I first heard this quote when I went to the Growth Summit in 2018 with my good friend, Mark Moore. Rachel Hollis was one of the speakers. Rachel is a best-selling author, and one of her books entitled, “Girl, Stop Apologizing” has sold over 1.5 million copies.
Rachel talked heavily about how comparing yourself to others can be detrimental to your success. She said, “Comparison is the killer of joy.” She is so right!
Most people focus on what they don’t have. They see people on social media posting about buying a new house, getting married, going on these luxurious vacations, and going on and on about the great things in their life.
And while a part of them is happy for other people’s success, another part gets jealous, frustrated, and depressed because they may not have those things. I have heard people say that scrolling Facebook or Instagram can make them feel sad because they immediately think about what they don’t have in their life.
Melissa and I attend The Cross Church in Deerfield Beach. The other day, Pastor Tommy Boland, was talking about how there are two kinds of pride. The positive pride is feeling great about your family, your achievements, and the life you have built.
The sin of pride is comparing yourself to others. He said it is wrong, and the constant comparisons can lead you down a dark road of depression and sadness.
Let’s get this out on the table. Social media is a highlight reel of people’s lives. No one is living the perfect life free from frustrations, problems, and challenges. Do many people post about their problems? Of course not!
They show all the great things! They show the amazing business they built, the new house they just bought, the new car they just got, the new, incredibly loving relationship they are in, etc. It is an overview of the positives in their life.
Should we allow what others have or don’t have influence our self-esteem? Hell no! And while we know this logically, emotionally it can be hard.
How can we live our best life and stop comparing ourselves and our lives to others? Here are a few ideas.
Strategy #1: Focus on what you do have!
Tony Robbins says when you ask better questions, you get better answers. So, ask yourself, “What do I love about my life? What am I most proud of? What do I have that I am incredibly grateful for?” Asking the right questions will get you to focus on all the blessings, victories, and achievements that you already have.
Tony also says that progress is the key to happiness in life. When we are seeing and feeling progress in our lives, we feel happier and more joyful. Focus on the areas of your life that are moving in the right direction.
I’m sure when you really look, you will see just how truly wealthy you already are!
Strategy #2: Cut back on social media!
I once read that you can either spend your time living your life, or you can waste your time by observing other people’ lives.
I love social media because we can reach an enormous amount of people very quickly. It’s never been easier to stay in touch with friends, family members, and loved ones.
As a business owner, Facebook and Instagram allow Elite Force Martial Arts to connect with people in our community for little money, and it brings new students in the front door, and it motivates old students to start training again.
There are a ton of positives, however if you feel bad, sad, or depressed when scrolling because you are comparing your life to someone else’s, cut back immediately!
Rachel Hollis told the crowd in Arizona that she posts on social media for business, but that is it. She does not scroll to see what others are up to. She said that when she did, she would naturally start comparing herself to others and that lead to intense anxiety, so she stopped.
And for the record, she has over 1.6 million followers on Instagram.
Strategy #3: Journal your feelings
I don’t believe that ignoring certain recurring thoughts will make them go away. Maybe that works for some people, and if it does, good for you.
I have found that writing down how I feel and the circumstance around my feelings helps me to clarify my emotional state and helps me to proactively deal with those emotions.
Sometimes just putting the feelings on paper can feel like a weight has been lifted. Try it! I hope it works for you!
We are all hoping for a strong year in 2021. Last year caught us all off guard. Many people saw their incomes get reduced, businesses were shutdown, stress and anxiety increased, and, sadly, many people died.
As we look forward into 2021, we know we have to be more focused, more disciplined, and have great clarity on our goals to win big. We will need to take massive action to realize the massive results we are all craving for.
To reach that level of success, we will need an abundance of physical, mental, and emotional energy.
We have all seen young children and puppies run around with a seemingly endless supply of energy, however it seems to dwindle as we get older.
How do we get it back? How can we generate ample energy to achieve our goals and enjoy the process?
Author Brendon Burchard conducted an in-depth study of high performers to determine how they reached their goals. He studied what actions they took and what strategies they utilized to optimize their health and energy.
What he found were a few key actions that allowed these achievers to win in life and have plenty of energy left over to enjoy their hobbies, have ample family time, and enjoy the process.
Strategy #1: Release Tension, Set Intention
High performers have brief pauses in between activities to take a break, refocus their thoughts and recapture their energy, so they are able to work at a high level.
