Here’s an insight from biology and anatomy that we can apply to any area of life and work …
You’re at the gym doing resistance training with free weights. One of the exercises in your routine is to work out your calves by standing upright while holding two dumbbells at your side. You rise up on your toes and then lower again. You’ve worked up to 2 sets of 20.
I’ve recently learned that the key to toning and building muscle tissue is that on your 2nd set, your last few reps need to push you to the point of muscle exhaustion. This is the point where it would be very uncomfortable to go any further.
Where the good stuff happens …
The key is to keep increasing the level of resistance you are working with to keep you in that zone at the very end of your exercise. Those last several reps where you feel you really can’t go any further is where the real action happens.
What’s occurring as you exercise in this way is that you’re actually breaking down muscle tissue.
If a doctor were to look at your muscle tissue under a microscope after you exercise (let’s just take exercise out of the equation in the doctor’s awareness), she would say, “Whatever you’re doing to your calves, stop doing it!”
Getting stronger via positive stress
When we exercise, we are stressing our system. It turns out that it’s a positive stress!
The muscle tissue breaks down and then over the next several days the tissue recovers and adds a little more strength, tonality, and size. You’re getting stronger!
This is the life principle that we can apply to everything …
Positively stress the system … recover slightly to a higher level … at this new level, there is no longer stress … you’re now at a new level and ready to positively stress the system again.
This is how we strengthen ourselves, increasing our capacity and ability to produce.
Sometimes life brings this upon us, apart from any personal initiative. We’re being strong if we proactively see the opportunity and work through it.
Other times, we can take initiative and intentionally place ourselves in contexts and situations to positively stress some aspect of our lives to get to a higher level. T
is could be mental/academic, emotion strength, personal finances or business, spiritual development, social lives and relationships, etc.
Even though it’s uncomfortable, do you see positive stress as a good thing?