“Everything in moderation”

A phrase I often hear that couldn’t be further than the truth.

My problem with moderation is that it is often used as an excuse to hide behind when we simply aren’t doing what we know to do. It’s sneaky, and it’s preventing a lot of people from hitting their long term goals.

Now don’t get me wrong, aiming for perfection is a quick way to fail as well.

But you don’t have to do that either.

You simply have to acknowledge “breakdowns” as a part of the goal-achieving process.

What is a Breakdown?

Breakdowns are when we take an action against our goals.

They happen all the time. In fact, they are essential.

They help us learn and create better structures for ourselves.

You see breakdowns only exist against our goals. Meaning that if we did not have goals in the first place, breakdowns would not occur.

…think about that for a second, if I did not want to be leaner it would not a breakdown for me to eat poorly.

This is an extremely important thing to understand because it is with this view that we can tackle our breakdowns VERY differently than how most people do.

Let me give you an example…

Let’s say that my goal is to get a six-pack for my winter vacation.

I have eaten well for 6 weeks, exercised 3 times per week, and done cardio in between my workouts. I am doing well by all accounts.

Then one weekend comes around and it’s my best friend’s birthday.

Because I have been so diligent lately I decide to let loose a little bit and eat all the deserts available. I pig out on everything.

I go home feeling terrible about slipping up and spend the next couple of days discouraged with myself.

I go to the gym the next day but instead of being excited about it, I am now exercising because of the deserts I ate and eating super clean to make up for it.

While these habits themselves are not inherently bad, the focus has completely shifted.

Now I am not eating to get a six-pack, I am eating to correct a mistake.

And as most of us know, what we focus on is what we attract…. so guess what? Another “slip up” is right around the corner.

So What Should We Do Instead?

The solution here is rather simple.

When you realize that you have “slipped up” immediately declare it as a BREAKDOWN! From there remember what your original goal was in the first place and take an action IMMEDIATELY that will help support that goal.

This rapid refocusing followed by an immediate action will get you back on track with little to no harm (having a “cheat” meal once every few weeks will do little to nothing, however losing focus on what your goals are can have a devastating effect).

This is also where it is incredibly valuable to have a coach who can work with you in handling breakdowns. A coach will have an objective view of the situation and can offer advice to get you back on track FAST.

The fact is, you are either acting FOR your goal or AGAINST it—there is no in between.

Breakdowns help us understand and manage these moments in an effective manner.


I spent years learning how to set out and accomplish goals in the traditional manner.

I wrote down my SMART goals on a sheet of paper—making sure to have every detail laid out. I would accomplish “x” by “y” by doing “z”. I would determine all the variables I needed to track to know if I was successful or not, and I would ensure I had a deadline to hold myself accountable to.

And while this model of goal setting has been around for decades, it needs an update.


In order to be effective at setting (and accomplishing) goals you must start with your state. Or said a differently “your way of being”.

What do I mean by this? Let me give you an example…

Many individuals who hire a personal trainer want to be more confident.

And they feel that once they lose weight that will happen (not a bad assumption).

However, more often than not this doesn’t happen. Why?

It’s because confidence is a state of being.

There is nothing you need to acquire to be confident, you simply have to “be” it.

The problem is that most of us don’t create declarations for ourselves. Affirmations, which are often used by top celebrities, athletes, and creative thinkers are not mainstream for people like us.

Here is another problem with the traditional model—when our goals are influenced by our results our chance of success plummets.

It’s easy to lose motivation or get discouraged when we need to HAVE something first. When our results impact our state it creates a vicious cycle.



This is the traditional model of how we interact with the world. Something happens (the result), we emotionally react (our state changes), we do something (our actions). While this works great in positive circumstances, it can be devastating in negative ones.

Now, if we are able to shift this model of goal setting to start with our state first we have:


Notice the shift. My state determines my actions and my actions determine my results.

Makes a lot more sense, doesn’t it? And my results are no longer influenced by circumstance, leaving me free to act effectively even when things aren’t going my way.



Here are some questions that you can answer to help you put this into action…

First, what is it that you really want? Dream big here. This isn’t about “getting real”. This is about being pure and true—to yourself; your vision; what’s in your heart and on your mind.

Second, what state is associated with it? What would it feel like if you had it?

Third, what actions reflect you being in that state? For example, if my state of being was “a powerful athlete” my actions would be to workout consistently.

These questions can help you get started with a new approach to goal setting. One that puts you in the driver seat and overcomes the inevitable bumps in the road.



Let’s talk about toughness.

Like it or not, toughness–or, as some of today’s most popular self-help experts call it, grit–is essential to success at ARM and everywhere else in life.

Being tough doesn’t mean you don’t feel anything, that you never come across obstacles, nor that life never gets hard for you. In fact, the tougher someone is, the more likely he or she is to feel things very deeply and profoundly.

Well, then, what does it mean to be tough? Basically, it means that you’re willing to get over yourself, your negative thinking, your destructive perceptions, and anything else that’s in your way as you set out to achieve a particular goal. You remember what you’re fighting for–and you fight not for the right to complain nor to remain comfortable where you are but rather to win. And, as any winner will tell you, winning hurts like heck–but it’s worth it.

At ARM SYSTEMS, we guarantee results. Not every fitness facility does. In fact, some companies are more than happy to collect your money, demand nothing of you, and send you right back into life having achieved nothing–except, of course, for some socializing that could have been done elsewhere.

That’s not our style; we’re tough and we demand toughness (or, at very least, a willingness to learn how to become tough) from both our clients and our coaches. In exchange, we offer access to physical transformation, radiant health and wellness, and improved results at home, at work, and everywhere else in life–including love.

Now let’s face it. All of this sounds awesome, but every once in a while, for a certain type of coach or client, this sounds good up-front but becomes too much to handle along the way. Too intense. Too insistent. Too demanding. Just way too much all around. It’s sad to say, but in cases like these, the best solution is to say good-bye and wish one another well.

Fortunately, it only comes to this very, very rarely.

So let’s get back to talking about you… the people ready, willing, and able to train hard, right here at ARM… the go-getters, the trend-setters, the bold and the brave, the enterprising and entrepreneurial. We thank you, we salute you, we thank you for your business, we love being around people like you, and we leave you with this:

When you’re having a bad day, and you just don’t want to deal with it anymore–and by “it” we mean all of it–just remember that the secret to staying tough, even when you feel weak, is to give more of… you.

Not your judgements, nor your perceptions.

Not your excuses, nor your justifications.

You. The real you. The you we’ve come to know and love. The only you that matters.