Trust can be a difficult thing to explain.
One of the things I talk about often is trusting the process. Whether it's my audience on Facebook, YouTube, the blog (hey, that's you!) or my clients, I talk about trusting the process and what that may look like for that audience.
I most often bring this up when talking about the health and fitness journey that all of us are on. Similar to many other things in life, a health and fitness journey is a lot like a path in the forest. We're walking along a path, hoping that it leads to the right destination. At times, we lose faith in the path and find a different path to go on. After taking that new path, we lose faith in it once again, and make a change. After doing that over and over, we realize that we've been moving, but we've been moving in a circle and really haven't progressed.
Whether it's building wealth, building relationships, doing well in school, or improving our health and wellness, we've all experienced this cycle that doesn't seem to end.
So, how DO we end that cycle?
Trusting the process, that's how.
As I said, trusting the process can be a difficult thing to wrap our heads around. Trust itself can be hard to explain or define. So what I'd like to do is work through a few different things we can do to make this whole "trust the process" thing a little more tangible.
FIRST, WE NEED A STARTING POINT
I'm sure you're sitting there thinking "Duh, Adam. Of course we need a starting point." You're right. We do need a starting point, but it's not just the starting point that we need. It's really the mark of the starting point on our map that we truly need. If the map is our process, we must know where we're starting.
Here's why. Knowing where we're starting is one thing, but having the ability to look back and see where we started is something really special. I know, looking back isn't something we've been told when it comes to moving towards a goal. We've been told to keep moving forward. "Never look back", they say. In this context, I disagree. Having the ability to look back gives some positive perspective. Marking a starting point gives us the ability to see how far we've come. Whether it's 2 steps, or 100 steps closer to the goal, we can see actual data that shows progression.
One way this plays out with my coaching clients is through progress photos. Regardless of how uncomfortable my clients are about sharing progress photos, I always encourage them to do it. Obstacles arise, down periods are going to come and they are going to get discouraged. However, if they have the ability to look back and see how far they've come, the inspiration comes back and once again they have a fire under their butt to continue taking steps forward.
We must never forget where we came from.
SECOND, WE NEED A PATH
Just a few lines up, I was talking about this path in a forest. In this context, the forest is the world of health and wellness, and the path is what we need to follow to get to our desired destination within the world of health and wellness. As I said, following that one path is extremely difficult at times. It's easy to take turns and go a different direction when hard times come up due to a lack of trust in that path. Put yourself in that situation for a second. If you were on a trail in the middle of a forest, what would make it easier to trust and follow?
A map with a clear path that leads to the destination.
Having a map in the middle of a forest is great. But it's even better if we can have a map that has trails and paths on it. Trails and paths serve as a clear, tangible way to get from the starting point to the destination. Being able to look at a map and say "ok, if we walk this path, it will take us to the final destination. That builds a massive amount of trust.
The reason we have a hard time trusting our health and fitness process is because we don't take the time to clearly map out what we need to do to get to the final destination. Often times, we say that we need to exercise more and eat healthier.
I say no. That is laziness, and a great way to set ourselves up for failure.
We MUST take the time to sit down and create our path in extreme detail. That path must include proper programming (how many days per week? What exercises? How many sets and reps?), proper nutrition tracking (how many grams of protein, carbs, and fats should I be eating?), as well as an extremely realistic idea of what's to come.
There's no doubt about it; when we are along our health and fitness journeys, obstacles will come up.
When we're walking down our path through the forest without a map, those obstacles will come up and KNOCK US OUT. However, if we prepare for those things ahead of time, we'll feel extremely confident that we can work around them.
A good example of this is travel. Ask yourself, "Are there any trips coming up that will make it harder for me to be at the gym? Will these trips make it harder for me to stay consistent with my training and nutrition?" You'll quickly realize that the answer to those questions is yes, and you'll begin to make adjustments/preparations like purchasing a set of bands to get some resistance training in while traveling. You'll figure out what you can control while traveling, and capitalize on those opportunities when they arise.
We must be aware of potential obstacles. We must prepare in order to win.
LASTLY, WE NEED A DESTINATION
Before I get into the last part of our process that we're building, I want to make something clear. Once a destination is reached, the process is not over. The destination your reach at the end will simply become your new starting point.
Just like business, if you're not growing, you're dying. There will ALWAYS be something to work toward. Big or small, there will always be something you can improve and build on.
The destination is an extremely important piece of the puzzle. Whether it's 50 pounds lighter or 2 pull-ups stronger, we MUST have a destination to work toward. If we don't, we're simply walking up a mountain for giggles with no hope that we're making progress.
Notice how I gave concrete goals as destinations. Although I love concrete goals, they're not the entire destination. When obstacles come up along the path, it'll be easier to give up when the going gets tough, because goals that have no depth really don't mean much. Goals like losing 50 pounds are child's play.
BUT... there are things we can do to make our destination have more depth.
Want to be able to 2 pull-ups? Fantastic, but WHY?! Why do you want to do 2 pull-ups? Why do you want to lose 50 pounds?
Is it because you're insecure about your image? Is it because you're afraid of your health ending your life earlier that you'd like?
Good. Now we're getting somewhere.
We all have a "why", but only a few of us have what it takes to dig deep and bring it to the surface. Those of us who do, are the ones that succeed 99% of the time. Why is that?
When we discover our "why" we discover that we have a deeper purpose on this earth that must be fulfilled. Bringing the "why" to the surface attaches meaning to the goal. The "why" allows us to fight not for the goal, but rather for the future self that we are building.
Our destination must have depth.
Trusting the process can be difficult, but only when it's not constructed properly. If you want to create a process that can truly be trusted, you'll need to create the following:
A starting point
And all of them must be taken seriously. Approach these three steps with an open mind and an open heart. Be realistic, and prepare.
You'll trust, and you'll win.
THANKS FOR READING!
I love you guys. Thank you for taking the time to read.
Spread the love by sharing this with friends and family. I know it sounds crazy, but making a small touch in their life can create a ripple that may positively impact them for years to come.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Adam is a fitness professional, baseball fan, and cookie fanatic based in Fort Collins, Colorado. After hanging up the cleats, he found a strong interest in the human body and how it performs. Since then, Adam has been transforming lives through fitness in a fun and encouraging atmosphere. As an ACE CPT and Fitness Nutrition Specialist, he is constantly moved to help people improve in all walks of life. If you’re interested in hiring Adam as your coach, fill out an application here.