About a year ago I'm back in Australia and I'm sitting on the banks of the Yarra with a new friend. Big jacked African American dude , and then there's me, more tattoos then common sense, not your average looking guys to be sitting in the Melbourne cbd quietly playing chess while talking about saving the world - as some trainers tend to do.
Adrian mentions to me he thinks this generation is struggling with a confidence issue, a lack of self esteem. Where do these things come from? I mean I know for sure in a volatile, intense , high risk situations, I'm quite comfortable - then you get me in a regular busy cafe, all of a sudden not so much. Does that make me more or less confident then the average person , I don't know.
What I do know there is a strong link between looking good and feeling good. I know personally, and I know from experience of helping hundreds of people do the same. This can also be a trap, creating an identity to the way you look, building your confidence and how you appear physically - not only can it cause you to seek the approval of others (eg social media) you can also not hold onto the physical forever. Which brings me to.
Education and knowledge. The more you learn, the more you earn. Pretty basic concept. The more you know, the more you can construct your life the way you see it in your mind. An this isn't more money = confidence / happiness. The strong link with this area I have noticed is people tend to be more confident when they are good at what they do, which comes from knowledge and practice, which general brings in money. Again the trap here I've noticed is should you lose the money/career/identity you're confidence can take a big blow.
I guess lastly is the people who associate with - and this can be on a large number of people now due to internet/social media. I can't remember the statistics I think for every one negative comment it takes fourteen positive comments to 'undo' the negative one. Again like the other two factors you shouldn't rely on outside sources for confidence or self esteem - aside from it being obvious your generally going to perform better and feel better around nice people then assholes - particular the amount of negativity generated from strangers due to social media.
I'm no expert on this , I also mentioned there are many 'normal' situations I don't feel confident in. Reading over this blog this probably raises more questions then answers - like usual. This just my opinion , my observation , I started writing about this due to the amount of people that bring up my physique or my presence and the way I seem arrogant or over confidence. Like I mention your appearance should not be your source of confidence or identity , also someone else's judgement of you probably suggest more about them then you.
Self awareness, mindfulness, meditation, self regulation. What ever you want to call any of these practices , they have taught me alot about myself. Particularly in the way my mind works - in this post we'll touch on noticing your own addictions, vices, demons . What ever word you prefer to use.
Addictive personality or maybe even one side of my family seeming to all be addicts of one thing of another, whether addiction is a disease , genetics or a choice - is not something i'm going to go into either. What I can tell you though my biggest addiction has not been drugs, or gambling or booze. It's dangerous behavior - going fast, motorbikes, cars. Risky decisions, shooting first asking questions later, doing what others tend not to. Taking chances, living on the edge. You get the idea I could describe this in one way or another but when I feel the risk, the danger, particularly when someone suggests I shouldn't do something. I usually go for it.
Why am I telling you this, self regulation. Losing jobs, relationships, ending up in hospital and so on. Once I realized I like to self sabotage, I like to like on the edge. I controlled my circumstances a little more. I stopped buying fast cars, I didn't goto night clubs, I stopped entering fighting tournaments with barely enough preparation ( wait I actually did that a few weeks ago) - anyway.
The point is, we all have vices, demons, addictions - are you aware of yours ? And if so what steps have you taken to distance yourself from these things taking control. Its Saturday night and im writing a blog with my cat sitting on my lap. I'm quite happy with that. Waking up , not knowing what happened or where I was , just to feel 'alive' or push things to limit - fun? not possibly. Dangerous , damaging and unnecessary to my goals , life and relationships absolutely.
Why am I like this? my young years were all filled with chaos (you'll find all your behavior patterns stem from childhood) so to compensate my mind find ways to emulate that release of adrenaline - which I can mainly do thru intense training now.
If you have a dangerous relationship with something or addiction , understand what it is, and why. Then take the steps to create a healthier one with something else. To fill that void, other wise when the opportunity arises - eg wine tasting with friends when you are in fact an alcoholic. If you haven't developed to will power to say no, or found something else you'd rather do eg maybe train with some friends or go for coffee. You'll find yourself fulfilling the cycle of a behavior pattern. Which left unregulated usually doesn't end well.
When I talk to people about change and living better, I don't make out to be the most loving perfect person on planet earth that goes around being positive all the time.
I am however a perfect example of what positivity, personal development and love can do.
If I had to describe myself to someone else I would saying a relatively friendly guy who is into fitness and helping people. If I had to describe the old me to someone I say a racist, uneducated degenerate with nothing to offer. I don't say that to make myself sound any better or worse. Its just a self assessment on 10 years of change.
I had a conversation with a young adult in prison and he asked me what was the hardest, but also the most important thing to lasting positive change. I thought about it. I said to him getting rid of (if necessary) friends and influences in your life that should no longer be there. Yes we are all accountable for our own actions, thoughts, feelings etc . But I'll give you a small example, my best friend for 6 years, he was probably the person that showed me the most about lifting weights in my life. But as I went on , made a career out of it, made my life about it. For what ever reason he would react negatively towards me - almost randomly. For example we would have a disagreement , he would unfollow my facebook business page. A small petty thing none the less, but when you are trying to change, or do great things, or evolve. These small actions, or shots, or negative behavior - what ever you want to call it.
Basically rolls down to - if you cant count on your best friend with something as simple as supporting your business by liking it , how can you count on them for bigger things, or do they even deserve a seat at your table?
This might some sound harsh to some, other people might be reading this and already thinking of a few people they need to take this kind of action with.
Now I'm not saying completely cut everyone off and only look after yourself. It's quite the opposite. The day I decided everyone near me were always, loving, positive and driven (most of the time) I also regulate are they doing things that are looking after their best interest, and mine.
Once I started doing this I had more, time energy and love - to then give to other people and my business. and when you are in the helping people business you need alot of it.
God speed. Fittsy