Insecurity kills more dreams than failure ever will.
Gaining confidence in your strength, your ability to make positive daily decisions for your health, and learning to love yourself each and every day is a critical, crucial, and possibly the toughest part of living a healthy life.
Over the past few months, I’ve been working on the new and upgraded edition of Strongfigure’s Total Health and Fitness Makeover. Due out January of 2017, REVAMP is going to be our best product yet.
Without going into too much detail, we have edited, added, and combined even more information into a shortened version of our previous book. With the Total Health and Fitness Makeover, we offered a 250+ page book plus a 50+ page workbook to help guide you through your very own fitness and nutrition transformation. In REVAMP, we’ve combined the best of the book and workbook, we’ve added new nutrition insight, and a whole new element to total body wellness.
We’re building your confidence.
I can’t stress this enough: Confidence and happiness are the peak of the total body wellness pyramid. And when Erik and I wrote the Total Health and Fitness Makeover, we didn’t include a chapter on this. I didn’t even realize that it existed yet.
All my adult life, I was on a quest to learn how to exercise the BEST way and eat the BEST way. I experimented with so many methods that I couldn’t wait to write about all of them: Tell you all my successes, my troubles, my failures, my setbacks. What worked, what didn’t. I had no idea when I began my own fitness journey that it would lead here.
I have spent over 10+ years now educating myself in the field of fitness, nutrition, health, and wellness. From senior wellness to children’s nutrition, my thirst for knowledge has exceeded any other passions I’ve had about anything in my lifetime. Getting consumed by the fitness industry, working in the health field, coaching others–it’s nothing I ever expected when I started my journey. But when I started looking for guidance so many years ago, I wanted one thing and one thing only: to lose weight.
I began my journey much like anyone else…probably a lot like you. I read a lot of books, went to Weight Watchers meetings, and took group fitness classes at my local gym. But as I lost weight, I wanted more. We always want more, right? I wanted to lose more. I wanted to lift more. I became strong but I wanted to get stronger. I was fit but I wanted six-pack abs. Body fat tests were never low enough. There was always someone who was stronger. Leaner. Better abs. And social media started bringing me down. “I can’t do that. Look like that. Lift like that. Be like that.”
Comparison kills our success. It brings us stress, depression, and sometimes it kills our health.
The worst thing you can do is compare yourself, your progress, and your journey to someone else.
No matter who you are or where you are in your journey, you’ve got to understand ONE thing: YOU are YOU. You are doing your best with what you’ve got every single day. You can’t compare yourself to the fitness model on Instagram and you can’t compare yourself to the fit mom on Facebook. You are where you are meant to be right now and you have GOT to appreciate your journey. Don’t spend your life in a state of “I hate my thighs.” Spend your life in a state of “I am strong and I love my body.”
It’s a fact that the more positive you are and the more you complement your body, the healthier you will become. The mind is so incredibly powerful. In fact, it is your best tool you have in this journey. I ignored my mind for too long and just like all that I write about–I want you to learn from my mistakes and do the things that work! Building your mindset–just like we started with in the intro–is going to be key to your overall success. Start getting positive about yourself right now and head into this journey with the right attitude.
Do not fear failure.
Do not fear success.
In honor of the upcoming release of REVAMP this winter, I want to give you five methods I’ve learned that helps build confidence and happiness in my life. No book on health should leave out the proper tools needed to build self-esteem. We don’t just need strong bodies–we need strong minds too!
5 Things You Need to Start Doing RIGHT NOW to Boost Your Confidence Account
I know that you already know this. But I can’t stress enough how much your confidence is going to soar each and every time you commit yourself to a workout. You know what else helps boost your self-esteem? Signing up for an athletic event. You don’t have to be in super fantastic shape to participate in a 5k or even compete in a local strength or CrossFit competition. Every 5k I’ve participated in, there are people who sign up to walk it. How awesome is it to come out with your friends and complete a 5k when you never thought you could?! And maybe in a few months you can run that same race! You don’t have to be at the top of your game to compete–ever. But signing up for something gives you motivation to stick with your goals and then builds your confidence with every single event you complete. So whether you sign up for spin class, a strongman competition, or you just commit yourself to 30 minutes of walking each day–completing your goal will boost your self-esteem and every workout you walk away from will leave you feeling tremendously successful.
2. Think positive, act positive.
Do you criticize too quickly? Do you speak negatively without thinking sometimes? I know–many times it’s just hard to always act happy. But even if you aren’t, you’ve got to try. If you can smile when you’re angry, you won’t stay angry for long. If someone ticks you off, put yourself in that person’s shoes before you fill your mind with hate. Can you sympathize? What about when life throws a grenade your way? I struggle with this one too–it’s really easy to get angry and stay angry. And in the fitness industry with all the compare and contrast that happens, it’s incredibly hard not to criticize others–especially when you’re having a bad day. Unfortunately, criticizing someone else is NOT going to boost your mood OR your confidence. Try complimenting that person and then complementing yourself! You may feel bloated that day or you might feel guilty about the dessert you splurged on last night. Is there anything you can do about it? No. But you can tell yourself that you’re smart, dedicated, and that one dessert does not kill your progress. You can say, “Sure I feel bloated, but man do I also feel strong today!” Whatever you have to tell yourself, tell it and smile. Think positive and act positive.
