Yogi Berra, in his infinite wisdom, once said: ‘You can observe a lot just by watching’ and like most Yogi-isms, this one becomes even more profound the more you think about it.

The truth is, the ‘Secret’ to success for a lot of people is to simply pay more attention to things that most people don’t. In doing so, you’ll be rewarded with a greater understanding of how things ‘work’ which is a tremendous advantage indeed. As time goes by, I have learned to do just that, take a step back and pay more attention to things – especially the things that I though I already knew – and a whole new world has opened up for me.

Now, according to the Rational Choice Theory, one would instinctively make choices that lead to the greatest ‘benefit’ with the least amount of hassle. In short, the road if least resistance toward getting the things we want.

This makes perfect sense when you think about it, I mean, we live in relative comfort, with food, heat, and shelter all readily available, something that our ancestors hundreds of years ago had to struggle mightily for.

Modern comfort is certainly nice but the thing of it is, there is such a thing as becoming too comfortable. You see, struggle is necessary to teache us, make us stronger and causes us to grow physically, mentally, and morally.

Think of the processes by which your muscles grow – you subject them to exercise above and beyond what they are comfortable with and used to. They respond by growing stronger. Getting in shape is the same way – physical exercise causes the heart and lungs to get out of their comfort zone and begin to use the available oxygen more efficiently.

But if you do nothing and simply exist as you are – in relative comfort – your body will fall to the level of comfort to which it exists in which ironically, isn’t what most people want. The bottom line here is that its good to be uncomfortable, to be ‘Hungry’ for change because you wont be motivated to do the things which can actually bring about change otherwise.

As far as working out, I’m not talking about having to wrap your barbell in barbed wire or doing squats barefoot on broken glass, that would understandably be taking things too far. What I am talking about is pushing things just a little bit beyond what you feel is even possible. If you know in your heart you can get 10 reps with a certain weight, go for at least 11. If you don’t feel like getting up early to go for a jog, that may be a sign that that is exactly what you should be doing.

You’ll surprise yourself when you begin to look at things this way.

The key here is to challenge yourself – take that next step, even if and especially if you are a little bit scared. Many people reach that threshold, only a few will cross it.

Will you be one of them?

Train hard,
John Wood signature
John Wood