Written by Chad Wesley Smith
Anyone who knows me knows that I’m not one for ra-ra, motivation and inspiration; it’s just not my personality and I’ve never felt I needed somebody else to motivate me personally. So with that said, know that for me to write this means that I think it is REALLY important.
Recently, I had the opportunity to speak at Adonis Athletics in Sydney, Australia alongside Dr. Mike Israetel and Brandon Lilly. As we were wrapping up a long day of coaching, there was one young man sitting in the front row who had been exceptionally attentive and excited about everything throughout the whole day. He wasn’t the strongest or most talented attendee that day, but it was clear he was truly passionate about learning and improving.
So we asked him, “What is your goal? Why do you do this?”
The question seemed to shock him, and he meekly responded after some silence that it was “because I want to be good at something,” but it was clear that there was more to it than that.
After some goading from Brandon and Dr. Mike he told us his real aim: “I want to be great.”
The vocalization of this seemed jarring to him, getting him (and us) a little choked up, as he continued to tell us about his history and his future plans – he was getting ready to begin a PhD program.
Why was the idea of vocalizing the goal “I want to be great” such a difficult task for him? Why is it such a difficult idea for so many of us? Especially considering that it is something that so many of us truly and deeply want.
Setting goals opens us up to two possibilities: success and failure. Setting big goals, great goals, set us up for greater success and the possibility of greater failure.
The fear of failure paralyzes us from becoming truly great. You need to be courageous to overcome this fear and embrace the pursuit of greatness.
When you vocalize a goal, something to aspire to, whether it is in sports, business or any other aspect of your life, there will be doubters, there will be people who tell you it can’t be done, that you aren’t capable of it, that you are wasting your time.
Those people are afraid.
They are afraid to take a risk themselves, they are afraid of your motivation, and they are afraid to admit that they want something greater for themselves.
There seems to be an epidemic of apathy in our current culture. It is perceived to be cool to not try hard, to not care. That is a road to mediocrity and discontent. The people who pretend who look down on you for your work ethic wish that they had your courage to pursue greatness.
I have lofty goals in business and in lifting, and I know there are people who think that I’m foolish for pursuing them, that I’m not talented enough to achieve them, and that I will fail. I know that there is a chance that I may fall short of my goals and fail, but I know that if I do, it will never be because I didn’t work hard enough. It doesn’t take any special talent to work hard. I’ll be the first to admit that failure is terrifying to me, but what is far more terrifying is the fear of mediocrity, the fear of never trying and the fear of living a life of regret.
As cliché as it may seem, the saying “a goal without a plan is just a wish” rings very true in this sense. You can set all the lofty goals you want but if you don’t have the bravery to pursue them through a plan and a real all-out work ethic, then you’ll be just like the rest of them, wishing you had something better and making half-hearted efforts to fool yourself and your friends into thinking you’re really dedicated by making some BS Instagram post about how you’re on #TeamNoDaysOff or some other nonsense.
Let me take the lead, here are two of my goals for 2015 and part of my plans to make them happen…
Grow Juggernaut to Over 1 Million Website Visits per Month
-Continue to seek out high level coaches and authors to share their expertise in articles, videos and events with the aim of helping our readers and followers improve in their endeavors of choice.
-Improve the production quality of our articles and video (there is an entirely redesigned JTSstrength.com coming in the 1st half of 2015)
-Reach more people through YouTube with a more personal connection via video.
-Help support more athletes in powerlifting, weightlifting and CrossFit and teach them how to grow their personal brands so they can pursue training on a more full-time basis.
Total over 2400 pounds raw w/ wraps
-Continue developing my squat through the same means I have been (If it ain’t broke don’t fix it), but with a greater attention towards honing my technique and use of knee wraps to push my squat beyond 1000.
-Build more upper body mass (chest, delts, triceps) to push my bench up toward the elite full-meet bencher level of 570+.
-Improve my hamstring and grip strength, as well as locking in my deadlift technique with aims of pulling over 850.
Please know that I’m not saying these things to brag or be arrogant. I’m saying them because they are what I want to do and I want you to know, this is the definition of great for me and I want you know that you should be proud to pursue your definition of great.
I implore you to be brave in pursuing greatness. Own your goals with pride and stand steadfast in your pursuit of them in the face of doubt. Do you have the courage to be great?
We want to hear your goals. Follow @JuggernautTraining on Instagram and make a post telling us one of your goals for 2015 and your plan to achieve that goal. Tag @JuggernautTraining and #CourageToBeGreat by Noon on Sunday, January 11th and we will choose five winners of a JTS Apparel Prize Package!
Chad Wesley Smith is the founder and head physical preparation coach at Juggernaut Training Systems. Chad has a diverse athletic background, winning two national championships in the shot put, setting the American Records in powerlifting, including a 900+ raw w/ wraps squat and a 2300+ total, and winning the 2012 North American Strongman championship, where he earned his pro card. In addition to his athletic exploits, Chad has helped over 50 athletes earn Division 1 athletic scholarships since 2009 and worked with many NFL Players and Olympians. Chad is the author of The Juggernaut Method and The Juggernaut Method 2.0 and The Juggernaut Football Manual.Facebook, YouTube, Twitter