Motivation 004. When You Fail, Get Up

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MOTIVATION 004. When You Fail

You indulged. You stayed home. You ate what you should not have eaten. You refrained from that which you ought to have done. You already feel like crap about yourself, but before I encourage you, I need to know that you understand the severity of your situation. Inconsistency is like rust. If you don’t cut it out, it will consume your life. Laziness and indulgence are the greatest thieves of joy. They rot out your confidence. They poison your sense of self. When you committed to this fitness program, what did that mean to you? What does it mean to you to put your name to something? Is your name worthless? Is your word meaningless? Can you even be trusted with yourself?

There are two ways to answer that question — The book of Proverbs in the Old Testament explains these two options: “The righteous man falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity” (Proverbs 24:16).

One is with self-condemnation, which results in giving up. And you can totally give up right now. You can say, “This failure reveals exactly who I am — weak, worthless, incapable, and stuck. I’ll never become anything more.” That self-hatred and decision to be defeated is, Proverbs says, wicked. The other way to respond is with a fight. Get back up. Say to yourself: “Yes, I failed. Because change doesn’t happen overnight. But I’m pushing for consistency. I will learn how to be better from this — why I chose to be weak, and how to avoid that choice. I will get back up. I may fail again, but I’ll get back up again after that, too. I will never stop pushing this.”

You see, the difference between people who are in great shape and people who aren’t isn’t that one group has perfect compliance and the other doesn’t. The difference is that in the wake of failures, people who recommit to fitness and double down on diet and exercise, rather than giving up, eventually achieve the body they always thought was impossible.