Self-Improvement

3 Steps to Overcome Resistance and Reach Your Goals

3 Steps to Overcome Resistance and Reach Your Goals

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Steven Pressfield wrote about “the Resistance” in his 2002 book The War of Art. It’s a short (and, for me, transformational) book about overcoming all those thoughts, feelings, ideas and distractions that keep us from doing the things we want to do. You know, things like learning to play guitar, writing the next great American novel, or designing new technology to keep slow drivers from even getting in the left lane to begin with.…

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How to Avoid the Dangers of Perfectionism in 6 Steps

How to Avoid the Dangers of Perfectionism in 6 Steps

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Most people believe that aiming for perfection is a good thing. But it can be a dangerous compulsion.

In our success-driven society, being perfect is the ultimate goal. The traits of perfectionism — constant striving, attention to detail, high standards, commitment to results, direction, hard work, achievement, planning and preparation — are highly praised and admired.

However, ask a perfectionist what his or her life is really like and the response is stark:

  • “If I’m not the best, then I’m a failure.”
  • “I can’t ask for help, people will think I’m not good enough.”
  • “I’m exhausted but I can’t relax — I always have to stay one step ahead.”
  • “I never feel satisfied and nothing I do is enough.”
  • “If I make a mistake it proves I’m worthless.”
  • “I feel hollow, like I can never be happy.”
  • Perfectionism, when taken to its extreme, has negative consequences.…

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    The Eightfold Path of Buddhism Applied to the Barbell

    The Eightfold Path of Buddhism Applied to the Barbell

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    The Eightfold Path in Buddhism is a course of behaviors that can help alleviate the cycle of suffering — which we experience as frustration, pain, and unhappiness. The Eightfold Path was the final piece of the puzzle in the Buddha’s discussions about the reality of our discomfort and how to alleviate it.

    To apply these eight behaviors to our strength training, we must be able to look at ourselves with love and compassion to see where we are caught up in ego-driven tendencies.…

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    How Choosing to Surrender Can Actually Empower Your Life

    How Choosing to Surrender Can Actually Empower Your Life

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    September, 2016, somewhere in the frigid southern Utah wilderness. It was raining. My buddy Patrick and I were huddled under a military-style poncho we’d pulled over our heads. Two minutes earlier we had been building our shelter for the night — a fallen log leaning up against a tree to create the A-Frame structure that we’d then stack more fallen branches against.…

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    The Chaos Monkey: How to Improve Your Life Through Failure

    The Chaos Monkey: How to Improve Your Life Through Failure

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    In 2000, I ventured onto a then-new website called “Netflix.” I can still remember how exciting it was to see the familiar red DVD mailer when I opened my mailbox.

    Then in 2007, Netflix launched a streaming service. As an early adopter, I distinctly remember how crummy the the streaming service was at first. I don’t think I was able to finish a movie for the first year.…

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    The Busy Trap and How to Get Out of It

    The Busy Trap and How to Get Out of It

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    I caught up with an old friend recently. When I asked how she was, she replied “Busy!” — as if I was interested in her to-do list rather than how she was feeling.

    Her response isn’t unusual. Many of us answer that question with “Busy!” before listing all the things we’re doing, our partners are doing, or our kids are doing.…

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    How to Succeed in the WLC: Focus on Consistency, Not Results

    How to Succeed in the WLC: Focus on Consistency, Not Results

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    A few weeks into the Whole Life Challenge, you will likely see some significant changes. Focusing on quality food choices, smart exercise choices, and even smarter recovery choices will, without a doubt, impact your health, fitness, and well-being.

    It’s very cool to see the number on the scale going down, to feel the waistband of your jeans getting looser, or to know that your two-mile jog is getting easier.…

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    Bucket List Taj Mahal

    5 Ways Your Bucket List Gets in the Way of Happiness

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    The Taj Mahal sat across the river from us, bustling with lines of people in the setting sun. Our location was a spot on the bank only accessible via a narrow footpath and inhabited by a handful of locals and a few mangy dogs.

    Despite its lack of amenities, our spot was ideal. As the group’s tour guide, I’d researched the perfect place where the sun would set just to the side of the marble minarets, bathing them in warm light.…

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    How to Use Discipline to Add New Habits and Gain More Time

    How to Use Discipline to Add New Habits and Gain More Time

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    By the time this article hits your eyes, we will be almost a month into the new year. 2017 — sounds beautiful, doesn’t it? A fresh start, new beginnings, and a worldwide surge to becoming the person you always wished to be. No matter your resolution for this new year, there is one solidifying factor that resonates throughout all our goals: discipline.…

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    Leverage: The Simple (But Not Easy) Element of the Challenge That Changes Lives

    Leverage: The Simple (But Not Easy) Element of the Challenge That Changes Lives

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    I’ve been in the fitness coaching business for over 25 years, and in that time, I’ve tried many strategies to gain leverage over people. Why do I need leverage? Because when left to their own devices, people invariably make choices that undermine their own best intentions to get fitter and healthier.

    It’s easy to make the “right” choices in the presence of your coach or trainer, but it’s a different story when you’re back at work, at home alone, at a party, or opening the freezer for a midnight snack.…

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    How the Whole Life Challenge Taught Me Impulse Control

    How the Whole Life Challenge Taught Me Impulse Control

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    Over the years and through trial and error, I’ve discovered the ways in which I move best through this world. I now have blanket policies that instruct me to avoid intense math at all costs, refrain from engaging in political posts, and resist correcting my friends’ grammar via text.

    Thanks to my many shots at the Whole Life Challenge, I’ve also learned that I need accountability to control my impulses and stay in my healthy-eating lane.…

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    How to Create a Winning Team of Voices in Your Head

    How to Create a Winning Team of Voices in Your Head

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    Fielding a great team is crucial to winning on any playing field. The same is true in building long-term, sustainable health and fitness.

    But I’m not talking about your friends, family, co-workers, and gym buddies who are there to help keep you motivated and accountable. Those people are important — but just as important, if not more so, is the team that is with you 24/7, giving you advice, encouragement, or, alas, discouragement no matter what you’re doing.…

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