You shouldn’t be judged as lazy if you aren’t yet successful with your physique goals.
I admit it. I can be judgmental.
Sometimes when I see someone who’s wearing those scary earrings inside the ears
(I think the technical term is ear gauging):
I say to myself…
“What were they thinking?!”
Instead of: “Wow, what a unique individual. It takes guts to do something that most people would find outlandish.”
Coaching is about Respect
The one area where I try not to be judgemental is with my coaching clients. When someone comes to me for help with their nutrition and training program, I want to give them the most effective assistance that I can. I try to understand my clients and the challenges they face on a daily basis.
The Personal Training World
I recently got thinking about the attitude many personal trainers have towards their clients. My own coaching journey began as a karate instructor at the age of sixteen, and continued when I started full-time personal training in the year 2000. I’ve spent many years “in the trenches” helping clients get the physique results they want. If the client wasn’t successful, I came to the conclusion that you can’t help someone who doesn’t want to be helped (since all my other clients were successful).
I still think that’s true, but if someone does want to be helped then you need to understand them better in order to give them the right strategy. As a young coach, I don’t think I understood that some people needed a different approach.
Role Models for Success
When I think about the hundreds of people I’ve coached over the years, I realize what an impressive group of people they are: Lawyers, TV personalities, financial gurus, scientists, real estate tycoons, IT and medical professionals, Presidents & CEOs of multimillion dollar companies.
They are all extremely successful with their work, and many also have fulfilling family lives.
It seems hilarious that the average 20-something personal trainer, making say $40,000 a year, would look down on these people and say:
“You’re so lazy. You’re not committed enough to exercise and nutrition. You should be more like me… single, 26-year-old dude who spends all day in the gym for a pitiful wage and hopes one day to be the gym manager.”
That doesn’t sound right to me. Why would a successful person want to be like this hypothetical “hot shot” guy at the gym?
The Oprah Paradox
Think about Oprah Winfrey. Media mogul. Oscar-nominated Actress. Producer. Billionaire. This woman who overcame a poor childhood and sexual abuse to achieve all these things… is overweight. And has struggled with her weight issues her whole adult life.
What if Oprah looked down on everyone who wasn’t a billionaire like she is?
She certainly wouldn’t be the beloved icon she has become…because she has empathy. Most of us could stand to be more empathetic and a lot less judgemental.
My clients aren’t lazy. Their priorities are just different than those of fitness professionals. In order to connect with my clients, and help them overcome their nutrition and workout challenges, I try to understand the world that they live in. By understanding their challenges, I can use my skills to help them succeed – without turning their lives upside down.
Because not every millionaire professional wants to quit their job to live “the fitness lifestyle” of the average personal trainer. And I certainly don’t blame them.