Zen and the Lizard Brain…

The Gold Medal Question

Why do people quit something after jumping into it with both feet, tackle a project with what seems like the same zeal and fervor as an Olympic athlete going for gold? What is that causes us to then slam on the brakes with both feet, do a 180 degree about face and run like the wind in the opposite direction?

We seem to do this on a regular basis during our lives, we start projects that we never finish, we join a martial arts program or a gym to only quit a month later or worse yet do it one belt away from earning our blackbelt, we lose 5 pounds only to gain back 20 in return. While others around us seem to flourish, they go on to achieve their fitness goals,  earn a blackbelt, finish that project they started and lose unwanted weight permanently. And as spectators we sit back in awe, watching and thinking how lucky they are to be so gifted and strong and day dream about being just like them some day. Boy have we sold out big time on our dreams.

Are those who succeed more talented gifted or of a finer stock than us? That certainly seems to be our perception and excuse when we lose courage or feel like giving up and throwing in the proverbial towel. The truth being told we are all gifted, talented and of a finer stock we just have a hard time believing or excepting it. So what’s holding us back from greatness?

Oh! That Little Voice

It’s that little voice in our heads that says STOP!…Slow Down!…You Can’t Do That!…This Isn’t For You!…It’s Too Hard!… and every other negative connotation we tend to entertain.  As we get closer to achieving our goals and to that shipping date the little voice inside gets louder and even more aggressive. You see the little voice hates it when we achieve anything of value. It get’s really upset and wants us to resist. Oh and does it  resist.

The Evolution of the Lizard Brain

That little voice resonates from a part of our brain that I’ll refer to as the “Lizard Brain”. It’s that pre-historic hump close to the brain stem called the “Amygdale”. It’s responsible for fear, rage and our re-productive drive, being so close to the brain stem it’s also the most aggressive and dominate part of our brain and the source of the “resistance”. Luckily through evolution we have developed an amazing focus control center called the “Pre-frontal Cortex” that enables us to reason, achieve goals and solve problems and it helps us to control the resistance. It’s what makes us human instead like a lizard whose main purpose in its life is to eat, survive and re-produce nothing more.

But How Do We Control The Resistance?

Quieting the lizard brain and overcoming the resistance isn’t easy it takes tenacity, courage and perseverance, along with plenty of practice, just like in practicing martial arts. It’s only after we tame the lizard and overcome the resistance that we can truly achieve the greatness and success that we so rightly deserve. The resistance is strong it hates to lose and it uses plenty of trickery to throw us off track, but the more we vigilant that we are beating it down the more subservient it becomes. Once the lizard is tamed greatness is possible.

Don’t let the resistance hold you back from the greatness you deserve…Tame the Lizard.

By Master Tim Bell

Special thanks to Seth Godin for inspiring me and allowing me to use his term “Lizard Brain” for more about the lizard brain read Seth’s books and blog.


In Search of the Prefect Diet…

What is the perfect diet?

Over the last thousand years their have been many claiming to be just that, from the first recorded liquid diet in 1087 AD of William the conqueror who felt he was too fat for his horse to today’s multi billion dollar industry created for the consumer looking for that quick and easy fix to drop the poundage fast. Some of our more popular so called perfect diets as of late have been the 800 calories per day Beverly Hills Diet and the NO carbohydrates Aitkin’s Diet.

The Meaning of Diet

The definition found in the dictionary states “The usual food and drink consumed by a person or an animal” Is consuming 800 calories a day or eliminating all carbs our usual food and drink? Is 800 calories enough to sustain bodily functions? Is eliminating carbohydrates and consuming too much protein good for us? The unequivocal answer is NO!!!

So why are these diets so popular?

The number one reason is that they promise results, and they promise them fast. In today’s society speed and convenience is of the essence. But do we take the time to consider the consequences and long term side effects, it’s probably not high on someone’s list when there losing 10 pounds a week. The mindset seems to be “I’m going to look good now” with no obvious thought or consideration of what might happen down the road.

