“Go heavy or go home”
That sign hung in the company fitness center. The message was meant to be inspirational to those who came to workout in the gym. I’m sure many took it the way it was intended. I wasn’t one of them.
For some of us, it was yet another implication that we did not belong there.
Have you ever walked into a gym and felt completely intimidated? Perhaps you avoid the gym altogether.
That’s a shame. Stick with me, though. This post is not about exercise. I’m not here to guilt anyone into (re)starting a physical exercise regimen.
Intimidation is not isolated to the gym. It happens everywhere. Do you remember starting a new job? Walking into a new classroom in school? Attending a social function where you felt less-than?
Have you ever wished you could play a musical instrument? Perhaps the guitar, the piano, or the ukulele. What’s holding you back? What is preventing you from starting?
I would venture to guess that at least part of the resistance comes from feeling intimidated. How could I do that? Look at that person there who is so good. I could never play like that.
Maybe that’s true. Chances are pretty good that you’ll never be able to play the guitar like Eric Clapton.
It is easy to feel it is pointless to pursue an interest when we compare ourselves to masters in the craft we are considering.
Pursue it anyway.
Start where you are.
Rather than be intimidated by those who are masters in your area of interest, see their current level as an indication of what is possible. Maybe. Someday. Instead of intimidation, use their example as inspiration.
Realize that “heavy” is a relative term. If you’re just starting out in the gym, a 5 pound dumbbell might seem heavy. Great! Start there!
If you’re just starting out on the piano, the C scale is pretty heavy. Great! Start there!
After you’ve mastered that, build the weight. On the piano, add the other hand. Two hands at once. Whoa! That’s heavy! Keep going.
Wherever you are in your pursuit, keep going. Keep adding weight. Make it heavier for you. Remember that what is heavy for you is different than what is heavy for someone else. And that’s OK.
Go heavy or go home.