The biggest thing that’s stopped me from going to the gym and working out is that I don’t know how to work out.
Like anybody would, I did a moderate amount of Googling and learned a few things about how to do it, but after a short while the information I got start to contradict other information. One article would say to do it THIS way, whereas the next article would say doing that is a total waste of time and to do it ANOTHER way.
It was then I would throw up my hands and assume that I would need to study more deeply the science of fitness than I cared to - if I were to ever hope to do it competently. In the mean time though, any attempts I made would likely fail.
I didn’t like the idea of going to work out at the gym and having wasting my time because I did it wrong. How bad it would be! I imagine I got off my ass, hauled myself to the gym, went through a difficult workout only to find the whole thing was a complete waste of time and effort. No thanks.
Looking back on it though, I realize this is just a way of fooling myself to complacency – into doing nothing.
Is there really any such thing as a bad workout? Probably not. If you go to the gym, move a bunch of heavy things around, get your muscles tired, get sweaty... you’ve probably done AT MINIMUM at B+ job of it.
I wish I could say this is the only area where I duped myself into inaction, but there are multiple areas. Content creation, marketing, and dieting among others.
Thus this main lesson dawned on me very slowly over the years: not knowing how doesn’t have to stop you.
Or to flip those negatives into a positive we’d say: You know how!
Not knowing how doesn’t have to stop you
You know how to work out, you know how to create a business, how to install good habits, how to become a greater version of yourself.
Simply ask yourself – what is something that you could do today (or this week) that would absolutely move you in the right direction? It’s probably something that you don’t want to do, if you're being honest.
And you will need to be honest.
For me, it’s to go to the gym despite not knowing exactly, exactly what to do. Because I’ll learn as I go.
If you're being honest with yourself, you'll know what to do but you'll feel resistance against doing it because there will be some risk involved - risking failure, risking embarrassment, risking disappointment, risking loss of some kind. Isn't this so? And thus we want to say "ah! maybe later."
But THIS is thing is here for you to do. The honesty is saying "It's not that I don't know how, it's that I'm unwilling." Even to admit that is a massive step.
From there we can maybe prepare ourselves to take this big new step onto a bigger arena.
What are you telling yourself you don’t know?
Do you tell yourself that you don’t know how to cook? How do you know this is true?
The lie that I kept telling myself is that I had to first learn everything that there is to know about something, before I could do my own thing. I had to “graduate from the school” first and only then could I invent my own techniques and ideas.
When really, what I most prefer to do is invent my own techniques and ways from Day 1!
People say that there’s no need to “reinvent the wheel” and while that may be true that you don’t have to – I love reinventing the wheel! I love doing it my own way. It’s just how I’m built.
So what are you telling yourself that’s just not true? Are you telling yourself that you can’t do something? That you don’t know how? That you’re still a student, in student-training? That you're missing some key information that you need to search for?
You’re not missing anything.
You do know how.
And if you don’t know how to do something, then you know how to figure it out, which is effectively the same thing anyway.
Of course you ought to keep learning and studying, but only to the extent that it appeals to you
If it appeals to your wonder, your curiosity, your excitement - then absolutely continue to study the masters, the techniques and the insights.
But gone are the days where we use this as reason to tell ourselves that we’re not valid players in the arena.
With this unnecessary film of confusion out of the way, we can now get into the real creative activity that we came here to do.