Maybe it’s because I was raised by two parents who, despite all their talents and successes remained very humble about them.
I have never had that resounding feeling like “Wow, I’m really awesome at this!”
Even all of the years I spent as a musician; recording, performing and writing, I never felt like I was one of the best in my city, state and certainly not on any grander scale.
I look at my life now: solid marriage, two beautiful boys, a successful business, a popular podcast and blog, and happy clients. I could never tell you that I am an excellent husband, excellent father, excellent small business owner, excellent podcast host or an excellent trainer.
At best, I’m just good.
Allow me to pivot from that point for a moment.
I see the struggles of some of my clients. Those desperately wanting to be amazing at weight loss. They want to perfect the diet riddle and claim once and for all that they hit their maintenance weight and they’re never going to gain weight again.
They deride themselves when the diet goes off the rails for an unplanned dessert or a portion size that was bigger than it needed to be. They mercilessly beat themselves up because the food plan was perfect on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday until Judy brought in those damn donuts on Thursday and due to complete lack of willpower and mental fortitude, they caved and ate the stupid donuts.
That must make them weak and unsuccessful and unable to conquer their diet plan with perfection.
Or I see the frustration of my clients who want that instant gratification of a new personal record. They come into the gym, anticipating the weight that they need to lift only to find that today was just not their day and they failed on the rep. So, they trudge through the rest of the workout, beating themselves up because their linear progress took a hit.
It is scenarios like these that I think about when I challenge people to embrace what’s good.
I recently told one of my clients that I don’t know what “perfect” looks or feels like so I don’t coach perfection, I just coach progress. The rest seems to fall in line.
I take my own general feelings of not assuming I’m excellent at anything and ask “But am I getting better?”
And I think when you can allow yourself to improve on any scale, that is reason enough to claim victory.
Maybe you have to temporarily take a break from dieting to focus on other skills like meal prep or better sleep. Maybe you have to stop chasing a heavier weight on the dumbbell rack or the barbell so you can focus on having a stronger grip, better endurance or some mobility work.
Maybe you (and I) were never destined for perfect but destined for better than we were when we started.
Lest people believe that I associate being good and seeking improvements are synonymous with mediocrity, I do not.
I think you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to be on a nonstop, relentless path towards self-improvement: to be healthier, more caring, more compassionate, a better listener, stronger, kinder, more forgiving, less critical, or simply a version of you that trumps the one you were even a month or two months ago.
I have attached a picture of our client Casey, who has mentally and physically transformed herself during her time here. The psychological shift that’s occurred in Casey is remarkable and I think that she says it better than I ever could when she posted this on social media last week:
“205 isn’t a lot of weight (to lift) for many people, so I’m not sharing this because it’s particularly impressive in that way. What it is, however, is a very revealing and accurate look into how good working out at Revolution Fitness And Therapy makes me feel. Happy, strong, accomplished. I love the feeling of getting a little better each week and knowing I’m continuing to do things that are more difficult than I’ve ever done before. If you haven’t checked out RevFit yet, you should. Jason Leenaarts will help you become an even greater version of you than you already are.”
I am very fortunate to have a roster of clients, both face-to-face and online, who I think are truly amazing people. The very privilege of seeing these individuals push and strive for more inspires me to do the same for myself because I don’t want to let them down.
So, I will continue to move my needle of being good and striving for better. And to my clients, who I think have in many ways achieved their greatness beyond my own skill levels I extend our proclamation:
“We Make Great People Greater”