Change isn’t something that a lot of people enjoy. It’s scary, it’s unpredictable, it’s intimidating. Change isn’t always something that is necessary though. After all, consistency is one of the keys to success. But being resistant to change and not being willing to hear another point of view can lead to a boring, repetitive life with a lot of closed doors that could lead to the happiness that everybody wants.
I’ll throw this out there right now, I’m writing this article for selfish reasons. I do the majority of my training in what you would consider a normal gym, treadmills, ellipticals, Nautilus machines and so on, so you see many different “training” techniques in one place. Now, I would never put someone down for walking in the gym and working out differently than myself, that is certainly not my intent…..if you enjoy walking on the treadmill and that’s what makes you happy then walk you butt off as best you can. This article isn’t about you adapting to my point of view because I told you to. Accepting change is about seeing and understanding another point of view, ideology, philosophy, dogma or whatever other way you want to say it and comparing it to what you currently believe then deciding which path will work best for you.
Here’s an example of what I mean by understanding another point of view. There are quite a few meatheads in the gym. Nothing wrong with this….I considered myself a meathead at one point (at 240lbs I’m sure some people considered me a meatball). A couple of months ago I wrote an article comparing my personal experience with unilateral leg training versus bilateral leg training (http://scarlatostrength.com/blog/who-needs-back-squats-anyway/). In short, I found I was significantly stronger on one leg than I was on two legs. One of the guys in the gym read the article and didn’t believe it. I must be doing something wrong, I must not squat right, I must not be doing the right reps. He was not able to accept that I had experienced more strength on one leg than on two, even though I had laid the numbers out pretty clearly. Most likely he spends most of his time back squatting, deadlifting, and benching, so the thought of doing something on one leg was absurd. He wasn’t able to accept a different point of view, a different ideology than what he had believed in forever. This isn’t to say that what I was saying were definitely the hardcore facts….I’ve been wrong before after all (we’re all human)….but that what I was saying wasn’t in-line with what he believed, therefore it’s unacceptable.
I realize this post probably took a different turn than you were expecting but having an open mindset is an important thing to have. I’ve been in that boat where I believed that what I thought and what I said was the way it was. I wouldn’t be where I am now had I not opened my mind to change. One of the hardest things someone can do is admit that they are wrong, which is why we try so hard to justify our actions and what we believe. Some times it’s just best to let your guard down, listen and learn and maybe you’ll learn that there is another way of doing things.
If you have any questions or comments feel free to send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, look for Treves’s story coming here in the near future, it’ll be worth the read!