Chaos, Learning, and What Tough Mudder Can Teach You – 43

I do not deal well with chaos, I create systems and patterns to avoid the chaos, because chaos causes me anxiety.
It is stressful for the brain to have to remember a new place each time I put down my keys.
I use systems to avoid the chaos and be more efficient. Knowing where my keys are every time is more productive and less stressful.
But this can cause behavior patterns that are similar to getting into a rut.
Getting into a rut is also stressful but in a different way. It can impact creativity and cause a different kind of anxiety.
Like eating the same thing at the same restaurant every time.
It’s like “cabin fever” or the stress of the “Groundhog Day” effect.
Always be evaluating yourself.
Anxiety disorder and OCD pushes one into a rut. Fear to try new things.
Balance having a system with trying new things. Taking on new challenges.
So do new things to grow as a person and change things up, while maintaining systems that reduce anxiety and enhance productivity.
To learn one must empty their cup before the teacher can fill it. How are you self defeating when it comes to learning?
I like to use dance as an example. Since I teach dance I see many examples of the learning cycle.
There is a spectrum of teachability. At one end of the spectrum the student learns the basic step the first time shown.
The other end they struggle with the basic. You show them many times and they still struggle.
There is a significant and obvious difference here.
Is it a natural who gets it the first time and a lost cause when they don’t seem to get it when shown over and over again?
Could it be more than the natural aptitude of the student?
What about experience in a similar field?
It is proven that those with a background in a subject will learn at a much more rapid rate than those without that experience.
Could it be how the student pays attention during instruction. Could it be their method of listening and how they focus?
I think one reason we fail to learn quickly is because we have an expectation of the result. Our bias can steer us in the wrong direction.
We should not be outcome dependent. We need to be agnostic of the solution.
I just want the correct solution. I dont need to be proven right. I just want to eventually be correct.
Don’t think you know more than the teacher. You go to that instructor for a reason, because they are experienced.
If you feel that teacher is incompetent, change instructors – and go to one that you will trust and listen to.
Is it possible that those who struggle are making incorrect assumptions? Not paying attention?
Set goals that will challenge you. We grow most when we are outside our comfort zone.
I signed up with my friends for a Tough Mudder last year.
But then last minute I had to travel out of state for work. I missed the event.
I rescheduled for the next year.
The next year rolls around. My buddies are not doing it with me. I am alone.
I almost didn’t go, yes I was ready to forfeit the money I paid. A hundred bucks.
But I decided to go because I didn’t want a weak obstacle to deter me. Going alone was a weak obstacle.
I went. I figured I’d make friends there. And I did. I ran with a small group I met at the starting line.
Before the race I watched youtube videos about the various obstacles that had a deterring effect on me.
I injured my arm prior to the race and I was not able to train well for it so I decided to skip some obstacles.
During the race as I approached each obstacle, I evaluated if I would try or not.
Watching others attempt them and my desire to not have regrets overrode my avoidance of pain and falling into cold, muddy water.
Watching others do it, I felt if they can then so can I.
I attempted every obstacle.
After completing each obstacle I felt a bit more empowered.
King of the swingers was the most ridiculous thing I ever did. 40 feet tall and I had to jump as far as I ever did to grab a very small bar and swing as far out as I could so I can ring a cowbell.
Looking down almost made me quit. But I climbed up the tower. Do I go home with regret? Or do I crash and burn?
I jumped. I missed the cowbell. I landed flat on my back in the water. I survived.
The electric shock at the end of the race was like being tased. I woefully underestimated that obstacle. I won’t do that one again.
I finished the race. No regrets. Don’t leave money on the table.
Set goals, go outside your comfort zone. No regrets.
Here are some pics from the race. Thanks to Michele and Gill. The other dude is Tom, he ran the race twice that day and again the next day.
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