Beyond “Have to” Exercise, To Fitness Freedom
As I write this, I’m watching Shaun “The Flying Tomato” White flip and
fly high through the air out of the half pipe on his snowboard.
Watching him is amazing. It’s truly art in motion.
Absorbed in the moment, it occurs to me that this sort of
expression—this talent and skill—can not be the result of “have to”
approach. There’s no one big enough or mean enough in the world to make
someone “have to” fly head over heals, 720 degrees around.
This is truly an expression of some other energy, some greater desire.
Even if it we’re a “have to” for yourself you’d not achieve this level.
“Have to,” also known as "obligation," is one of the four levels of motivation, on the path to
Mastery, that I detail in my book, Strength for Life. This is the level from which most people first engage in fitness and transformation.
The good news it’s the motive that gets you going but it’s not the
motivation that can keep you going. It wears out quickly and wears you
"Have to" results in more “have to”'s and next soon you “have to” hire a lion trainer to get your ass out of bed.
The sort of amazing human expression that Shawn White show arises from
a higher place, a “want to” energy. I “want to” fly, is fueled by
feedback, reward both intrinsic and extrinsic (from the outside).
"Want to" is an expression of self, an energy you can not contain. And
the more you express, the more you revel in “want to” the more quickly
you move to the ultimate freedom, “Mastery.”
Mastery is the instantaneous expression of excellence. It’s where you
cease “doing” and start “being” the thing, be it snowboarding or
It’s the ultimate freedom for you no longer rely on carrot and cattle prods to get you moving.
"Want to" get out of the “have to?”
Find the thing you most want, animate the energy that gets you
moving—no right or wrong. At one time it may have been getting the girl
or guy. Perhaps it’s a “want to” win a contest, a “want to” compete,
“want to” impress, “want to” achieve.
One tip, shallow as it may be, usually the transformation best happens
in a public domain for that which is done in secret, is well, secret.
And that means it’s usually things we “want to” keep that way.
Find something you “want to” brag about.