Mindset: More Obstacles = More Growth

Welcome to Unit 28! 

This is a catch-up unit.

Select whatever you know you need to work on from the previous units.



When I first started my journey in 2016, it was my goal to become perfectly balanced and pain-free for the rest of my life, and to be as fit as the CrossFit games athletes. Over time, I started to realize that nobody is perfectly balanced and nobody is immune to injuries, especially CrossFit games athletes!! In hindsight, it was quite naive of me to set a goal to be perfect in every moment, capable of achieving everything without trying.

The reality is that problems will be with us no matter where we go, all that matters is how we deal with them. So in 2020, I changed my goal. I made it my goal to become better at facing challenges.

I know a lot of people like to join programs with an end-game goal. For example: 12 weeks to a press handstand, or 8 weeks to 6-pack abs. This used to appeal to me too until I tried it and realized that putting a timeline on achievements makes me dislike the process. Timelines make me feel like a failure when I don't achieve the end-game goal in the prescribed amount of time... and guess what happens next: quitting.

I've matured a lot since the days when I wanted to do a ring muscle-up by a certain date. Now my priority is learning how to improve my ability to move my body in space with the correct mindset so I won't quit or take the joy out of the process. I can't force my body to do something until it's actually strong and mobile enough ... and that requires time, not a timeline. If you need a timeline for motivation, then that means you aren't prepared to play the long game.

In every worthy endeavour, there will always be obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, from those who quit. If you’re able to push through and overcome, you’ll emerge a stronger and more confident person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

When trying to activate muscles and learn new exercises, you may feel everything from anger, frustration and anxiety to disappointment. These emotions come from not having control over the situation. Sitting there swimming in your emotions is not going to change the situation. The more action you take, the more you will regain control over the situation, the more you will improve, and the better you will feel. That's why it's helpful to get really good at identifying your go-to emotion... so you can tell it to screw off so you can take productive baby steps in the right direction!

Key Points:

  • Nothing starts perfect (or stays the same). You gotta work for it (and then keep working at it).
  • Challenges come to us to make us better, not bitter.
  • We don't grow when things are easy. We grow when we face challenges.
  • Focus on actionable steps. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it.
  • Realize the situation can be a lot worse. No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse.
  • Don’t limit your challenges, instead, challenge your limits. Challenge yourself to be stronger when things gets harder. How's that 400 metre sandbag carry coming along? A major reason why I like the sandbag carry is for that very reason: I'm faced with the easy choice of prematurely dropping the bag ... or the uncomfortable choice of going a bit further. It's good to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.