I woke up this morning with the 1997 movie, Grosse Point Blank on my mind. If you are old enough to remember it, the scene Im thinking of is right before the High School reunion and John Cusack is stewing in his hotel room. In an anxious panic John picks up the phone and calls his Psychoanalyst and asks for help. His analyst (Alan Arkin) gives him the mantra to recite, "I am home in the ME, I am Rooted in the ME, This is ME Breathing...". Well, this classic centering mantra got me thinking about the concept of SELF DOUBT. This very human feeling is a hinderance that 99% of us have and if we can conquer it, the world will literally open up before us and goals can be met with force! Today lets dive in on understanding and moving past SELF DOUBT.
First, my definition of Self Doubt. Self Doubt is the psychological manifestation of FEAR. Fear of the unknown and our ability to overcome the challenges we are presented with.
Self Doubt is a primal feeling developed in our left brain lobe over the millennia; Most recognized as the 'little voice inside my head' that tells us when to hold back. While I will focus on the negative aspects of Self Doubt today, I must digress and say that this is the same rational side of the brain that kept us alive during ice ages, famine, war and the like. The world would look much different if we did not have this type of limiter on our conscious brain right?
Manifesting Self Doubt is incredibly debilitating in todays society. Competition being what it is in the job market, on the sporting field and in our interpersonal relationships; we tend to become victims of circumstance if there is a tendency to live inside Self Doubt.
As an athlete, Self Doubt will stunt your progression and is the biggest cause for quitting or giving up as the training gets harder. To overcome this, it takes conscious acceptance and then conscious action. Conscious acceptance of Self Doubt is the deliberate act of acknowledging... we are human. Looking at yourself in the mirror and being ok with what you see is the first challenge. Many times my own acknowledgment has ended up with me having a good laugh at myself, and coming to love this Process we call LIFE!. Conscious Action is really where we move past the Doubts and become unconquerable.
Conscious Actions are mental 'forks in the road' you face when challenged. Usually the path that seems easier perpetuates self doubt whereas the choice that involves rational thought, will move you away from it. Lets use an example that we all know very well. We are 11 minutes into a 12 minute workout and our muscles are drained. We feel like quitting and just being content with the progress we have made thus far. We doubt our ability to carry on, to push past the pain and just rest. We now have to make the choice to keep pushing or rest and count down with the clock until the workout ends. This fork in the road represents a moment where self doubt can either hold us back or we can step confidently in the unknown and see where it takes us. The mental strength developed by embracing the unknown is the GOOD that comes from pushing past Self Doubt.
What are some conscious actions I can take in my life to conquer Self Doubt?
Well, I have a few...
1. Identify your Principles and Purpose.
Taking stock in oneself needs to be a bi-annual exercise at the least. Reconnecting with what you stand for (principles) will sign you with a path that is easier to follow. Defining the Principles by which you hold dear will then lead you towards a Purpose Driven Life. In my experience, there can be little doubt in your thoughts and actions if you KNOW you are acting on what you believe. Chasing someone else dreams, trying to live up to a preconceived notion of standards is only a path towards doubt and ultimate sadness. When you wake up each day and live your Purpose, the result is Freedom from Self Doubt.
2. Seek out those who you admire and follow their lead.
Life is truly a winding road (pardon the Alanis Morissette reference) and no one way will get you to where you are headed but having a few beaten tracks is sure a good way to stay on course. There are incredible people in this world who have faced down and conquered Self Doubt in the same way you are. These people are usually the ones who are not looking to keep improving themselves only , rather they are looking for should like YOU who can be mentored and given the confidence to slay your own beasts. Seek these mentors out, befriend them, and humbly ask for guidance.
3. Only surround yourself with those who wish you well.
Humans are fickle people and for every step forward you may make in life, your 'best friends' may try their best to pull you two steps back. Self Doubt is perpetuated by outside influences as much as it is an internal struggle. Friends who truly care about helping your advancement past doubt and FEAR are going to be few but they are out there. If you are living by your PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE, they will find you and together big things will happen.
4. Failure is not an option.
I truly believe that 'What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger'. For as many times as I have chased down important goals in my life, there have been SO many failures and embarrassments . Every moment is a learning moment. Get comfortable laughing at yourself, because none of us get out of this alive! DOUBT IS DEBILITATING, if there is no such thing as Failure then there is no need to Doubt. Go for everything! Once again, if you are living by your principles, you can never be ashamed at the time of reckoning.
Becoming Fearless is truly a goal that most humans will never attain. All the points I have just listed do not need massive wealth or intelligence to achieve yet they are thought of as impossible. You have the ability to become a Professional Human Being by overcoming Self Doubt. I say Professional because the Fearless person is someone who is the master of the SELF.
Begin today in your Athletic training. Step in the conscious acceptance that Fear is not real, limitations are not real and your goals will soon be fulfilled. Go back to the John Cusack reference, the doubt in yourself can cause stress but if you claim your mantra you will soon be able to consciously say, "This is ME Breathing". Give it a go and I will be here to back you up, support you as you kick Self Doubt out of your life and truly become who you were supposed to be.
Programming Notes 2/19-2/23
20 Mountain Climbers
15 Squat Therapy
10 Prone PVC Pass Thru (lying on the ground, pass PVC)
Back Rack Push Press (snatch grip )
Overhead Split Squat
Snatch Drops (begin from toes, drop into squat position )
*not to exceed 95/65
20 Min Partner AMRAP
*one partner working at a time, except for the sit ups
20 Cal Bike
15 Overhead Squats 135/95
10 Partner Sit Ups
*score is total rounds and reps completed.
5 Min of Rowing.
*keep pace at or near M=1:55 W=2:05
Kettlebell Warm Up: (top to bottom)
-Single Arm Press
-single Arm Bent Row
-Lateral Trunk Rotation and Punch
-Straight Legged Deadlift
-Bow and Bends (kettlebell begins from floor and finishes locked out overhead)
-One Arm Thruster
Bar Muscle Ups:
*rest as needed between sets
*scale to Jumping bar Muscle Ups
KB Overhead Lunge 53/35
Lat Band Mobility
1:00 Side Plank L
1:00 Side Plank R
Agility Warm Up @ 10m Each
High Knee Pull
Squat 180 **stepping the leg high over hip, swing opposite leg to 180, squat
Marching High Kicks
Straight leg shuffles
Fig 4 Drill
Sprint W/ Change of Direction
Spend 8 Mins working the following complex:
-3 Push Press
-2 Push Jerks
*build past your workout weight
*practice foot position and cycling the Shoulder to Overhead
3x 5:00 AMRAP
15 Shoulder To Overhead 135/95
*rest remaining Time
*consistency and speed are king
Bike 5 Min @ casual pace
15 Kip Swings
9 Push Ups
-Elbow To Instep+ Reach
Cal Row X 2 (42-30-18)
Med Ball Clean
CrossFit Games Opens 18.1!!!!!