“People wait all week for Friday, All year for summer, and All life for happiness.”
It was a tough pill to swallow. The moment I realized that I had become what I loathed the most: a Personal Trainer GA that is out of shape. A fraud.
I knew I can get back in shape. I knew how to do it. But here’s the rub…I wasn’t doing it.
I had fallen into a pattern all too familiar to most of my clients: Eat too much over Friday night and Saturday brunch, feel guilty and gross. Sunday night comes and I read some motivational quotes, and I “get motivated.” I’m good with whatever my plan is for Monday and Tuesday. By Wednesday, I’m tired and frustrated with work/life/blah blah blah. By Thursday I think, “Fuck it. This is just how it is gonna be. It’s not that bad. The clients can’t tell the difference.” By Friday I feel gross again but think, “Meh. It’s the weekend. I’ll enjoy my family and not think about getting my shit together until next week.”
I just can’t shake this gut-wrenching feeling of living a lie. It’s got to stop.
I soon figured out that I had made a mistake. I was too focused on fantasizing about my “dream lifestyle” and creating my “vision board” that I forgot to get in touch with what I really wanted. The problem with using a “dream lifestyle” as your intrinsic motivator is that it is impossible to know if it is true what your heart desires.
When somebody asked me to write down what my “dream lifestyle” looks like, I wrote down stuff like a big house for my family, a vacation home by the beach, driving a sports car, traveling the world, etc…
Common cliches that I associated with being a successful business person and a provider for my family. But the things I wrote down weren’t what will necessarily make me happy. The truth is, nobody ever knows what will really make them happy. Yet we continue on this pursuit until we have either given up on ever finding happiness or when our time on this planet finally runs out.
Most successful people lament how unfulfilling their lives have become once they have reached the goal that they have set out to achieve. Ironically, the very destination that was supposed to promote all the happiness in the world becomes their source of discontent.
So this got me thinking. If we are never going to know for sure what our “dream lifestyle” really looks like; nor if it will ever bring us happiness. Why not just focus on living the “perfect day”?
A perfect day that is based on your current situation and which can be replicated over and over. Shouldn’t we be putting all of our energy and resources into designing such a day so that we can have our perfect day every day?
When I talked to my friends, it was very easy to see a pattern. Most of them will talk about how shitty of a day they had at work. How horrible the commute was. How much stress they are under. How annoying a certain co-worker or supervisor is. How they wished to lose weight but just don’t have the time.
We have started accepting that it is normal to be grumpy at work and bringing home that negative energy. It is ok to expect the daily commute to be horrible which gives us the right to yell and curse at another fellow commuter who cuts you off. It becomes part of our daily routine to be stressed out all the time and using it as our excuse for not having the patience to deal with our crying kids. It becomes ok to put up a facade and pretend we don’t mind spending more time with people who annoy us than with our loved ones. Worst of all, somewhere along the line, we start accepting our current body and state of health as the status quo.
I believe wholeheartedly that there is a better way. Let’s assume for a moment that you are not at the point where you can make any drastic changes (such as quitting your job). What would your perfect day look like given all the constraints that currently exist in your life?
How much better would it be if we can turn all the negatives into positives? If you are grumpy at work, what would have to change in order for you to love your work?
When I got burnt out from coaching too many personal trainer session, I decided to start using the training sessions as a chance to practice my public speaking skills. So every session, I would deliver a pre-scripted motivational speech and then gauge the response of the clients (some of them did not get very positive responses by the way). This new process helped me find the passion for coaching again.
When we first started our Richmond location, I hated the new 45-minute drive that I had to make to Cloverdale. It was such a waste of time! I hated every minute of it until I started using the commute time to listen to audiobooks. Books that I have been wanting to read but couldn’t find the time to. Now I actually don’t want the commute to end because the books are so great!
These positive changes have given me the clarity and focus to do what I really love to do. To work on my fitness level and train like mad to be the best I can be.
We are all responsible for choosing how we respond to external stimuli. If you are ready to choose yourself and need guidance, give us a call and we would be happy to find out how we might be able to help you.