They stop, close their eyes, breathe deeply, and focus on releasing any negativity they are feeling. They focus their thoughts on their next task and doing it with excellence and ease. They set a clear intention on their next activity and visualize themselves doing it at a world class level.
Strategy #2: Bring the Joy
Oprah Winfrey has a sign up in her office and her boardroom that says, “You are responsible for the energy you bring into this room.” What she is saying is, be intentional about being positive, optimistic, and happy.
Top performers are intentional about being positive, friendly, and joyful. They don’t wait around and hope something happens to put them in a good mood. They intentionally bring the joy in everything they do. It’s no wonder everyone loves being around them!
High performers are intentional about consuming positive information. They read inspirational books, listen to instructional podcasts, and surround themselves with good natured, successful, and happy people.
What do they do when dealing with obstacles? They honor the struggle and continue to bring the joy!
They ask themselves empowering questions that generate positive emotions. They set triggers to remind themselves to be positive and grateful. For example, every time they enter a room, they remind themselves to be the most joyful person in the room and to compliment someone else.
Strategy #3: Optimize Your Health
High performers set themselves up for success. They sleep 7-8 hours every night, and they drink plenty of water (a minimum of half your body weight in ounces).
They also eat lots of greens and exercise every day.
I’ve never met a person that said they wish they had less energy. I have heard people say they wish they had more. Try these strategies for a couple weeks and watch your energy, emotions, and attitude rise like the sun in the morning!
Remember, massive action leads to massive results!
New Year => New Habits => New/Better Results
2020 is in the rear-view mirror, and we are in high gear working to make 2021 a much better year.
Most people that make New Year’s resolutions never actually make the changes or improvements. In fact, only 4% of people that set New Year’s resolutions stick to them and make the changes.
Yet, we hear of some people making changes and achieve great results. I just read that New Year’s marks 4 years of sobriety for actress, Rumor Willis.
Comedian and game show host, Drew Carrey, stopped drinking, started exercising, changed his diet, and lost nearly 100 pounds some years ago.
So, how do some people do it while others continue to struggle and slide along laterally? Is it just doubling down on your will power? No way!
There was a study about willpower. Two groups of people were given an unsolvable problem to work on. One group was given a plate of warm, freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, and were told not to eat them until after they finished the problem.
The other group was given a plate of radishes and were told to not eat them until they were done with the problem. Needless to say, that wasn’t too hard to do!
The group that had to have the willpower to not eat the chocolate chip cookies only worked on the problem for 9 minutes before giving up. The group that was told to not eat the plate of radishes worked on the problem for over 20 minutes.
So, clearly will power tires you out and fades with time!
The answer lies in changing your habits. Did you know that 90% of everything we do is based on our habits? Let’s talk about some strategies to change your habits this year so you can create better results, achieve your goals, and live the life you want to.
Strategy #1: Make it Easy! If you want to start exercising first thing in the morning, set yourself up for success. Lay out your clothes and sneakers out the night before, so right when you get up, everything you need is right there. If you don’t do this, it’s too easy to talk yourself out of taking action.
If you want to read more, layout your book on your reading chair so you can’t miss it. Do you want to practice guitar more frequently? Pull the guitar out of the case and set it up where you want to practice. We are all lazy! It’s human nature. Set yourself up for success in advance, and it will be much easier to follow through consistently.
Strategy #2: Replace it! One of the best ways to change your habits is to swop a bad habit for another one. For example, you can swap out drinking soda with sparkling water. Most of the time, you want the bubbles in your drink.
Do you want to stop snacking on chips late at night? Swop out the chips for carrot sticks. It’s the same crunching sensation! You can swop out drinking alcohol with sparkling water mixed with cranberry juice. Swop out beer for non-alcoholic beer.
Strategy #3: Focus on Addition, Not Subtraction! When Montel Williams was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, he had to make changes to his diet. He had to give up foods that he loved, like steak and potatoes. Instead of focusing on what he could no longer have, he focused on what he got to add into his diet.
He focused on adding in delicious salmon with a large, flavorful salad. He got excited about some of the new foods he got to eat that he liked.
Focus on what you get to add in!
Strategy #4: Bet on Yourself and Make the Penalties of Failure Sting! This is a powerful strategy. Find an accountability partner and tell them your goal. Then make a commitment that you will write a check to a person or an organization that you hate if you fail. Tell your accountability partner that they cannot listen to any stories or excuses of why you did not follow through.
It’s all about results. If you hit the goal, you keep the money. If you fail, they send in your money to that person or organization that you hate! Make sure you give them the check at the beginning, so there is no backing out!
