At the tail end of my work week, and one of my last personal training sessions of the day was about to approach, I got a text message.
“I can’t make it today. Something came up.”
I understand how the world works. Demands outside of our control pop up. It is essential to have the flexibility to be able to cancel outside of our original arrangements. But that was a rough week. A lot of clients cancelled their sessions and it got me down. I like progress. This wasn’t it.
“Okay,” I texted back.
The next message came moments later.
“Sorry I had to cancel.”
At this point I was pondering. Why? What is it I’m doing wrong? I’m doing my best and it’s just not enough. This was me thinking below the line though. I was being selfish to myself. The going was tough that week. It happens I looked at the message again.
What is it about that one that is sticking out to me right now? I read it over and over again in my head and thought about all of the similar times I had to do the same thing. It sounded the same every time. The issue was in my own mind. As I read, the message only sounded like a formality. I could see myself doing the same thing to somebody else just because I felt like I had to, or was told to do so.
I do not blame any other person or people for their own causes. They were simply a catalyst for thought up to that point. I have no idea if that particular message was sincere, formality, or both, but it was what I was holding within me that brought the truth.
I felt bad because, in my own heart, I had lost sincerity; in a lot of things. I knew at that moment my vision had gotten away from me on the importance and impact of being meaningful with my voice and actions; that my voice goes way beyond the words that come out of my mouth or through my fingertips. Voice includes my actions, my behavior, my presence, and perhaps even more. In fact, I know it includes so much more!
The sincerity comes from effort. It comes from a deep level of encouragement that will spread into others. This is my vision with the occupation I have and it wasn’t happening. Not because of anybody else, but because I was biting into formality too often. Taking less encouragement. Giving less effort. Showing little sincerity. It happens little by little until all of a sudden you do not feel or think like you. You are simply going along with general thought, to which, is not even a little bit productive.
Every voice matters. What does that mean? To me, it means that everything is important. It means that my will, my strength, comes from the ability, capacity, and tolerance to exercise the voice that I have through actions, behaviors, presence, and even more than that. It means that when I get to thinking, “It doesn’t matter,” or “What does it matter?”, that I am thinking nobody cares. I am thinking without sincerity, and that I am operating at a low level of energy that is not conducive to my well-being.
We’re all beyond that. It’s true. We’re simply not practiced at it. That’s it.
Close your eyes and listen to it in silence. I believe that silence is the greatest weapon against the tool of destruction. When you can distinguish between what you are saying and what is being said, that is the point your voice has control. We all know we matter. We may not know how. But we do. You make an impact. Your voice matters. Exercise it in as many ways as possible! Share it!
Trey Tompkins is a local resident who writes fitness columns for The Record-Herald.