Almost 13 days late as I write this HOF speech. I think I have written and rewritten a HOF speech at least a dozen times now and haven’t been able to decide on one I like until now. As talkative as I am in my class, I’m sure my December Brothers and supporters have been wondering where my speech is.
Well, here it goes.
I’m going to teach you about how I built my own Integrity Shield with the 3 actions I made these first 100 days.
“Fake it until you make it” I’m sure most of you have heard this saying before. While I don’t recommend it in an emergency situation, quitting is one situation I think it can be utilized well. When I came to KTC, I knew that my biggest demon would be accepting that I would be quit for life. 12 years of wrestling and cutting weight. I was used to someone saying, “okay, you can’t have anything sugary for the next 16 weeks.” That was no big deal. There was an end date. 16 weeks was just a challenge of fortitude. Sacrifice a little pleasure now and reap the rewards later. For some, this might be a tough challenge, but for me, it was just part of life. Cutting myself off from nicotine was different. There is no end date. There is no end to the “challenge”. I was just expected to power through the rest of my life. “I’m a mentally hardened wrestler and nuclear engineer. If I can put myself through those hells, I can do anything, right?”
“Well, am I actually as tough as I used to be?” This was a question I repeatedly asked myself during this process as I silently questioned my own resolve.
One Day At A Time. I’m at least tough enough for that. I can do that. That has an end date. At the start of the next day, I can make a decision to refresh my promise or to throw in the towel. As long as I don’t break the promise I made for the day, I am safe.
I’m past the first week. ODAAT is great, but how do I ensure that I HAVE to keep my promise when I make it? and how do I protect my quit for the longer term?
The INTEGRITY SHIELD
In the midst of my own self doubt, I, Unknowingly made several shields for myself.
- I Got Involved. Getting involved in your quit and your quit group shows your supporters that you care about your quit, and they are more likely to be personally effected by any deficiencies you have. I shielded myself with the accountability of others.
- I Supported My Brothers in Their Time of Need. When you reach out to your brothers in quit when they need it most, they are likely to return the favor and talk you down from your cliff when YOU need it most. I shielded myself with the support of my brothers.
- I Called out My Brothers When They Let Me Down. (The Most Important) When you call out your own brothers for letting you down, you set a standard for yourself. When you hold your brothers to a certain standard, you are subconsciously expecting the same from yourself. If you tell your brother how disappointed you are in him, how can you expect anything less of yourself without being a hypocrite? I shielded myself from my own doubt.
In my first 100 days, I got involved and made my quit known. I supported my brothers and made others care about my quit. I called out my brothers and I anchored my quit.
Was I ready to commit to a lifetime of quit when I started? No. But it’s okay, because I knew that I had to find a way to make myself commit. I faked it until I made it. We don’t always start where we need to be, but so long as we know where we need to be and work to get there, we can be successful. Building a shield behind my own integrity was the best way to do that.
So, 113 days in and my shield stands stronger than ever. Not only do I promise to quit every day, one day at a time, but I also promise to make my shield stronger everyday. I recommend everyone do the same.
Am I as tough as I was before I dipped?
I’m a hell of a lot tougher.