I recently came across a story about an ultra-marathoner and endurance athlete named David Higgens. In the article, David shares his approach to mental toughness which he says is crucial to long distance running. I connected with the article, because I often compare a fundraising campaign to a marathon. In fundraising, we must find strategies to keep going, despite the walls that we may hit. I love this quote from David describing how it pushes past a wall.
In a race, you hit several walls. Every time you hit a wall, it’s a big deciding factor in that race, or in life, if you’re not running. You have a big decision to make. You can either stop at that wall and go parallel left or parallel right. You are looking for that door. When you get to that door you have another decision to make. Should I open it or should I keep it closed. If you keep it closed you made the decision to quit. If you open that door you made the decision to carry on, to continue on your journey or mission, whatever you’re on. I always open that door! Once you open that door, and you go through it, your mind resets and it gives you a few more miles.”
So, next time you are fundraising and you hit a wall, find a new direction. Go to the right. Go to the left. But whatever you do, don’t give up. Eventually you will discover that special door. And when you do find it. Go through it. What lies ahead will be well worth it.