Posted on November 4, 2015

“You’ve come a long way, Bob.” These words were spoken this week by friends I workout with on a daily basis.

The guys I workout with bring varied strengths and weaknesses to the gym. On any given day one will shine more than others based on the requirements of the workout.

The strong guys clean house on squat day, the fast guys leave the others behind when it’s time to go for a run. Then there are those who are pretty much good at everything! This makes for great accountability and challenge.

This week we have been working to develop an advanced skill called a “muscle up.” Basically, you begin with a pull up and end up with your entire upper body above the bar (or rings) with your arms locked out downward. And repeat…

Some of the guys can do them. I unfortunately cannot! I was trying hard this week and got discouraged by the inability to do what I wanted to do. That’s when Jonathan (pretty much good at everything) reminded me that when he joined our group some time ago I was still doing pull ups assisted with a band. I had almost forgotten how far I have come. I can do unassisted pull ups all day long – including chest to bar! I’m on my way to muscle ups.

I am grateful for the people around me who are better than me at things. They give me a goal to chase. They help me grow more than I would without a picture of what another level looks like. They can also help me with what they have already figured out.

My experience this week reminded of the Law of Environment from our John Maxwell Team “15 Invaluable Laws of Growth” curriculum. It states that “growth thrives in conducive surroundings.”

If you constantly find yourself at the head of the class you are probably in the wrong class.

It’s ok for people to be better than you and to know more than you. It’s ok to not have it all figured out (even though our pride often tells us otherwise). There will always be someone further along than you even in the areas of your gifting. Don’t let it get you down; embrace it! In fact, engineer it into your life! The most successful people do.

Who around you challenges you in the areas in which you want to grow?


Within the area of marriage and parenting?

At becoming a better leader of yourself and the people around you?

In your relationships?

Spiritually and personal growth?

Maybe it’s time to evaluate your environment.

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