“Lucky for you girls, I’m not from California, which means we’ll actually get something done today.” These were the words out of our surf instructor’s mouth yesterday as my friend Lisa and I followed him, boards stacked on our heads, across the boardwalk and onto the beach.

If I’ve learned anything over these past months during which I’ve been submersed in the realm of personal development, it’s that the best way to learn, get shit done, grow and improve is really to jump in and get going, even when you aren’t entirely sure what you’re doing.

But even though rationally I knew it’d be best to “hit the beach running” so to speak, I was still a little nervous. How much exactly are we going to get done today? 

Surfing, as I’d imagined it, was one of those sports in which the learning process should not be rushed. I mean, waves are powerful. Strange creatures live in the ocean. Figuring out stance, board positioning, and balance are tricky. What if I wipe out and hit my head on something, then what?

And yet, after no more than 5 minutes of pretend paddling and learning to get up on our boards on dry land, we were in the water. Here we go . . . 

To my surprise and relief, I didn’t find surfing to be as terrifying as skateboarding or snowboarding (okay, so I’ve never actually tried snowboarding, but skiing is certainly terrifying)! It seems that people are always pointing out how similar these sports are, but to me, losing balance and falling off the board in water is so much less scary (mostly because it’s less painful) than falling on hard ground. Plus, at least in the beginning, it seems the runs are much shorter in surfing (you know, because us beginners catch small waves and attempt to ride them in for all of 10 seconds until we reach the shore).

What’s more, I found I really enjoyed the challenge! I was completely out of my comfort zone, being tossed in the waves and wiping out all over the place. I got salt water in my eyes, and up my nose, and lodged in my ears. I banged up my elbow and jammed my thumb. But, I was having a blast!

And, I was determined to stay on my board, catch a wave on my own, and stand up.

This is the ultimate growth mindset. This is the mindset that says “I’m not good at this yet, this is challenging and does not come easily to me, but I will get better.” This is the mindset to carry into all aspects of life and apply to all goals, no matter how big or small.

This is how we get the most out of life!

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By pushing out of our comfort zones and continually putting forth our best effort, even when things get rough or we are not immediately successful, we are often able to surprise ourselves in being able to do things we hadn’t previously thought possible!

By the end of the surf lesson, I had stood up on my board multiple times. Look at me! I’m surfing!! I even caught the last wave in, all by myself. ♥

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