You Have to Learn How to Finish What You Started (Part 3)

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(In the first and second part to this series, I talked about the importance of finishing what you intend to do. If you consistently fall short of finishing the WODs, it may be a sign of you being a quitter. The only to find out if you have are a habitual problem is to ask yourself if you have this problem in your daily life. If the answer is yes, then you have a serious problem. You and I must make it a top priority to get rid of this debilitating problem.

Learning to finish the WODs is where you must begin. By constantly getting through them will help you discover what you mentally need out of yourself  to learn how to stay in the fight. Once you can establish this pattern within the workout, it is time to transfer the skills to your personal life.)

I was serious when I ended part 2 with this – All the lessons that you have learn during the WODs, must be transferable to how you live your life. If your personal life does not improved, this training will be a waste of time.

This training is not about you being a bad ass with the WODs and then going back to your life and being a total pushover. Everything you learn and discover about yourself during the WODs must somehow be adapted to your personal life. If not, you are only experiencing half the potential of this training. I’ve only briefly discuss transferring your toughness training to your day to day life with this post, but now I will go in greater depth on how the physical training must intersect with how you live your life.

One of major problems with how the masses workout is they don’t see the direct relationship with what they do in the gym and how they live their life. They see strength training as how much they can lift and not how one can be emotional stronger in life. The typical gym goer is preoccupied only with physical strength and rarely considers how to improve the mental aspects of their life. They may have huge arms, but weak minds. They don’t see the connection with how physical strength training can improve their mental power. The more you understand how everything is linked together, you will improve your chances for making it through this long process of mind strength progression.

In order to do so, your thought process when facing adversity should be the same when you are in the gym or out of it. You must use the same 3 mental strategies that you have been using so during the physical training and apply it to defeating your personal crutch which is the inability to finish projects or tasks. By preparing yourself to be the aggressor, engaging your well and positive self-talk, you can make great head ways in not only overcoming this bad habit, but going to the other extreme and be unstoppable in reaching your goals.

Let’s breakdown the three mental strategies and apply it to your goal of learning how to finish things.

Mental Strategy #1 – Preparing Yourself to be the Aggressor 

Like with how you prepare yourself to get aggressive before the WODs, you must do the same with your personal problems. Every morning spend some quality time in solitude like with a walk and reflect on this mental weakness of yours of not being able to finish things. Pick three specific projects that you have been procrastinating about and how each have been holding you back with your personal happiness.

Now begin to ask yourself empowering questions like how you do before your battle with the WODs.  Example of self-questions pertaining to the personal adversity can be “How can my life be better if I overcome my bad habit of not being able to finish?”…”What am I missing in my life when I continue to not finish projects?”….”How would I feel if I’m able to finish accomplish doing (fill in the blank) ?”

Let the responses from these self-empowering questions to surface up emotions, memories and feeling. Unless some of it is very painful, don’t suppress it. Let them come up. Your answers should motivate you do take some aggressive actions to overcome this issue. The key word is action. Instead of wishing, hoping, the problem will go away, you know must take some initiative action to rid yourself of this problem. The skill of “doing something productive” is what you are trying to hone in on.

For simplistic state, focus on just one incomplete task. Every day for the next couple of weeks, spend some time in the morning with your self-empowering and come up with two things that you can do to help you complete the unfinished project. The two things don’t have to be huge life changing actions either. You don’t want the behaviors to be too stressful or out of your reach. In the beginning, you want to take some actions that you can do immediately and are available to you.  As you work up to chasing down the task, the actions will be more nerve-wracking and tense.

When that happens, this will be your challenge. Instead of finding excuses to avoid the discomfort, stay with being aggressive. Learn to work with the tension, no matter how uncomfortable it makes you. The more distress it causes you, the more you must you must continue to push yourself forward. By countering the anxiety with a mindset that will remains aggressive in the pursuit of finishing the task, you will break your bad habit of running away when the pressure gets too great.

If the actions that you constantly do are similar every day, that’s okay too. Just follow suit and do the behavior. Chasing down an adversity or changing a bad habit can be very repetitive. Just don’t be robotic about. See how each day is different and how each action is different from the previous day. Acknowledge each small accomplishment and let it motivate you to be even more aggressive towards getting you topple this obstacle.

The goal is for you to attack all personal problems with the same guts and relentlessness that you have displayed during the WODs.

(To be continued)

Today’s CrossFit WOD –

Swinging Cindy –

As many rounds as possible in 20 minutes

5 pull-ups

10 push-us

15 kettlebell swings

Here’s a variation of one my favorite CrossFit babes with a different twist. Instead of the traditional “Cindy” WOD where you do 15 squats, for this updated version you do 15 kettlebell swings instead. Which one is harder? That’s arguable on which one is more physically demanding.  Let’s just say, both these bitches suck. They will not only run but drive you head first into the ground.

We men all know what can happen when we responsive passively to a beautiful girl. They will eat us up alive. So the only way to handle “Cindy”s bashing of you is to counter back with aggressive actions. The huge test for this WOD is that your upper body will feel dead tired from working to near failure with all the pull-ups and push-ups. When this happens, always take a quick breather and come back to the WOD with a even more aggressive mindset.

When it seems that “Cindy” is toying at you when you can’t do another pull-up, you got to answer back to her and hop back on that bar and aggressively crank out a couple of more just to spite her.

The same when it comes with the push-ups. It will seem that “Cindy” is showing you no respect when your arms feel numb and you think you can’t do any more. Stop for a moment and then aggressively prove her to her that you are nowhere near to being done. Pump out the remaining push-ups to hit your mark of 15 reps.

