You may have heard the story of a bucket of crabs before. If not, you’re in for a treat as this story is one that I think about often – not just when it comes to working out and eating healthy. We think of it when it comes to our business, my faith/spirituality, and our lofty goals.
Here’s the story…
I was walking down a pier in Florida one summer and noticed a fisherman sitting near the edge. As I walked by I noticed he had a bucket full of crabs.
The fisherman seemed focused on his line and the expanse of the ocean that was before him. I don’t think he realized that the crabs were about to crawl right out of the bucket as it had no lid.
Being the helpful person that I am, I decided to tell the fisherman that he was about to lose his crabs.
The fisherman turned around to face me. He looked down at the bucket full of crabs and said, “Oh, they won’t go anywhere. If I just had one crab in there it could easily crawl out. But if you put more than one crab in a bucket… well they won’t let anyone get away.”
As he talked to me, I stared into the bucket. And sure enough as one crab climbed to the top of the pack and was close to the top… the other crabs pinched at him and pulled him back down.
We all have crabs in our life.
That person or those people that don’t want to see you succeed.
The friend, well-meaning or not, who laughs at you when you tell her you’ve joined a new personal training program.
The in-law that scoffs at your effort to become a better parent by attending a weekend workshop.
The spouse that sabotages your new healthy eating routine by bringing sugary, fatty, and bad foods into the house.
Your co-workers who now talk behind your back because you got a promotion and they didn’t.
We all have crabs that want to keep us where we are – not because it’s good for us, but because it makes them feel better about themselves and where they are.
Bettering ourselves in any capacity (health, career, parenting…) is not for the faint of heart. It takes commitment, determination, encouragement, and a steadfast resolution.
Never let crabs pull you away from your goals and your dreams. When you think of your life a year from today… where do you want to be?
Pursue that vision at all costs.