"Backwards, longline," said the four-time barefoot water ski World Champion, David Small. I was on a lake in Winter Haven, Florida, getting back on my feet with barefoot water skiing following a 9-month rehabilitation after ACL replacement surgery.

I shot him an incredulous look. "Are you crazy? I don't think I'm ready for that."

"Get back there and try it," he said.

I was dubious to say the least, but after a couple of tries, I found myself barefoot water skiing backwards behind the boat for the first time in my life. And right then and there, I learned a valuable lesson: a coach will push you toward your dream, even when you think you're not ready for the next step. 

A few days later, another lesson popped up. I again expressed doubt about doing a new trick on the water. "The moment you think you can't, then you can't," said my coach. "You have to change your thinking and believe you can." I didn't master the trick, but I came several steps closer. My thinking had definitely changed.

I've been fortunate to have all kinds of mentors and coaches in my life. And now that I'm on my own journey as a Passion Coach, I'm learning several valuable lessons as I engage in this process of coaching others. The most valuable lesson of all comes from the mentors and coaches who have encouraged me to step out of my comfort zone time and time again to reach for new heights and new experiences. There have been times I've stumbled along the process, but every single time I get myself into something new and uncomfortable, I've grown in ways I could have never imagined before.

So if you find yourself in a place in life where you've grown complacent and stagnant, find a coach who will help you unwrap a whole new journey.

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Comment by Karen Putz on November 1, 2012 at 8:09pm

Thank you for your kind words, Rob! This was an eye opener for me-- and it gave me a better insight on how I can help others see beyond their own doubt in my coaching biz.

Comment by Robert Clinton on November 1, 2012 at 4:12pm

Karen, absolutely! A great coach believes in you even if you doubt yourself. They know you have it in you and if you can just get past the breaking point of uncertainty, you'll astound yourself. I'm inspired by you and your story; way to get out there and do it.

Comment by Karen Putz on October 30, 2012 at 8:55am

Peter, I love Dan's wisdom too! I find myself randomly opening pages of his books and I find myself inspired all over again each time.

I bet you feel amazing after you push those limits with your trainer!

Comment by Peter A Ferguson on October 30, 2012 at 7:20am

You lost me at barefoot waterskiing - forget the backwards part. One day I will actually ski with skis on my feet. For now that is the challenge :-)

I have a personal trainer who is as insane and constantly pushing me to limits I have mistakenly placed upon myself. 

Dan's voice on podcasts, audio books, and in person with you last May also extend me past self-dehibilating limits I thought I would not be able to overcome. 

Thanks for the post - and I'm glad you are where it is warm enough to ski (in the water). 


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