We experience so many feelings and emotions throughout the day. We have approximately 60,000-80,000 thoughts in a twenty-four hour period. The majority of us deal each day with some kind of anxiety, depression, and fear. There is a lot that happens within our brain, within our mind. Personally, I struggle daily with controlling my mind, controlling my thoughts, and controlling my anxieties. From the time I was a tween, I have had a conscious fight, a conscious battle with my mind. With my feelings, emotions, anxieties, and fears. At times when I was younger, I could barely bring myself to get out of bed because the anxiety and fear of the day was so great. There seemed to be an overbearing weight that was upon my shoulders. Recently, over the last several years, I have learned that I have control, full control over my mind. I have control over my thoughts, my anxieties, my fears, and the outcome of my days. I cannot control others. I cannot control the weather, or any other outside variable. But I can control what goes on inside of me. I can control my mind. Now, the feelings, emotions, anxieties, and fears are still present in my life. They always will be. They are a part of me until the day I die. But I do not have to be a slave to these feelings, emotion, anxieties, and fears. I do not have to allow these to control my life, how I live, how I serve, how I love. How have I come to the point in my life where I no longer suffer from my anxieties and fears? I have learned that I have to go against the anxiety, the fear, the feelings, and the emotions. I have to attack them. Every day. Each day, head on, aggressively, relentlessly. When my feelings and emotions are strong, when the anxiety and fear is trying to suffocate me and hold me back, I have to decide I am not going to be a victim. I am not going to give in, I am not going to allow what is happing inside of me to effect what I want to accomplish that day, week, month, or year. I AM IN CONTROL! My feelings, emotions, anxieties, and fears ARE NOT IN CONTROL! I cannot waste my life. I cannot waste what has been given to me to give. I cannot waste the opportunities I have been presented! I have to live my life fully! I have to be the man I know I am to be! I have to be a leader! I have to be an example! I have to be someone to follow! I must overcome. I must be the master of my mind, all day, every day. I must be stronger then the weakness that wants to win. I accept that I am not perfect. I will never be perfect this side of heaven. Perfection is a myth. But I can work harder, work smarter, learn more, apply more, grow more, mature more, serve more, give more. I can’t stop. I won’t stop. My feelings, emotions, anxieties, and fears have no power over me. They have lost. I have won. The fight, the battle continues. The beautiful struggle of life.
Life can have intense times of loneliness. I personally have spent the majority of my life alone, fighting with loneliness. Some of this has been by choice. Other times, not by choice. Even for those who are constantly surrounded by other people, loneliness can have a strong presence within your life. A lot of the time, people allow loneliness to destroy them. They allow the loneliness to eat at them from the inside out. They allow loneliness to be a dark, depressing, and happiness-destroying presence. People allow loneliness to control their life. But what if you take loneliness and embrace it? What if you choose to learn from it? What if you use loneliness as a positive, rather than a negative? This is a new concept for me, personally. Because I am alone and deal with loneliness a lot, I have come to the realization that being alone can have its benefits, and can indeed be a positive thing. I am learning to embrace the loneliness. The alone time within my life. I am taking the loneliness and using it to drive me. I am using it as preparation, I am using it to teach me. I have big dreams. Big aspirations. Big goals. I want to live life fully. I want to be the man I was created to be. I am using the loneliness to drive me towards my dreams, aspirations, and goals. I am using loneliness to prepare me for my future spouse. I want to do everything the way I would do it, as if I was married, and had someone else to consider and serve. I am also using loneliness to teach me more about myself. Who am I? What do I want out of life? Where am I going? Am I being an example? A leader? Am I practicing what I am preaching? There are days that suck. Days that are difficult, frustrating, overwhelming. I will never deny that. The loneliness sucks. It really sucks at times. But I have accepted it. I am learning to accept the loneliness, I am learning to learn from the loneliness. I will not allow the loneliness within my life to distract me, deter me, or effect who I know I can become. Everyone deals with loneliness at some point in life. Some of us deal with it daily, others, sparingly, but loneliness is a reality for all. It is how we choose to look at loneliness and react to it that defines us and will continue to define us as individuals. Life is not perfect. It never will be. Life will always be imperfect. There will always be highs and lows. Twists and turns. Ups and downs. Times of peace, times of turmoil, and times of intensity. We as humans, have to learn to remain steadfast. We have to learn to remain steady. We have to learn to overcome. That we may grow, mature, and become individuals who shine brightly in the midst of the darkness. Embrace your life. Embrace the good, the bad, and the in-between. Embrace, learn, grow, and become.
Cameron Kolling has competed on team USA for functional fitness. Cameron is also a local personal trainer here in Colorado Springs. He is a husband, weightlifter, and outdoor enthusiast. We talk about his upbringing in Nebraska, his athletic background, nutrition philosophies, and much more! Enjoy!
I won’t back down. I can’t back down. I won’t quit. I can’t quit. I won’t give in. I will continue to do what needs to get done. I will continue to do what I know I need to do, each day, every day. A lot of days suck, a lot of days are no “Fun.” But that is OK with me. This is what I have been created for. This is what I want, what I have chosen. While you and others indulge in distraction, I will continue working on getting better, stronger, and smarter. I am preparing for the future. Brick by small brick, I am building, creating something new out of the old. I won’t be distracted, I won’t be caught unprepared. You won’t throw me off course. I am focused. I am hyper-focused. Locked-in. Dialed-in. Ready. This place is lonely. But I am learning. I am learning so much about myself and others within the loneliness. You think you know, you think you have it all together, all figured out, but you don’t. You are trapped within a false reality created by and for yourself. You are another soul living in a world of mediocrity and average. I have to rise above, I have to block out all of the noise, block out all of the distractions. I must continue the fight. Continue to fight each day to live the hard, difficult life, that I was born to live.
Peter Maksimow is a sponsored athlete. He has run for team USA. Peter’s forte is mountain and trail running. In our conversation, we cover Peter’s struggle through recovery from an injury, his love for traveling, and a lot of other fun, interesting, and challenging topics.
Time and again, I have found myself surrounded by people. People who are negative, lazy, and who live in absolute contrast to the way I live. Being surrounded by these individuals sucks. But I have learned, and am learning, that through these individuals, I can gain knowledge. I can gain knowledge about others. What makes them tick. What makes them react. What makes them respond. What makes them angry. What seems to motivate them to be who they are. What causes them to take the easy road. I can gain knowledge about myself. How to control my feelings, my emotions, my responses, my reactions. I can gain knowledge about how to lead, how to encourage, and how to challenge others. I can gain knowledge about how I want to live my life. When you are constantly surrounded by people who are opposite of you, it truly can be draining. Mentally, emotionally, and physically draining. I get it. I understand it. But it is our choice in terms of how we are going to handle these negative people, these negative situations. We can allow these people and situations to effect us negatively or positively. We can have a fixed mindset, or we can choose to have a growth mindset. I personally, refuse to allow others to project their stupidity upon me. I refuse to allow another person’s negative energy, to alter my positive path I am walking down. I get to choose who I am going to be today. I get to choose what I will become tomorrow. No one chooses for me. No one’s negativity, laziness, or their way of living is going to hold me back. People are people. They are going to live how they are going to live. I am going to live the way I am going to live. I want to learn. I want to grow. I want to mature. I want to get better. I want to be a great leader. A great example. I want to be youthful in heart, passion, and service. I want to be an individual to follow. I want to help those who cannot help themselves. I am going to be, and become who God created me to be. Live life with a mindset of learning. Wherever you find yourself today, whatever situation you may be in, whoever is in your life at this point, positive or negative, be open to learning! Learn, apply, grow!
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