09/10/2014 02:54 pm ET Updated Nov 10, 2014

Finding the Strength to Start: How to Find the Courage You Need

Over 10 years ago, I was heavily into distance running. From half marathons and marathons to ultra-marathons of up to 100 miles or more; I took it all on. At the time, the marathon was still the king of the distance events.

John Bingham was a gentleman who was very popular for beginners taking on this distance, and at the time went by the moniker of "The Penguin," a title earned due to his unique running style. John's entire mission was to help get people to the finish of a marathon. His start in this realm came when he took on running as a way to assist a friend of his in improving their health.

When people would make comments to John about the courage it takes to complete a marathon, his answer was always the same, "The miracle isn't that I had the courage to finish, it's that I had the courage to start." It is a simple statement, that one that holds a lesson for just about all of us.

Bingham is on to something with this statement, and it's not just about running, although that is his domain. What John does is take he takes people who never thought they could cover the 26.2 miles of a marathon and he gets them to the finish line. Many of our current and past students have faced similar fears when considering how they can change their lives, and the lives of their families. This includes investing or starting a business around real estate and paper assets -- stocks, options and more.

The same sentiment is reiterated in the popular Chinese maxim that "A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step." This ancient statement is telling us is that it is the process of getting started that counts. A single step is a good start, but in order to find success, we must make the decision to start, and to start to move towards the finish.

This same message is also echoed in many self-improvement and self-help programs, as experts from all different realms and backgrounds have found that this idea of getting started is the key to success.

Over the years, our team has observed that there is one thing that our successful students and customers have, and it has nothing to do with intelligence, background or capital. Success all boils down to who is prepared to take action and who is not. No one is expected to find success in an instant, in fact, you should allow time to absorb and take in information. No matter how long it takes, it is important to remember that starting or taking action is the key to succeeding.

Our team encourages a similar approach when it comes to goal setting and achieving. We encourage everyone we work with to determine first, what the goal is, and second, how to get started. Next comes the monitoring progress, and and the commitment to growing and making adjustments on a pretty continuous basis. Growing, changing and monitoring are all essential components to growth, but it all depends on first finding the strength and courage to take that first step and to start your own journey.