Ah, the turtle. It’s often dismissed as a creature and I’m sure it’s often ridiculed as a college mascot. They seem so slow!

But while turtles may not win any speed records, they have several characteristics to which we should all aspire. In the farewell address of the University of Maryland President Wallace Loh, he talks about the Terrapin turtle (UMD’s mascot) and points out that it only walks forward. “And how does he do this?” Loh rhetorically asks. “One step at a time by sticking its neck out.”

Think of how your life would be different if you only walked forward. Instead of harboring regret, backtracking, reversing decisions or even standing still you could accomplish so much in your life by persisting one step at a time. You don’t have to be fast; you merely must be consistent.

Take a lesson from the misunderstood reptile. Forward, even slowly, is a great way to get ahead.

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