This past Saturday we returned from a short trip to discover we have bed bugs.
Which (as Christina says) is kind of like finding out your house has an STD.
The process we’ve endured since and will likely endure for a few days more has reminded me of the danger of sunk costs and the power of commitment.
But to explain that I need to tell you about bed bugs…
BED BUGS ARE INSIDIOUS CREATURES THAT ARE INCREDIBLY HARD TO KILL
They can live for a year without feeding.
They are resistant to pesticides.
They can hide anywhere that’s the width of a business card.
They can lay 2 eggs a day and 200 eggs in a lifetime.
(If your skin isn’t crawling yet, I’m amazed.)
The only reliable way to kill bed bugs is to gradually heat your entire home to 150 degrees for several hours.
For a three-bedroom house, this cost is north of a few grand and requires extensive prep work.
MY ONE-MAN BED BUG CRUSADE
For the past two days, I’ve been fighting the bed bugs as a solo job.
I’ve bagged all of our bedroom belongings.
I have frozen bags.
I have spread desiccating powder.
I have vacuumed live bed bugs, nymphs, and eggs.
I have gone above and beyond the call of duty in fighting the bed bugs.
Having done all of this, I’m 90% sure we’ve killed 90% of the bugs and I’m 90% sure they are still only living in our bedroom.
BUT THAT 10% IS A B*TCH
Last night I went into our quarantined bedroom to make an inspection.
I found a couple live bugs and a few nymphs.
BUT they were hiding in a place I hadn’t seen before.
I felt incredibly defeated.
I thought I had ID’d their main infestation point.
I WAS SURE I’d gotten most of them.
YES I think I’m winning, but is it fast enough?
Part of me wanted to throw in the towel and call the guys with the industrial heaters.
Part of me wanted to continue the fight.
And this part of me is the part I found fascinating.
MY AMAZING EGO
I mostly wanted to continue fighting for two reasons:
1) I don’t like wasting money. I feel great when I get a deal and when I save some CASH. Even saving a dollar on TP makes me feel like an evil genius.
2) I don’t like to admit I was wrong.
If I hire the heaters now it means all of the bagging, powdering, vacuuming, quarantining was for NAUGHT.
It means I was doing all of that in vain. And I JUST HATE feeling like I’ve wasted time.
But then I realized something else…
THE BED BUGS DON’T CARE
They don’t care about my efforts, they don’t care about what I’ve tried, they only care about two things – feeding and reproducing.
They are either ALL DEAD or ALIVE that’s it.
And this is what commitment is like as well.
You are either committed or you aren’t.
Over and over when I look back on my life I can see these little shining moments where I committed.
It happened when I joined a high-level mastermind hosted by Rich Litvin I couldn’t afford.
It happened when I flew to New York with flowers to surprise Christina and tell her I wanted to be with her.
It happened when I hired my coach Jeff Riddle three years ago and it happened again when I hired my coach Hans just a few months ago.
Commitment creates magic and half commitment creates a few bed bugs that multiply.
My resistances, my doubts, my “I’ll do it when’s,” my “I’m not ready’s,” my “maybe this will be just another’s”. . .
They all hang out and multiply until I commit.
And yet some part of me keeps thinking that I can do just enough that the bed bugs in me will just give up and go away.
BUT THAT’S NOT HOW COMMITMENT WORKS
Being ready, creating what you want, transformation that lasts, doesn’t proceed commitment, it SPRINGS from it.
There will always be reasons not to commit, there will always be costs you spent preparing to commit that didn’t pay off, there will always be your ego telling you that this will fail like everything else, or that you should have committed already and gotten the results.
But none of these are commitment.
ONLY COMMITMENT IS COMMITMENT
When I sign a client, when I enroll someone into the Dojo, when I hire a coach, 90% of the magic happens at the moment we commit.
The beg bugs crawling from the walls and turning up dead on the floor, the feeling of safety and peace, and the amazing results happen because we commit, not before we commit.
I WISH it was the other way.
If it was, change would be easy, transformation second nature, and exponential growth an everyday occurrence.
But if you leave a few bed bugs alive… if you let yourself believe that “maybe later” the commitment will be easier to make… if you put it off, this thing you know deep down is something you need to do… The doubts, worries, and fears don’t go away. More often than not they grow.
BECAUSE bed bugs can lay 2 eggs a day and 200 in a lifetime…
And bed bugs are nature…
And nature is what keeps us from leaving the old ways we know we can survive…
And becoming the people we so deeply long to be.