Why Do We Fail?
“Man, I see in Fight Club the strongest and smartest men who have ever lived. I see all this potential. And I see it squandered.” – Tyler Durden, “Fight Club” (1999)
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the drivers for our success, and the possible reasons for our failures. What follows are my slightly unfiltered thoughts offered for your consideration.
Who is responsible for your success? Who is at fault for your failure?
As your coach and the owner of your gym, it is at least partially my responsibility to keep the carrot dangling out there in front of you, and help you stay motivated to get your butt in gear. And I take that responsibility very seriously. Many of you over the years, have chased that carrot with unrelenting fire and ambition, and I’m so proud of you!
But the real truth of the matter comes down to the fact that nobody can take the credit for your hard work and dedication, but you. I provided the opportunity, the path, and the help along the way, but you chose to follow it. You chose to stick with it even when things got hard, even when you had legitimate excuses to give up. You earned your results. You get the credit.
On the other side of things sits a growing number of people who want to create a story around why they’ve failed. These stories are called “Excuses”. Sadly, we all do it. The problem with this behavior is we actually believe that our stories are true and therefore, justifiable reasons why our situation is unique and different, and why our failure to produce is understandable. “If you only knew what I had to go through, you’d understand why I can’t get to the gym, and put in the work required for me to get me what I want.”
That is totally false. Everyone knows it, even you. If you want something bad enough, you’ll make it happen. You will make every sacrifice necessary to reach that future bright spot. For example, this past weekend, there was a man with no arms and no legs who went through the SealFit KOKORO 20X Experience. If you don’t know what that is, look it up. Imagine doing it with stumps for arms and legs, and then try and justify your “excuse”.
We all have a choice. We can choose to have RESULTS, or we can choose to have STORIES. Both require a commitment. One is a commitment to doing everything necessary to accomplish what we want; while the other is a commitment to saving face, to keep alive the fantasy that we’re not really failing. Both require a relentless pursuit. The choice is yours.
I realize that this feels a bit harsh. That is my point. I love you enough to say the hard thing when it needs to be said. You told me what you wanted. Some of you want a renewed confidence wearing a swimsuit, others are in it for health, still others have a life of functional ability in mind. Maybe it’s your older self enjoying a life that is more fun, less painful, and less expensive than it otherwise could be. Either you really want it, or you just want to want it. I don’t know. All I know is THAT is what you told me. And I intend on holding you to the integrity of your word.
Either you can have your dream, or you can have your series of excuses. Either you can do the work, or you can tell yourself the reason why you didn’t. You can’t have both.
So what is the way forward?
Take full responsibility for yourself. Realize that your Stories are nothing more than the lies that you’ve created to protect yourself from experiencing the pain and embarrassment that comes from failure. Stop Lying. You’re telling yourself story after story about your situation, and making up fantasies that justify the fact that you’ve given up. Own it. Embrace reality. Make the change.
There are obstacles constructed around each and every one of us that we all have to overcome if we want to succeed. They may be enormous, seemingly unconquerable, and nearly impossible challenges, or they may just be slight inconveniences. But, the responsibility is still ultimately yours. Your busy schedule isn’t keeping you from your results, you are. Your boss isn’t keeping you from your results, you are. Your genetics aren’t keeping you from your results, you are. Your budget isn’t keeping you from your results, you are. Are these obstacles and challenges that must be overcome? Absolutely. Do you need to make sacrifices to overcome them? Yep. Will it be hard? You know it. Will it be worth it? Absolutely.
Finally, we’re here to help YOU overcome YOUR obstacles. No judgment, just help. Remember, the only failure is giving up.
So, here is what I want you to do.
If you are currently a member at CrossFit Regeneration, invest $50 bucks in yourself by scheduling a half-hour meeting with me. We’ll look at your life through the lens of Reality, and chart a path toward getting you exactly what you want. This kind of consultation is only available to current CrossFit Regeneration members.
If you’re a former member at CrossFit Regeneration; either because you quit when things got tough, or you got distracted by a shiny object, or you temporarily decided to change your priorities, we’re still here for you. We’ll welcome you back with open arms, and get you back on the path toward getting what it was that got the ball rolling for you in the first place. Send me an email. I’ll get you set up.
If you’ve never been a member of CrossFit Regeneration, we’re equipped to set your body on fire. You don’t know what you’re capable of, and it’s our job to set your inner athlete free. We’re very good at that. But know that we can’t do the work for you. It will be a long, difficult climb, but when you see the view from the top, you’ll never want to come down. If you’re willing to put in the work, you won’t recognize yourself a year from now.
Feel free to share this with someone who needs it. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.