Garbage in…Stays in?

We as a society consume way too much garbage food. It’s over processed, high in fat and sodium and lacking in any real nutritional value, (as a side note watch the movie Food Inc, you’ll see what I mean) it’s no wonder we have so many obesity and health issues today in every age sector from young to old. There are too few healthy alternatives to choose from and too many cheap and convenient comfort foods. Just walk into your corner convenience store you would be hard pressed to find anything of nutritional value. Give it a try. It only goes if you consume more than you need you will get FAT…This is not rocket science.

Looking for the Holy Grail

There perfect diet isn’t found in any diet book or canned plan you purchase online it starts by making the right choice. A choice between either believing what the diet industry is pedaling as the next best thing or in making a positive lifestyle change that will last you the rest of your life.

Zen and the Art of Dieting

The perfect diet is about making better and healthier food choices more often and eating less more often, meaning eating smaller more nutritious meals more frequently during the day. Along with the perfect diet you should consider incorporating a good aerobic/anaerobic fat burning exercise program like kettlebell’s to help build lean fat burning muscle and to really tone up.

You’ll Look Good, Feel Good, Live Good or guess what, its No Good.

There you have it, the choice is yours.

By: Master Tim Bell

Eureka! I have discovered the fountain of youth…

Eureka! I have discovered the fountain of youth…

And no it wasn’t on that late night TV infomercial featuring: the ACME Abs rotational leg/butt gizmotron or in a bottle of wonder elixir it was right here in front of me from the start, I just never realized it until now. What is it you ask?

It’s really simple and it’s practically 100% FREE but it comes at a price, the price isn’t monetary, the price is in the form of commitment, dedication and the desire to truly make a change in your life. It’s about changing the way you live and think. It starts by getting rid of deliberating habits that sabotage and create pain and creating new ones that enhance and create quality to all aspects of your life.

This year I decided to make a few changes in my life by committing to several goals and community based projects, firstly to motivate myself and hopefully in the process to inspire my students and those around me to look at their lives. I knew I had to do something drastic and life altering that would create massive change and I desperately wanted to live the life and walk the talk of a true Master Instructor, the super hero versus just talking about being one.

Since turning 50 in 2009 and taking on my 365 day challenge I have seen tremendous gains both physically, mentally and spiritually, I feel like I’m in the body of a fit 20 year old and have a crystal clear vision of where I’m going in both in my personal and professional life and a clear understanding of where I want to be.  In taking this challenge I stumbled across the true fountain of youth, who would of known that it was with me the whole time, right in front of my nose, I just had to open my eyes to look for it.

So before someone tries to sell you the next best health gizmo or cream to make you feel younger and more vibrant, take a hard look around and if you try real hard I’ll bet that you’ll see the real truth and believe me it’s not in a package.

The fountain of youth isn’t for sale, you can’t touch it or see it or smell it…it’s a mind set, a new way of thinking…a new way to a better life.

So before you spend your hard earned cash on the latest and greatest new gizmo, take a real close look from the inside out and discover your own fountain of youth, you’ll never regret that you did…I can promise.

Get inspired! Follow me…HERE

What are we so afraid of?

What are we so afraid of?

Fear can be one of the most debilitating and most self destructive things we can experience or it can be one of the most motivating and eye opening. What is fear really and why does it consume us so, why are we so fascinated with it?

Fear is the ultimate oxymoron, we fear failure but at the same time fear success, usually when we can smell it. It can motivate us to greatness while at the same time sabotage our success.

Here’s the definition of fear as stated in the dictionary

a. A feeling of agitation and anxiety caused by the presence or imminence of danger.

b. A state or condition marked by this feeling

c. A feeling of disquiet or apprehension.

d. Extreme reverence or awe, as toward a supreme power.

e. A reason for dread or apprehension.

