As I type this I'm actually blown away that it has been 7 years. 7 years since Paradigm was founded, and 7 years since we have hit the ground running. Not literally guys, so you can relax.
Paradigm was founded on a belief, perhaps more so a notion, that we could make believers out of you. Yes we do fitness, yes we teach nutrition, yes we do several activity related things, but at the core of all that we do, what we are trying to do is make you believers. However we are not trying to make you believe in our model, as much as we are trying to make you believe in yourself.
At the core of all action, there is one thing that creates action more than anything else. It's not skill, it's not knowledge, it is belief. Belief you can, belief you won't die, belief you won't look stupid etc. The problem with stumbling upon this reality, is the struggle that has been Paradigm for 7 years. This is a topic of much fascination for us. With knowledge and skill, those are neurological, or they-can be affected through practice and proficiency. I can teach you, I can show you, I can explain, but at the end of it all, I can't make you believe. Belief is more organic, it takes exposure, conditioning, development, conscious and unconscious thought, and confidence, but it also changes you. In essence, why the healthy get healthier, and the sick get sicker. Belief creates action, but belief requires action.
While listening to a podcast this was eloquently summed up as the set-point theory. Meaning we all have set points. Much like your home's thermostat achieves homeostasis based on your set point. We too have set points. In the summer we turn down from 68, winter up. However 68 always stays the set point, dictating what we consider a cool or a warm home. This 68 number varies widely from home to home. Much the same as our other set points. We have fat-set-points, finance-set-points, relationship-set-points, and we base our capability, and potential for success on those set points. "What we think we deserve." This is largely why we think earning an extra 100 dollars is amazing, when to some, anything less than 100k doesn't move their needle. These set-points are built from belief. A belief based on conditioning, experience and exposure, but very much so also based on narrow field of view.
What you believe you will achieve! Show of hands, who hates that stupid affirmation? Seriously, if I have to read it one more time from someone who truly doesn't understand it, I may scream too. However, it is true. I'm not saying you're going to believe yourself into winning the lottery, but we can start small for the sake of progress and argument. You can absolutely believe yourself into the body, and health you've always wanted. The career, finance, income as well. You can also build incredible relationships or tear them apart from within, simply by acting on what you feel you deserve.
In simplicity, this would mean that positive affirmations are all that is necessary to achieve your wildest dreams. Easy enough right? Oh belief, you fickle, negative thing. Now we arrive at the hard part. Defense. We didn't make it thousands of years, evolving from prairie roaming, mastodon punching wild men without some deep seeded self preservation mechanisms. One of those, in all of its complexities, is the cognitive defense mechanism. We have several, and they also vary from person to person. Without getting into the DSM, we will look at reaction though.
The first line of defense for anyone as soon as they leave their comfort zone is negative self talk. Commonly referred to as pessimism, doubt, apathy, fear etc. It is nothing more than defense. If we didn't have this, we'd likely have chased food straight off cliffs. Genetically speaking however, this wasn't exactly meant to keep us from believing in our capability. We have unfortunately swapped survival considerations for social, and now we're all screwed up. Genetically speaking we aren't wired to earn money, acquire meaningless assets, or have big houses. We're wired to survive and pro-create. That used to mean the alpha got the ladies, and made the babies. Now, the way we define that alpha is a whole cavalcade of human psychological flaws, like money, and possessions. Can't fix that, but we can fix your belief in what you want.
There is hope! Much the same as fitness simply requires constant action, so does belief. This is where meditation becomes so important. Now if you think meditation is burning incense and humming deeply in your patchouli soaked zen-cave, well you're wrong. Meditation is a focused series of moments in an attempt to remove the mind of clutter and distraction and center around whats important. As you get better, the important part changes wildly, and it truly is quite incredible. The human mind and conscious are so unexplored still. So for today, we're talking about finding a way to play your favorite song over and over so that you don't need to think about the words anymore. They become subconscious till you are always three notes ahead in the melody, and ironically no longer even need to truly hear the song. This is what meditation does.
This is where you need to make a determination. What do you want? Not what you believe you deserve, or what you're capable of. What is it that you truly want? (No-not the lottery ticket either.) This is what you meditate on. This the song you put on repeat, till you believe, till you don't need to hear the words to feel the song. In many ways, this is what we've been doing to you all along at Paradigm. Playing the song on repeat till you stop thinking about exercise, and start believing in fitness, in yourself. By removing the think part of training that most encounter when they walk in the gym, your song is already playing. Unfortunately we only have this opportunity with your physical adaptation. It's going to be up to you to believe you are capable of the rest.
Find your why, and you'll find your hows, and it will define your whats. Find your quiet time each day to quiet the noise and turn up your song. Surround yourself with people who are vibrating, or singing the same song as you. Then, do it everyday. There is incredible power in belief, unfortunately there is even more negative self talk. Quiet the defense, and you will contently surprise yourself with what you are capable of.
We have always believed in you. That doesn't do anything to make you believe in yourself. Belief takes action, to create action. Put the song on repeat.