Don’t stop your aggressive manner when you get to the swings either. By the fifth rep of the movement, you’ll probably be gasping for wind and tempted to drop the kettlebell. If you have to stop, take a quick recovery break for air and then go back to finishing your set. If you can do the set unbroken, power it through with fast and explosive hips.

The lesson here for today is that whenever “Cindy” is taunting you with her jabs at your lungs, always strike back harder with aggressive behavior. Take a moment to regroup if you have to, but don’t go back to the set with a weaker frame of mind or lackluster power. Always return back to the set with greater intent and more desire to shut her up. The more aggressive you are with your attack, the less you hear “Cindy”s discouraging laughs to make you quit.

Keep applying this pressure back to her, especially when the clock ticks down. By the last 8 minutes, most people are pretty spent and near total exhaustion with “Cindy.”  They pretty much go through the motions in a very slow manner as they watch the clock wind down. To the average person “Cindy” is a 12 minute WOD with the last 8 minutes on cruise control.

Take the challenge and say “Fuck that” to the thought of being average. Go at it hard and with much intensity as you can muster down to the last minute. Your arms will be closed to being dead from all the pull-ups, push-ups and swings, but find the second wind in your mind. Your thoughts can summons your body to not only keep going, but to work faster and to whip out more reps than you ever thought was possible. Keep going and continue to be unstoppable until the 20 minutes are over.

When you are done, enjoy it. You not only finished a tough WOD, but learning how to tap into the unlimited supply of energy that you mentally have. As much strength and power that you were able source out from your mind today, all I have to say is that there’s a hell of lot more power for you to discover. More than you can ever conceive.

This is only the beginning.

Scale back versions for this WOD –

1.  Use a Woody band for the assisted pull-ups

2. Horizontal body rows can be done instead of the pull-ups. They look like this – images (18)

3. Jumping pull-ups are good too. Here’s what they look like – download (2)

4. Do the push-ups from your knees.

5. Do as many rounds as possible in 15, 12 or 10 minutes.

Acceptable substitutions –

1. If you don’t have a kettlebell, use a dumbbell for the swings.





8 thoughts on “You Have to Learn How to Finish What You Started (Part 3)”

  1. I swear this series was written just for me. For all my life I’ve had this shiity habit of not finishing any of my long term goals. Never thought about how working out can help me with this problem. If anything, going to the gym is the only consistent thing I do, however, its nowhere near the high intensity stuff that you suggest.

    starting on monday, i’m going to start the workouts that you recommend.

    I’m willing to try anything at this point.
    So frustrating….


  2. Hey Jodie – I’m exactly in your situation. can’t finish most of what I start so I have committed myself with this training. Been doing the WODS 2x a week and they have been hard as hell. I’m not the best in shape, so I have been doing the lower version of the WOD. Even then, they are hard.

    However, I have finished every one of them. They make take me longer than anybody else on this site, but I done them. Love the sense of accomplishment from doing them. So far, I feel good about myself. The best I’ve felt in years. Haven’t made the jump yet to applying this feeling to my goals, but I’m sure it will come.

    My advice to you is really adjust the wods to fit your level and no matter how hard they are, finish them!!!!!!

    Good luck!

  3. At first, I thought doing the WODs was a unrealistic stretch to solving my inabilities to finish goals, but after a couple of WODs, (hell as shit WODs), I started to see the connection. Today, I actually re-started a huge project that i haven’t touched in months. Was it because of the WODs? Not sure really, but ll I could say is that finishing those hellish WODs is teaching me not to quit and persevere.

    Only time will time, but in the meantime, this program and Jackson’s philosophy is good thing. Until I learn to finish things on a consistent level, then I will celebrate.

    One day at a time for a life long procrastinator like myself.


  4. Although my psychology professors would say this training is bullshit, I would give it try and commit to it. I don’t normally have a problem with getting things done, I know a lot of people who have this problem badly. They always are taking shit about what they are going to do, but never have anything to back it off.

    If you have this problem, I’ll give this program a whirl.

    What do you got to lose? If getting ripped and jacked, and mentally stronger is the worst that can happen, I say go for it.


  5. I have a background in psychology, so I think to prove the effectiveness of the program and one’s ability to finish long term task is very difficult. However, that’s not say one should invalidate Jackson’s theory on this subject.

    I think what Jackson is saying is the doing the workouts on a consistent level will bring some sort of consistency in one’s life. For example, if you do martial arts, you most likely will improve with your discipline. Same concept. It is not a new concept, but just a different way of saying it.

  6. I don’t know if you can ever “prove” something like Jackson’s theory works. Just do it. For most people who can’t finish things, quit talking a storming of doing this and that. Just go out and make the effort.

    Talk less and do more.

  7. I have been crossfiting for nearly months and overall, my life have improved in so many aspects. Mainly, helping me fight on and continue fighting on as what Jackson is preaching in this site.

    I, too have had this awful habit of not doing what I say I’m going to do. Since Crossfit, I have made some drastic improvements in this area. I just feel stronger and more focus now. I haven’t made the connection with how Crossfit had made me a stronger person. But, with this site, things are clearly to me.

    Thanks Jackson for pointing things out and helping me make sense of the transformation. I still have a lot to go (I need to lose about another 30 pounds), but I’m in the right direction with my wonderful CF box here in Daytona.

    Recommending this site to all my CF buddies.


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