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  Febuary 12, 2016
Waging War Against Ourselves...

 

The more important an activity is to your soul’s the evolution, the more resistance you will feel to it - the more fear you will feel.

                                    ~Steven Pressfield
                                      The War of Art

As I pulled into the parking lot at the gym last night, I couldn’t help but notice that there were a lot fewer cars than there were only 6 short weeks ago.

I didn’t know for sure exactly where the missing people were... perhaps they were back home... maybe  Gymhelping their kids with their homework... or reading a good book... possibly they were working late at the office... or even having a quiet romantic dinner with their loving spouse at a local restaurant...

What I was keenly aware of was the one place that they weren’t... that is at the gym.

For weeks leading up to the new year, they told themselves, as well as others, that they were on a mission... that as soon as 2016 arrived they would be a new person with a new lifestyle.

Some of these people had specific goals in mind...

Maybe it was to lose some weight, save some money, quit smoking, become a better spouse or go back to school to learn something new... all of those endeavors are indeed noble goals...

The greatest of intentions mean absolutely nothing if they are not deliberately acted upon...

We just can’t wish things and watch them come true. There is no magic pill or button to push. Achieving a goal takes hard work, discipline and resolve.

Unlike every other species of plant and animal on this earth, human beings are not driven strictly by instinct to survive. We have a free will to do as we please, even if it is against our own self-interest.

The route from my office to my home requires that I come to an intersection in the road. Go right to go home... go left to go to the gym.

If I turned right... I could go home to have my dinner, spend time with my family, and relax a bit before going off to bed.

On the surface, no one would have faulted me for taking a right turn... but I would have known. I would have gone to bed angry at myself for taking the easy road, knowing that I had succumbed to my weaker self.

In the moment, I would then vow to myself that tomorrow I would turn left instead of right... allowing myself to sleep comfortably knowing that I have told myself a reassuring rational lie.

However, if I turned left... I would spend the next 90 minutes on the Stairmaster, being short of breath and drenched with sweat. I would end up eating dinner by myself leaving little time to interact with my family before taking a shower and heading to bed exhausted.

And although I’ll awake the following morning with sore and achy muscles, I would have gone to bed with a great satisfaction that I had beaten resistance, if only just for a day.

Resistance and its friends, procrastination and rationalization, are mighty foes who are constantly fighting to take control of our will while offering us the solace of comfort and ease. Together these enemies of the mind allow us to settle for mediocracy rather than achieving some modicum of success.

Every day we wage a battle against our internal resistance... some days we beat resistance... while other days we yield to its powerful forces.

The good news is that each and every day is a new battle to be fought. From the moment we wake up in the morning, we start with a clean new slate.

Although our past has already been written, our future is unblemished. No matter what happened in our lives before today, we still have the opportunity to change the course of our future.

No matter what we want to do... we have the unlimited opportunity to actually do it.

My father was a smoker for nearly 45 years. His friends and family pleaded with him to quit... knowing that it was the right thing to do, he tried over and over to stop smoking... but never succeeded... until the weekend he spent in the hospital in an oxygen tent unable to breathe... at that point he made the conscious decision that he was never going to smoke another cigarette again... and after 20 years he has kept that promise to himself.

The fact that he had tried and failed to stop smoking several times before didn’t prevent him from ultimately achieving success.

From that day forward, he drew a line in the sand and told himself that this was no longer negotiable. He was done.

So today, what line in the sand will we draw?  What will become non-negotiable in our lives?

Now, I’m not suggesting that we go complete "cold-turkey" and do a complete make-over on our lives (unless of course you feel compelled to do so).

What most of us need are small corrections not entire do-overs.

Over the course of time we have acquired a bunch of small bad habits that we need to break ourselves of. Individually these small vices may not be life threatening, however taken as a sum, they can have a devastating effect on our total well-being.

The key to our success in life is to stop focusing on what we need to do and start focusing on the person we want to become.

We need to imagine ourselves as that person... what that person thinks and what that person does.

Starting from the end and working our way backwards will provide us with a road map to get to the place we are looking to go.

Old habits that keep us in a place of comfort must be eliminated by making them harder to do.

Conversely, those habits that contribute to our success need to be easier to do.

Then we need to make changes in our lives to transform us into that person. We then need to make commitments to ourselves to become that person we want to be.

We need to start learning to fight back at the resistance focusing on the result not the process...

I hate going to the gym... but I love the results of having gone to the gym.

On that night, my overwhelming desire to become that person I wanted to become successfully defeated the resistance against the process of going to the gym.

Today is a new day and a new battle.

There is nothing magical or mystical about New Year’s Day.

Today can be the day that we finally decide to make the commitment to ourselves to become that person we desire to be.

Thank you for your support of OptiFuse where open and honest communication is one of our core values and helps to make the world a better place to live by allowing its population to thrive.

Jim Kalb


Jim Kalb President

Email -  jimk@optifuse.com
Website - www.optifuse.com
Blog - www.optifuse.blogspot.com 
Twitter - @OptiFuse


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