This question is usually asked with a load of negativity or judgment, and generally after you’ve done something apparently stupid, like, trying to deadlift at Planet Fitness... But I ask this question in complete seriousness, to help inspire a deeper view of yourself so that maybe you can come out the other end a better person. But I realize that this could be an extremely loaded question. I’m sure when push comes to shove, you could probably find all sorts of problems with yourself. So, I want to narrow it down to finding one really major issue. And, I can guarantee that every single person in the world has one.
Your problem does not have to be completely negative. It does not have to be that you’re a pathological liar or something (although, if that’s your problem, you must acknowledge that), hell, your problem could be the complete opposite in your head or on paper. I knew a guy who over time found out he was too nice. Yeah, he was so overtly nice (for whatever reason), that it ended up effecting his life negatively. People found him annoying, they found him suspicious, or just plan too happy to be around. Now, he may be wrong, he may be right, I have no idea. That’s not what this post is supposed to be about. This post is meant to be a call-out to think about what your problem might be, and to work on making it NOT a problem anymore.
First, it’s probably worth me defining what I am calling a problem. I think that for this exercise, a problem is something that hinders your, and/or other people everyday activity. Think of it how they diagnose OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder); everyone has OCD tendencies, but when they begin to negatively affect your life is when you should probably do something about it. So, say you think your problem is something like drinking too much wine. Well, does your wine drinking cause you distress? Are you pissed off and unable to be dealt with if you don’t have it? Do you HAVE to have it? Are you difficult to deal with when you DO have it? Do you think about it all day and base your day around the time when you can finally have it? Well, if you answered yes to any of those (and I am sure there are plenty of other examples of negative effects) then yeah, this could be your problem. If no to all of them, than you know what? Maybe it’s actually not a problem.
Another thing I want to avoid doing here is picking out too many problems. I am certain everyone reading this could begin writing out a list of problems they think they have. But again, that’s not what this post is about. I want to diagnose one problem, so that you can approach dealing with it with a clear head. The second you begin listing off problem after problem you will overwhelm yourself and not be able to help yourself at all.
So, who wants to go first? Well, seeing how I’m writing this, I guess I will. But, I challenge all of you to post to comment about what you think your is. To be honest, I know that there are hundreds of people that read this (and if you told your friends and shared it, there would be thousands… just saying…), and I am really curious to know if my writing is actually doing something for all you. Yes, it’s great to know that people are reading, and I have gotten plenty of positive feedback (oh, and the main negative feedback is spelling and grammar! I am working on that, I promise). But will any of you actually step up and try something I am proposing here? I guess we’ll see…
My problem is that I over-analyze. When something happens to me, or to someone near to me, I break it down into more detail than is necessary. A lot of the times I find that doing this leads me to never act on the issue because all I am doing is thinking about it so much. I will think about how the something occurred and how it could have been avoided or changed. I think about why it occurred and how reactions were and why. I think about the person (whether it be me, or another person) and why they/I would have done such a something, and what would have caused them/I to do it. And my over analyzing tendencies goes so far as to making decisions. I will break down the choices so much that I just can’t do anything. I am a classic “analysis-paralysis” case.
Well, my goal isn’t to give ways to fix you, because hey, I’ no therapist or anything. But what I can do is let you know how I have been working on my problem. First, I was honest with myself about my problem. If I denied ever having one in the first place it would be impossible for me to improve as a person. Second, when I catch myself beginning to over-analyze, I try to stop it as early as I can, and do something that I know clears my mind. Generally it is getting outside and being moderately to very active. The second I do this, I am able to come to a conclusion about what I am feeling very quickly. So, perhaps I do have an answer for you, perhaps I am actually a great therapist in the end! When you find yourself faced with your problem, do something that will put you in a state of calm, happiness. When you are clear of negativity, you will be able to deal with your issues so much better. The cleaner you are, the easier it is to get rid of dirtiness.
This obviously begs the question: what makes you calm and happy? But there I go breaking down the situation way too much. Perhaps a post about that soon? I’m off to the outside world now to clear my head.
