You’ve likely heard of the expression dog days of summer, the most sultry time of the summer in July and August when it gets hot and steamy, and we blame it for our lethargy and inactivity.

And it’s a synonym for those times in our lives–or our business–when we’re stuck in a malaise and lack the motivation to make the kind of progress we know we should.

Are you pushing yourself hard enough?

A couple years ago, I started training with my friend and client Curd Hos at Hostyle Conditioning. My circle of influence is filled with great people who encourage me to take better care of myself, so I finally decided to take the plunge. Although I had exercised on and off for years (read more OFF than ON in that previous statement), I knew it was time to make myself accountable to a professional fitness coach who would push me beyond where I would normally push myself. Kudos to Curd for the work he has done with me! Challenging stuff, and after two years, I am loving every minute of it.

As I have reflected on the the results of the training (and nursed some very sore muscles along the way), it has become quite clear to me that one of the most important outcomes is the improved mental game. On several occasions, Curd has challenged me to try something I have never done before, and to push myself harder than I have done in the past. Often, the first thought to cross my mind is, “Are you kidding me? I can’t do that!” (Of course, I would never admit this out loud. :))

Don't settle for anything less than extraordinary!But with every physical challenge accepted and achieved, I improve more than my physical strength and stamina. I also strengthen my belief in myself significantly. I grow in my capacity to face the next challenge Curd throws my way with greater confidence and determination. This improved mental game helps me look at every area of my life with a new level of focus and faith, and prompts me to ask myself the following questions…


  • Am I pushing myself hard enough in other areas of my life?
  • Am I settling for average when I should be striving for excellence?
  • Am I stuck in maintenance mode malaria?
  • Has mediocrity gotten the best of me?

I have never been one to embrace average. Giving 110% is more my style. But thanks to the fitness training, I find myself even more committed to passionately protest and reject mediocrity in every area of my life. Thanks Curd! 🙂

What about you? Are you pushing yourself hard enough? Do you need to enlist someone’s help to enable you play a bigger game and get to the next level? Life is too short to play it safe and to settle for the status quo. Here’s one of my all-time favourite quotes to wrap up this post.

“Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body. But rather, to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: WOW! What a ride!” -Mark Frost

Passionately protest mediocrity! You will be glad you did!

Eric Deschamps | Ottawa Business Coach

Eric DeschampsBusiness Coach Ottawa

Co-Leader of Rhapsody Strategies

“Helping others succeed has always been my passion. There is no greater feeling in the world than coming alongside someone and empowering them to achieve their goals and dreams.” I work with individuals with a single and simple purpose: to help them define and attain their goals, one step at a time. Through the coaching relationship, I help business owners and professionals achieve more by delivering world-class growth strategies, tools and advice individually tailored to each owner and his/her business.