Two concepts for you to mull over for a moment:
Concept 1: Shared Pain and Suffering Leads to Closer Connection
It’s not a new concept, but pain and suffering together brings people together.
Science agrees: For example, this article (http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0956797614545886) in Psychological Science, argues that shared pain actually has social consequences. It acts as a social glue that helps foster cohesion and solidarity in groups of people. So yeah, the military has definitely been onto something for a while now…
Concept 2: Connections Lead to Increased Happiness
Whether you’re in the military or not, having more connections to other humans in your life is useful. For one, study after study shows the number one predictor of happiness doesn’t come down to tangible things, such as increased fitness or financial or career achievements. It comes down to how connected you feel to others. This is probably why people aren’t less happy in the developing world, where they have so little, than they are in prosperous nations like ours.
Some further evidence in case you’re still not convinced: This German study (http://home.uni-leipzig.de/diffdiag/pppd/wp-content/uploads/Manuscript-Pursuit-of-Happiness_final.pdf) found that those who pursued and achieved goals, such as seeing friends or family more frequently, or joining a non-profit organization, had more success increasing their happiness over the course of the year than those who pursued and achieved more individual goals, such as finding a better job or quitting smoking. In other words, those who pursued social and relationships goals improved their life satisfaction considerably more than those who pursued individual, internal, achievement-based goals. In fact, the self-focused road to happiness was even less effective than having no action plan at all!
The latter certainly isn’t the only evidence: This study from the University of California Berkeley (https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/why_americans_struggle_to_be_happy) also found that social connections are the key to well-being.
Or what about this study: (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3160511/)? It found that embarking on a sort of official pursuit to “find happiness” tends to make you less happy! Instead, you’re better off focusing on improving your relationships and becoming closer with those around you. Doing this—as opposed to pursuing happiness, per se—is what will actually make you happier.
In case you’re not convinced yet, how about this one: The biggest predictor of how long you will live comes down to whether or not you have strong, close relationships in your life! Check out this TED Talk for more: (https://ed.ted.com/featured/1fJ5KElL). Or here in this article (https://truththeory.com/2018/01/22/secret-living-longer-may-social-life/).
How does this relate to the community we have forged at our gym?
Well, shared suffering and close connections/friendships with others are two major keys to our community, and why we think what we’re doing is so special. And certainly different than most Globo or community center-type gyms.
No, we’re not an anti-social gym, where people show up with their headphones on and heads down and proceed to workout for an hour without speaking with another human being!
Training with us isn’t just about the workout!
Training with us is about the whole experience of developing a relationship with a personal coach, someone you trust with your deepest secrets and someone you feel comfortable opening up to in order to improve your life. Training with us is also about getting to know those around you, about sharing experiences together (often painful ones) to create a supportive network of friends who have similar goals of improving their lives. Like real friends you can lean on in good times and in hard times. And yes, it’s also about the physically, mentally and emotionally challenging, sometimes painful workouts, you pursue together, that will help you meet your tangible fitness goals. And at the same time, these workouts are a bonding experience that will help connect you to others, develop long-lasting friendships you value, and ultimately bring you more happiness in your life.
Sound like a community you want to be part of? If so, we’d love to have you!