One day comprises 24 hours, 1,440 minutes, and 86,440 seconds. And businessman-turned-motivator Jake Thompson believes every single one should be spent competing, in one way or another.
Compete Every Day is the name of the company Thompson founded in 2011 on the compelling idea that life is worth competing for (a favorite Compete tank-top of mine says just that!) and that we must fight daily to not only achieve goals, but to keep making and striving toward others. Be it a sport, an education, a career or a relationship, everyone, according to Thompson, has something to compete for.
“There’s no such thing as staying neutral in life,” he says. “You’re either moving forward or you’re sliding backwards, whether you realize it or not. Our mission is to motivate people to take control of their lives, their communities, their families and ultimately their destinies.”
Described as a “lifestyle brand” Compete Every Day produces apparel (think brightly colored T-shirts with the words “Beast Mode” scrolled across them) and accessories such as wristbands, hats and posters that aim to bring out the competitor in you with galvanizing phrases like “Every Second, Every Day,” “Fall 99 Times, Rise 100,” and “When All Others Quit, Persevere.”
But Thompson’s vision for Compete didn’t stop with catchy, captivating clothes. Every day, Compete shares what Thompson refers to as “jet fuel”—that is, inspirational, real-life stories and thought-provoking quotations from poets, athletes and average Joes. Whether via Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest or Facebook, you can always find Compete Every Daypermeating the web with refreshing rays of pure, positive sunlight.
Thompson himself is a perfect example of someone who has embraced the Compete Every Daymentality. As with many first-time business owners and entrepreneurs, he had his doubts about leaving the comforts of his successful consulting business and launching a brand-new company. And with a name like Compete Every Day,there seemed to be even more pressure.
“I had a friend of mine tell me, ‘No matter what happens, you have to make it work. … Failure’s not an option,’” he says. “I knew he was right and that there was no way I could give up because then I wouldn’t be living the message that I’m trying to encourage others with.”
I asked Thompson to share a bit of advice on how to overcome the negative, complacent attitudes that so often hinder us from pursuing our passions and competing every day. Here are four of his favorite tips:
1. Never say can’t. “We all have those stages of life where you feel like you just can’t catch a break,” he says. “You have to ultimately say, ‘This is my one life. I have one shot at it. I’m going to make it everything I can.’ There will be ups and downs, but know that the valleys won’t go on forever and, if you stick with it, you will reach the top of the mountain.”
2. Use sticky notes. Thompson always has at least 10 sticky notes on his bathroom mirror. Whatever he feels God is laying on his heart to meditate on and pray about, Thompson writes it down and posts it so he can be reminded every single day. He even has notes on the dash of his truck so he can continuously be motivated with phrases like, “Make every interaction count,” and “Make each conversation meaningful.”
3. Don’t dwell in despair. If and when a storm blows through and stalls your progress, you have “12 hours to sulk,” says Thompson. The Bible says sorrow lasts for a night, but joy comes in the morning (Ps. 30:5). Whether you get laid off from work or go through a break-up, don’t linger in gloom too long. “I give myself what I call a ‘grace period’ to be upset, but after that I wake up and say, ‘What am I going to do now?’”
4. Be content no matter what. One of Thompson’s favorite quotes is by Martha Washington: “The greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances.”
No matter how hectic or frustrating things become, no matter how bleak and clouded the horizon may appear, remember that the joy of the Lord is your strength (Neh. 8:10). Resting in the knowledge that He is the one who holds all things together and faithfully provides your every need will fill you with a peace that no predator, plague or pestilence in the world can take away (Col. 1:17; Ps. 54:4; Rom. 8:38-39). Make up your mind to be content, whether abased or abounding, as the apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 4:12.
“Our mindset changes everything,” says Thompson. “You must compete for that too.”
Diana Anderson-Tyler is the author of Creation House’s Fit for Faith: A Christian Woman’s Guide to Total Fitness. Her popular website can be found at www.fit4faith.com, and she is the owner and a coach at CrossFit 925. Diana can be reached on Twitter.
For the original article, visit dianafit.com.