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Posted by Barry on Jan 4, 2011

Feel Like Quitting?

Do you ever feel like giving up?

I mean can’t you just hear your inner voices telling you that this whole “working out” thing will NEVER work for you?

Because I know I certainly did when I first got started. In fact, I was so sore and hardly able to do any of the P90X moves that I thought of quitting many many times.

So today I want to share with you one of the biggest secrets to success that I discovered.

Here it is:  Never, ever, ever, EVER give up.

Sounds cheesy, doesn’t it? And doesn’t it just totally piss you off?? Because I remember being told that when I was struggling and all I could think at the time was, “That’s easy for you to say! You’ve already made it!  You are already in shape!”

But the more I struggled, and the more I persevered, and the more I followed the system, the more I realized how true it really is – the only real secret to success is the drive to NEVER give up.

As human beings, we tend to look to “successful” people and somehow convince ourselves that they did something special. Or that they had some special advantage that you don’t have. But you may be surprised to find that that couldn’t be further from the truth!

To prove it to you, I looked up the stories of some of the greatest writers, inventors, politicians, entertainers, and businessmen that have ever walked the Earth. Here are a few of their stories:

As a young man, Abraham Lincoln went to war a captain and returned a private. Afterwards, he was a failure as a businessman. As a lawyer in Springfield, he was too impractical and temperamental to be a success. He turned to politics and was defeated in his first try for the legislature, again defeated in his first attempt to be nominated for congress, defeated in his application to be commissioner of the General Land Office, defeated in the senatorial election of 1854, defeated in his efforts for the vice-presidency in 1856, and defeated in the senatorial election of 1858. At about that time, he wrote in a letter to a friend, “I am now the most miserable man living. If what I feel were equally distributed to the whole human family, there would not be one cheerful face on the earth.”

Albert Einstein did not speak until he was 4-years-old and did not read until he was 7. His parents thought he was “sub-normal,” and one of his teachers described him as “mentally slow, unsociable, and adrift forever in foolish dreams.” He was expelled from school and was refused admittance to the Zurich Polytechnic School. But he did eventually learn to speak and read. Even to do a little math 😉

Thomas Edison’s teachers said he was “too stupid to learn anything.” He was fired from his first two jobs for being “non-productive.” As an inventor, Edison made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the light bulb. When a reporter asked, “How did it feel to fail 1,000 times?” Edison replied, “I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.”

Henry Ford failed and went broke five times before he succeeded.

An expert said of Vince Lombardi: “He possesses minimal football knowledge and lacks motivation.” Lombardi would later write, “It’s not whether you get knocked down; it’s whether you get back up.”

Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because “he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” He went bankrupt several times before he built Disneyland. In fact, the proposed park was rejected by the city of Anaheim on the grounds that it would only attract riffraff.

The first time Jerry Seinfeld walked on-stage at a comedy club as a professional comic, he looked out at the audience, froze, and forgot the English language. He stumbled through “a minute-and a half” of material and was jeered offstage. He returned the following night and closed his set to wild applause.

Tom Landry, Chuck Noll, Bill Walsh, and Jimmy Johnson accounted for 11 of the 19 Super Bowl victories from 1974 to 1993. They also share the distinction of having the worst records of first-season head coaches in NFL history – they didn’t win a single game.


Kind of inspiring, isn’t it?

So if you ever feel like giving up like I did when I first got started, just think about Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Walt Disney, Jerry Seinfeld, and everyone else who has achieved their own success before you. Because I can GUARANTEE that they ALL felt like giving up at one point or another. But they refused, and went on to become some of the greatest icons in their own fields of work.

So can you. Because the truth is 80% of success is just showing up. I realize that may be hard for you to believe at first, but the more success I experience in my own life, the more I realize how true that really is…

In fact, I think the great Washington Irving said it best –

“Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortune; but great minds rise above them”

You’re going to feel like quitting along the way. You’re going to experience setbacks. And sometimes things aren’t going to go your way. But if you simply refuse to give in, and each day force yourself to “show up” and make progress, I have absolutely no doubt that you will achieve whatever level of fitness and whatever you want out of life!


Coach Barry

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