Have you ever wondered why some people are so successful and others are stuck wading through a sea of mediocrity? What is it about them that allows them to make the jump from average to awesome? As we examine today, that something is very small, very subtle, and very hard to accept…but once it’s been engrained in your mindset, it will help you unlock your fullest potential.
It’s something we all hit. From the wildly successful to the abysmal failures, no one is immune. It is the reason most people fail to reach their goals. The difference between the wildly successful and the abysmal failures of course, is how they deal with it. And how you deal with it is simply the product of your mindset.
But let’s back up a second – what the hell am I even talking about, and more importantly what is, “it”? If you’ve ever attempted to lose weight, you’ve experienced “it”. If you’ve ever tried to increase your bench press, you know all about “it”. If you’ve tried to pass a tough class, get better at shooting a basketball, or cook meals your family doesn’t want to feed to the dog under the table when your head is turned, you’ve experienced “it”.
“IT” is the feeling that the efforts you’re putting in aren’t doing you any good. Have you been stuck on a certain weight, or plateau for a while now, and feel like you’ve “maxed out” your progress? Does each gym session feel as if it’s not making a difference – as if you could go to the gym, or not go to the gym, and nothing would change? This is what I’m talking about. And this feeling is the reason so many people burn out, abandon the set course, quit, and ultimately fail.
It’s understandable after all. Who wants to kill themselves in the gym, or maintain a strict diet, if in the end it’s not going to make one lick of difference. “Screw it, I’m not losing weight anyways.” Ever have that thought?
When confronted with this feeling of helplessness, most people will do one of two things:
- Get so frustrated and completely quit altogether.
- Jump from plan to plan or diet to diet, looking for the one that “works”
Obviously if you’re simply quitting, you’re failing. Not much more needs to be said there. For the impatient group that is constantly jumping from one thing to the next, failure comes because nothing is given enough time to work. This leads to a very important concept in all of this – and something very successful individuals realize…
Your efforts are going to deliver diminished returns – know this, expect this, prepare for this.
Going from coach potato to someone with an average fitness ability is going to come quickly. Recall the TV show, The Biggest Loser for a second. Ever notice how much weight these people lose at the very beginning? Dropping 10, 20, or 30 pounds in a given week isn’t completely uncommon. That’s because they’ve got a LONG way to go. As you progress, making noticeable changes takes more time and effort.
More Work, Less Return
Those that forget this very important fact are the ones who feel as if their efforts are useless. Your efforts aren’t useless, the results are just more minute; harder to recognize. Nonetheless, consistent and sustained efforts will eventually lead to noticeable change. Whether it’s a gradually improved physique or an ability to shoot a basketball better, the work you put in is contributing towards that goal, even when it doesn’t seem like it.
Think about this – at the highest of levels, the difference between an Olympic champion and a last-place no-namer can literally be separated by hundredths of a second. These people work years to make up a few hundredths of a second. Remember THIS the next time you “only” lost half a pound in a week, or increased your bench press by a “measly” 5 pounds.
This all boils down to mindset. How you deal with the diminishing returns of your efforts will become the greatest indicator of your successes. Do you get frustrated and disappointed your progress has stalled, or do you focus on the fact you’re slowly but surely pushing the ball in the right direction? This is what separates the physical specimens you see walking around the gym from everyone else. I admit, great genetics helps too, but let’s not lose sight of the point at issue.
Have Some Faith
What I’m telling you to do, is simply put faith into the science behind what you’re doing. If you started off on our Total Body Blitz workout and have now progressed to something like our HIIT Training Plan, but are getting slightly annoyed your progress isn’t moving along as fast as you’d like – take a step back, take a breath, trust the science behind what you’re doing, and recommit yourself fully. Keep at it, and over time, you’ll gradually notice the results of your sustained efforts.
This is where one big caveat that comes into play however – trusting the science won’t do you a bit of good if it’s bad science. Sticking to any plan isn’t going to work if the plan sucks. Or the diet sucks. Or your study habits suck. Be mindful of where you’re getting your information. Make sure it’s a trusted source and not a fly-by-night personal trainer or “nutrition expert” dishing out shoddy recommendations. Assuming you’ve weeded out the nonsense and have found something of worth, revert back to the previous paragraph and simply put your faith in the system as it has been designed. No more jumping from one game plan to the next – pick one that works, follow the plan, and be consistent.
That’s it. That’s all I’ve got for you today. It really can be that simple. Overcoming the “burn out” feeling or desire to bounce from one thing to the next is what’s going to unlock your true potential and help you realize your dreams. I admit, easier said then done. There are times even I question what I’m doing, or wonder if I should mix things up. Fortunately, I’ve been able to put my head down and continue to do work, and that’s why I’ve been able to achieve the things I have. Once you figure out how to do the same, you’ll truly understand the meaning of “the sky’s the limit”.