2021 can be an amazing year! Decide on your 3 big goals, identify what habits you need to add in, change, or eliminate, and watch the success and victories come rolling in!
Happy new year!
Shihan Craig Haley
I recently spent 5 days in Phoenix, AZ going through Brendon Burchard’s High Performance Academy. It was 5 days of intense learning, growing, and self-discovery.
Many topics were covered. Everything from motivation, habits, daily rituals, and more.
One of the key things I got from the event was how FEAR can stop us from pursuing the life that we really want. All of us have goals and dreams, however few people in the world are living the life they dreamed of when they were younger or would really want.
Sure, many people have good jobs, great families, and lots of vacation weeks. All that is great if that’s the life they dreamed of and are truly happy with.
For many, they would like an upgrade to their life or lifestyle. Think about it yourself…
Motivation is a big piece of the puzzle, but we will tackle that in a later article. Let’s talk about what holds us back. In many cases, it’s FEAR. What is FEAR…really?
Most FEAR is bad management of the mind! That’s right. Our minds naturally wander to the negative. There is an immediate assumption of pain. It’s human nature. Don’t get frustrated by it. Instead, understand it and let’s do something about it.
We know there are 3 kinds of FEAR that stop us from taking action toward our dream life.
#1 Area of FEAR is FEAR of Loss.
We fear what we might lose by pursuing the goal. You might lose that consistent pay check and financial stability. You may have to give up that food you love…or alcohol. Perhaps you will have to give up free time to pursue the new dream. Fear of loss of any kind is a real FEAR and it’s natural.
#2 Area of FEAR is FEAR of the PROCESS
One thing that will stop us in our tracks is the FEAR that the process will be hard. Building the business will be hard, working out consistently will be hard, giving up some of the foods you love will be difficult, etc.
#3 Area of FEAR Is Outcome FEAR.
We are afraid that after all that work, the end result won’t be worth it. Perhaps the dream didn’t work. Maybe it did workout but not the way you thought. Maybe the end result is now more work than what you had before you pursued the goal.
So, what is the strategy? Do we just accept the lives we have, or do we dare try to overcome our FEAR? Luckily, there are strategies that high performers use that allow them to build their dream lives with financial abundance, great health, great relationships, and lots of free time.
Overcome the FEAR of Loss: Focus on what you will gain by pursuing the goal, not what you will lose. Focus on how good you will feel. Think about how happy you will be building your dream business. Think about how proud you will be to finally lose those 30 pounds. Think about the delicious (and healthy) foods you will get to eat.
“If you don’t break the frame of loss, you will never get the gain.”
- Brendon Burchard, author of High Performance Habits
Overcome the FEAR of the Process: Honor the Struggle. Don’t focus on the hardship. High performers embrace the struggle. They honor it. They get excited about climbing the ladder. One thing that we know through research about high performers is they believe in their ability to figure things out. Most people choose a life of distraction (social media) because the struggle to achieve seems too hard. Honor the struggle!
Overcome the FEAR of the Outcome: Focus on how you will be fulfilled by pursuing and achieving the goal. Is working towards this goal going to make you feel good, proud, or fulfilled? Also, high performers focus on how they are contributing to others or giving others’ opportunities by going after the goal. They focus on who they can serve by achieving the goal.
Think about what might be holding you back. Is it a FEAR of loss, FEAR of the process, or a FEAR of the outcome? Is it more than one or all 3?
Believe in your abilities and potential. Focus on what you will gain, honor the struggle, and remember that fulfillment beats the S**T out of FEAR!
Thank you for being a part of the Elite Force family!
We all know a person in our lives that cannot stop talking about their problems, challenges, injuries, health concerns, relationship troubles, and much more. They come in and immediately put the focus on them and their tale of woe.
Be honest…do you like being around these people? I’m sure some of them are good friends and you want to help them out. You want to be a good person and listen to them, be a shoulder to cry on, and possibly even offer suggestions.
Does that ever help? More than likely, the answer is no! In my experience, this gives them the green light to complain more, sulk more, and put all their troubles on your lap.
The reality is complaining is a way of getting attention. They have something to say and they want you to agree that they have it so much rougher than the rest of the world.
What if that person accepted 100% responsibility for the position they are in. What if they accepted they are in a tough spot, whether it was their fault or not, and decided they are going to make the best of it with a great attitude.
Mike Smith was the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons from 2008 to 2014. In his book, “You Win in the Locker Room First”, he talks about installing a NO COMPLAINING POLICY.
