You are responsible for your actions.
It doesn't matter what you do, or how you do it, only you pull the trigger.
If someone rattles your cage and you respond, you're pulling the trigger. If you cheat on your diet because you went to a BBQ, you're pull the trigger.
Blaming your actions on the 'cause' is pointless. Good or bad, only you decide the actions you take.
Is it hard to do the right thing? Absolutely. Like most things in life, taking the decisions which are right for you is hard. But the easiest way to teach yourself the lessons you need to learn, is to become the stern father figure your mind and body crave.
It keeps you accountable and it retains a firm dialogue with reality. People are averse to tough love because they can't handle the truth. They're not ready for change, or they're not ready to learn discipline.
Every elite performer in the world has reaches the pinnacle of peak performance because of tough love. If you look in the mirror and you're fat, don't tell yourself that you need to lose a few pounds. Tell yourself that you need to get into shape.
If you realise you're not working hard enough to get the results you want, then don't tell yourself you need to up your game. Tell yourself that you need to change your game entirely.
Tough love teaches you a lesson. It teaches you that you won't stand for mediocrity. It teaches you that your goals matter. That's why the military loves taking the tough love approach. It's not to break you. It's to reshape you.
Luckily, you don't need to go into the military to reshape yourself. All you need to do is learn how to teach yourself a lesson. Did you miss a workout? Then make sure there's consequences. Remove some of your privileges. Do something you hate. Do the same workout the next day, even if you have to cancel your plans.
It requires discipline to teach yourself a lesson, but the process of teaching yourself a lesson has long-lasting benefits on delivering results.
Go to bed late? Then wake up at the same time you previously planned. No sleeping in. No snoozing. Wake up no matter what.
Will you end up tired? Yes. Will you end up grumpy? Yes. Will this have knock on effects to your day? Yes.
But that's tough love for you. It's not an easy process, but it is a process that gets results. Change your actions, change your life.
Remember, tough love, is still love. It requires pools of empathy to understand that what you're doing is not easy, nice, or fair. But none of that matters when you have your own best interests at heart. When you get results, you'll be grateful for the lessons you've taught yourself.
A Lesson for Future Champions
You are the person that pulls the trigger. No matter the catalyst, every action you take, is taken by you, and you alone.
When you want to change your behaviour, take a tough love approach to yourself, and change it with action. Have the hard conversations with yourself that will help you take action. Set the stakes high and hold yourself accountable.
If you're lazy, don't tell yourself that you need to improve your productivity. Tell yourself that you need to fix your attitude. Have the hard conversations with yourself that you know you need to have.
Teach yourself a lesson. Teach yourself that actions have consequences.
If you miss a workout, do the same workout the next day, no matter what. If you have one workout already planned, then do two. If you have plans for dinner, cancel them.
Yes, this will hurt, but it will teach you a valuable lesson.
Tough love is not easy, but it is the greatest type of love you can give yourself. It's a love that respects your goals, dreams, and everything in between.