I read a Nerd Fitness article and I learned good stuff.
Sir Winston Churchill said : « Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm ».
I’m sure you’ve heard this quote . But there’s something that nobody told you about that quote. This thing is the « GRIT ».
The meaning of the word « grit » is : « passion and perseverance for a long-term goal ».
We discovered after several years of case studies that intelligence wasn’t the most important element to have success in school, at work and in life.
The most important element to be successful is grit and personality. It’s essential to have the courage to go through all the challenges and failures to find a new solution to achieve the goal.
Psychology Professor at University Of Pennsylvania, Angela Duckworth shows in her studies that :
« Smarter students actually had less grip that their peers who scored lower on an intelligence test. This finding suggests that, among the study participants – all students at an Ivy League School – people who are not as bring as their peers compensate by working harder and with more determination. And their effort pays off : The grittiest students – not the smartest ones – had the highest GPAs ».
« At the elite United States Military Academy, West Point, a cadet’s grit score was the best predictor of success in the rigorous summer training program known as « Beast Barracks ». Grit matter more than intelligence, leadership ability or physical fitness.
At the Scripps National Spelling Bee, the grittiest contestants were the most likely to advance to the finals – at least in part because they studied longer, not because they were smarter or were better spellers ».
These findings suggest that the achievement of difficult goals entails not only talent but also the sustained and focused application of talent over time.
There is also this article by Thomas Friedman in New York Times: Need a job ? Invent one .
In this article, there is a quote from Tony Wagner, Harvard Education Specialist : « Today, because knowledge is available on every Internet-connected device, what you know matters far less than what you can do with what you know ».
As you can see, it’s not the amount of information that is important to be successful but what you do with this information. It’s the same principle to have a healthy body. I know people who know a tremendous amount of information about how to lose weight and how to build muscle. But there is a problem, they’re all overweight and from year to year, they take on more weight and they need to take more medicines.
What is necessary is to use the information that you have every day. It’s useless to know all the answers and look for the perfect workout. Start with what you have now and day after day, you’ll improve your knowledge on the field.
How do I do
Here is my case. As you already know, I plan my workout program throughout the year to gradually increase the difficulty (periodization). I have failures (very often) and I adjust. Every week I search for small changes and tactics.
Tracking my workout helps me tremendously to adjust the difficulty without creating any injury. I use an application on my smartphone to track my workout, it’s Jefit.
I know that all my life is going to be like that. Learn more, have more failures and find new tactics to progress.
It’s true that says it like that, you think it’s boring but it’s very motivating to see progress made week after week. Small details are important to your body. Often the people around you don’t see you making progress. They don’t see that your body is changing but you know you have more strength and better health.
What looked annoying is actually motivating. I like to see small changes on my body because I know that the accumulation of small changes make a great transformation. It’s the same principle as a video game, the main character is gradually becoming stronger and stronger.
When I look my workout’s tracking over several months or several years, I see that I have done great transformation. The amount of weight lifted has increased and my endurance has increased.
When I check my workout’program of the day, I stop to day to myself : « It’s going to be painful today, oh no ! » but « Mmmh, it’s going to have a little new record today ! ».
That is why I began to « document » the evolution of my body. If you watch my videos every day, you’ll not see any difference but when you watch the videos I made 6 months or 1 year ago, you see that the differences are really visible. And it’s the same for you.
Build the grit
For several years I had several (one ton) failures and I searched to find small changes and new tactics to change my body little by little, week after week. I did all that to create « my new standard » and « my new identity » to have the best possible future in my life. All these small improvements on my body have developing more grit and perseverance.
Here is how to build your grit yourself :
Determine your new « identity ».
The more specific your new identity, the easier it will be to prove it to yourself. For example : « I’m the type of person who never miss a workout » and « I’m the type of person who always eats a healthy meal at lunch » and/or « I’m the type of person who works on his own business as soon as I have free time ».
To always have these identities in mind put post-it in several places in your house like on the calendar, the phone and the mirror of your bathroom. You can also have it in the wallpaper (lock screen) on your smartphone.
Have small victories every day to prove it to yourself and motivate you to do that
Follow your evolution and highlight your small victories to see that you are in the right direction. Make a daily challenge that takes you between 5 and 15 minutes. Once this challenge is successful, it’s a small victory in addition.
Increases the difficulty of your challenges every 30 days
For a month, for 30 days, you’ll have small victories. Once you have 30 small victories, make a party to celebrate these victories and increase the difficulty of your challenges for the next 30 days.
Attention, our will’s strength is limited so use all this will to build this new healthy habit.
When you have created you « new standard », it’s time to improve it.
Improve your « new standard » by making small adjustments. Make slow and steady progress to win. If you make drastic adjustments, you will have more failures than small victories and this will make you want to give up.
When you fail in something , be sure to fail differently next time
Failure doesn’t mean that you have a bad or a weak personality. It’s just mean that you didn’t have all the knowledge and experience to succeed. Learn and practice more on the field to continue towards the best.
It’s not important where you’re from, where you’re going that’s important.
I warn you already that this a path with more that 1 billion challenges but it’s the price to pay for a better lifestyle. To achieve the lifestyle of your dreams , you will create 1 billion versions of yourself, all better than the previous ones (it’s like an update).
The most important thing is that you shouldn’t let anyone tell you that you can’t accomplish anything in you life (this also includes you parents).
If you know you can do it, do it !
What is the little victory you have recently made, and what the next ?
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