Think your vote made a difference? A note on REAL Change.

I'm so glad that election season is over. It's my least favorite time of the year. 

For a couple months, everyone talks about change... change healthcare, change taxes, change foreign policy.

Want to know what no one talks about? Changing themselves.

You see, it's way too easy to look out at the world and see things that need to change. It's the government, it's the schools, it's the democrats, it's the republicans. I see fingers pointed in almost every direction besides the one that will actually fix the problem.

Everyone, including myself, gets caught in the delusion that the problem is outside. This makes us feel better. We’re not the problem. It’s everyone else. We’re just bystanders, the innocent victims of everyone else’s foolishness. This is convenient as it saves us from the pain of looking deep into our belief system and finding what we most fear – that it is us that is the problem.

This victim way of thinking is a trap. By making everyone else the problem, we protect ourselves from pain but we also leave ourselves powerless to make a change. Ever try to change another person – partner, sibling, or child? How’d that turn out for you? I’m willing to bet that it didn’t.

Here’s why:

The line between good and evil isn't something that exists only in the external world. It also runs down our own psyche and our own heart.

The good tells us that we are capable of anything that we put our mind to, it compels us to change and become a better version of ourselves, it challenges us to love our neighbor as ourselves. It empowers us. It is for the constant renewal and betterment of life.

The evil tells us that we are a victim, that we aren't good enough and never will be, that the problem is outside, that life is meaningless and our actions don't matter. If we're being honest, this voice is violently opposed to life.

So I ask, who has the courage to point their finger in the mirror? Who has the courage to say that yes, the world does need change and I might as well start with the one thing that I can change: myself.

With good reason, changing the world is a hot topic and a common conversation topic. It gives us a sense of moral superiority without actually having to do anything difficult. I think we can all agree it's a lot easier to talk about change than to BE about it.

If you're reading this, it means that I am preaching to the choir. You are not just a talker, you're a walker. You aren't satisfied with your health and fitness, so you are doing something about it. Maybe that something is as small as clicking on this blog post. Or maybe you purchased my book, Mountain Fit: The Hunter’s Fitness Solution. Maybe you went all in and joined my private coaching program.

You didn't blame society for abandoning the hunter/gather lifestyle. You didn't blame your parents for your genetics, or not teaching you a healthy lifestyle. You didn’t blame your employer for making you work too many hours. You didn't blame God for giving you the short end of the stick.

Instead, you have taken responsibility and in doing so have begun the process of change. That alone separates you from 99% of people in this world. That alone puts you in elite company. If there were more people in the world like you, it would be a better place.

I know that I need change... Now what?

Sometimes realizing you need change isn't enough. Sometimes you need to be guided through the process; you need a coach. There is no shame in it. I'm constantly finding new coaches and mentors. It's how I got where I am today and how I am going to get where I am going.

There are three steps to real change. The first is being honest with yourself and identifying what needs to change. This is the reflection and goal-setting phase. If you had a magic pen and everything that you wrote about your personal life became reality, what would you write? 

Regardless of the final destination, the process starts with taking care of yourself. Your diet of highly processed foods, workout routine of 12 ounce curls and changing the channel on the TV, and habit of constantly judging yourself and others will have to change.

Once you are healthy and you have something to give, you can start to work on your relationships, spiritual life, work situation or whatever else it is that you are seeking.

The second step is taking action. The process has to transcend reading and thinking about change. It has to be real. You have to start taking steps toward your goal. You have to be an action-taker.

But what should you do first? 

That depends on your goal. Your best bet is to find someone that has successfully made the change that you seek and ask them. Or even better, find someone that has helped a bunch of people just like you make the change that you seek.

The third step is relentless persistence to follow-through. This is where it becomes difficult. I have bad news and good news concerning this step.

The bad news is that people tend to underestimate the difficulty of change. They think that it'll be easy... I'll just cut out all processed foods, eat only organic, eat more protein, and wake up an hour earlier to workout every day.

If only it were that easy. No, the truth is that change is difficult and it takes persistance and hard work.

Over your life, you develop a set of beliefs systems that allow you to survive in this world. They allow you to fit in with a group, have a sense of security, and give your life meaning. Over time, you start to confuse them with who you really are. You start to think that you ARE your beliefs.

So when it's time to change a belief that is no longer serving you, like "I'm not a fitness person" or "eating healthy means giving up foods that taste good" or "I just don't have the time", it's like letting a part of yourself go. It feels like death. That's the bad news.

Here's the good news. From death always comes resurrection. As a phoenix rises from the ashes and new creation always follows destruction, you too will rise with a stronger and more empowering belief system.

People tend to underestimate their own power. They are taught when they are young that because something is difficult, they can't do it. Not true. When people are willing to dig into their beliefs and uncover WHY they think the way that they do and why they seek change, they become unstoppable.

He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.
— Friedrich Nietzsche

While in most of my writing I talk about the results you will receive from my coaching program -getting lean, building all-day endurance, cranking up your energy levels - what I really coach is how to change your belief system.

Anyone can give you a cookie-cutter meal plan and workout. The internet has set the price for these at $0. That's right, these things are all over the internet for free. If that is all that I offered, I would have went out of business before I even started.

But no, I have new clients filling my coaching spots as soon as they open. Why? Because I guide people through the most difficult process on the planet: changing their beliefs. They hire me when they are done being a victim of circumstance and want to take control of their destiny. They hire me when they want real and lasting change. 

Your beliefs become your thoughts, 
Your thoughts become your words, 
Your words become your actions, 
Your actions become your habits, 
Your habits become your values, 
Your values become your destiny.
— Gandhi

Health and fitness have played a huge role in my life since I first snuck into my dad's weight room with my brothers as a kid and failed to bench press an empty bar.

I've come a long way since then.

To me, it's not about being super fit, looking good with my shirt off, or even cruising around the backcountry with a heavy pack - those are pretty cool side-effects, though.

It's about reminding myself every day of my potential for change. I am not the thing that needs to change; I AM the change.

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With that revelation, we have the power to do and be anything that we choose in this life. I've chosen to share it with others and act as a guide.  I use fitness coaching as the platform to teach this essential process.

This post gets to the bottom of what I'm about and what you'll receive by working with me.  If this message hit home and you want to get started today, I recommend that you download my free Kitchen Rescue Pack. It’ll get you started with the first and most important step: taking care of yourself.

If you want to become better than you are now, the first step is changing what you put in your body. This guide covers it all:

*how to simply and easily create the perfect, chef-approved meal

*the secrets to fast and healthy meal prep so that you always have appetizing, supportive food ready when you need it.

*How to quickly prepare delicious protein shakes that are excellent meal replacements when you're short on time.