3. Kill negativity in your life–your own thoughts, and those who are constantly negative.
Ok, don’t kill negative people–even though you may want to sometimes. But seriously, first and foremost–you DO have to kill the negativity in your head. Just like our positivity tips, if you have a voice that tells you you’re fat, you’re a loser, you can’t run a 5k, you’ll never win…..guess what? You won’t. Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence. Helen Keller.
One of the best books I read, Richard O’Connor’s Rewire Your Brain, is full of information about how you can train your brain to think differently. Let me tell you first hand: it’s hard. If you’ve been telling yourself that you hate your hips for 20 years, you can’t break your thoughts overnight. In fact, your thoughts are so powerful, they’re already ingrained into your subconscious. Remember in the introduction how we talked about always being conscious of your thoughts? It’s going to be hard and take a while, but you’ve got to be in charge of your thoughts. Tell yourself daily that you love your hips and in six months? A year? You will actually love your hips. It sounds silly, but it works. Start loving and complimenting yourself and before long, not only will you be more confident and happier, but because of your confidence, you’ll make healthier decisions and start living a healthier life. It’s all tied together. Your mental state is truly going to control your health.
As for people? I know, it’s really hard to control negative people in your life. You may work with negative people. You may have negative family members. And you may be a bit more passive than you are aggressive–meaning it may be tough for you to stick up for yourself and tell the negative people to stop being so damn negative! Other than learning how to be more aggressive (in a good way–fighting for your health), one way I’ve learned to distance myself from negativity is to ignore it. If your co-workers are having a negative conversation, don’t join in, even if you want to. If you can walk away, walk away. If you can close your door, close it. If you can’t, you can kindly let the person know that you don’t enjoy hearing such negativity and you’d rather talk about positive things. You can’t always escape it, but you can do your best to be positive and act as a role model for those around you.Did you know that you act like the 5 people you spend the most time with? If your top 5 people are not positive, you may need to rethink your circle. It’s tough to walk away from friendships sometimes, but do you really need to poison your mind with toxic relationships? And if you can’t walk away, think about being the most positive person you can be and hopefully your attitude can rub off on others.
The same applies for success. If you can hang around the top 5 successful people you know, you’ll be successful. If you hang around the top 5 richest people you know, you’ll increase your wealth. You are who you hang out with. Think about this. If you want to be healthy, fit, successful, and happy–it’s time to find those people in your life–seek them out and join their tribe.
4. Get to know yourself, complement yourself, trust yourself.
Who would have thought I’d have fallen in love with spaghetti squash? Not me. Not until I tried it. When you take the time to try new things, you can’t imagine how much you’ll end up surprising yourself. I didn’t eat very healthy growing up, but I love healthy foods now. I didn’t exercise much when I was young but if I had never started, I’d have never found a love for powerlifting. And not just a “love” for it, but a natural ability to do so! Once I started focusing on “me” I found that I was good at strength training. That’s instant confidence! Getting to know myself helped me learn that I didn’t have big hips and thighs like I thought I did–I had the ability to build awesome quads! I learned about my body type–someone who could gain both muscle and fat easily if I didn’t watch my food intake. The process is about learning and when you really start to trust both yourself and the process, then you’ll also start seeing the results. Wake up, take a look in the mirror, and instead of saying “I hate my thighs,” say “I have awesome quads and glutes.” Instead of saying “I hate my arms,” say “I love my biceps!” Get used to complimenting yourself and sooner than later, not only will this positivity become engrained in your subconscious, but you’ll also start believing yourself. And when you believe, good things start to happen.
5. Become prepared and follow through.
If you write in your planner that you’re going to go to the gym after work, unless an emergency happens, you’ve got to go to the gym after work. If you tell yourself you’re going to the gym three times this week, you’ve got to go to the gym three times this week. If you want to eat healthy, you can’t buy Pop Tarts at the grocery store. You’ve got to follow through on your plans. Every single time you follow through on something you said you’d do, your confidence builds. Every time you don’t follow through on your plans, your confidence dwindles. The more you do for yourself, the bigger your self-esteem. Make plans. Make grocery lists. Food prep your meals. Be consistent with your workouts. The more you follow through with your plans, the bigger your confidence and the better your end results.
That’s Not All!
These are just five out of 10 tips we have to help boost your self-esteem and lead you to finding ultimate confidence in yourself, your mind, your body. To get the last five tips, you’ve got to get your hands on a copy of REVAMP coming soon! Make sure you’re a subscriber so you don’t miss more info on our best product yet. We cannot wait to share with you even more information on the things YOU can do to build your health to supreme standards.
Any idea what our last five tips might be? Have any tips of your own? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below!
This week’s Strong Figure Conditioning Workouts: