How To Suck and Still Be On Top

Ahem, disregarding the highly suggestive title of this post…

I’m going to tell you how to suck and still be on top…in a personal development sort of way. Only.


I got this idea from reading Death by risk-aversion on the always good Creating Passionate Users. While Kathy talks about risk aversion in the state of companies, you can also read it through as it applies to you, personally.

While I expounded on how important it is to your personal growth to stretch, she says it this way;

Here’s where the Buddhists have an edge. Too many of us hold on to practices or ideas (including sacred cows) long past their sell-by date. If it doesn’t serve us any longer, it’s time to give it up no matter how well it served us in the past.

Of course, “letting go” means temporarily experiencing that painful, awkward, “I suck” stage again. But pro athletes do it if they want to break through plateus. Go players do it to move up in ranks. Musicians let go of habits and styles. Programmers do it (waterfall anyone?). Writers do it. Anyone who has switched from skiing to snowboarding (or switched from regular to “goofy foot”) has learned to let go.

There! That’s stretching to a T. How comfy are you with sucking, and sucking bad? Because anytime you take a risk and do something outside of your comfort zone, something new that you’ve never done before, chances are you’re going to suck, and suck bad.


Remember, anything worth doing is worth doing badly…at first.

I’m expounding on stretching again and again because I sincerely believe it is the one principle that will virtually guarantee you accelerate your personal growth beyond anything you can imagine. I’ve seen it work in my own life and in the lives of so many others. It is, quite literally, a matter of stretch or die. Because if you’re not growing, you’re dying.

When was the last time you took a good risk that stretched you and grew you? What is something new you’ve always wanted to do but have held yourself back saying ‘oh, but I’d suck so bad at it’? Be willing to suck, even if it’s uncomfortable at first. Because that’s what will keep you on top in the end. And that’s a conclusion I hope you’ve come to, again and again by now ;D

9 Responses to “Fast and Effective Ways for Coping with Stress”

  1. Julie Melillo
    November 9 2008 at 5:50 am #

    I really enjoyed this post. It’s easy to forget how powerful our physical reactions are! I like your approach here. Especially reminding the reader that we are not always ready for change — though we think we are! I agree that the real failure is letting fear stop us. Thanks for posting this!

  2. karen parsons
    November 9 2008 at 6:46 pm #

    Hi Julie,

    Thank you for your kind words. I am glad it was helpful! “Coping with Stress” is a part of a series of articles on Stress that I have written, hopefully Life Coaches Blog will be posting the rest. So keep in touch!

    Kindest regards,


  3. Jill R.
    November 10 2008 at 6:55 am #

    This is a great article. I especially like the list of symptoms… some of which a lot of people may not recognize as a sign of stress.

    It’s also important to continue with your stress managment activities even when there are no signs or symptoms of stress. Doing this will help you become stressed less often and ward off stress before it even begins.

  4. karen parsons
    November 10 2008 at 5:48 pm #

    Hi Jill,

    Absolutely, it should be a way of life! Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.

    Kindest regards,


  5. yvonne
    July 1 2009 at 10:36 pm #

    Great site!!!!! Good health is very important with the high cost of medical coverage. We need to have a healther lifestyle by taking care of our health eating and exercising. I am a cancer survivor and I know. Our health is our greatest asset. Keep up the Good Work!!!!!

  6. Rev. Dr. Bush
    January 16 2010 at 1:03 pm #

    The physical body does not differentiate between happy stress and overwhelm. Stress is stress. We need to develop coping mechanisms in our daily life to avoid the harmful, physiological effects of stress.


  1. Live Without Work - April 17 2009

    7 Great Personal Development Blogs…

    For today’s post I’ve compiled a list of some must read personal development / productivity / life enhancing blogs that I frequently read myself! The list is in no particular order, but I have given 3 recommended readings per blog. Have a …

  2. Solopreneur Productivity :: Featured General :: 7 Great Personal Development Blogs - May 19 2009

    […] Fast and Effective Ways for Coping with Stress […]

  3. Coping with stress « FavPanel - June 23 2009

    […] it and reflect, and think you have the will and discipline to do something about that. Points of the article is don’t let stress becomes our way of living. What a good […]