OK, bear with me on this one. Steve wasn’t exactly known for his monstrous squat, and he never really looked like he was going to dominate the next International Bodybuilding meet either. But he had a strong force of personality and a lot of the reasons he was successful are just as relevant to lifting weights as they are to being a king of business. Read on to see the 16 things you can learn from the great man to help your weight lifting career.
#1 Skate to Where the Puck is Going to Be
In 2007, Steve Jobs said, “There’s an old Wayne Gretzky quote that I love. ‘I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.’ And we’ve always tried to do that at Apple. Since the very, very beginning. And we always will.”
Focus on the future. Focus on where you want to be. Forget about your last workout, forget about the things that don’t matter in life. Look to where you want to be and strive towards that with everything you’ve got.
#2 Accentuate the Positive
Steve started life out on the wrong foot. He was given up for adoption at birth because his mother had wanted a daughter.
Tough break? Young Jobs didn’t think so: he was thankful for his loving adoptive parents — who happened to live in Palo Alto, California (which would eventually become Silicon Valley).
You might have had problems in the past. Maybe you’ve got crappy genetics, or you have difficulty with flexibility, or you’ve got some other reason why life is harder for you. Forget about it and accentuate the positive – you’ll make more progress that way.
#3 Learn from Others
In high school, Jobs attended lectures at a small computer technology company called Hewlett-Packard. Before turning 21, Steve had worked for both HP and Atari. He saw what these companies were doing and learned what he wanted to do differently with Apple.
You should spend as long as possible learning from those who have been successful. Check out the training section of the site for some inspirational coaches that can help you reach your goals.
#4 Start Early
Because Steve was still a sponge-brained teenager when he started working with computers, he learned quickly.
It also helps that he started Apple in his early 20’s: when he was still full of energy, fresh ideas, and not yet restrained by a family or career.
If you’re a young guy – you should be in the gym lifting free weights in compound movements. You have a hormonal advantage
over the older guys and will clearly benefit from having longer to train.
#5 Surround Yourself with Good People
Steve Jobs wasn’t a great computer engineer. Apple would have had no chance if Jobs was the only one building the computers.
That’s why he recruited Steve Wozniak.
Through the years, Jobs’ companies have blossomed thanks to the brilliant people he’s brought on board – like Apple CEO Tim Cook and Pixar CCO (Chief Creative Officer) John Lasseter.
Get yourself quality training partners who know what they’re talking about and can motivate you on to greatness. Or sign up at the various internet forums where you can discuss lifting weights with guys who know more than you. The Iron Game has a lot of experienced people who are really approachable and knowledgeable – make the most of them!
#6 Expect Greatness
People tend to rise to expectations. Set the bar high and then go to achieve these expectations.
Jobs and Wozniak ran out of money while developing the first Apple computer. Instead of giving in, Jobs sold his van and Wozniak sold his graphing calculator. When there’s a will, there’s a way.
You might have trouble breaking a squat plateau, or in finally nailing that bodyweight overhead press. It’s not the end result that matters – it’s the persistence and effort you put in on the way that count.
#8 Don’t Value Money
As CEO of Apple, Jobs earned $1 a year. Jobs wasn’t incentivized by his salary, but by his own unrelenting pursuit of excellence. (Then again, his expansive stock holdings may have been some incentive.)
You should spend your own money on quality training equipment, coaching and information products that help you achieve
your goals. Too many people horde cash and look for free information when the paid stuff is where the real gold is kept.
#9 Value People
Jobs hired passionate people and cultivated exceptional company cultures at both Apple and Pixar – and their work speaks for itself.
You should find people you trust – on message boards, in real life and in your gym. Value those that have achieved greatness
before you and copy their methods. Listen to those who know what they’re talking about and you will succeed.
#10 Take Risks
Jobs was willing to cannibalize his company’s products in the name of progress. Many CEOs would have been hesitant to develop
the iPhone, knowing full well that it would help to make the iPod obsolete – but Jobs did it anyway (and took a big bite out of the lucrative mobile market).
Don’t be afraid to take risks. Push your limits. Go for that heavy squat single. See if you can break your old PR’s as often as possible. If you don’t put yourself out there and make the effort then you’ll never succeed.
#11 Have a Higher Purpose
Buddha said, “We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.” Jobs has turned his vision into reality since he began practicing Buddhism in the 1970’s. You should also create a vision for where you want to be in the future. Pick a dream and follow it. Unhappy with your body now? Think about where you want to be and hold that thought for as long as you can.
#12 Find the Right Partner
There is no more important decision in your life than the person you decide to share it with. Choose wisely (as Steve did), and you have a partner who will help see you through daily challenges.
This is essential in weight training – a quality partner that will come to the gym with you through thick and thin. Someone who can push you on and inspire you when you don’t feel like leaving the house.
#13 Fail Forward
Everybody fails. It’s how you respond to those failures that makes all the difference. In 1984, Steve Jobs was fired from Apple.
At Stanford’s 2005 commencement address, he had this to say about it:
“I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.”
You shouldn’t be afraid of your failures. Sometimes diet takes a back seat and you get a bit fatter. Other times you can’t make your training because of work and family issues. It’s not the little setbacks that define you, it’s getting back up and getting back on with it that are your true legacy.
More inspiring words from the Stanford speech:
“Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work.”
Sometimes you get an injury. Sometimes you just can’t train for weeks on end and you think you’ll go back to being fat and weak. You won’t. Stand strong, keep the faith and learn how to take it on the chin. Learn to love progressive overload so you keep coming back for more.
#15 Remember You’ll be Dead Soon
“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.”
Our time on this earth is short. Let’s make it count. If you really want the body of your dreams before you sit in your own coffin then go and make it happen. If you’re fat and unhealthy at the moment, realise that you’ll be dead even sooner if you don’t sort your life out. Make the time here count. Check out the fat loss and gain muscle articles on the site for more inspiration.
#16 Put a Dent in the Universe
Jobs once said, “We’re here to put a dent in the universe. Otherwise, why else even be here?”
Having a higher purpose doesn’t just help you find success. It redefines the meaning of the word. Go out and prove what you can do! Make a dent in your own personal Universe.
Ready to Redefine Success?
How has the life of Steve Jobs inspired you? Let us know in the comment section below.