Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Let go, make choices, and appreciate.........

A while back, someone asked me how it was that I arrived at the conclusions that I had about life. Mainly, how did I stop caring about comparing myself to others, when they felt like that was such a natural thing to do. If you do something, you always want to know how you measure up to your peers or to others in the same avenue.

I can't always give an answer that resonates with everyone.

Sometimes "feelings" are hard to explain. No different than trying to explain a color to a blind person or a sound to a deaf person. Feelings and emotions are very individualistic and speak to you in a very unique way that only you get to experience. So trying to explain an emotion to someone, or a feeling to someone can be a difficult task.

If I had to write in a high level overview kind of way about how I eventually stopped caring, it would be that I let go of my own perceived short comings and also started to appreciate what others could do, that I could not. Both of those things have strong positive connotations with them, and when you really grok that, you grow tremendously.

We all perceive ourselves in a certain way. We choose to see ourselves through certain strengths and weaknesses. Short, fat, ugly, weak, skinny, strong, assertive, passive, introvert, or extrovert...these are all perceptions we define about who we are. They are very real because we make them real. They are also choices, and choices can be changed.

You don't HAVE to eat the burger you usually do, you can in fact order the fish tacos on the menu. They are choices, and you get to choose what you really want.

The problem is our own perceptions also generally come from how we believe that other people view us as well. "So-n-so said I was weak/incapable/a failure/unattractive" etc, so forth and so on. This is allowing a persons opinion to guide your own perception about yourself. When you choose to do that, you allow the other person to define who you are.

This is where we start to fail. We allow someone else to order from the menu for us, rather than taking charge and ordering what it is we want the most.

It's important to learn how to let go of other peoples perceptions of who you are, and to carve out your own path and to come to terms with your own strengths and weaknesses. To come to terms with the fact that YOU get to decide what those things are. But you must first CHOOSE that no one else gets to decide that. Once you can do that, you let go of other peoples perceptions about who you are, and what you are.

If you can't let go of what other people think of you, and appreciate the unique things you bring to the table, no matter how trivial you think they are, then you will continue to wallow in misery and self pity. And you can't blame anyone but yourself for making that choice.

Every emotion and "feeling" that you have is a choice. Empower yourself by knowing you can make the choice to appreciate you for who you are, and what you want to become. Take the steps you need to make in order to become that person, so that your choices are backed by your own actions.

This is empowering yourself and can be applied to your lifting, life, relationships, and career. You get to decide if you're going to be warrior or a peasant. You get to decide if you want the burger or fish tacos.

Your decision. No one else's. Own it.


  1. Alright Paul,
    Great article Paul. Just wondered if you will release any new books soon?. Like the lifer serise, or collection of articles like this one. cheers, lee

  2. Good article, it might save a few peeps from injuring themselves too. I know a couple of guys that have pushed too hard & injured themselves just coz someone in the gym suddenly started to squat or bench more than them, go figure?

    Sorry off topic but saw this interview on elite with Steve Goggins. Some good stuff about keeping it simple and starting your meet prep light on sets if 10 etc


  3. Great write up, and one I can greatly relate to. Casting off the mess of caring what other people think is so freeing. Along with that idea is another one I have employed: CHOOSING to be happy. It's a shocker, but you can choose to be happy; mainly, by owning your emotions. Someone doesn't "make" you mad, you choose to react that way. When you no longer give anyone that power, you gain so much freedom and license over how your day goes.

    This topic is interesting because I see this manifested at such a young age. My 4-y.o. daughter will burst into tears because "Ben said I was (fill in the blank)!" My response is always, "Does Ben saying that make it true?" I usually get a sniff and a, "no". "Well, then, don't sweat it." My hope is that my kids will not fall for this game as they go through life (I can only hope and pray).

  4. In regards to choices.

    Today I've created a "30 day challenge" with my friend. We both are our own judges as to whether we ate healthy though we have set some guidelines. The winner at the end of the 30 days does receive some set prizes.

    This will be very challenging for two people who generally don't eat real squeaky clean and want to lose some pudge. I feel it's a good start. Anyway just thought I'd post here cause it was inspired by this post and an earlier one you made about the quality food list.

  5. I want the burger AND the fish tacos.