We’ve all had that moment. You know which one I’m referring to, right?
The one where we quit.
It’s that moment when we stopped pushing ourselves because it got really hard. Or it hurt. Or we didn’t think we could handle failure again. That moment. We’ve all got at least one of them.
We quit on a great relationship because it was harder than we “thought” relationships were supposed to be.
We threw away our manuscript because we thought our writing sucked.
We just stopped showing up to the gym because we don’t look like everyone else.
But there’s nothing special about my story.
I remember telling my coach that early in our time working together. I was new to public speaking and had hired his team years ago to help me elevate my craft to better serve my audiences. I had goals of becoming a household name as a speaker, but mentally, I was struggling to see myself as one. I wasn’t able to connect my stories with everyone else who carried that “speaker” title. I’d never been homeless. I hadn’t overcome a powerful addiction or had a near-death experience, and I didn’t “live in a van down by the river.” By all accounts, my life was very, well, normal.
And that normal thinking was keeping me in neutral at the starting line instead of taking action for my goal. Normal doesn’t change lives – or so I thought.
I tore my Achilles almost seven weeks ago during a men’s basketball league game. As anyone who has gone through this recovery process can attest, it has not been a fun seven weeks.
I’ve been actively doing physical therapy 2-3 days a week with the awesome team at PMST in Dallas, but have found mentally, it’s been even more of a recovery process. I’m used to working out 5-6 days per week, staying active throughout the day, and overall moving easily.
That’s quite a bit harder with your foot in a boot, unable to put pressure on it.
WORKING THROUGH IT (PART ONE)
I went back to the gym my third week after the injury (when I had the initial cast removed) to start limited upper-body workouts. I could bench press. I could hop over by the dumb bell rack and do shoulder press or flys. There was a handful of core movements and situps I can do. It was enough of a combination to give me a decent workout in the corner of the room while the rest of the class moves through the full body group workout.
And despite my laughter or joking with classmates and the sweat on my shirt from these limited movements, I was damn frustrated. I don’t like limitations. I don’t like being unable to workout with the rest of the class or do the same movements. I’m very limited to what I currently can do for previous six weeks and what I will be able to do for the upcoming six-to-eight weeks.
And as many of you who have dealt with injuries know, it sucks.
“For a long time, I convinced myself that I could will my way to a dream. As long as I wanted it bad enough, I could make it happen. But if there is one great truth I learned from this great game, it’s that no great accomplishment is ever achieved by yourself. Being successful is contingent on others, and it always starts with someone taking a chance on you.” – Kurt Warner, PFT
I heard retired NFL quarterback Kurt Warner say these words Saturday night during his enshrinement into the NFL Hall of Fame with his fellow 2017 classmates.
“…no great accomplishment is ever achieved by yourself.”
I believe a lot of us love the idea of reaching our goals and claiming that “I did it.” I put in the work. I faced the obstacles. I won. Our (long) roads from Day One to eventually reaching our goal can many times feel, well, lonely. We remember the early mornings we woke up and went to the gym, alone. We think about the times we drove cross-country for our dream, alone. And we think about the struggles we went through financially, alone.
Yet, through all that time, we were never actually alone. And the reason we got to that goal was never just us.
People all around us are searching for inspiration.
They scout their social media feed, multiple times a day, for the right quote, the right picture, the right spark to help them. The world around us gives enough reasons every day to question if we actually “have what it takes.” Buy this. Do that. Believe this. Each and every one claiming to be the missing ingredient we need, the source of inspiration. They hear the doubts whisper in and wonder, “can I really be a Competitor if I think this?”
They’re desperate to believe that “yes, they are a Competitor, and yes, they can win.”
So what if you were the reason why they did believe?