Have you ever had the realization that you just can’t do it all?
The world is a HUGE place filled with LOTS of people you will never meet, cultures you will never understand, romances that will never happen, languages you will never speak, Countries you will never visit, jobs you will never have, books you will never read, musical instruments you will never learn, and hobbies you will never master (and the list goes on and on and on).
Over the years I have also made this realization about the fitness world. I am interested in Kickboxing, Kettlebells, Bodyweight Plyometrics, Jiu-Jitsu, Power Lifting, Olympic Lifting, Yoga, Animal Flow, Parkour, Triathlons, Gymnastics, MovNat and Bodybuilding. If you just took one of those “systems” listed above it could take several years going 5 times a week just to, have a decent understanding let alone make any significant progress.
So how then do I get really good at all these things? The truth is I probably can’t especially once you consider that I also have two business to run, a new puppy to attend to, blogs to write, family commitments, a social life, and many other non-fitness related hobbies that I am also interested in learning about. I am not of fan of using the word IMPOSSIBLE but sadly, it is impossible to do everything (at least in this lifetime)…
It turns out I am not the only one that feels this way, in fact there is even a word to describe this feeling. The word is ONISM.
Onism – n. the awareness of how little of the world you’ll experience.
There is even an amazing video about this “feeling”. Check it out (it is less than 3-mins long)
My favorite line from this video is:
“All the billions of doors you had to close in order to take a single step forward”.
So what does this all mean?
Is Onism a good thing or a bad thing? Is this knowledge supposed to depress us or make us feel better? Most people might find the idea of Onism depressing, but I think it is quite the opposite. The knowledge that we can’t do it all gives us a reason to “slow down” and focus on the moment. Remember we can only inhabit one body in just one place at one time. So instead of always worrying or wondering if the grass is greener somewhere else, just focus on making your current “patch of grass” greener. Lastly, it is a great reminder to focus on the little things opposed to overwhelming our lives with the uncontrollable.
How to use Onism to improve your life.
The solution is actually quite simple, but just because it is simple does not mean it will be easy.
The solution in 3 steps:
- Discover what makes you happy – This is critical!
- Trim the Fat – In other words remove all the non-essential out of your life. A Great Book Title “The Dip” by Seth Godin talks about how quitting can actually be a good thing. Now this is not an excuse to quit everything, instead, this book challenges you to analyze why you are doing what it is you are doing. If you can’t find any good reasons why you are doing this particular thing maybe you should quit. Because once you remove the non-essential from your life, you immediately free-up more time for the things that you are passionate about!
- Do the things that make you happy as much as possible! – A wise man once said; “It should either make you money or it should make you happy“.
Onism teaches us that; in order to be truly happy we need to live in the moment and focus on the now! More specifically, we need to be aware of how we are spending our time. Our time should be spent (as much as possible) focusing only on the things we truly love while simultaneously removing the things we are less passionate about. If we are successful in doing this, we will have more time to spend doing the things we love. But please understand that by opening a particular “door” that makes you happy, you are also closing a billion other doors, but that’s OK! Because a successful life is not about concerning ourself with all the things we are missing out on (FOMO) it’s about focusing on what makes us happy NOW!