The Fallacy of “All or Nothing”

Taken from Idolatry in Fitness in the Mission Briefings.

The narrative is simple: do exactly what I do/have done, and you will look like me, have as much money as I do, have as attractive a spouse/companion as I do, etc.

This leads to a dogmatic approach, which says, You MUST do this, this, and this. Otherwise, you won’t get the same result. So, buy my product, buy this supplement I use, wear this t shirt – all of which I receive compensation/commission off of when you buy through this nifty link I’ve provided!

Meanwhile, if your results are not the same, or within a desired time frame, that means you probably were just doing wrong. Or genetics.

Listening to Jocko Willink’s podcast, I recall a request from another listener for Jocko’s personal weight-lifting/jiu jitsu routine (here is the link to the portion of q/a).

Jocko’s response was that, He is an individual…His workout is for him. For two people to accomplish the same thing, the same result, is going to require different things due to the previous adaptations to their bodies.

He explains that people want a formula for success, they want a dogmatic approach to follow. He refuses to do so. Instead, he would offer his intent. If your intent is to achieve your personal goals – not someone else’s goals – then you are on your way to Victory.

The Continuum of Wellness

The reason that the All or Nothing Philosophy is a fallacy is because of the Continuum of Wellness.

On one end of the continuum, there are the people who look “perfect” but are deeply flawed and crippled by injuries, both physical, emotional, and spiritual. You wouldn’t know it by just looking at them, or rather, looking at them through the lens of social media or advertisement.

The problem is, along the continuum, you’ll also find someone who looks great and is truly healthy, in all facets of wellness. The difference between these two people is not readily apparent upon observation through the lens provided. If you give them both physical assessments, or observe their relationships with their family and friends, you’ll discover the gulf between them.