“What blocks us is clear. I am too short, too old, too scared, too poor, too stressed, no access, no backers, no confidence. How skilled we are at cataloging what holds us back” – The Obstacle is the Way
“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case, you fail by default” – J.K. Rowling (taken from the book Tribe of Mentors by Tim Ferriss
When presented with a challenge be it physical, work related or personal, are the first thoughts that cross your mind “I can’t do that”, or “that’s impossible at my age”, or “I wish I could do XYZ”? Never undermine your success or ability in the gym, in sport, or in life. Most people I speak to about Ironman triathlon, ultra-marathon, or long-distance obstacle racing all have the same response. “I could NEVER do that”.. They have already defeated themselves mentally, however when they see someone their same age, weight, disability, etc complete one of these events, their mind begins to shift from “I could never” to “I think I could do this”. Regardless of how fast or slow your finish time may be at a race, or even if you had a “bad day” at the gym or in a race, someone out in the world watching, thinks you have just accomplished the impossible. Be proud of everything you do and learn from every day, race, adventure, and trial. Celebrate the small stuff.
In setting and achieving small goals you slowly begin to build your confidence. As you do this, begin to change your self-talk from, I wish, I want, If I could only, to I am, I can, I will. Once you make that mental shift what you thought was impossible becomes a challenge that you will stop at nothing to achieve. Set small goals, but at the same time don’t be afraid to reach for the stars and set a large goal for yourself. If it scares the hell out of you… GOOD! Everyone feels fear, from the most elite Extreme Sport Athlete to the baddest UFC fighters on the planet. They are all afraid. It’s what they do with that fear that makes them special and it can do the same for you. Fear will not kill you but it will contain you. Take your fear and shift your mind from letting it hold you back, to having it motivate you to conquer it and achieve the goal.
In creating a mind-shift think about it in one more way. What if you tried to accomplish a goal for the next 20 years. Something that you thought and maybe Dr’s or “experts” said was impossible for you to do. At the end of 20 years you don’t achieve that goal. It will be so much better for you to realize and say to yourelf “I gave it my all and tried every avenue to get there”, than to never have tried at all. You will NEVER say “what if” and I guarantee you will have learned a TON about yourself in the process. That, is a victory.