This is it, it’s that time of day again. You’ve been working for ten, eleven, twelve hours, driving at least one-half hour to and from your place of work, fighting traffic the entire way. You wake up at 3:30 in the morning, are out the door by five, start work at six, and work until somewhere between 4:00 and 6:00 in the evening. You’re driving home and you run into a one lane road due to spring and summertime construction. This will add another fifteen to twenty minutes onto your commute back to Dodge. You arrive back in town sometime between 4:50 and 6:50 in the evening, yet with rush hour still in its peak hours, you are an additional ten to fifteen minutes away from the gym. You turn and head back home, telling yourself tomorrow will be day. Wait, it’s Tuesday, Monday has already come and gone, so you tell yourself next week you’ll begin fresh come Monday. It’s the day of goal setting for the week, right?
Sure, you’ve run into road blocks such as these over the past few months. Four weeks ago, the main route was closed down. Three weeks ago, that snowstorm forced you to drive about half the speed you normally would, and there was just no way getting to the gym was feasible because snow was bad on both Monday and Tuesday. In addition to getting home late, you had to wake up earlier in order to warm the car up and scrape snow off the windshield. Two weeks ago, you said you’d go after it again, right? But you were facing some serious stress at the office and was forced to remain at work after hours, getting back into town somewhere between 7:30 and 8:30. Last week wasn’t good because all week traffic was forced an alternate direction in the city in which you work, once again creating delays.
It’s April, and that resolution you’ve made for this year has come and gone. The beach body you’ve always dreamed of achieving has to wait another year, because stereotypically no one begins a regimen in April. Yet, maybe coming into the gym three to four times a week to “maintain” appears to be feasible.
Next Monday arrives, and once more you face yet another roadblock. Your boss calls a meeting and informs your entire staff a large report needs to be done promptly because the Divisional Vice President is coming in and they had just forewarned everyone that morning. Looks like an extra hour or two at the office. You will be delayed again with your fitness goals for yet another week.
Does this sound familiar to anyone? Does anyone face a situation such as the one laid out? How many of us end up going to the gym anyway? A handful of us do. I don’t care if I get back into town at midnight and have to be awake at 3:30am, I’m getting that workout in because I pre-planned doing so. It’s shoulder day, and tomorrow is arm day, while Thursday is back day. I’m sticking to that plan and that’s all there is to it. Sure, the Divisional Vice President will still get his report and I’ll be sure to exceed their expectations. I’ll actually have a small advantage, because I won’t be facing evening traffic. Oh, and roadwork will have finished as well. I’ll simply adjust my meals and my daily routine to fit this one. Maybe I’ll add a meal in, or do something to keep me from losing my sanity until gym time!
Look at the above paragraph and pay very close attention to my mindset, as opposed to that of the individual I described during the first half of this post. I looked at my schedule and my situation at hand. Did I complain? Not once. Did I find a solution to the problem, or curveball that was thrown at me? I did. I took my pocket two-seven off-suit and turned it into a full house. I won the hand, because my mind was actively working to find solutions.
Do you know what most people would do? Many would do what the first individual did. Make a goal, not see to it, delay it, because the circumstances weren’t perfect. The circumstances are never perfect. Ever. Something is going to blemish your day. The key is to be ready for these potential delays and roadblocks. Winners always look at their problems in a different light. They see the problem and find the solution to that problem. They never complain. They never dwell on it, and they never say their situation is “unique” or something that no one ever faces. Everyone’s situation is unique. We all have different roadblocks and delays. My point here is simply changing your mindset.
There are people who go through life setting goals and failing to achieve them because they find excuses to why they failed. Sadly, they will never win and even worse, they’re typically the negative individuals who blame everyone but themselves. In other words, they will never win in life, because they’re looking to fail again and blame someone else (or society) for their failures. They know and realize the buck stops with them, but they aren’t strong or disciplined enough to admit that. They are the talkers and not the doers. They won’t take action. Instead, they’ll say this will happen or that will happen, but it’ll never happen because they are looking to fail so they can place the blame on others. Yes, I had to reiterate that point.
There are others who realize no situation is ever perfect and they take action regardless. Is there ever a good time to leave home, move to a new area that is relatively unknown to you, put yourself on an island, and either sink or swim? No, but there are many people who have done that and have succeeded, as I’m currently looking to do, and am doing to the best of my ability. Is it a tough road? Yes. If I fail, am I going to blame everyone else? Nope. I’ll analyze what went right and what went wrong, so the next time I will succeed. If I do succeed and exceed my own expectations, then I can help encourage others to take the risk and move to their dream location as well. Better yet, I’ll have some wisdom to my name and I’ll tell them not to repeat my own mistakes in order to make their transition smoother.
The difference between the negative and the positive individual is simple. The negative individual is going to be self-righteous and mistake free in their own eyes, while telling people they can’t. The positive individual addresses and confronts their mistakes, because they realize they’re not perfect and the road to success isn’t going to be perfect. Yet they’re going to try to bring people up to their level because they felt success, and they want others to feel it too.
Today’s post is saying one thing: Be positive, even in a bad situation. Light always shines in the dark, and that’s a fact. It doesn’t matter how dark the room is or how small the light is. Light is always shining in the darkness. The odds can be stacked against you, millions to one. In fact, look at the lottery of birth, for example. Richard Dawkins said in a popular album by the band Nightwish that “Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this, because of the amount of potential people outnumber the sand grains of the Sahara.” Think about that quote by Dawkins the next time you find the odds stacked against you. The odds of life were greatly stacked against you, yet you beat those odds. The odds of birth are literally 99.999% to 0.001%. Yet here you are, chosen by a higher power to live life, open your eyes and see our awesome planet, sparkling with color, bountiful with life. Within decades we must close our eyes again. You’re living life full of excuses? You were given an awesome gift here.
So, when you believe life is stacked against you, or the odds aren’t in your favor, remember you’re in control of your life, and never allow your life to control you. I know some of you will read this and scoff at it, stating I’m living in some fantasy world. The reason being is because I speak the truth, the tough love kind of truth. If life is keeping you from coming into the gym, and you’ve wasted years making excuses as to why you haven’t succeeded in your fitness goals just yet, remember the buck always stops with you. It’s time to get your act together and get moving once again, towards your goals, right now. Not next Monday, not next week, not next month, not in 2018. Your time, and your future, is now. Stop talking and start doing.