From University Place Personal Trainer Isaac Ho,
I started massage school this week and it hasn’t been easy waking up at 6:30 when I’m used to 11 am. Being a business owner and trainer I’ve noticed going back to someone else’s structures and rules has been an adjustment for me. Most noticeably I am not used to sitting for hours in hours in a cheap chairs and not drinking as much water as I like due to limited bathroom breaks. What’s the problem with cheaper chairs? Well I have a a chair that allows me to adjust the height. I’m typing to you right now as I sit on this chair and my hips are able to sit to a level that helps my hip flexors elongate compared to sitting in a more tensed position. Tight hip flexors equals poor hip mobility, which equals poor movement patterns.
Besides the chairs I’ve noticed the students are interesting. Most people go to school to learn something for a career change. I get it. To be honest I don’t HAVE to be at massage school. I could be doing a lot more things to be making more money or heck, I make enough money, I could go on vacation. I picked massage school over Hawaii (think about that for a second) because I want to be great at massage so I can help the people around me feel better and work on the tissue structures of my clients before we train for a few minutes.
Because if I had a trainer that’s what I would want from them.
Strangely, in class I find that some people just don’t seem very excited about massage. In fact they don’t seem very excited about learning or participating at all. We had one person refuse to read the syllabus because she was an “adult” and didn’t need a mother. Part of me wanted to grab her by the ear and throw her out of the school. I just drove for forty minutes in bumper to bumper traffic at seven in the morning to have you slow me down and tell the teacher you won’t participate.
I was a bit heated about the day but when I got to BeFit to train some of my clients things got immediately better. One of my long time clients had gotten me this amazing book called ” Strawberry Fields Forever”. It’s about business, life, faith, and fitness. Sounds like the perfect book for me.
School, training clients, and sleep got in the way but I got to crack it open and the first chapter gave me chills. Touched me to the heart truly and that’s what I want to share with you. The concepts of a strawberry field.
Did you start in the strawberry field?
At BeFit Tacoma we do team training EVERY Thursday. Why? Because we need to get better as a team as well as keep everyone on the same page. You’d be surprised how many trainers are not on the same page at the same facility. Yesterday we were talking about how to deal with our disappointment of working with clients who keep saying they want or need their lives to change but don’t show up. This is something I learned the hard way starting training.
You want the client to succeed more than they want to succeed but then past that, you hear their cries for help so do your best but they don’t meet you halfway.
There is only one simple answer for this, they haven’t been to the strawberry fields and come back.
Isaac what do you mean? Have you finally lost it from all the chemicals in the rockstar energy drinks?
No, not yet. I still have a little bit of brain left. Here’s what I mean.
It was late on Tuesday night and I was ready to pass out but I was really touched by my client’s gift of this book. This particular client has been with me for years and last year gave me the poster that hangs up above my computer screen that I look at almost everyday.
Eventually, he’d ask me about the book so I knew..it was time to read.
The book started out with a man reflecting on his first big life lesson. He was eight years old and his dad up to that point had him pick weeds in the yard for pennies as training for his first real job. Picking strawberries.
Most boys start picking at ten years old but his dad was sure with the weed picking experience he was going to be just fine. So at 5 am the bus pulled and and the little eight year old boy, scared, cold, and nervous climbed into a bus where it drove for hours in the dark to a strawberry field.
There the boys filled buckets for half dollars. The young boy became excited and his heart beat fast when the foreman handed him his first silver half dollar. It seemed like life was good until lunch time came. The older bigger boys grabbed the boy and held him down while they smeared strawberries all over his clothes, in his ears, on his face, and nose. He fought as hard as he could but they were too big and too strong.
He didn’t cry and after lunch began to pick berries again.
I’m sure that day was horrible for him, he went home and cried in his room. His mom asked him what was wrong but he didn’t answer, at dinner he told his dad he wasn’t going to be going back. His dad asked him why and he told them the story.
The boy’s father said, ” you have to go back tomorrow, you’re not big enough or strong enough to stop it from happening, but true bravery is showing them you aren’t scared even when you can’t change stop something from happening”.
The boy went back the next day, the boys left him alone, and eventually he became like their little brother.
WOW and Wow
To me that is a powerful story. It speaks so strongly to me about what true bravery is about. Bravery is going out when you know there may not be any hope for yourself but committing to your heart and fighting against its fears.
You are strong and you have known struggles before.
I sure have gone through a lot of struggles and I continue to go through them but struggle is what makes you strong. This may sound a bit harsh but many of us have not gone through enough suffering. Having trained clients for years and years the most serious clients are always the ones who suffered the most in the strawberry fields. When that suffering is fresh and deep it helps you grow up strong. So the simple answer I give my coaches when they ask why this person will want to start but then quit and goes back and forth is this.
Something will hurt them, they’ll be reminded of their pain and then they will reach out to you. But soon they will forget their pain and they will forget why they need this change in their life.
They will stop showing up, they will let go of their promises to their selves and they will wait until pain comes to them again. Until the pain is deep enough for them, they will not want it more than you.
It’s a hard lesson to learn but many of the things I have are related to the most painful moments in my life. Pain moves people. That’s why a bonus rarely inspires people to produce more while bankruptcy does.
So in short, when was the hardest moment of your life?
What was your strawberry field moment where you learned about bravery, suffering, and came back again to face it.
Think about that moment and how much strength you had to have to conquer it.
You did that.
This is easy.