I noticed an email in my inbox from a popular fitness blogger who I follow, with a subject line that read:
“5 Natural Ways To Fight Chronic Stress”
Now, on the surface, that seems reasonable.
If I have chronic stress, I want to FIGHT it with all I’ve got, so I can be calm again. Right?
The problem is, the body and brain don’t work this way. If you have chronic stress, your body is trying to tell you something.
Sure you can “fight” this stress with whatever they are recommending, and it will likely give you some relief- for a while.
But as I discussed in a past email about Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT), the idea of fighting things is going to eventually lead to them growing bigger, or morphing into larger problems.
Do you have an inner battle going on with something? Perhaps it’s time to stop that battle and accept whatever it is, and then proceed to move forward.
Growing up, I was a fighter. Not in the sense of fist fights, but I wanted to WIN WIN WIN. Every sport and every game was ultra-important for me to beat the competition and prove myself to be good, great, better than the opponent(s).
But when I was 12 years old, I learned a lesson.
I was in a tennis tournament, and my first 3 matches, I won pretty easily.
The winner of my next match would advance to the final.
And, I was playing against a girl (this was a co-ed tournament).
I was joking with my best friend the night before about how I would just lay down on the court and and still easily beat her.
Well it turned out, she was pretty good. We were tied up and going to overtime. At least I thought. I shouted the score “Duece!” (that means a tie score for you non-tennis players!)
She disagreed and thought she was up 40-30. We got into a huge argument on the court. I lost my cool. I got ANGRY.
We had to go to a judge and ended up resetting to the point before we disagreed on the score, basically a do-over of that game.
Now I was in fighting mode. I can’t lose this, no way!
Fueled by anger, I couldn’t make a shot. I couldn’t serve to save my life. She EASILY beat me in that last game, and advanced to the final, while I moved to play for 3rd place.
My point of this story is, FIGHTING is a short term strategy to success.
If you are working on your swim, fighting to improve your technique will lead to frustration.
Swimming is a step-by-step process. It takes Patience. Perseverance. Even grit.
But swimming is not a fighting sport. It’s a finesse sport, where getting faster happens when you are able to piece things together little by little, enjoy the process, and accept where you are at each level.
And you get to learn about your deep inner self as you progress!
If you haven’t joined yet, we can help you with each step, both the technical steps and the mental ones, on how to get to a faster freestyle while not battling, fighting, or losing your cool. 🙂
Befriend the water!