Have you noticed how people love to see and applaud the AFTER photo but they are more interested in the BEFORE part of the story?

Think about it.

On weight-loss shows, it’s the unhealthy person, struggling to be fit, that’s fun to watch. The finished-fit product, the AFTER, is the end. The struggle is over, so is the story.

Home remodel shows (which deep down I really like to watch) are all about documenting the BEFORE: a horrible house, a vision from the expert and turning that vision into reality. The finished-furnished product, the AFTER, is the end. No more transformation, no more story. It’s full of ooooo’s and ahhhhh’s – as well as stagnation.

The world is full of examples like this. Happily ever AFTER, right? Why stay interested. Close the book.

There’s something powerful and engaging about someone that’s on a path to bigger and better things.

I believe it’s because we are fascinated by people that are brave enough and dedicated enough to face challenges when they are weak. I deeply respect the BEFORE version of people.

Why? Because its easier to be great after you’ve crossed the finish line. It’s a whole different thing to be great when you haven’t crossed the finish line yet. Vision-casting, dedication, fortitude, and all-out-grit is required and not everyone is willing to practice these attributes.

I had this “BEFORE” shirt made up as a reminder to myself that I’m still on the upward climb to where I’m going. I haven’t peaked.

During my 20s, I set a lot of goals for myself. Some centered around family, others around career and income, several around fitness and others for travel.

As I started to reach more and more of these goals I could feel my motivation levels for growth start to decline. That’s when I decided I needed a new set of goals, making now my BEFORE moment, and a new-envisioned AFTER photo to push me. In other words, I added more chapters of struggle to my book to keep me interested.

Truthfully, I enjoy the struggle of my climb more than I enjoy the celebration on the summit. The struggle is what builds strength. It’s odd to say, but there’s comfort in knowing that there’s more struggle left, that there’s more to go and grow.

One day I’ll have an “After” shirt made up but I’ve got a lot of milestones that I’m going to achieve between now and then.Tell the t-shirt printers that they can hold off for a few. I’ll be rocking this one for a while.

Are you in the middle of your journey and want someone to check in with you weekly on your goals? Hit me up @justinklingler. I’ll gladly support you, and no I’m not selling anything. Your story is important to me too.

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