When I was young (er), a coach of mine punished the entire team for being lazy. We were goofing off and walking to the drills instead of hustling. When he asked why we were so slow, one kid responded with ” Because I’m lazy coach.”
What followed sucked, we ran until our legs went numb. It was 115 degrees out in the Tucson sun. You could see the tar bubbling on the streets. The grass was so dry that a cloud of dust hovered over the field while we ran. We could taste the dirt in our mouths.
The talk that came after the run changed my life and has stuck with me ever since.
Coach Sanchez, brought us all in for a huddle as we squeezed water out of old gatorade bottles to quench our thirst. He started with:
I never want to hear you guys admit your lazy.
He went on to explain how what we say molds who we become. As a 15 year old kid, this really stuck with me. It was a great moment in my life where I happened to pay attention at the right time and really sink in the message.
As an adult, and someone who works with people as their nutrition and strength coach, I see how important words are. How I talk to a member has a tremendous impact on helping someone get better, or lose hope. How I talk about them to others has an even GREATER impact on their experience in the gym.
But this is still not as impactful as what someone says about themselves. Self-talk is critical to success. I can make a solid guess about how quickly someone will experience success, i.e get stronger or lose weight, by how they talk about themselves.
I’ve heard people call themselves lazy, dumb, slow, (insert all kinds of negative adjectives). Go ahead and stop that right now.
I believe that self-talk is the biggest limiting factor for peoples ability to succeed. I can say this better, our believes are strengthen by what we say to ourselves. That is the biggest limiting factor and most important catalyst for success. This goes deeper than food and exercise.