The Leadership Blog

Life is like a 10-speed bike...Most of us have gears we never use

Jun 11, 2023

I had a 10-speed bike as a kid, but I rarely used anything above the third gear.  Peanuts comic strip writer Charles Schulz once said, 

“Life is like a 10-speed bike.  Most of us have gears we never use.” Charles Schulz

That’s heart wrenching to me.   I want to use everything inside of me to make a positive impact on this world.  Don’t you?  Please say yes.  Then, the first thing we need to do is become aware of how to do that.  The key is to increase our capacity which is our ability to get things done.

Benjamin Franklin said, “if you want something done, ask a busy person.”  Why do busy people get the most done?  They’ve found the way to blow the lid off their capacity and you can too.

New York Times bestselling author John Maxwell wrote the book No Limits-Blow the Cap Off Your Capacity.  While you definitely need to read the book for yourself, I’ve got some tips from it to help you get started.  It starts with this secret recipe.


If you truly want to reach your capacity, which allows you to reduce your stress then you’ve got to realize that change is necessary.  Your capacity and your potential can absolutely grow but you won’t get there by doing the same things you’ve always done.

In his book, Maxwell tells us to never assume that we’ve arrived.  Becoming self-aware is essential to you reaching your capacity.  Here are some things that prevent us from developing great awareness.


*Talking without listening

*Unresolved negative emotions

*Unwilling to pay the price to gain experience

*Habitual self-distraction

When we successfully avoid doing those things we’ve got to make choices that maximize our possibilities. Here are three important steps.

  1.  Responsibility Capacity-Your choice to take charge of your life.
  2.  Attitude Capacity- Your choice to be positive regardless of your circumstances.
  3.  Growth Capacity- Your choice to focus on how far you can go.

There are so many more tips I want to share but I’m running out of space.  I’ll leave you with the rule of five.  What five things do you need to do EVERY day to accomplish difficult tasks?

  1.  Intentionality- decide what I want to accomplish?
  2.  Practicality-  how will I accomplish it?
  3.  Focus- how many things will I do?
  4.  Action- what action will I take?
  5.  Consistency- how often will I do it?  The best answer...Every day!

These may seem too simplistic to actually lead you to growing your capacity, but that’s where you’d be wrong.  The reason you don’t grow your capacity is because you don’t take the simple steps necessary every single day.  You can grow your capacity.  I’ve followed these steps and seen great gains in my ability to accomplish things I never thought possible and you can too, if you take action right now.  You can’t manage your life, if you can’t manage yourself.

If you’re tired of the limits in your life, then guess what?  You’re in the perfect place to create the change necessary to make the extraordinary impact you want to make on our world.  The world needs you to blow the lid off your capacity.   I can’t wait to see how you make a greater impact on your life and how it will help those around you.  It’s worth the effort.  I promise.