The Monday Mindset: Processing Your Progress


I had the pleasure once again to sit in with some of the best coaches in the biz during my weekly Wednesday Q&A with Strength Faction. Coaches from across the country, from various backgrounds, with different levels of professional experience, get to chime in and ask questions, talk about the week, and essentially converse with the idea of making each other better coaches. 

This past week we touched a lot on the idea of perfection — about ourselves and our clients — and how it will perpetually lead to failure. I’ve written about this before, and discussed it many times within the friendly confines of ILP and its members — it’s not about perfection, it’s about progress. 


Something that you may not realize, but as a coach when you start talking aloud about coaching, you come to realizations about coaching and your style of coaching — I love me some self reflection. When Todd B. called me out and asked my thoughts on the process I felt like I was word vomiting, but than quickly noticed something that I said, “the thing about coaching progress in others is that you’re going to have to show a lot of them the progress they’ve made, because the client won’t always see that progress. They are too busy staring down the end goal to see the progress in the process.” This is something that I like to refer to as the journey, and it’s really hard to see when you’re looking ahead. Each client I have ever had has had this moment of insecurity or doubt during the process of achieving a goal that they have laid out. 


Now, let’s assume that every person is setting a reasonable goal to achieve. No matter the goal — weightloss, athletic performance, a boss deadlift because deadlifts are awesome, a pull-up, consistency within a week — every person will look for affirmation that the process is truly progress. Our ambitions blind us in this way as our eyes are focused on the goal at hand. We simply aren’t attuned to how much we’ve already achieved. 

The lifter who’s looking over her shoulder at you after her lift asking “how was it” - affirmation. The new weightloss client really thinking about the kettlebell deadlift motion trying to make it perfect - affirmation. The cross-fitter working through some asymmetries because they want to get back to what they love to do (WOD’s) - affirmation. 

It’s not about perfection, it’s about progress, and we progress through the process, that is not perfection. Sorry for all the P’s.