I'm just getting over 2 weeks of colds, flus, endless nose blowing and days strung together with no work, no gym and barely any food.
This year I got hit hard with the germs and tbh I kind of really needed the break.
I didn't love being sick (obvi), but I did love the downtime. The quiet days, calm brain and lots of indulgent sleep!
As a woman who owns 2 businesses, has a social life, fitness goals, spiritual goals, everything goals! I tend to run hot and busy on the regs.
In the past, before doing work on my mindset, I would have quit anything and everything that would have been routine for me after a few weeks of 'falling off track'.
It's easy to fall back into old patterns that don't serve us. It takes hard work and tenacity to stay accountable to our goals and the lifestyle that we desire to have.
We all know that.
But what is it that might make us make the decision to scratch our goals and go back to old patterns vs those of us who dust our complacency off and get back into action?
This is where the beautiful work in life is done.
I believe it boils down to introspection, uncovering self-limiting beliefs and developing awareness of the things that don't serve us in terms of thought patterns and behaviours.
Also, an acceptance of the times in a year that we will (and do) 'fall off the wagon'.
After decades of being in the health and fitness industry it's safe to say that there's this high level of unconscious belief that we must act perfectly in order to be worthy of our goals being achieved.
Almost like perfect behaviour and choices around the Christmas holidays, summer holidays, birthdays, vacations is expected in order to be worthy of achieving fitness and wellness goals.
Is that really realistic? Are we seriously expected to act in perfect accordance in order to look and feel the way we want to?
In my humble opinion, no.
We are allowed (and should!) let ourselves off the hook a few times per year. Have the perspective necessary to know that these times will happen in our lives and that's ok!
The piece that's missing in my opinion is the self-trust in knowing that we will get right back on the horse and fall back into a self-loving routine.
It's an ebb and flow and that's ok.
To me, that's realistic.
There is no such thing as perfection. Only excellence. And excellence, to me, looks like self-empathy, self-compassion, self-trust, tenacity, side-stepping perfection and committing to the mindset and habits that yield a calm, healthy and happy mind, body and soul.
So, coming off a few weeks where I wasn't training, wasn't eating properly and wasn't performing at my best in biz, I'm following the below 3 steps to help me get back on track and I hope you find these useful, too!
1. Notice your thought patterns
But really. Notice them! Take stock of the language you're using. Excuses, self-loathing, being a martyr, playing the victim.
Your brain is where it all starts. The way you think about yourself, the world, your future will determine your experience.
If we don't change the way we think, we won't see positive change in our lives.
If you find it incredibly difficult to change the way you're thinking, it may be because you don't actually believe it.
Why wouldn't you? I'm not saying that to shame you, it's a legit question. What happened in your life to date that may make you not believe you're capable?
Are you modelling your parents' behaviour and language? Were you neglected, abused (emotionally, mentally, physically) and are struggling with low self-esteem or potentially limbic system impairment?
These are big open-ended questions but *could* be the beginning of you starting to pull apart the deeper issues that keep you in a negative cyclical pattern that isn't ultimately helping you see the change you want in your life.
These questions were exactly what I needed to start to uncover in order to really heal and become accountable to myself and my big wants in life.
2. Focus on your goals, not your dissatisfactions
Too many of us sit and look at eeevvveeeryyytthhhiiinnngg we don't like about where we are. We know that list so, so well.
"I hate my tummy"
"I hate my ass"
"Why can't I be stronger, leaner, prettier"
The list goes on and on and on.
Did you know that 90% of our decisions are made from our subconscious mind, and only 10% from our conscious mind?
This means, what we focus on will grow in our minds as truth. Our subconscious mind is always listening.
If you continue to tell yourself you're not happy with yourself, your body, your efforts, your decisions etc., you will continue to reinforce that neural pathway.
You will continue to believe and act out the truth that you're telling yourself.
It's so, so important that we understand neural plasticity and the way the brain works. We MUST begin to look at our goals in a way that we know we can achieve them. We know we're capable, worthy and will do it all.
We must talk to ourselves with love and kindness the way we would a young 5 or 6 year old in our care.
Think of how you might teach, support and love a young child so they can achieve the self-esteem and goals in life that they desire.
Why are we not worthy of such support and love? Why are we so damn hard on ourselves? And what do we actually get from being so hard on ourselves and always focusing on what's wrong?
What good comes from beating ourselves up? Truly!
For me, personally, being an addict has been the fertilizer necessary to learn how to overcome these thought patters and habits. Side-stepping shame, guilt and perfectionism is key. It's hard work but it's 100% doable!
Don't be afraid that you won't be able to do it. You can change your thoughts and behaviours.
The journey to doing so may be uncomfortable at times. That's part of the healing. It's ok. You'll survive, and you'll come out stronger and better than ever for doing the work.
3. Just Do It
Nike has THE BEST SLOGAN!
Just frigging do it! Put it in your calendar, don't deviate from the plan. Make a workout buddy date. Make several!
Plan your grocery shopping time, meal prep time, think ahead for your day and plan when you'll eat, what you'll eat and stick to it!
What I've found after years of fitness competitions, having to eat special diets, travelling on special diets, travelling all over the city for work etc., is this:
"If you fail to plan, you're planning to fail"
It's that simple.
Scheduling the things that matter to you. Self care, fitness, nutrition, sleep, research etc.
Whatever it is that matters to you that you find often gets pushed aside, put those things in your cal and treat them like they're the most important meetings of your day.
Often, they are.
I move through life now with a bird's eye point of view on things. What's the big picture? How can I live according to my values and goals while letting go of the negative and frenetic energy behind my decisions and inviting more self-loving and supportive energy into my day?
I'll leave you with this...
How well have the patterns you've chosen to engage in helped you so far? Are you willing to do some deeper work to uncover your true potential and see real change? If so, what does that look like?
What are the first steps you need to take to begin that journey?
Make your list, start walking, take it step by step and day by day. Eventually, you'll end up in a new territory that is fresh, different, feels like empowerment and looks like self-love.
You can do this. Excellence is in all of us.
Be well with hope
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