9/5/17 - Developmental Frames (via the Deadlift)

There is a mathematical probability that you are a fully socialized person. This means that you’ve advanced beyond the developmental stages of childhood and, as a result, you have established values and your self-worth from your family, your community, and the organizations that detail your life. If this is you, a congratulations is in order! To use a fitness example of this perspective, this mind knows how to deadlift because a famous coach taught them how.

According to Robert Keagan and his team of Harvard University researchers in adult development, there are more stages beyond the socialized mind. If you’re fortunate enough to be in the minority, you have achieved this “socialized mind” and advanced beyond it. This rarified air is full of individuals that recognize these socialized influences and transcends them. The folks that have achieved this level of consciousness have built their own customized, self-authored values. If this is you, a special congratulations is in order. You’re well above par-for-the-course. This mind knows how to deadlift because they took the lessons they’ve been taught, and learned for themselves how they may (or may not) work.

“But, wait, there’s more!” As you can imagine, things don’t stop with a self-authoring perspective. An even smaller number of human minds have found access to a stage beyond the previous gold standard, self-authoring mind I just mentioned. This perspective is akin to observing your own perspective from a balcony high above. It’s from this vantage point that you can witness first hand the limits of your value systems. It’s this view that has the best understanding of “the whole” and brings to life the notion that “the more we learn the less we really understand.” This stage is where the egocentric become humble. These minds consider ambiguity and polarity, while the socialized mind is stuck defending its truth. This mind knows how to deadlift, but recognizes that the “deadlift” is just an abstraction that serves a purpose in a moment in time and that there is no right way, therefore, the “right way” can be true and false simultaneously.

If you’ve made it to this paragraph, thank you for your mental patience and flexibility. Also, just because you read and understood the previous three paragraphs doesn’t mean you’ve moved through these stages. Like I mentioned, chances are you’re frame of mind is stuck in the first paragraph. If any concept above made you uncomfortable, that’s where you ought to place your focus. This is how development works. Challenging your current frame affords you the chance to break it and progress forward.

Keep in mind that this isn’t a contest, either. Consider that in each example above with regards to the deadlift, the subject can get as strong as she would like at each stage. The only thing that changes is her perspective on the lift. Nonetheless, there are advantages to earning more mental complexity and therefore, regardless of your current frame, I’d argue that it pays to dabble in the next stage of your development. Good luck!



Logan Gelbrich


9/5/17 WOD


Max Distance Handstand Walk




Complete 3 rounds of:

400m Run

21 KB Swings (53/35)

12 Pull Ups