The mind and body are powerful tools. And they are also some of our biggest road blocks. Athletes are constantly pushing themselves to keep going when their bodies are telling them to stop. While engineers and scientists are always looking for new discoveries that our brains and physics tell us just isn’t possible. It’s hard to believe in the unknown and look beyond the supposed impossible. But incredible breakthroughs and new records happen everyday. It’s time to redefine your limits and achieve more than you ever imagined.
The future and uncertainty can be scary. We like the coziness and safety of our comfort zones, and growth is so darn hard. And sometimes opportunity is staring us right in the face but we just can’t see it. As Steve Jobs said, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.”
Mental And Physical Toughness
If I had to choose which is harder between mental and physical toughness, I’d pick physical by far. I’ve never been much of an athletic type, and have lousy endurance and a low tolerance for pain. Mentally I’m tougher because I tend to be more patient than average and set high expectations for myself.
Since I’m a bit of a klutz and have never achieved any great milestones in athletics, I’m easily inspired by people who are disciplined in sports. Some of the most successful people, athletes especially, are equally tough mentally and physically. I saw an example of this recently when I stopped to watch a tennis match at one of the city parks. There were some spectators watching this match, and I could sense the excitement from their gasps and body language. I could also see the intensity and sheer focus in the players eyes and movements.
I’ve Found Proof That Ninjas Exist In Real Life
The player on the far court stepped up to serve, thwack! Then the receiver swiftly hit back a powerful return and a fierce rally ensued. Unexpectedly, the far player hit a fast, wide shot down the right sideline. The receiver sprinted to hit it from the opposite side of the court. I didn’t think he had a chance to make it. But his mind was strong and told him otherwise. He sprinted for it at full speed.
A second before the ball bounced out of his reach, he almost lost his footing. Out of the nowhere he did a summersault on the court, landed on his feet and smashed the ball back. I didn’t even look to see where the ball went because my jaw hit the floor. I couldn’t take my eyes off of him. Did he really just do that?! Holy smokes, there was a real life ninja on the tennis court. I’d never seen anything like that before in my life. It was incredible! Talk about never giving up and fighting for every shot. That guy had some serious mental and physical toughness.
So many of us give up before we even give ourselves a chance to win. We think “I’ll never make that” so we don’t even try. It’s foolish and detrimental to think that way though. Stop making excuses. It’s time to open your mind and believe. Crazy and incredible things are possible! Redefine your limits and achieve more than you ever imagined.
Redefine Your Limits And Unbelievable Things Can Happen
Over the weekend I watched a very moving film on ESPN’s Nine for IX series called “No Limits” about Audrey Mestre, a famous free diver. For those of you who are unfamiliar with free diving, it is an extreme sport in which divers descend to mind boggling depths while holding their breath. Professionals use a weighted sled to help them descend straight down as far as they can, and then take a lift balloon to rapidly ascend back to the surface. It is incredibly dangerous and takes a lot of preparation, training, and logistics.
Having recently tried scuba diving myself and experienced the amount of pressure even at a very shallow 40 feet below the surface, free diving totally blows my mind. Not only do you have to be extremely physically fit, be well sponsored, and have a large support team, you must be stronger than steel mentally. World records in competitive free diving are at incomprehensible depths of over FIVE HUNDRED feet. That is CRAZY.
Taking Risks And Getting Out Of Your Comfort Zone
With free diving on my mind all weekend, I did some searching on Tanya Streeter, a free diving world record holder who was interviewed in the “No Limits” film. I stumbled upon an inspiring TED Talk she gave last year and want to share it with you.
It’s a fabulous video about her experiences and growth as a free diver, mother, and conservationist. She talks about how to redefine your limits and learning to let go. I encourage you to watch at least the first ten minutes.
“If I could do 525 feet with such a rough start, what could I do under perfect conditions?” – Tanya Streeter
“The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live. Chained by his certitude, he is a slave; he has forfeited his freedom. Only the person who risks is truly free.” – Leo Buscaglia
Untemplaters, how do you redefine your limits? What’s something you or someone you know have accomplished that you never thought would be possible?
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