From the moment my RUNNERS WORLD magazine arrived last month, I have been thinking about how to create a newsletter around the interesting topic of STREAKING. For those in your late 50s and above, the words "running and streaking" may draw up a memory of the 1974 Ray Steven's song "They Call Him the Streak." (It was nominated for country music's top single and top album of the year.) Life was much simpler back then, and for those who want to take a trip down memory lane or are just curious about what in the world I'm talking about, we have provided the link to Ray's video at the end of this newsletter.
For those a bit younger, you may have been introduced to one form of streaking from Will Ferrell, as I was reminded when I received this meme after talking about the concept with some clients. Thank you Tony!
If possible, I would like to ask you to put that version of streaking out of your head at least for the time being. The RUNNER'S WORLD magazine was reminding its readers, who of course would mainly be made up of runners, of the value in running every day, tracking progress, and developing run streaks. Jess Movold, a RUNNER'S WORLD coach, talked about her experience with streaking in an article in the May issue: ". . . streaking is about more than just piling on miles. It is powerful and life changing. As my first streak went on, each day, I felt more accomplished. I felt more capable. I felt proud. Each day was a victory." Stop for a moment, and read that excerpt over again. A run streak of any length with its consistency would be valuable to any of us. Yet many may not be runners, may not enjoy it, or may not be physically able for running. The article made me wonder what other kind of streaks you and I could begin today that would help us capture that same feeling that "EACH DAY WAS A VICTORY." As you continue reading, we will find a list of ideas that we have compiled from what we have been able to observe in successful individuals, teams, and companies over the past several decades. Before we present that list, I wanted to give you some food for thought of what streaks may have already helped or hindered us from accomplishing our goals. Finally, I would really like to hear stories of streaks you are currently committed to or have achieved in the past that you would recognize as powerful and life changing.
The Negative and Positive Effects of Lifelong Streaking
As I am writing this, I realize I may have just ended a STREAK that I was on. I am not a fan of using the thesaurus when I write. I believe the word thesaurus itself may have origins from some word centuries ago that referred to trying to confuse someone or for one to sound smarter than they really are. I went to the thesaurus, and what did I find about the word streak? . . . nothing! At least nothing on the "streak" I am currently writing about. I did find it under the heading of "slang" with a definition for streak as the continuous days somebody connected with someone else on Snapchat. After reading that, I felt a new streak concerning my use of the thesaurus starts again . . . NOW! This does, however, offer up freedom to apply some of my own synonyms to the term "STREAK" that may help you and me choose to be aware of the streaks we are on. Let's consider the following possibilities:
Habit, consistent, intentional, tracking of an action, and if we wanted to stretch it a bit more . . . character defining.
Possibly expanding on these words will define how streaking can have a negative effect or positive impact. What if as a four-year old child we realized that when we did not get the attention we were desiring, we would do something that intentionally got it for us? Writing on the wall with a crayon, crying at the checkout line of the grocery store for a treat, or acting hurt when told no could have all become the actions we took to somehow receive the response or reward we were looking for: in this case, attention. Our conscious minds begin to intentionally take that negative action and get the desired result to the point that over time this becomes an unconscious action or habit that defines an aspect of our character. Probably each of us has some sort of streak that has gone on now unconsciously for years that is hindering our performance or keeping us from achieving the goals we desire. As adults, instead of writing with crayons on the wall, we may intentionally fall short in our performance until somebody gives us what we want. Instead of crying, we may complain to our co-workers; or instead of feeling hurt, we get mad and quit again because the manager is a jerk. The challenge of these lifelong negative streaks is they take a very self-aware person or a very honest friend or manager holding up the mirror or "runners log" to realize what has happened. It then takes the willingness to start a positive streak by taking the first steps and starting at "one" followed by the courage to go as long as it takes to benefit from the life-changing effects of a positive, intentional, and consistent streak.
In contrast to this, what if our negative actions were never rewarded with the desired result we wanted as a child or young adult, newlywed, or professional just starting or advancing a career? What if we were fortunate enough to realize and see that positive actions produced the positive results and rewards we were looking for just like the Runner's World coach benefited from running every day? Then in helping others learn to do the same, we would have the confidence to begin and continue building on the foundation these positive streaks have established for us.
Below is a list of potential streaks you could begin, either to change the results of a negative streak you have been on or to build upon the success of a positive one. We offer these as examples and hope you will click on the link below to share your stories of the streaks you have been on to claim a victory every day.
- How many days in a row could you help get homework finished before a desired activity?
- How many days in a row will you commit to at least one hour of unstructured activity, even if it's just watching them play.
- How many days in a row can you creatively reduce screen time to a desired amount?
- How long will you help your child continue a positive streak they are on?
- For more ideas on how to engage your children in getting outside every day, check out the Come Alive Outside Passports program.
As a SPOUSE:
- How many days in a row can you get a half-hour of quiet time alone with each other?
- How many weeks can you go with taking one mini vacation each weekend? It can be a bike ride, a picnic, a bonfire or a host of other things.
- How many days in a row will you accomplish at least one household chore?
- How many days in a row can you enjoy an exercise/health activity together?
As an EMPLOYEE:
- How many days in a row will you be on time and prepared for your workday?
- How many months can you reach your department or individual goals?
- How many days can you go completing everything on your to-do list?
As a MANAGER/LEADER:
- How many months in a row can you complete individual one-on-one coaching sessions?
- How many days in a row will you review goals and progress with the team?
- How many days in a row will you write a thank you note to a customer or team member?
As a SALESPERSON:
- How many weeks in a row can you make a sale?
- How many days in a row will you thank a member of your support team?
- How many days in a row can you ask for a referral?
As an INDIVIDUAL:
- How many days in a row will you keep your scheduled workout routine?
- How many days in a row can you read something that inspires you?
- How many days in row can you cut bread out of your diet?
It is evident that there could be an endless list of positive streaks we can begin, with each one providing a variety of benefits, while at the same time offering a powerful and life-changing experience, feeling more capable and accomplished every day the streak continues.
Click the link below to quickly tell us about a streak you are currently on or one from your past (and if it is running naked down Main Street after a college party, you may want to hold on to that one). If we get enough input, maybe a future People Solutions newsletter can share the input we get from you.
Let's Start a Streak Together
Let's see how far we can all go together. The JP Horizons team is getting involved with 100 Miles in 100 Days, and we challenge you, your family, department, or team to get involved with us. Let's all of us get on a wonderful streak of a mile a day and see what impact it has on us and others after three months.
100 MILES, 100 DAYS
June 26 - October 3
Sign up to walk 1 mile a day for 100 days! You'll receive a free logbook in the mail to help you track your progress and also have a chance to win prizes along the way. Be part of a community of people making it a habit to get outside and walk for their physical and mental health!
Register online at
AND AS PROMISED, with the risk of breaking our streak of trying to always be politically correct, here is the link to Ray Stevens and "The Streak."