Every morning I get home from the gym around 6:00am. There’s dew on the grass, sometimes deer running around, and complete silence. It’s got that country feel. And over by my kids' swing set, there's literally one apple tree. When I moved into that house, about 11 years ago, I planted six trees. I went to this place called Wilson’s down the street and bought a peach tree and apple tree. I was telling my wife that I was about to have an orchard.
I’ve been watching this tree grow for over 11 years alongside my son Alex. We’ve been in the house since he was in first grade, and he'll be a junior. And this is the first year I could eat an apple from it. With apple trees, you’re supposed to do some specific stuff like plant a male and a female. Don’t quote me on that, but the point is, I didn’t do any of the stuff you were supposed to do. I didn’t even give this tree a chance.
6 --> 1
I went from six trees to one tree. Only one survived. Six chances, one of them survived over 11 years. The same stake that I brought this tree home with is still wedged into the bottom. I remember when the stake was only a couple inches shorter than the tree itself.
At the end of the day, this one tree defied the odds, right? It was persistent, it fought off any disease and fought off any droughts. We had some crazy winters over the past 11 years with ice, snow, and extreme temperatures.
All of that time and all of those seasons to produce that fruit 11 years later. I view my path with business, training, and life in a similar manner. I’m talking about the mentality of continuing to show up. It’s all about the days compounded and combined on top of each other. Only then can you start to reap what you sow. You have to go through the seasons. You have to spend the time. There’s no way around. And for some reason the other day, it hit me right in the face.
It's All About the Process
I’m looking at a tree that has stood the test of time. And as I reflect on getting older and my kids growing up, I’m understanding even more that this tree isn’t going to go anywhere. It’s only going to continue to mature, grow, and give off some juicy apples.
I’m looking at my career over these last 20 years, going from starting my own studio, opening Old School Gym, co-founding multiple businesses, and going through multiple business partners. This entire process and evolution have led to where I am right now. I can now walk 15 feet and be in Old School. I can walk 15 feet in the other direction and be inside of Max Effort Muscle. And I can walk another 10 feet and be inside this podcast studio.
Max Effort, Old School, CoryG Fitness, etc. have never been under the same roof until recently. So, what happens when they're all fucking planted together for a period of time? It’s even bigger than I originally thought I was capable of, right? The best is yet to come.
Everything here is deeply rooted. Everything is seamlessly working together. The soil here is fertile for something to be next level. Persistence and execution, continuing to be creative, doubling down on myself, and showing up every day. Having these things in place makes it impossible for something great not to happen.
You’re Not Entitled
What do I tell people? Be both consistent and relentless for the opportunity to be great. You're not entitled to greatness, you're not entitled to blowing up, you're not entitled to a certain amount of money, and you're not entitled to a certain lifestyle. You consistently show up every day in the hopes that you’ll be prepared for when the opportunity comes. It’s the long game. It’s the consistent game. And if you execute properly, there will be a mature fruit at the end.