A few weeks ago we had a particularly cold snap for a day or two here in the beautiful northeastern portion of exotic Ohio. When the temp drops, like the good dad that I am, I begin assigning my son more and more random outside tasks, like grabbing the mail.
"Elias, step out and snag the mail, would you?"
"What? It's freezing out there. I'm not wearing any socks."
"Come on dude, man up!"
But it was the next line that caught our attention. My little two year old had been listening in on this exchange and decided to intervene with her very own call to action in her very own high yet tiny voice, "Yeah, man up man!"
We lost it.
The whole family laughed as she repeated it now for the attention. But it worked. Elias immediately stepped out into the frigid winds and grabbed the mail. I think we need this once in a while. A humorously motivating break in an otherwise mundane moment.
It wasn't an impossible task, and for most of us, many of the things we're hesitating doing aren't impossible or even unreasonable, they're simply beyond what we're comfortable with and it takes that small but mighty voice within (and sometimes from without) to step up and do it.
In We Bought A Zoo Mr. Lee gives his brother credit for a wildly simple action step when prompted by a challenge. Twenty seconds. That's all it takes to take the first step toward a goal, a challenge, a healthy and bold and awesome desire. Twenty seconds of courage and you're off.
So, like Joanna said, "Man up man!" And take the next twenty seconds to take the leap.