When we came into this world we were fearless we had no concept of what was good or bad or what was safe or harmful. We had to learn fear. As we matured we developed fears, such as fire burns or walking out in front of an oncoming car will kill you or conditioned fears such as don’t talk to strangers or it’s embarrassing to get up in front of a group, this is one of our biggest fears or we are constantly being reminded of the distinct possibility of pain and embarrassment “If you try that you’ll fail or make a fool of yourself” or the big one “You’re not good enough” These are fears that hold us back from being great, being the person we were meant to be, and enjoying the life that we deserve.

Conditioned fears are part of our psyche, nothing more. They are not real nor an immediate physical threat. We have been conditioned through our upbringing, school and society that being different, trying new things or going outside that societies box was a recipe for failure and disaster. In reality it’s those of us that overcome these conditioned fears, and take that step outside the box that go on to become great, become the leaders, become the change, live their lives to the fullest and give the most.

Just read a paper or watch the news, we are constantly being bombarded with fear, the fear of losing jobs, terrorism, inflation, and the poor economy. The fear monger’s are having a field day preying on our insecurities, but in reality it’s not reality, it’s someone else’s view. The chances of being exposed first hand to these perceived horrors are minuscule to say the least, but most of us relent and allow it to consume our lives. Every moment we spend on worrying about things we can’t control is time lost for ever on things we can.

So if you truly want to live the life you deserve, get outside your box, stop reading and watching over embellished news, concentrate more on giving and learning and contributing to make this a better more peaceful and giving world.

All of our problems can be easily eliminated; all we need to do is stop being afraid of facing them.

What are the fears’s holding you back?

Limitations…What Limitations?

Just imagine the world today if some of the great inventors, scientists and artists believed in limitations or listened to the nay sayers around them, would we have electricity, computers, I phones, disease fighting drugs or IMAX movies? Probably not.

As children we tried anything, we took chances, failure wasn’t an option but during the course of our lives we are conditioned to fit in and not take chances, make waves or go to the beat of our own drum, we are constantly reminded that we have limitations; we’re too short, too tall, too skinny, too fat, not smart enough, not athletic enough, too poor or it’s just not in our genes or in the stars or the big one “you are going to fail”.

With all this negative conditioning what is it that makes those individuals succeed, those that become the artists and leaders? Are they special or better than us? Are they gifted?  Are they smarter than us? The answer is unequivocally NO, they just don’t know what limitations are and they don’t listen to the “what if’s” or that little voice in their head saying “STOP before you fail, make a fool of yourself”. That’s the difference.

We are all the same. It’s the ones who don’t listen to rhetoric or side with caution, it is the ones who make the waves, go against the norm, dance to a different beat, those are the ones who become the artists and leaders, the movers and shakers, They are the reason we can enjoy so many of the great things they envisioned but were not afraid to pursue.

When I was 15 years old I tore my knee up pretty good in a bike accident. Back in the 70’s, knee surgery was pretty much in its infancy. After 2 surgeries and months of rehab, I was told by the physician that I would be a cripple by the time I was 30 and would never be able to do sports. Being 15 I really didn’t think about what life would be like at 30 or what my limitations were, so I joined a Taekwondo school. Now this was odd in itself because here I was with a big knee brace and limited mobility joining a martial art that focused primarily on kicking. Limitations? I had plenty but I didn’t believe or listen to others or that negative little voice.

Sure, I had my self doubts, listened to a few nay sayers along the way and battled with the little voice, but in the end I won the battle. This year I turned 50, I can walk, run, practice Taekwondo (kicking with both legs) and I’m as active and pain free as I was back in the day. It wasn’t easy, but it was well worth the time and effort. I achieved my 5th Dan Blackbelt, became an International Referee a certified Kettlebell and fitness instructor. I now own and run a fulltime school with 120 active students, and having the time of my life, so if you think you can’t do the same, look at those around who did and I’m positive you will see someone just like yourself.

Our only limitations are the ones we create. Are your limitations holding you back from greatness?


Master Tim Bell