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Productivity is not an accident.

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I've been training clients for about 18 years, the more I work with people, the more I wonder why some are so productive and others are not. Why one client can handle insurmountable problems in their life and not miss a beat, and another crumbles because their BMW doesn't react well to snow (well not crumble, but they get really whiny).

This morning I asked a returning client, one that for job reasons had to move out of the area and is now back, some thought provoking questions about commitment, communication and motivation.

This client is female, has a one year old child, lives about 30 miles north of Columbus, works on average 60 hours a week, gets about 6 hours of sleep a night if the one year old permits, and works a high level, high pressure corporate job with about 850 people that answer to her, and then she has to answer to people at the very top who only want the right answers.

Lots of reasons to "no show", drop off the radar, fail to email for scheduling, fail to communicate effectively, fail to be consistent with training or dietary intake, meeting expectations, you name it.

So I asked her how and why, given the level of complexity and demands in her life, she very rarely misses a session, has in all the years I've trained her, NEVER "no showed", always emails in advance with scheduling, travel or any simple issues or questions, and will always make time for a phone call or face to face if a matter requires a higher level of communication. She is always on time despite a long drive even in the winter, is a team player, always focused, listens, learns, never complains or whines and remains friendly and professional even after she has or is about to face a s***storm at work.

Here is the Q & A.

Q: Given all on your plate, what motivates you to keep training?

A: I know I will do better at everything if I am happy with myself from a health and physique perspective. Being healthy and physically capable to live life also fuels my mind. I am a very goal oriented and achievement is a key motivator, thus being good at “life” continues to perpetuate the desire for accomplishing even more. MM Team training not only allows me to accomplish things I NEVER thought would be possible (like climbing a rope, body weight dips, etc.), it continues to challenge me because of the variety functional training provides and even when one “masters” a move there is always a way to take it up a notch through more weight or an added variable.

Q: It would be easy for you to "no show", not have time to communicate, etc. Given the levels of priority in your life, the trainer (me) could easily be the lowest. Yet, you are rock solid consistent and always make time to communicate effectively. Why?

A: You personally have an unprecedented level of commitment to what you do and your clients. You aren’t just “showing” up for your sessions, you pour yourself into the preparation for the routines, research of articles, sending tutorials, answering questions, making time for advice and on and on. Not only am I committed to my personal wellbeing, when I started training with you I made a commitment to you. I go all in with everything I do or I don’t do it……my grandfather always said “you either pay me now or you pay me later but if it is later it will be with interest.” His message was meant to do it right every time. It goes against who I am to not honor commitments and because of who you are and what you put into your clients and me personally being a no show goes against my commitment to you.

My experience has been that most issues either at work or personally boil down to communication. It is very easy to react to what is said and tell stories to yourself to either validate or build a “case” for the message you want to hear. Understanding the intent behind what is said and knowing that if someone is taking the time to talk about an issue is a sign they care enough to talk about it. I use questions to really get to the intent as well as the facts so I don’t end up telling myself a story. I can’t begin to count the number of times that issues have come up that created negative consequences and only if “I had known about them” could have been avoided……so I make it a point to communicate as I am sure I am not alone with these experiences.

Q: On your worst days, you never show it, always a team player. How do you manage that?

A: Everyone has issues and everyone has a different ability to deal with their issues. No matter what mine are, it can always be worse. My 3 hours a week with you are for me. I need those so I decide to check my issues at the door and pick them up on my way out. If I don’t, I won’t be fully present and my performance won’t meet expectation, ultimately not fueling me (in fact having a negative effect) and not honoring my commitment to you.

Not whining or complaining….one of my life approaches is love it, leave it or change it. With this mindset it doesn’t allow for complaining, it drives either acceptance and getting on board, leave it behind or change what is bothering me.

I played team sports since I was 5 so understand the dynamics of a team environment. Been on great teams and horrific teams so I know how to operate in that range. I never want to be “that girl” on the team. The world is much bigger than me.

Q: Any final thoughts?

A: My grandfather always told me that I can sleep when I am dead and to make sure I leave the world a better place than when I came into it. While I am not changing the world on a global basis like Issac Newton or Albert Einstein, I do feel that my job allows me to improve patients’ lives around the world by making quality medicines and the people I touch through my leadership at work helps them to be better people professionally and personally. I wouldn’t be able to do this without feeling good about myself, therefore the desire to train.

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