Let’s fix high goalposts

What happened to that old piece of advice “study as though you want to get an A grade, that way you will be sure to get a C grade, but don’t just study to get a C, because you will probably then fail the exam”? If the answer to this question is “at school” or even “at university” then we are beginning to get diverted. This might well have been a one-off recommendation at the time, but it is a timeless piece of advice that can actually help us at any time in our life. It’s for life in general. When we stop living to get an A and we only look towards the C, we are missing out on a large number of the experiences that are in waiting for us.

Let’s aim for the top and do our best to get there. Let’s fix high goalposts. We probably won’t reach them, but we will surely progress and grow in our attempt, and we will be better by the end than we were at the beginning. That’s what it is all about: to reach the goal, to get to wherever we can depending on our own potential and circumstances and making sure that the roof of our objective is not being lowered by us before we have checked where it really is.

Let’s fix high goalposts. We probably won’t reach them, but we will surely progress and grow in our attempt Click To Tweet

It is thought that physical disability, to name but one factor, is limiting. It certainly could be in some ways, but this – or any other – will never be as limiting as that which comes from the person who decides to reduce their own personal commitment, who prefers to lower the goalposts to avoid knocking them down and without knowing that the only thing that this does is not allow them to explore and discover their own limits. They close the door to a journey that brings happiness to us all. A journey which we will make if we believe in ourselves as much as, or even more than, others believe in us, and if at the same time we demand from ourselves even more than others expect from us.

As Javier the founding President of our Association will explain in future articles, only then can attempts to “storm heaven” like swimming in a Paralympic final – at the age of 33 and without previous training before the age of 30 – be understood. The fact that there were no modern precedents only meant that it would not be easy but not that it would be impossible and therefore something not to be attempted. It is clear that nothing can depend on just one individual – none of us live in a vacuum – but a lot more depends on us than we think, if that is we can dare to believe in ourselves and to test our own limits. Let’s put the bar back up where it belongs.

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