Nothing Lasts Forever
You’ve probably noticed that I have a few tattoos.
A lot of people tend to ask me about the one on my neck. It says “Nothing Lasts Forever” and it is applicable to everything in life, especially the world of fitness. Another way of putting it is, “If you don’t use it, you lose it.” That was too long to fit across my neck though.
Sometimes people misinterpret my “Nothing Lasts Forever” tattoo as a pessimistic or cynical statement but it is actually the opposite. It is a celebration of the present moment and a tribute to the beauty of the temporary nature of existence. I often joke that the tattoo is my homage to irony as well.
There is no finish line in fitness. It is an ongoing journey that must constantly be approached with modesty and an open mind. To paraphrase from Shunryu Suzuki, one of the great Zen masters of the 20th century, “In the mind of the beginner, there are many possibilities; in the mind of the expert, there are few.”
I think what Suzuki is saying here is that when we think we know everything, we look at the world through a narrower scope. We think we’ve seen it all and heard it all already, so we find a way to reject whatever isn’t within that small spectrum of vision. We lose the ability to learn and grow. We also can lose our appreciation for the beauty of simple every day things. It’s kind of like what we often call “taking things for granted,” which is something we all do too often (myself included).
There is a key step in between “believe” and “achieve” that sometimes gets overlooked: TAKE ACTION! You can’t just sit back and hope for good things, you have to go out there and work for them.
Now don’t start getting defensive over there. The idea that you (and only you) are responsible for your own circumstances is not something to be afraid of. It is actually an incredibly empowering concept once you put it into practice.
I got these tattoos on my wrists to remind myself and others that anything is possible if you put your mind to it and truly dedicate yourself. If you don’t get what you want, maybe you just didn’t really want it enough.
Be a Free Thinker
Don’t listen to me because someone else considers me to be an expert or some type of authority figure. Only do what makes sense to you.
If you don’t work out, I have no interest in forcing you to start. I might inspire you, but I’d never want to force you. Exercise is a reward, not a punishment. The forced will be the last.
Each journey is unique and while the advice of someone with experience can be helpful, remember that no one else can do it for you. You must take personal accountability and deal with your life!