Sunday, January 31, 2016

Don't be stuck in a box

One of my new rituals has been to stretch and meditate more. Not because I have been experiencing physical or emotional pain or some type of chronic issue, but the thought came because I wanted to rewire my circadian rhythm. According to, circadian rhythm is often referred to as the "body clock"; the 24-hour cycle that tells our bodies when to sleep and regulates many other physiological processes. To me, rewiring some of my daily rituals creates energy, creativeness, mental clarity and new possibilities. These life traits keep me living to my personal best.

As you have seen in my past articles, I am an advocate of constant growth. Whether that is in the physical form utilizing exercise or performance or the mental and emotional form via meditation, breathing and goal setting, I am constantly in a state of “self-evaluation?” This is my way of recognizing what life has to offer. Once I can clearly see a path in front of me, I can then decide if that is the particular journey I want to take on at that point in my life.

Stay with me here…

It can get easy to live a mundane life. We can get stuck in our comfort zone and stay in this “box” for months, even years. Life is not truly maximized in this “safe zone”. Now this doesn’t mean you go out and do foolish and dangerous activity just to “leave the comfort zone.” I think there is an intelligent and efficient way to push yourself without endangering your physical body. Everyone has their own individual and unique lifestyle parameters. For some, these parameters are more extreme like base-jumping or skydiving; for others, it may be less evasive like learning how to play the piano. The idea is to recognize your personal limits, the parameters you have set on yourself and CHALLENGE the boundaries.

Let’s use a simple exercise as an example…

How long can you hold a plank? Stop reading and go test yourself….

Ok, how’d you do?

You now know your limit on a simple exercise like the plank. I guarantee that with proper training and consistency to improve on the plank, the next time you take this test, you will break your previous best. IT'S MIND-BLOWING AND LIFE CHANGING WHEN YOU COME TO A POINT WHERE YOU RECOGNIZE THAT YOU CAN BREAK YOUR OWN PERSONAL PHYSICAL AND MENTAL LIMITS. I put that sentence in bold on purpose. Read it over….

Don’t worry, we will circle back…

Eventually you will reach a plateau in your plank exercise.

(P.S. I’m not advocating that you need to go hold a plank for 30 minutes but we are using it as a metaphor.)

You will either have to train your mind to go longer, find a new training technique that will challenge your physical boundaries, add in new and supportive daily habits or accept the status quo.

Now, it’s important that I clear this point up… It’s ok to accept a current state of personal growth that you have reached, as long as you are challenging other areas of your life. We are very homeostatic, in the fact that when growing and improving in one area, it can positively shift and improve our entire environment that we live in.

For example, when you get fit, improve your physical condition and attain performance, discipline will be built. This same discipline can be utilized to improve your financial and professional life. You may have started the exercise program to improve your health or to lose a few pounds, but truly, you are changing your entire natural world.

So let’s get back to why I have shifted my own daily rituals and alter my personal circadian rhythm…

Many people have dreams and cloudy fantasies in their head but they are not willing to do the necessary work or to add the essential habits that are NEEDED to accomplish a particular thing or goal. The comfy life is their way of living. And not to say “this way isn’t the way to live”, it’s just not my way to live.

The past 10 years I have been extremely focused on personal growth, physical fitness improvement, and strengthening the mindset. I have achieved some things like running 300 miles, finishing an Ironman Triathlon and opening up my fitness business. But, I felt a plateau. Something needed to change. I don’t think I needed drastic changes. My thought was that by adding a few new rituals and habits into my life (like stretching and meditation), I would rearrange my lifestyle just enough to morph my movement into the direction of my goals. This fresh new path and daily rhythm has created mental energy and clarity, which helps fuel my daily living.

And so I encourage and promote you to do the same… Add something new. Maybe it’s a new food. Maybe it’s a different workout style. Maybe it’s a new driving route to work. Maybe it’s a completely different book than the ones you are used to. Maybe it’s pushing your physical limits. Maybe it’s writing more. Maybe it’s drinking more water. Maybe it’s new friends. Find something that will shock the normalicity that life tends to bring. Watch what happens...

All in all, life is lived outside your comfort zone. The biggest learning lessons, the most growth, and the forward movement happens when you commit to reaching and challenging your personal limits. It’s ok to take deep breaths, rest at the spot you are at, and “hang out” for awhile. But don’t wait around too long…

Life is so damn short and can end in a snap of a finger. And I don’t know about you, but I want to LIVE as hard as possible, do as many cool things as possible and inspire as many people as possible. So I must live this way in order for me to achieve this type of life. You coming with me?!

ACTION is required!

Peace, Justin

Past writings