Smith says people that complain are energy vampires and will drag a team down. Be careful who you surround yourself with because they may influence your attitude in a bad way and make it difficult for you to achieve your goals.
Nelson Mandela was arrested and put in prison for 27 years. Did you ever hear him complain while serving his sentence or after he got out? The answer is NO! When asked what he was doing while serving out his sentence, he said he was preparing. WOW! Now that is a great attitude!
The Swahili term “hakuna matata”, means no worries. What if, instead of complaining, your knee jerk reaction was, “No worries!”?
You think to yourself, “I’ve got this. Yeah, it’s a minor inconvenience, but I will make it through. No worries!”
Tony Robbins says your life will completely change when you trade your expectations for appreciation. So instead of thinking everything should go smoothly for you and there should be no trouble in your life. Focus on everything you have to appreciate and be thankful for.
Think about it. I have a wonderful family, great wife, awesome little girl, and I work with an incredible team. I have said it again and again. The best people in all of South Florida train at Elite Force Martial Arts. And lucky me…I get to see them 6 days per week!
So first I challenge you to go one week with no complaining. Discipline yourself. Sure, it will be tough. Writing this reminds me not to complain!
Put an alarm reminder in your phone that says, “trade expectations for appreciation” and have it go off 3 times per day. This will serve as a gentle reminder to focus on gratitude and eliminate complaining.
Complaining drains energy. Appreciation enhances energy and puts you in a great mood.
Train hard, be your best, and make someone feel great today!
We all experience pain, discomfort, disappointment, and frustrations.
That difficulty is an opportunity to get stronger, to develop character, to gain a new perspective. Anybody can fall apart; anybody can get bitter—that’s easy. But what that’s doing is wasting your pain.
That pain is not there to stop you; it’s there to develop you, to prepare you, to increase you.
In 1982, researchers aboard the space shuttle Columbia did an experiment with honeybees. They took them up into space to study the effects of weightlessness on them.
According to a NASA memo, the bees “were unable to fly normally and tumbled into weightlessness.” Then it was reported that “the bees have all gotten stationary.”
The bees did not have to use their wings, did not have to exert any effort, did not have any resistance. They just floated around.
Later they all died. They may have loved having it easy, having no adversity, but they weren’t created for that. You might say that they enjoyed the ride, but they died.
We need life’s challenges, struggles, and hardships. They make us better.
Don’t just go through the challenge. Grow through it. Learn the lesson, develop the new mindset, improve your skills, and you will come out stronger on the other side!
Once an entrepreneur was in debt, owing money to creditors and suppliers. Stressed as he was, he went for a walk in a park.
As he was sitting on a bench with his head down, thinking of a solution that could save him bankruptcy, an old man with a strange hat approached him. “Is something bothering you, my friend?” the old man asked. The business man told the old man about his financial problems.
After listening to him, the old man said: “I think I can help you.” He asked the entrepreneur what his name was, then took out a pen and wrote him a check which he gave to the man, saying: “This money will help you. Let’s meet again exactly in one year, right here in this park. At that time, I hope that you will be able to return the money to me.”
After that, the old man walked away. The entrepreneur took a better look at the check in his hands and was shocked. The check was for an amount of 500 thousand dollars, signed by John Rockefeller. “Rockefeller?
One of the richest people in the world!” he exclaimed. “This check can solve all of my problems in no time!” he thought. But he decided to put the check into his safe and use it only if all his other efforts failed.
Just the thought that he could access these resources any time, was enough to give him strength to focus on finding smart solutions to save his business. The return of his optimism was a great thing because it helped him close some very profitable deals.
A couple of months later he had earned enough profit to get out of his debt. Then his business started making money again. One year later, he put the check in his pocket and returned to the park.
Around noon, the old man appeared again. The business man took out the check and as he was about to hand it to the old man, a nurse appeared suddenly and grabbed the old man. “Here you are! Haven’t I told you not to bother people you don’t know?” She exclaimed. “I hope he wasn’t bothering you, Sir.
He always runs away from the house and tells people he is John Rockefeller.” Surprised, the entrepreneur was standing there, speechless.
During the whole year he was building his business, buying and selling, confident that he had half a million dollars in his safe.
Suddenly he realized that it’s not the money, real or imaginary, that put him out of trouble. It was his new confidence that gave him strength and motivation to achieve everything that he had now.
