An Embarassing Story

I don’t talk about this often…. but I quit studying for graduate school after 2.5 days. 

I just couldn’t convince myself to do it.

At the time, I had just returned from playing soccer and backpacking in South America and the Middle East and going back to school was what everyone else was doing, so I felt like I should be doing it too.

I was embarrassed to quit studying and felt like I would be letting my parents down by not going back to school. 

But, there was something pulling me.

The first thing was I hated being in a classroom.  

I’ve always felt confined and could never sit still at a desk. The thought of 2 or 4 or however many more years of that did not sound fun. 

The second thing was that I would be pursuing an MBA and taking classes like statistics and accounting sounded tedious and boring at the time. (well, they still do)

I knew that going back to Europe to chase the dream of playing more pro soccer wasn’t an option and some of the places I went and people I met in South America had really inspired me to try and make a difference in other people’s lives.  

At the time I figured the best way I could make a difference was to help people with their health. 

So, I got re-certified as a personal trainer.

Starting looking for a job, 

Took a minimum wage job at a gym that I could walk to because I didn’t own a car.

Starting building my own personal training business inside the gym. 

Launched an outdoor Bootcamp at the park.

Opened my first location. 

Then the next. 

Kept expanding. 

Impacted thousands of lives. 

A somewhat embarrassing (at the time) decision shaped my destiny.

If I had stayed the path of going back to school I most likely would not be writing you this email.

I’d probably be in an office somewhere, at a desk, not helping people with their health and fitness, likely not doing work I love to do.

But now I find myself in a tough spot.

I’m a small business owner in the middle of a pandemic and a recession.

Now I think about this decision and wonder if life would be better if I was protected by the corporate vail.

Meaning, you have this job in this big firm and you get paid your same salary to work from home, you have a nice benefits package and stock options.

Or, you get unemployment if you get laid off. 

There are days where I think about that life.

Then I snap back into reality and show intense gratitude for my choice.

The freedom to do the work that I love to do.

The freedom to live my life the way I want.

Is there more on my shoulders?

Yes.

Is there more responsibility? 

Yup. 

Is it stressful at times?

You bet!

But I am in control.

I rely on no one else.

If I want to change my schedule around so I can help home-school my kids, I don’t have to ask anyone.

If I want to implement the changes I think will do the best job keeping my clients safe, I can do that.  

I feel good about the impact we have on people’s health and fitness every day. 

I say this to you today because as hard as this is right now, there’s a lot to fight for.

Take it one day at a time. 

There is no playbook for this. 

You’re doing great. 

Stay true to what you believe is the right thing to do. 

Champions do more.

PS: I have a handful of FREE 3 day passes to my small group personal training program. Let me know if you or a friend might want one! EMAIL ME >>>>>>>>>ian@ianfitness.com