Thank you for all your #business questions this past week about owning a gym and how to re-open after 2 government shutdowns. Here are some of the answers to specific questions:
20 years of owning my gym, X Fitness, keeps teaching us Real Life& Death Lessons about survival – business survival and mind-body-soul survival. They are connected. Here’s Business Real Life&Death Lesson #25,505 that our business team has learned:
Challenge all conventional thinking to overcome business challenges.
Here’s what it means:
When I started X Fitness, I had applied the Challenge Rule in every profession I worked in. Here’s an example: As an unpaid football coach for 40 years, my teams don’t kick. No punts, no field goals, no single point-after touchdowns. That is the highest level of unconventional thinking in the Football Establishment. We go for it on 4th down, anywhere on the field. We go for 2 after every touchdown. We onside kick after every touchdown. We never follow, we lead. And we build the lead and keep the lead. We don’t play it safe. We don’t crack under the peer-pressure of conformist conventional thinking. We are different.
Here’s my point – it works out. We can prove that unconventional thinking works – by with hardcore evidence of explosive production that wins big and gets student-athletes to the next-level. I started our no-kicking streak after I asked one question after my rookie head coach disaster season at the age of 26, when we ended up winless and in dead-last. The question was, “Why?”
Why do we kick?
Why do we do what everyone does?
Why do we do things that end up in the hell-hole of prolonged losing streaks?
Asking #why forced deep, profound investigation. Good news. We solved the mystery of habitual losing. We found the no-kicking solution. Our football program turned around.
Asking why we do what we do has proved to generate innovation and creativity in every profession I worked in for 4 decades. Until I started X Fitness from scratch 20 years ago.
I contradicted my beliefs and became a conformist. A conventional thinker. I found myself losing and not asking why. Here’s the best example: I adopted a social media strategy that was the same as everyone else. It didn’t work. But I kept doing it. I never asked why I was doing it. I fell in the social media trap that cost a fortune in time, money, effort, energy.
Finally, I asked why after reality hit the same way it hit after my rookie head football coaching nightmare season – I was doing what everyone else was doing without any corroborating evidence that it worked. The overwhelming evidence I discovered was that I was stuck in The Abyss. I was stuck in The Vortex that was flushing time, money, effort, energy down the toilet. Every day, I was lost in the the Dark Alley of futility, superficiality, and artificiality, all the places I had escaped from during 4 decades of working for other people.
Everything we posted on social media stuck us in the equivalent of a Photo Lineup – a crowd of same images hoping someone will pick you out. One image after after another of similar faces, similar places, that we have worked our ass off to separate from and build our unique Natural Brand.
Everything we posted on social media became part of a Flea Market NewsFeed, the equivalent of a Trade Show where vendors sit behind a broken table watching customers walk by and never buy. Then you pack up and go to the next Trade Show where it repeats – walk by, never buy.
Good news. I asked why. The treadmill stopped. We’re not the same any more – dual meaning.
- Not the same as everyone else posting the same bullshit on social media.
- Not the same as our losing team just like my first football team that I coached.
Conclusion: Business will kill you unless you stop getting killed.
Blessings and all good things