By Jillian Broaddus and Chuck Cusumano
If you’ve tuned into our latest blogs, you know there’s been a recent underlying theme: in our last article, we wrote about your health at work, and prior to that, we’ve spotlighted the life lessons and accolades of Coach Bill Thorn. This week, we’re back with one more piece of commentary on the topic of physical well-being – and it may just be the secret to unlocking your greatest potential.
If you’ve ever set your sights on a tough physical achievement – think, running a marathon, trekking a mountain, or losing weight – you know the feeling of accomplishment at the finish line. Sometimes, that payoff is ostensibly visible, in the form of pounds shed or a shiny medal or a documentable PR.
However, what is often overlooked is the change that comes to us psychologically when we push ourselves to physically great feats. Because the truth is, showing ourselves we can do hard things physically teaches us that we can do hard things mentally, as well. And, at the end of the day, much – if not ALL – of life requires handling tough things! Here’s how:
It instills confidence: Setting out for a goal that seems insurmountable at the start but is surely and slowly achieved through diligent hard work is perhaps the #1 way to instill confidence in ourselves and our own abilities. This confidence easily translates to other aspects of our worlds, too – whether that be in needing to step up to the plate for a big presentation or a hard conversation. So, start now and choose a goal that seems unachievable!
It instills trust: Doing what we say we’re going to do is the best method for learning to trust ourselves. If you say you’ll be at the gym before work tomorrow and you choose to snooze your alarm instead, you’re slowly degrading your level of self-trust. So, although those little decisions may seem inconsequential (or even rewarding) in the moment, they have lasting implications on how you view – and trust – yourself!
It instills grit: Think about the last hard thing you accomplished. Now, consider, how many other people can say they’ve had that same accomplishment? Truth be told, most hard things don’t have huge followings; the highest mountaintops are pretty empty. That’s because if something were easy, everyone would be doing it. The best achievements usually have setbacks, moments of doubt, and inevitable roadblocks and detours along the way. Learning to overcome these in pursuit of the ultimate goal will establish a fortitude and sense of bravery to serve as your backbone for all of life's pursuits.
It instills perspective: When you’re used to accomplishing hard things and routinely pushing your body to the point where it feels like you’re ready to give up, you will likely look at the other little distractions and hurdles in your day-to-day life a bit differently. Knowing you’ve overcome something much larger than a stressful email response should reframe much of what we often consider bigger-than-they-need-to-be incidences.
So, you’re ready to do hard things! Now, where do you begin? Here are a few ways we recommend getting started:
First, let us put you in contact with Coach Thorn. :)
Just do it. Rule out procrastination from TODAY and put a goal on your calendar.
Then, reach out to us at email@example.com to help us guide your journey and help hold you accountable.
We also recommend Can’t Hurt Me by David Goggins, or similar books on the market, for a daily dose of mental toughness and the importance of hard work.
Be patient! As we mentioned, if it were easy, everyone would be doing it. Hard goals take time, patience, and consistency.
You CAN do it and we can’t wait to hear what you accomplish!