November 16, 2021

Achieving Contentment Without Complacency

I had an interesting conversation with a friend from my time in the Army the other day. He’s still active duty and has a couple years left before he can retire and move on to whatever he wants to do next.

We chatted about funny things that happened while we were at Baylor and eventually we got into the topic of him starting his own practice when he retires.

The funny thing for me was, he had all the same questions and fears that I had when I was transitioning out of the Army.

Being on the other side of the conversation was a bit surreal. This is someone I have a massive amount of respect for. Even when we were in school, I viewed him as a leader.

Fast forward 6 years and here we are having a conversation about his next steps. He’s asking me what he should do and seemed nervous but excited about his future opportunities.

Moments like this are interesting. When I left the Army, it was to teach to teach and to start a cash practice in Atlanta. I didn’t get out with the intention of eventually teaching other people about the business side of cash practices.

So how did we get to this place?

I spent some time reflecting on this after our conversation and here’s the conclusion I came to.


Taking a chance on myself and focusing on the process of constant progression.

That’s it!

First you have to take the hardest step, which is taking a chance on yourself. It’s scary as hell but necessary. Once you do that, you have to get better every single day.

I had a conversation with Kelly Starrett about this once. I asked him if he had this grand plan to eventually start MobilityWOD (now The Ready State), write multiple books and be a consultant for tons of professional teams.

Obviously he didn’t. It all started with a blog. Him sharing his ideas with other CrossFit coaches and eventually a Youtube channel because blogs just took him too long.

That same combo of starting something and focusing on improvement is what he has stuck to this day.

Complacency is the thing you must fight every day. If you can do that, you’ll make progress. Do that for years and you’ll make massive progress.

The challenge is, you also have to learn how to taper your desire to progress. If you don’t, it’s just as bad as being complacent. If can negatively effect the relationships you have and you’ll end up a lonely arrogant person that thinks you know it all.


I’ve struggled to find that balance since the day I left the Army. The thing I’ve found that helps me so much has been focusing on gratitude. Remembering where you started and the work you’ve put in to make change.

That gratitude also helps you realize that you may have aspirations and ambition but what you’ve already accomplished is enough.

Seriously, if you never accomplished anything more than what you have right now, you’re still probably better off than the vast majority of the people on this planet!

Who are you comparing yourself to anyway?

There’s a famous line from Fight Club in which Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) says “Advertising has us chasing clothes and cars, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don’t need.”


This is so true. We chase accolades, possessions, money and notoriety. In the process we forget the benefit and the value is in the process.

It’s about personal growth, challenge and experience.

This is why I’m such an advocate for entrepreneurship in our profession.

Very few things will challenge you and force you to grow as much as taking a chance on yourself.

I hope you have big aspirations and achieve whatever it is that you want.

Just don’t forget, it’s about the process….not the result.

Physical Therapy BIZ