A professor raised his glass of water in front of the students. “How heavy is this glass of water, you think?” he asked with a smile. The students’ answers ranged from 10 oz to 20 oz.
“Okay. Now, could one of you come here and help me hold the glass?” A girl walked to her table and held the glass. After a few minutes, the girl said, “Sir, I am tired, is it ok to leave the glass on the table now?”
The professor smiled, nodded yes and said to the students, “Imagine if you have to hold this glass for an hour or even a day! Would you think now that 10 or 20 oz weight too little? “No,” all students answered. “Exactly!
Hold it too long and you will only hurt yourself. Always remember to put the glass down several times a day,” said the teacher.
“The weight of a glass filled with water does not change, but the longer you hold it, the heavier it becomes. Our worries and stresses are like this glass of water. Think about them for a moment and nothing happens. Think about them longer and they begin to hurt. Think about them all day long and you will only feel panic making you unable to do anything else.”
Do not carry your burdens all day long, from morning to night.
Remember to put your burdens down as often as you can. Remember to put the glass down!
A person with an indomitable spirit does not accept defeat! They have a spirit that does not accept failure. This is an important part of being a Black Belt, because on our journey to Black, we may experience failure. It’s been said, if you’re not failing, you’re not trying hard enough!
This week I have an excellent story that illustrates this point.
Many years ago, Gene Tunney became the Heavyweight Boxing Champion of the World because he defeated Jack Dempsey. When he first started his career, he was known as a puncher rather than a boxer.
One day, while doing an exhibition match, Gene broke both his hands. The doctors told him he would never be able to fight again. Suddenly, his dream of being a World Champion Boxer was shattered.
Tunney did not waiver. He said, “If I can’t become the champion as a puncher, then I’ll make it as a boxer.” After being faced with a career ending injury, Gene figured out a way to continue and still realize his dream. Since he could no longer punch, he would learn to box.
History tells us that Gene Tunney went on to beat Jack Dempsey for the Heavyweight Champion of the World. Experts agree that if Gene Tunney had never learned how to box, he could never have been able to beat Jack Dempsey. His apparent set back turned out to be something that made him a better fighter.
Teaching Points: Gene Tunney experienced a setback that would make most people quit. His broken hands almost guaranteed that he would never fight again. Having indomitable spirit means having the determination to continue after you have experience a failure or setback.
Indomitable spirit is important because in the pursuit of our goals, we are all going to experience setbacks and failure. If you quit, you’ll never accomplish your goals. If have indomitable spirit like Gene Tunney, you’ll figure out a way to continue despite your setbacks.
One of the best ways to accelerate your success and achievement in any area of your life, especially your Martial Arts…is to practice, drill and rehearse it until it becomes natural and fluent. When you practice/drill/rehearse with the intent of becoming great, you’ll give it better attention and spirit.
This is true in your Martial Arts and any other area of life that you are striving to improve and achieve excellent results in. Imagine how many practice sessions someone like Lebron James or Kobe Bryant has had in their lifetime.
Spirited repetition is deliberate practice. It is practicing with the intent to get better, to be the best you can be. It doesn’t mean you are error free. It means your focus is set on constant and never-ending improvement.
There is a great story of Kobe Bryant told by his trainer, Robert, in the 2012 Summer Olympics.
The night before a scrimmage for Team USA Kobe called his trainer and asked him to meet him at the practice facility at 5:00 in the morning to do a conditioning and strength workout. When Robert arrived at the facility at 5:00 Kobe was already there drenched in sweat. It looked like he just came out of the pool!
Robert asked him what time he had arrived and Kobe said, “4:30.” I had to warm up.
From 6:00 - 7:00 Robert put Kobe through a conditioning and endurance workout then from 7:00 - 8:00 Robert put Kobe through a strength workout. After that Kobe told Robert he was free to go but he wanted him to meet him back at the practice facility at 11:00. Kobe mentioned he wanted to practice a little more before he ended his morning routine.
When Robert arrived at 11:00, Kobe was shooting jump shots. Robert asked Kobe what time he got done, and Kobe said...just now! Kobe explained he wanted to get in 800 “makes” and he just finished!
Kobe started at 4:30 AM and went until 11:00 AM, then he still had Team USA practice that started at 11:30.
That’s spirited repetition! That is deliberate practice and “A” rated work ethic.
“The way you do anything influences the way you do everything!”
By the way, Kobe played 20 seasons with the LA Lakers, is an 18-time All-Star, 2-time Olympic gold medal winner, and has made over $200 million in his career!