My advice for exercise is to think of it as a marathon, not a sprint. The task takes dedication, patience and a lot of time. As another analogy, exercise is like a lease. However, with fitness the rent is due everyday. Since it requires so much dedication and commitment, it is necessary to look at small improvements.
1) Improves Motivation: Looking at small improvements will help you continually push in the gym. If you look at improving your strength movements by 5 pounds a week, that is a 260lbs increase over the span of a year. While a 5 pound increase every week may not be achievable, this is just to demonstrate perspective. That why you may not be at the level you are at, that does not mean you won’t get there. Don’t compare yourself to other people and see their highlights. Look at your improvements which will keep you motivated.
2) The Bad Days: Everyone is going to have bad days during their training. Days where the weights feel heavy or movements feel foreign. That is completely understandable. For this reason you have to be grateful and appreciative of the effort and work you put in on the good days.
3) Training Waves: Your workouts will most likely look like the graph below. Some days are great and some are bad. But the key is that the wave is gradually increasing and you are getting better. So be happy with those good training days and shake off the bad ones. Take a look at the big picture but don’t let it scare you to the point of discouragement.