I hear it from clients from time to time.

I’m sorry I let you down.

It happens after a rough stretch where they fail to hit the process targets required to reach their goals, and the calendar is now their enemy.

I tell them that life happens and they haven’t let me or even themselves down.

Because whatever week we’re at in our plan, it’s still just the third quarter.

I remember a Pittsburgh Steelers game when legendary coach Bill Cowher was on the sidelines. It was early in the game and the Steelers were on D in a comfortable 3rd & long.

But Troy Polamalu whiffs on a routine tackle, resulting in a fresh set of downs for the opposition.

Coach wasn’t happy.

The camera zoomed in for that famous snarl but Cowher is pointing at Polamalu and yelling, “YOU OWE ME.”

You owe me? As in, the coach, not the team? I remember thinking that’s sub-par coaching.

By end of the 4th quarter that play was long forgotten by most — but clearly not by Polamalu.

In the final drive he reads the QB’s eyes, undercuts the receiver’s route and makes a Cirque du Soleil-level interception, sealing a Steelers victory.

Camera cuts to Cowher and he’s again pointing at Polamalu, but now nodding and saying, “We’re even.”

If football plays had price tags, that wasn’t equitable. If a missed tackle costs $10 then a game-sealing interception would be worth $100.

But that’s pro sports — you have ONE JOB and are expected to do it at a high level every play.

Making the highlight reel might erase one mistake, but probably not two.

Fortunately, losing fat isn’t a professional sport.

You’re not getting paid millions and expected to be perfect every day. Nor is that required to get great results.

Life WILL happen. You’ll have setbacks. EVERY successful client I’ve coached has had bad days, even bad weeks.

Know what else they had in common? They all got back on the program.

It may take longer than planned but that’s okay. This isn’t pro sports, it’s LIFE.

The only clock that matters is your time left on this rock and you can’t just sit and watch it tick down.

Might as well just say it’s early in the 3rd quarter. Plenty of time left.

Go make some highlight reel plays.