The little girl started to cry. Her eyes swelled with tears. She kicked the inverted climbing wall in frustration. She cried out aloud: “I can’t do…I can’t.. do…I can’t do it…… I don’t want to do it anymore.”
An hour earlier, the KIDS XX RACE was buzzing with energetic kids running through the indoor obstacle course. The little girl was not one of them. The little girl and her mom were running late from a soccer game and then got lost on the way to iMETTLE.
The girl was allowed to run the Kids XX RACE alongside an iMETTLE coach, with her Mom following her and cheering her on. The little girl smiled when she ran. She was without a care in the world until she would reach an obstacle. Each obstacle she would ask. “How do I do this obstacle? I have never done it before.” and each time the coach would offer some coaching: You can figure it out, if you need help I will be here.”
She was able to conquer most of the obstacles, until she stood there in front of the inverted climbing wall. The goal of the inverted climbing wall is to scale the wall climbing sideways toward the other side. The obstacle is completed when you can ring the cow bell.
The little girl stood in front of the wall with her hands covering her face.
The coach leaned in and whispered in her ear.
The little girl smiled and climbed back on the wall. She would climb up on the wall and would make some progress, but she ultimately would fall off. She climbed and failed a dozen times with smiles instead of tears.
“What did you whisper to her?” asked the astonished mom. The coach explained:
“Instead of saying ‘I can’t do it’ just say, ‘I will, I will someday’.”
The little girl was not able to climb the inverted wall obstacle on that day. But she left with a smile saying:
“I will someday.”
Words are powerful. The stories we tell ourselves and to our children matter. The roots of negative self-talk run deep. We become what we believe. The stories we tell ourselves day in and day out take root in our thoughts and actions. Are you the hero in your story or the victim?
What happens when we rewrite our story by switching out “I can’t do it” to “I will do it” maybe not today, but with some effort someday.