Onions and Barriers

Buying a treadmill or a yoga mat is not a waste of money. It’s a real effort to create an environment we can succeed in. Buying home workout equipment or a gym membership is removing barriers.

We remove barriers to doing the thing that will make us better because “we’ll be more likely to do it.”

  • We join Globo-Gym because we won’t do burpees and sit-ups at home. (Motivational Barrier)
  • We buy a peloton because it takes time and planning to go to Globo-Gym (and we have a drug-dealers salary). (Time Barrier)
  • We work with a coach because the peloton bike doesn’t call us and ask where we are on our goal or how we’re doing on our water that day. (Accountability Barrier)

We can remove all of the barriers to doing the work, but the work remains. 

The zen saying goes:

“Remove all of the layers of the onion, what are you left with?” 

Some say “nothing.” 

Some say “everything.”

I say “You are.”

You are the layers in that onion, and what’s left of it when peeled. You are the barriers because you decide if they will remain or be removed. You are the work waiting to be done on the other side of the barrier, and also the work waiting to be done before you can start that work.


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