Monday, April 17, 2017

Potential & Drive

One of the most frequently asked questions I come across is "how do you stay motivated?" In typical fashion, many of the people I see come to me, driven and excited about the possibility of working out, getting strong and being healthy. At some point the excitement wanes, results aren't coming quickly enough, and they just give up to some degree or another.

One thing I've learned through training for a fitness competition is self-motivation and drive. I think drive is something that, internally, is enduring. But externally is fleeting. Those who come to me telling me they want to lose weight because their husband made a comment about her weight and how gross she was getting (true story...I should have throat punched him), I know that, unless she is able to find her worth through the process of working with me, her determination will not last. Drive that comes from another person will never sustain the drive necessary for results.

I have defining moments in my life that helped flourish my drive. And the amazing thing about drive, is that once you catch a glimpse of your potential through it, it strengthens and grows and becomes ingrained in who you are and what you stand for. It makes you hungry for more.

As for working out, I am consistent because I have a variety of motivations, some positive and a couple maybe not so much:

I feel proud when I workout.
I love feeling strong.
I love the way my body looks and feels when I'm consistent in my workouts.
I love the release of stress I physically and emotionally feel when my body is working hard.
I love the confidence that comes from caring for my body.
I love knowing my kids are being influenced by these choices and hope they will care for themselves as they get older.

Not so positive reasons?
Sometimes I avoid feeling emotionally. I'd rather feel my muscles and feel the hard through my body rather than my heart.

I want to look good naked. Although in all honesty, while I know this can be seen negatively by others, I see it as a positive. I want to show off my hard work. I want to show off my pride. I want to display my effort. I want to feel awesome in my own skin. This to me feels like freedom, one of my core desired feelings for my life.

One thing I found through my competition, is that the biggest barrier between us and success in the fitness world is the idea of options. The trouble is having a scheduled gym day and talking ourselves out of it. It's that slim window of choice that fucks us up. Because it's in that space that fear and doubt creep in and those bastards sure can be loud and convincing, can't they?

You're not worth this time.
You'll never look hot in shorts.
Everyone at the gym will stare at you.
You should just sleep instead.
This isn't working, you're still fat.

And those voices will keep you stagnant as long as you allow them to. They'll keep you inactive and stuck in a level of comfort that prevents you from witnessing your potential.

What keeps me in the gym day after day is that I don't give myself a choice (unless I'm actually not well). It just is what happens every day. I don't question it or hesitate, I just go. I have my workouts pre-planned so that those moments of coming up with a plan can't disguise the voice that'll talk me out of it. There isn't an option for me, this is just what I do. Just like brushing my teeth is something that happens right when I wake up, working out just happens before my kids wake up. It just is. I don't complicate it by thinking otherwise or allowing myself the option. It just is.

It is reported that Albert Einstein wore a version of the same grey shirt every single day because he didn't want to waste brain power on choosing an outfit every morning.

Mark Zuckerberg wears a similar outfit everyday consisting of a grey t-shirt as well. When questioned on it, he stated, "I really want to clear my life to make it so that I have to make as few decisions as possible about anything except how to best serve this community."

Steve Jobs followed the same approach with his choice in black turtlenecks.

They get it. Decision making requires energy, cognitive dissonance, frustration and conscious attention. I take the same approach with working out. I don't think about it, it just happens. I plan my workouts once a week, spending 10 minutes doing so. For the rest of the week I just get up, get it done and move on. My life isn't cluttered by deciding whether or not to do it.

I'm no math wizard but here's my formula for the three characteristics of success

Consistent Action = Drive = Potential
Awareness of potential = Drive = consistent action
Drive + Consistent action + awareness of potential = unlimited success

All three equal one another in some capacity. All three feed on one another and grow one another. Once you find one, the other 2 will flourish.
You just need to be patient.
And consistent.
And stop doubting yourself.
And stop listening to what others want of you.

This is for YOU and only you, and once you tap into your internal drive, your potential absolutely is limitless. And success inevitably will follow.


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