Don’t Expect to SEE a Change if You Don’t MAKE One

by / Monday, May 15, 2017 / Published in Motivation

There’s nothing like having a clear goal. It provides you with something to look forward to when you need a boost. It makes your mind race with anticipation as you plan for its achievement. And it lets you be creative as you look for opportunities to ensure its success. But there’s always a trade-off… to achieve a goal, change and action are required on your part. That’s a huge part of my message as a motivational speaker to any group that is struggling to get out of a rut or plateau. Any person or organization that seeks positive changes, must first MAKE purposeful changes.

Want to achieve a goal? Don't expect to see a change if you don't make one.

Yes, if you really want to achieve a goal, you have to give up some things. For example, in getting ready for the summer, you may want to put on some muscle. A lot of guys and girls watch what they eat some of the time, but very few know that it takes more than that to achieve their fitness goals. Maybe your goals won’t allow you to eat like everyone else and expect a different result. So you absolutely take actions that are specific to your fitness goals. This may mean staying home and preparing your own meals, or buying them already made if that’s an option. Even if your friends get together to grab a burger or something else, you’ve got to be able to make sacrifices here and there to get where you want to go.

Part of your success includes being honest with yourself. If you have trouble with that, try identifying what is missing in your life and start there. I believe that “people don’t know what they don’t know,” but we have to make an effort to learn how to move forward. Sometimes, we have to find friends and family who can help us.

It’s important to do what must be done to reach your fitness goals. Some people talk about goals and then never do the things it takes to achieve them. It doesn’t benefit you to talk about it unless you put your words into ACTION! Just work to do everything you can to achieve your goals, and pay attention to the details that make all the difference.

If you’re feeling stuck as you try to achieve a goal, remember that you must TAKE ACTION TODAY FOR TOMORROWS RESULTS!

I recently interviewed an amazing young athlete from Kansas State University, quarterback Jesse Ertz. He suffered a knee injury that knocked him out his entire sophomore year. This last season, he led the Wildcats to a Texas Bowl victory, where he was named MVP. But his story is a great example of how today’s actions are tomorrow’s results. Here are some of the insights he shared.

How to achieve a goal – Jesse Ertz, QB and Texas Bowl MVP

Jesse Ertz, QB, Kansas State, was awarded Texas Bowl MVP.

I asked Jesse about that boogeyman that lurks behind most of us…the Fear of Failure:

“I had a major gut check! Before this season, there was a lot of stuff going through my head! I had already had 2 torn ACL surgeries. The last injury was my very first game on the very first play last year (2015 season). I knew this year that I had to be willing to go all in if I was going to make it! Do I go through all this work? I worked harder than I ever worked all my life! There was so much doubt. At times, it seemed really dark, like it wasn’t going to happen.
The first game was great and almost surreal! We were learning a lot as we were losing. Take that and learn to improve. Have faith and trust in God. Put in the work… it will pay off. Do your very best, you’re taking a leap, but if you put in the work, it’s going to pay off!”

I then asked him how he views success – what does it mean and how does one make it a habit?

“It’s not about being the best! It’s when you set a goal and you put everything into it! You give it your all! That’s the most important thing! You give it everything you have. Whatever you end up with, that is Success!

If you work extra hard and you aren’t promoted / get the job / win the national championship…you can’t control that. You keep working harder, and sooner or later you will be rewarded for that. Work as hard as you can and have a “Never Give Up” attitude. For example, there is a wall that is between you and what you want to achieve. When you keep working harder than you ever have, that will still be there, but it will get smaller and smaller. Through chipping away at it constantly, you will bring it down to a size where you can see what you want just on the other side. And eventually, you can just step over it to achieve your goals. The mental block and the physical wall that were holding you back are now behind you. As you accomplish more of your goals, you start to see you’re capable of much more that you thought!”

His definition of failure was just as impactful:

You didn’t stay committed to the goals you made. That’s failure!

“Commitment is staying true to what you said, even when the mood you set it in has left.”

You have to honest with yourself! If you just kind of want it, you will not make it happen. If you don’t do what you’ve committed to doing, then it’s your fault you didn’t achieve your goal…you didn’t give it everything you’ve got.

I’ve learned Persistence after all my injuries. I had to really buckle down and take it seriously. I’ve had to learn mostly from my own experiences! I have learned how to network with people and make friends to be successful in life. This year more than any other, I’ve learned the importance of hard work and Never Giving Up!

Jesse also left us with a powerful reminder of what success looks like from both sides…before the work has begun, and after achieving your goals.

Jesse Ertz, QB, K-State Wildcats“Last year when bowl games were going on, I was fresh out of surgery from a torn ACL. I was lying in bed with ice on my knee. One year later, we were 9-4, Champions of the Texas Bowl, and I was being honored with the MVP award! It was the hardest I’d worked in all my life! If you stay true to your goals, a year can make a huge difference.”

Jesse Ertz, K-State QB & Texas Bowl MVP, Houston, TX

You can read more about Jesse’s journey here.

“What are you going to do about it?”

We’ve all seen films where the hero is challenged by the villain with that question. And it’s usually when the situation looks darkest, and the protagonist needs a miracle. Well today, tomorrow, and for the rest of your life, YOU are the hero. But every day, you’ll have to answer the question: “what are you going to do about it?” Are you going to do what everyone else around you is doing, or are you going to put in the effort and make the sacrifice necessary to achieve great results? The ball is always in your court when you see things this way, and as Wayne Gretzky famously said, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” I’ve spoken to thousands of organizations, helping them make changes by recognizing that great results don’t come from a single great effort, but are the result of hundreds and thousands of purpose-driven actions that steer them to greatness. That means you don’t have to wait for anything…start today!

Keep Going for the GOLD! Never Give Up!
Kevin Saunders, motivational speaker
Kevin Saunders


Kevin Saunders is a World Champion Paralympian, motivational speaker, athlete (with multiple gold medals) and author. Kevin Saunders was the first person with a disability appointed to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness Sports (only 20 people are selected for this nationwide) by the President of the United States. Kevin Saunders was first chosen to be appointed to the prestigious Council by President George H.W. Bush and was the only person reappointed by to this Council by President Bill Clinton and he was reappointed again by President George W. Bush as a constituent expert to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports. Learn more about Kevin’s story and accomplishments.


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