Every other day I go to the gym to lift weights.
After years of aerobics and group fitness and ecstatic dance, it’s finally come to this: I need to push against something.
I need to go up against the Universe in some kind of arm wrestling match, and see who wins. (Well, of course it's the Universe!)
When you lift weights, there’s the idea of going to failure: you lift a weight that’s right on the edge of being too heavy for you, and then you lift that weight until you can’t lift it any more.Maybe you lift it eight times.
And the first and fourth times are easy; but by the time you’re at the eight rep, you really can’t lift it any more.
In other words, you go to failure.
And thus weightlifting becomes an incredibly humbling experience, a kind of meditation in which you fail and fail again, every time you show up.
And in this process you learn to fail better.
You can’t fight gravity, can you? It’s an unwinnable battle.So in this process of getting used to what it feels like to fail, over and over and over, you lose your fear of failure.
You trust that you’re going to arm wrestle the Universe with all the might of your ego and your personality and your body, and the Universe is going to win.
You lose your fear of failure, over and over again.
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