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The Gym Can Jumpstart The Direction of Your Life
The other day something hit me.
The gym has always been a place that can jumpstart your life and bring much needed change to not only your health and body, but to nearly every other aspect of your life.
“Why is that?” I thought to myself the other day after a couple hits of a THC pen, and it hit me like a ton of bricks.
Most people, especially young men, go through life with little to no direction or purpose, at least not a well-defined direction or purpose.
This thought hit me when I caught eyes with a friend’s neighbor and thought about what he does all day from time to time.
Let me tell you this quick story to make my point.
The Man With The Door Opener
There is this guy, he’s retired, lives alone with his dog, who spends his days outside on his porch on the top floor of this apartment complex.
This apartment complex has 2 buildings connected by a courtyard and you have to scan a keycard to get into each building.
What he does is he sees people he knows and uses this app on his phone to open the door for them automatically, seems like a small task, but being I’m over there a lot, working with my business partner—it’s actually extremely convenient.
Some of the other neighbors, while they think it’s nice and convenient, think it’s really weird and wonder why he does it.
Well, the other day I looked at him and saw him doing it, like he does most afternoons, and it all made sense—he is retired, he has nothing to do, no real direction or purpose anymore, so he does this one small task that makes people’s lives easier, makes them happy for a moment, which makes him happy.
It all makes amazing sense and it’s actually quite an honorable thing as simple and insignificant as it might seem.
The reality is, in a man who already made his money, has no work or anything to do, this one simple act of servitude gives him purpose—so simple yet so profound.
Think about this just one more time to really drive the point—he does something that makes others and himself happy which gives him purpose!
This is not insinuating you need to open doors for people or some other singular purpose in life, this is insinuating that purpose is an innate NEED for all people and finding purpose gives life the flavor we all desire.
Now, why as a fitness writer am I talking about someone who opens doors for others?
Because this led me to a profound insight that this is all most people are looking for in life, purpose.
All Humans Need Purpose
Too often, people get caught in the minutiae and routine of normal life. Most of it has already been thought out for you, whether by parents, mentors, or society.
Go to college, get your job, work 9-5, pay your bills, enjoy your free time on the weekends, try to find romance, start a family, etc etc.
This is great and all, but for most this is just a zombie routine and gives very little, if no personal satisfaction or self-actualization. This is represented well within Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Many struggle to go beyond esteem, and of those many struggle to go beyond relationships or even safety (see poverty line stats and current macroeconomic outlook).
Because of this, a lot of people go through mid-life crisis or suffer from mood and even mental issues because of the simple fact that their lives are almost robotic and void of any real meaning outside of family—which is very important and rewarding, but does not accomplish the human need for your own individual purpose and accomplishment in life.
We NEED purpose and we NEED a direction to feel fulfilled and to truly feel that we lived life, to quote legendary Frank Sinatra, “My Way”.
This is where the gym—something as simple as building our physical body—comes into play.
The Gym Gives Your Defined Direction and Purpose
Although the gym should be something every single human utilizes, the grim reality is they don’t and over about 50% of people are obese.
Most humans will never step foot in a gym, and this is a huge mistake, if not for the health aspect, for the fact that the gym drives a new purpose and meaning to life.
The reason why is rather simple—the gym and the results from the gym are both achievable on the premise of basic biology and physiology (anyone can see success in the gym, there is no “luck” or real skill involved) and the results are tangible, you can see them and they come in relation to the effort and consistency you put in.
The last line there, the effort and consistency, is the one we will focus on.
To achieve great results in the gym, it is not something you can kind of do one day and not do another—you MUST do the basics consistently to get good results. Plain and simple.
Those who understand this and undergo this task to make progress in the gym—regardless if goal is physique, strength, training for a competition like an Ironman, etc.—find that they have a reason and a direction for life—there are things they must do everyday to reach their desired outcome.
This lights a fire in people who start to see results from their effort and consistency, it starts to give them a sense of purpose, a sense of they are doing something they find worthwhile and something most people just simply aren’t doing (see “Esteem” on Maslow’s Hierarchy).
Now, what *should* and does happen for many? This spills over to other aspects—a relationship between effort and results has been built (remember, you are nearly guaranteed results if you put in effort and consistency, this is important and why the gym is a FANTASTIC starting point). These same people start to take more action and responsibility for their own lives.
Your purpose and direction in life should NOT start and end in the gym, that is not the point, but if you need direction and purpose this is the PERFECT place to start for the reasons mentioned above. This new sense of direction and purpose should spill into everything and give you a lust for life and everything it has to offer.
If you’re reading this, I’ll assume I’ve convinced you at this point to lift and take your health and fitness somewhat seriously.
What I’m asking you to do here is to really dial this in. If you are someone who really feels like they are just caught in the flow of regular life, maybe even underwater, take the next few months—hell the next year—and truly devote your life (short of neglecting career and other responsibilities) to taking your fitness and diet to the next level.
Truly buy in, have a plan, know exactly what you need to do daily to reach your desired fitness and physique goals, and make this your top priority.
This means no skipping a session, no cheating on your diet, no “I’ll do cardio tomorrow, I’m just too tired tonight”, you will simply do what you need to do and make no excuses or exceptions.
What is the worst that happens? You end up in incredibly good shape and look amazing? There is no negative that can come from this and it might, just might, give you an entirely new lease on life.
You will find the discipline, effort, dedication, struggle, sacrifice, all of it, will lead to an entirely new human—someone you will likely look back on a year from now and not even recognize who you were before.
This (as we will get into, next paid subscriber post) has always been the real reason, behind the vanity and physical aspects, to get serious about the gym. The gym builds physically, mentally, and spiritually. The gym can build the frame of mind and the habits, the fire, the desire, to improve every other aspect of your existence.
You have all the tools here, simply look at the Directory and you’ll find every resource you need to be beyond successful in this regard, I’m asking you to USE IT.
The gym saved my life, and looking back it was for this simple reason—it provided me, a teenager who was lost, a sense of direction and purpose that has fueled every single accomplishment I have made to this point and will, Lord willing, make in the future.
These words, no matter how they make you feel, mean absolutely nothing if you do not put them into practice.
If you’re skeptical, just try it, again worst case you get into amazing shape.
If this made you feel some type of fire in your soul, put your phone down, shut the laptop, and go fucking lift.
This is not Legal, Medical, or Financial advice. Please consult a medical professional before starting any workout program, diet plan, or supplement protocol. These are opinions from a Cartoon Ox.