“People create their worlds with the tools they have directly at hand.”

-Jordan Peterson

There are those that look to the past for guidance, those that look to the future, and those who live in the present moment. I am a believer that we need to use all three to map out where we are in life; learing from the past, enjoying the present, and planning the future. 

We speak to many people with goals in the fitness industry, but deeper than the external goals that we might want or even think we want, lies self awareness. A crucial internal step in learning where we are in life that is missed by many in search for the external in where we want to be. Before we get to where we want to be, we must know where we are.

Anyone that has dug deep and hit pay dirt with their goals has, at some level, discovered a little bit more about themselves as a person. We are not our goals, and our goals do not define who we are. This is not to say that having goals is not important, on the contrary, goals are necessary in order to stay true in life. But having goals without attempting to learn about ourselves,  is like trying to arrive at a destination in the dark. Self awareness is our gps system in our navigation and will allow us to observe our past, absorb our present, and see our future with open eyes. To discover ourselves we must observe ourselves in order to gain a perspective shift. Just as the feeling we get from seldomly hearing our own voice on a recording, some of what we see in our self discovery will disturb us at first. This is the major deterrent for most of us because it becomes too scary to face, this is true for all of us, we all have low points in our lives that are hard to adress. But we will come to find, the courage to stay strong through the uncomfortable will eventually start to light up the map towards not just we want, but what we need.

Choosing Strength

Our lives on a whole are the sum of the choices we make. After we are born into what nature has provided in parenting, genetics, geography, and social status the rest is up to us. Which direction we travel, is up to us. We can go in two directions with each decision, we can go up or we can go down. If we are without values or principles hearing this truth of cause and effect can seem stressful, because there are so many choices to be made over the course of just one hour of one day in our lives. However, if we can center our choices on values and principles, decision making, although still difficult, becomes directed. We can give ourselves the strength of knowing that we are choosing the right things for ourselves because we govern our own choices by what is important to us. 

Handling Change

As a fitness community we discuss many topics surrounding adaptation because the analysis of how we are adapting to our past situations will define the path of our current and future adaptations.  

I have had a few major relocations, or moves, in my life and it has always been consistent in mental and emotional adaptation, only now do I realize that this was all just adaptation to my ability to handle changing circumstances. When we are among major change, like relocating where we live, we often fail to recognize the macro viewpoint because we are usually too involved in the chaos presented within the change. But with each change large or small, we have the power to make a choice, which is why there is discrepancy among us when it comes to change. Some people fear change and can never go anywhere, they easily become stuck, and others close to them become stuck along with them. Where some crave too much change and are always looking for something new, never being able to see things through and overwhelming those who are close to them. 

In both of these situations we are running, in one situation we are running away and the other we are chasing, but nonetheless we are running when it is best to observe. But rightfully so, change is quintessential to mental barriers because the adaptation to change is to face ourselves, our deep selves, in essence we become the barrier to ourselves. That is downright scary for all of us whether on a conscious level or otherwise. However, if we can direct our choices and stay focused on our goals, we can find our way through those barriers of change more calmly, productively, and even find that the barrier is not a barrier but a new possibility. “When we experience change, everything is up in the air, it’s stressful, but in the chaos there are new possibilities.” (Peterson) Change presents itself differently and comes in many forms, one thing that is consistent about change is always chance. It is a chance for us to start new and redefine ourselves by either confronting ourselves when we would normally run away, or stay our course when we would normally stray.