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Positive Mind, Positive Life, Positive Results

When I was about 8 years old, I picked up the mentality of wanting to be the best at anything I did and to focus only on that one thing. Licensed psychologists and counselors call it obsession, but I call it passion.

You may have heard that many Olympians and other successful people have been diagnosed with “Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.” As I grew up, I learned that this tendency isn’t always praised. Actually, we live in a society where this type of behavior is almost frowned upon.

Healthy man and woman sitting on floor and giving each other high five at the gym. Fitness people after successful exercising session in cross training gym.

When I was younger and preparing for an important competition, I was faced with an ACL injury that took my identity, or so I thought. “I will never recover; it’s so far away; I’ll never play again.” Toxic words poured out of me. Praying the pain away didn’t work.

God seemed to have a different plan for me other than an easy way out. Every time I awoke in the middle of the night from pain, I realized the pain wasn’t going anywhere unless I did something about it. The moment my pain medicine wore off from surgery, I was on my feet. My mind was made up and giving up was no longer an option, and my “passion” took over.

Soon after I recovered, I tore my ACL again just ten days later. What’s the point, I asked myself; I worked for months to recover, just to end up right back where I started. I decided to once again embrace the pain and do something about it, and found my own tactics to try to motivate myself.

My first attempt to combat negative thoughts was I wrote where I wanted to be in one month, three months, and six months on a piece of paper and put it in a place where I could see it every day.

I did one exercise that I absolutely hated. I kept a journal where I wrote about all of my feelings.

This was an outlet for me, as well as a way to fully express my thoughts on paper rather than taking it out on someone close to me in a negative way. I also looked back at what I wrote as I moved forward in my journey.

I could’ve chosen to take my situation and do nothing but believe the thoughts in my mind that I wasn’t going to recover. That’s what my “comfortable” mind wanted to do. But as many leaders say, “Do something uncomfortable each day that really pushes you to grow,” and I did exactly that.

The concept of doing things that make you uncomfortable is an art and something that should be developed. You have to condition yourself to be positive with tiny daily decisions. The things you look at in life and think, “Oh gosh, I don’t want to do that” or maybe “I don’t want to have that conversation.”

Whether that means doing something simple, such as making the bed each morning, or having to do something more difficult, such as saying you’re sorry to someone. This leaves two questions to ask yourself; “Why does this task or thing bother me so much?” and “How can I restructure my life to make this task something I can do?”

Dig really deep, pull those hard feelings out and fill your head with challenges that you aim to overcome instead of filling it with the mentality “This is just who I am.”

The last and most recent part of my life where I have used my positive mindset is in my journey to be a professional athlete. I have been training to make it to the Crossfit Games.

Goals that don’t scare you are goals that are not big enough. And goals that not only scare you, but scare the people around you, are just right. “How could I ever be good enough to do this? Look at those girls, they are so much stronger and bigger than me” or “This is crazy. You have to be so strong, and those athletes work out all day and have money to get there.” Doubt has been my biggest struggle.

We all struggle with our own negative thoughts in some capacity, and there are times they may actually be true. I’m not good enough to be a Games athlete right now, but I can do everything that I can control to change that. We can’t ignore reality, but we can change it. Life is so much better when you are living life your own way, doing exactly what you want regardless of what it takes, and doing things in life that you dislike that pull out the best in you.

Three things I currently do to keep my mind positive and keep my life moving in a positive direction are getting rid of anything that produces negative thoughts, never complaining about a workout even if I don’t want to do it as it is always an opportunity to grow. And lastly, every time I come across a new person or situation in my life, I always ask myself, “What is the purpose of this? Will this person or situation make me grow?” If the answer is no, I don’t pursue it. It hurts, but it has pushed me further into my potential.

Challenges aren’t something to be feared. A positive life leads to a life where you could lose everything but still know who you are. Be positive, be kind, love what you do, and work hard everywhere you go. That’s how you get the best results, not only in the gym, but in life as well. We have to earn the life we love to live. Use each day in the gym as an opportunity to define yourself. If you can get past the desire to stay at home on the couch and instead, go to the gym, you’re winning an uphill battle. Don’t ever aim to stay the same. Keep striving and keep bettering your life.

Positive Mind, Positive Life, Positive Results

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