T Nation

Bad Improvement

Have you guys ever thought about the downside of trying to constantly improve yourself and your station in life?

For every fat fuck that won’t get off the couch and every douche living off the system, it may seem strange to question the person who seeks to improve themselves.

But this constant striving to learn more, read more, do more, and be better than you were yesterday, does come with a price. I find it takes a tremendous amount of physical and mental energy to do so.

Since people of similar mindsets tend to group together, and T-Nation seems to be (at least to me) one of those groups who are not satisfied with their personal status quo, what do you guys do to achieve balance in your lives. What do you do to “turn off” that self improvement button?

Can’t turn it off, just take a break every now and then.

[quote]MikeShank wrote:
Have you guys ever thought about the downside of trying to constantly improve yourself and your station in life?

For every fat fuck that won’t get off the couch and every douche living off the system, it may seem strange to question the person who seeks to improve themselves.

But this constant striving to learn more, read more, do more, and be better than you were yesterday, does come with a price. I find it takes a tremendous amount of physical and mental energy to do so.

Since people of similar mindsets tend to group together, and T-Nation seems to be (at least to me) one of those groups who are not satisfied with their personal status quo, what do you guys do to achieve balance in your lives. What do you do to “turn off” that self improvement button?
[/quote]

I dont ever turn off. Remember, one can improve in all areas of their lives…not just their strength and physique. I think trying to be a little bit better every day, at whatever you do is great. Stagnation feels awful to me

This really depends on the individual because one person’s drive to improve in everything is another person’s case of ADHD and not getting anything done. Pick one goal at a time and work on that, especially if you’re new to this whole “goal reaching” thing in life.

Then, whenever it feels like you may be going too far or missing out on something, take a break, reflect on who you are and what you want out of life, and readjust your goals.

Prioritize, Compartmentalize and Focus.

Set a goals, prioritize your goals, pick a path that leads to your goals, then focus on each activity you do.

For example, if fitness is your primary goal (which many of us have decided it is, bcause it leads to improved quality of life and imporved performance in all other aspects of life) set your exercise goal, pick an exercise schedule that will get you to that goal, then go to the gym when scheduled, block out everything else and train like crazy. When you are done training, leave the gym and forget it until the next scheduled session.

Most successful people are not just driven all the time, they realize you need sleep, relaxation, family, friends, etc., as well and plan time for those activities as well.

To me its just a juggling act. Mental, physical, social, etc. Like right now my social is lacking because I’m studying all the time to get into med school and I’m getting serious about weight training again. Maybe this keeps a fresh persepective so I don’t burn out too bad.

[quote]MikeShank wrote:
Have you guys ever thought about the downside of trying to constantly improve yourself and your station in life?

For every fat fuck that won’t get off the couch and every douche living off the system, it may seem strange to question the person who seeks to improve themselves.

But this constant striving to learn more, read more, do more, and be better than you were yesterday, does come with a price. I find it takes a tremendous amount of physical and mental energy to do so.

Since people of similar mindsets tend to group together, and T-Nation seems to be (at least to me) one of those groups who are not satisfied with their personal status quo, what do you guys do to achieve balance in your lives. What do you do to “turn off” that self improvement button?
[/quote]

To play devil’s advocate…what if that’s why we have only 100 years on the planet, and not say, 1000?
Maybe this insane pace that burns us out at times is EXACTLY what it takes to have us feel like we actually LIVED our lives come death bed time?

And who said down time isn’t a way of improving self as well?
If to improve our bodies we must get adequate rest, should that not apply to growth of self?