Fessing Up

The Americans have an unpleasant phrase: to “fess up”, or admit what the issue is and take responsibility for it.  It isn’t a nice thing to have to do.

Running a long way isn’t nice either.  The first time you do it your heart pounds, you get hot and sweaty, your lungs feel like they are going to invert, your brain screams at you to stop, it is not a pleasant experience.

But there are people who can run marathons, plenty of them. How do they do it?

When I started to run I picked a four mile route and I set off, after about ½ a mile I got all the symptoms, (particularly the thing with my lungs) and I stopped, I stopped by a post box on the Newmarket Rd.

Two days later I ran again, I ran all the way to the post box and then I ran a couple of hundred yards further until I came to the ring road, then I “had” to stop to cross the road, and as I had “had” to stop I had a bit of a walk, it seamed wise to take the opportunity.

The next time I went that little bit further.   I sprinted across the ring road with gay abandon.

After a couple of weeks of this I could run all four miles without stopping.  How?  Because I “fessed up”, I held myself accountable to my performance and pushed myself just that little further each day.

It would have been easy to have a beer instead, to watch the TV, to read a book. But I didn’t.

The morale of the story?  Unless you “fess up” to yourself and those around you, you will never get any better.

That doesn’t make it nice though.

Fessing Up

Image by Marcel Masferrer Pascual


  1. No but it has to be done.

    Classic Deming PDCA, particularly the C bit

    You can’t improve with out it, can you?

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