The Path Towards Mastery

A different approach towards the mindset of new years resolutions.

Ryan Terrill
3 min readJan 1, 2021

Happy New Year Everyone.

“Goals And contingencies (a future event) are important. But they exist in the future and the past, beyond the sensory realm. Practice, the path of mastery, exists only in the present. You can see it, hear it, smell it, feel it. To love the plateau is to love the external now, to enjoy the inevitable spurts of progress and the fruits of accomplishment, then serenely to accept the new plateau that waits just beyond them. To love the plateau is to love what is most essential and enduring in your life.”

George Leonard, Mastery, pg. 48


2020 is over and to put it simply, it did not go as planned. We are all a little more older than 1 years time probably for many reasons, and many goals were destroyed before they even had a chance of achievement.

A lack of practice times, varying schedules, and inconsistencies have caused plateau and possibly decline in performance capabilities at no fault of your own.

But in the words of Giovanni Rossoni, “that’s life.” and in the words of Dory from Finding Nemo, “just keep swimming.” These two phrases, I think, sum up the quote above nicely.

Having competitions and goals for those competitions are extremely important. They give you direction for improvement and preparation to perform at your best. However, these are set in the future, and unseen circumstances and obstacles can sweep these things right from under your feet. There are times of great improvement in abilities and times of plateau. However, whether in triumph or disaster, you must treat those two just the same.

Mastering something means you are always striving to improve on what you are most passionate about no matter how much improvement, plateau, or decline may happen in a certain time. If you are present in these times and “just keep swimming,” just keep learning, and just keep adapting, there will be a day of improvement, a day of accomplishment, a day of success, and a day of celebration.

These days may be far from us right now. We must approach each obstacle and adverse situation as a training exercise, enjoy the grind and daily struggle, and help each other along the way. If we do these things while striving to master our physical and cognitive capabilities, then character is built, goals are met, and the future is bright.

The present moment defines the past and creates the future. Approach 2021 with a mindset towards mastery instead of specific New Years resolutions and goals. Avoid laziness and negative or pessimistic attitudes. Go back to the basics in times of struggle, and if you fail; learn, adapt, and keep going. If something gets cancelled, good. You can become more prepared for the next one. By doing this, you may achieve more than the limitations that goals can place on you.

The only thing you have is the power of choice in the present moment. Choose wisely.

- Ryan Terrill



Ryan Terrill

Men’s gymnastics. Trail Running. Resistance Training. Flexibility and Mobility Training. I am a health enthusiast and aspiring ultra athlete.