How do you see your world?

I’m straight into the deep end today, check out this statement: The perception that you take into the world hugely influences how you experience it.

Let me elaborate. A while ago I was sitting down with a lady who was overweight who had recently found a great exercise programme that had been developed to get the non-exerciser up and moving. She was really passionate about how they had a fantastic product that worked for people like her. It was great listening to her as she told me how she was finally enjoying exercise. For me as a fitness professional I love hearing stories like this.

After a while she started telling me why she had failed in the past and how she didn’t like gyms. As I have always been a gym-goer I was curious to find out why she felt that way. She described one experience that was the catalyst. In the past she had been to a female only gym and during one of her first sessions, when she was getting to know the weight machines, (an area she was unsure of and therefore was super aware and insecure about using them), she looked up and saw all the people behind reception laughing at her. It was at that moment she was put off gyms forever.

When I first heard her story I was disheartened and was a little disappointed in my industry. But then I got thinking about the people I know in my industry, 99% of us don’t sit around laughing at overweight people. We genuinely want to help get people healthier and fitter through exercise. I started to wonder; maybe because this lady was in an uncomfortable environment and doing something she felt insecure about, she may have got the whole situation wrong. Maybe because she was in this insecure place she was looking for ways to reinforce her own feelings so when she saw the people at reception laughing she instantly assumed that it was directed at her. What if they were just a bunch of workmates having a laugh about something?

I can’t judge that situation because I wasn’t there but you can see my point. When we have areas that we feel unsure about in ourselves, they can influence how we see things which can mold our experience of the world and limit opportunities to develop ourselves. A good piece of advice is to spend time learning what you bring into different experiences and if it holds you back, it could be the time to explore how to shift your thinking and find better ways to look at the world.


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Bevan Eyles