Remember in grade school, when that kid on the playground told you that you couldn’t do something?
Let me guess: you spent the rest of recess trying to do whatever it was in order to prove that kid wrong.
Am I right?
Does This Mean I Can’t…?
That’s where a lot of my drive and motivation comes from: either other people telling me that I can’t do something, or if I think it seems like something will be really difficult to accomplish, or even if the general public thinks that it’s not “do-able”… Each of these scenarios gives me the green light to go make it happen.
You might even compare this playground scenario to becoming an Entrepreneur.
Maybe the guy next to you at work says, “no way, you’ll never be able to actually make that happen.” You might even say to yourself that starting your own business – stepping out on a limb and following your passions – sounds like a tough goal.
And nearly everyone around you is conditioned to believe that being an Entrepreneur is nearly impossible. Becoming successful takes tons of work, tons of dedication, endless sacrifices… you should just stick to your day job since it’s a steady paycheck and provides you with benefits, they say.
But since when does that mean you shouldn’t do something you really want to do? Your co-workers, that doubt inside your head, the outside world – what do they know?
If nothing else, you should be using those empty threats to your advantage – in order to fuel your desires and your passions.
You can do it. You just have to want it bad enough. You just have to work hard enough.
Like when I ran my first half marathon: everyone thought 13.1 miles was way too far to run – no way can Kate do that!
Yes I can!
I was reminded of this “yes I can” feeling again a couple of months ago when I first moved back to San Diego…
Have you ever heard of Insanity? It’s a DVD workout program that is just that: INSANE! Through intense daily workouts, Shaun T. promises to get you a year’s worth of results in just 60 days (results vary, of course).
Last year, I became obsessed with Insanity, with Shaun T. yelling at me, with the music in the background that used to drive me nuts, and with the feeling I’d have after sweating my butt off for 45-60 minutes every day.
I wasn’t in it for 60 days. I was in it for life.
I’ve always been a big fan of the gym, so for me to be giving the elliptical machine the strong arm was pretty insane (no pun intended).
But once I got a taste of the post-Insanity workout feeling, it was like I became addicted to it. When I would jump on the elliptical machine – even if it was for 60 minutes and I had crushed 10 miles – it didn’t feel like I was even getting a good workout.
Kind of sounds like a couple of jobs I’ve had… I was putting in the time, but I wasn’t getting much out of it.
My commitment to my workouts
And so after I first started Insanity, I continued to wake up at 5:30am every morning to go into my living room and pop in that DVD before getting ready for work, (the sub-zero degree temperatures in Maine in January probably contributing to that decision to a certain extent).
It was such a great feeling to get THAT good of a workout done in the comforts of my own home.
And then I moved back to San Diego, which coincided with leaving the “corporate world” and diving head first into EntrepreneurOnFire – a big shift in my daily routine altogether.
A couple of days off were required to get myself from one coast to the other, but when I found myself back in San Diego, day 2, I popped in the Plyometric Cardio Circuit DVD, ready to get down with Shaun T. (I can hear him now… “LET’S GOOOOO!”)
It was early in the morning, but not 5:30am early (I didn’t have to be at “the office” anymore!) It was maybe about 7am.
Three minutes into my workout, I started hearing this banging noise, and it seemed like it might be coming from the floor… I’m on the second story in my complex, and so I guess it wasn’t that alarming to hear noise below, but I sort of subconsciously ignored it – thought, “no, it’s probably something else, it can’t be the person below me.”
I kept going
Hmmmm… okay, that’s definitely the person below me.
I was crushed. All I could think was, “Does this mean I can’t do Insanity anymore??”
Indeed it did. I quit. Gave up. If I couldn’t pop in my DVD’s anymore, what was I going to do?
So with a sad face on, I started going back to the elliptical machine at the gym because that was the easy thing to do. I just had to show up at the gym and jump on. Same motion, over and over again, and then 45 minutes later I’d get off, and then go back home. I didn’t feel awesome about it, but at least I was still working out.
But that feeling wasn’t there anymore – that feeling I’d get after my Insanity workout. Satisfied. Charged. Fulfilled.
Being resourceful in order to make things happen
And then it hit me. Just because the guy downstairs doesn’t want me to do Insanity doesn’t mean I have to stop doing it. It’s something I want to do; why would I let him stop me?
And so I memorized the workout. And with the workout memorized, I started going to the park by my house and doing Insanity outside. When that got hard (because there isn’t a whole lot of level ground that I can drop down on for the push ups), I started checking out spots at the gym where I might be able to do it.
Soon, instead of jumping on the elliptical and robotically making the wheels spin, I went upstairs to an empty spot I found, and I did Insanity.
Now, I’ve been back into my normal Insanity routine for 3 1/2 weeks, and I feel great.
Here’s the takeaway:
Don’t let the kid on the playground, your co-worker, your family, your downstairs neighbor or anyone else tell you that you can’t do something. You can do it, you just have to figure out the best way, and then execute.