Never Stop, GET FIT
If the font is messed up on this post, sorry. Can not figure it out...
Man, this title is one of those things that could literally be left alone, nothing else stated besides those simple words. Or, it could be one of the most in-depth statements out there. Kind of like Michael Pollan’s statement of “Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants”, so simple but confusing enough to most people that an insanely successful book was based off it. So what do I mean then, when I say “Do Something You Suck At”? Well, I guess it’s my more childish way of stating o of the lines from the lululemon manifesto: “do one thing that scares you every day”. The idea is that if you stick to what you know, what you are comfortable with, and what you are good at, you’ll never really get all that much better.I know someone who was scared out of their mind to do a box jump. The idea of leaving the ground was so overwhelming it caused complete paralysis. Well that was no excuse in my mind and I did everything in my power top help motivate this person through their fears and just, freaking, do it. And you know what happened? Well yes, they got the box jump, easily in fact. But more than that, they got an even higher box, then an even higher one. And from that day forward, little events that once seemed like a major life hindrances became nothing but minor speed bumps. When you overcome something, you become more confident, stronger, happier and healthier. But I want to talk more specifically about something else. Overcoming fears is great, I write about it a good bit and I am constantly thinking and talking about it. Today I want to talk about doing things you suck at. I know, I know, when you think about it it’s kind of a blurry line between sucking at something and being scared of something. We are generally scared of things we suck at whether we will admit to it or not. But rather than getting all psychological on you, I’ll just keep it basic. I suck at snatches, I suck at handstand push ups, I suck at swimming, I suck at NOT eating cookies, I suck at warming up properly, yeah, this list could go on. When I’m down my response to sucking at these things is to just do them minimally, and when I do do them, I’ll put less intensity into getting better at them. Hell, there will be times when I totally “forget” about how much I suck at them all together because I just don’t work on them at all! But if I’m really good at box jumps and deadlifts, and I want to be a serious CrossFitter, doing box jumps and deadlifts all the time are NOT going to do very much for me. Sure, I’ll get damn good at those two things, but I won’t really get all that much better as a well-rounded person. What I generally tend to do, or, when I’m “on my game”, is to program these things in on a daily basis. So, each and every day I am making a point to do at least one thing I suck at. The goal being that I suck less and less at more and more. This then leads me towards truly becoming good at the things I really want to be good at. If I want to be a highly competitive CrossFitter, I have to NOT SUCK! How many times have you been faced with something where you know you are going to do poorly? What did you do? Did you turn and walk away from it? Did you itch and moan about it and then just go through the motions? Did you bitch and moan about it, do it anyway, then make excuses as to why it didn’t go so well? Or did you sack up and give it your all?
Given the nature of this post, I am sure you can assume which of those I would say is the right choice. Here’s food for thought: you are standing on a cliff. 40 feet below there’s a body of water, dark, still, waiting for you to jump in. From this insane vantage point you can’t tell how far the water is. You blink and it seems like it’s ten feet away, another blink and its miles. You have no clue what’s underneath, could be rocks, damn, could be a gator for all you know. You just know that you’ve seen a couple other people jump in and they came out fine. Do you:A. Holler in sheer joy as you pounce off the rockB. Shimmy your feet to the edge, pause, then leapC. Pace back and forth for about 10 minutes before cautiously jumpingD. Turn back, and climb downWhat you do here says a ton about your personality and how you approach life in general. But the best thing you can do as you read this is be honest with yourself, pick the answer that best suits you, then ask yourself why. If you care to share, post away and share. If you’d rather keep it to yourself, that’s fine too. All I ask is you take the time to figure out what kind of person you are. When you have a second, take out a paper and pen and write down 10 things that you suck at. Anything. They don’t have to be fitness related at all, just 10 things you know you are not good at doing. Now try to do the first one tomorrow, the second the next day, third the next and so on. Feel free to share your experience!
Never Stop, GET FIT.