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  • Writer's pictureJamie Gustafson

A New Run is Rough. A New Project is Rough.

Today, I went for a run. The first quarter of a mile is always rough—like when I start any new project. It’s something I have to settle into, finding my rhythm and pace.

When I hit that initial discomfort, I remind myself to settle into my breath, to take in where I am, and to focus on my rhythm. It takes effort. Do I look at my watch? No, I look inward. I become the process—settle in, settle in.

This experience brings me back to my first week of boot camp. We had people who were several weeks ahead of us come to talk. One of the questions asked was, “Does it get easier?” The answer was simple but profound—“No, but you get used to it.” Life is about settling in—not fighting, but becoming, creating, and connecting.

A new run is rough. A new project is rough.

There are parts and things that have just not settled in yet. But once a rhythm is set and the process of step, lift, and forward movement is clearly established and repeated, it gets better each time. Once the mind, body, heart, and soul work together, just like a team, a run becomes an experience. Similarly, a project then becomes a service or a product.

The initial phase of any endeavor, whether it’s running or starting a new project, is always challenging. The key is to find your rhythm and keep pushing forward. The process might not get easier, but you adapt and grow stronger. You settle in.

Life, in many ways, is about finding this rhythm.

Instead of resisting the initial discomfort, we need to lean into it, embrace it, and allow ourselves to become part of the process. Over time, what once felt insurmountable becomes second nature. We create, we connect, and we move forward.

Just as a runner finds their stride, a team working on a new project finds its rhythm. Each step, each breath, each moment of effort contributes to the overall progress. We become the process, and in doing so, we transform. A new run is rough. A new project is rough. But in settling in, we find our way, and what once felt like a struggle becomes a seamless flow.

In this way, running and managing projects share a common thread. They both require patience, persistence, and the willingness to endure initial discomfort. But the rewards, both physical and mental, are immense. It’s in settling in that we find our strength, our creativity, and our connection.

The next time you find yourself at the start of a new run or a new project, remember to settle in.

Focus on your breath, your rhythm, and your process.

Become the experience, and you’ll find that, over time, it transforms into something extraordinary.

Running - Settling In - Business Projects
Running - Settling In - Business Projects

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