There are many learning styles, and over the years I’ve discovered that I learn best by doing. I can memorize facts and statistics after hearing or reading them, but to me, nothing beats rolling up my sleeves and trying something new for myself.

Because I learn by doing, I find opportunities to learn in everyday activities – like playing golf. While recently playing a round, I found myself needing to hit the ball over a pond to reach the green. My partner asked what ball I was using, and then suggested I switch to an older, cheaper ball in case it went into the water. Granted, I wasn’t playing that well – it was the first time I played this season – but I wasn’t about to prepare to take the shot as if I were going to fail.

This made me think – how often do we set ourselves up for failure? The meeting with a potential client that we pass up because we don’t think we have a chance at closing the deal, the job we don’t apply for because we don’t think we have a shot, or the person across the room we don’t talk to because we’re afraid they won’t like us. Why do we let fear prevent us from taking chances and instead stick to what’s safe?

I didn’t switch balls. And you know what? I not only made it past the hazard, but I landed on the green. Because I believed I could. Don’t sell yourself short. Work hard, and be confident in your abilities. I’ve learned that you’ll never hit the target if you don’t take the shot. So give it all you’ve got!

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