I had a seemingly innocuous yet insightful encounter last night. During a CrossFit workout, I partnered up with someone new to the gym. We were sharing the same barbell and weights, alternating front squats. After a few rounds of increasing weights, he looked like he was struggling a little bit. I whispered to him: "You know you can take some weight off, right?" And he looked at me wide-eyed and responded innocently: "Really?" So, we shared a smile and quickly striped off a couple tens.
In that moment, I felt a little like Oprah -- so empowering! What felt so good about that simple encounter was that this new guy had no ego about it. He knew his limits, accepted that he just wanted to do it right and worked within his means. He did not let literal or figurative pressure determine his strength.
It made me put into perspective how often we try to add more and more weights, to prove our strength or our value to those around us. We so often seek extrinsic confirmation of our abilities rather than intrinsically trust our own strength. Once we accept the latter, we ultimately feel lighter, less bogged down by unnecessary weight that is not healthy nor productive for overall growth.