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Episode 23: It’s Okay To Release Your Goal

Good morning, everybody, and welcome to today’s episode of The Work Of Becoming podcast! Today, I’m gonna give you a sneak peek into something that is going on in my personal life that I am kind of in the middle of right now, and I haven’t shared a lot of this on Instagram just because there are moments where I need to be in my own growth and deal in my own shit, and this is one of them, but I wanted to share a little glimpse of it with you.

So, as many of you know, at the beginning of the year, I had set this big goal of training for a powerlifting meet, and I had set a pretty ambitious target of the numbers that I wanted. So, I wanted to lift a total of 600 pounds at this powerlifting meet, which would pretty much require me to be consistently training all year long. And that was really what I wanted out of the goal. I wanted to train frequently all year long, I wanted to really work towards something, and I wanted to, quite honestly, see some body composition changes. I wanted to gain muscle and see more muscle on my body as part of that powerlifting goal, and that was 100% part of the reason why I went into it.

For the first half of the year, the powerlifting goal went really well. I was working with a coach that I really liked. He was writing me programming, and in the middle of the year, right before I went to Indiana in July, I had started to have some issues with getting to the gym, and that was mostly because in May of this year, if y’all remember, we bought our condo that we were living in, and it was a very unexpected situation. Our lease wasn’t up until October, so we had to come up with a bunch of money. It was just a very stressful situation. And so, I gave myself a lot of grace in the month of May and the month of June as I was kind of dealing with that situation.

And then in the middle of the year, I started to feel like I needed a change. I started to feel less motivated to workout and, obviously, motivation is something that we create for ourselves, but beyond that, I started to feel a lot more resistance than I was used to experiencing or that I had been experiencing. And so, I kind of jumped in and grasped — I was like, “Okay, what I’m gonna do to kind of reinvigorate my interest in this is I am going to go sign up with a very specific powerlifting coach.

So, I signed up with Claire from Barbell Medicine, who I absolutely adore Claire, and Claire started writing me programming that was very specific powerlifting programming. And I did that for a little while. I struggled while I was in Indiana, but in general, it came to a point in August where I was just experiencing pretty intense amounts of resistance every time I thought about going to the gym. Like, the presence of the gym in my schedule was no longer adding to my life. It was just making me miserable, and I had to stop.

I had to really have a come-to-Jesus moment with myself, which was like, “Yes, I have a big goal,” and I had set this powerlifting goal for myself, but I like to remind myself, and I like to remind our clients, you always get to choose again, and if your life changes or your circumstances change or your approach changes or something changes, and the goal that you set is no longer serving you, there’s nothing wrong or shameful or bad about releasing that goal at any time during the year. And I, of course, had a lot of mental drama about it because I’ve obviously talked about this powerlifting goal. It’s obviously been a thing that I’ve really used on Instagram to have conversations about, and it’s something that was really important to me, but at the end of the day, I was really, really, really burnt out from lifting, in general, and from powerlifting training.

So, I talked to my coach, and, basically, our conversation landed in a place where I was like, “I need to take a break,” and I use this with clients, too. Sometimes when you’re relying so much on an extrinsic-motivation-type goal (I’m doing this training because I want to lift this amount of pounds, I’m doing this training for my goal), what happens is that your intrinsic motivation starts to decrease, and you can actually lose your internal joy and desire and love of the thing that you’re doing. And that felt like it was what was happening to me.

So, in the middle of August, I stopped working out completely. I completely removed that expectation from myself, and it was about a week, a week-and-a-half, almost two weeks, I think, until I started to feel a little spark come back to me of, like, “Oh, I do want to move. I do want to workout again.” But I felt detached from the powerlifting goal.

So, I’m gonna try to keep this podcast short and, like I said, I’m in the middle of this situation, so I’m not exactly sure how it’s gonna resolve. I’m still planning on doing the meet because I think it’s gonna be really fun to test my strength regardless. But right now, I’m in a stage where I am just giving myself way more flexibility about what a workout looks like, about getting movement in in a way that supports me, and I’m giving myself credit because I did gain a ton of muscle this year, and I did learn so much about workout frequency and getting things done and the way I operate best.

And so, in a lot of ways, my goal was fulfilled even if it’s not totally done yet, and who knows, I may decide to jump back into powerlifting training for the last eight weeks of the year next month. I don’t know what’s gonna happen. But I just wanted to give you all an update today and remind you that there’s nothing shameful, there’s nothing you have to be guilty about. It’s not quitting if you are releasing a goal that is no longer serving you. And that is what I feel like I did, and I can tell you that I have been a whole lot happier since I let that go.

That’s all I’ve got. I’ll see you in the next episode!

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Hi, I'm Karin

I’m a funfetti flavor super-fan, a loving dog mom, a PhD expert in mindset and behavior change… and I’m here to help make personal development and transformation a process that’s actually fun.

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