Every time I sweep, vacuum, and mop the floors in our house, I find other tiny particles of dust, dirt and or dog hair within 5 minutes of being done cleaning.
It drives me nuts. It’s a never ending fact of life. We clean, things get dirty again.
As I was cleaning yesterday, I realized the floor is just like our minds.
Once we get in the habit of being aware of our thoughts, the next step is to be curious about them and tidy up our minds so that our thoughts, beliefs and ideas are in line with our values and our goals. The mind, however, likes to be efficient, so if there’s a pattern of unhelpful thoughts (anxious, negative, doubtful) they need to be swept up, just like dirt on the floor.
This, as well, is an unending process. And it requires more frequent attention at first (like a house that’s never been cleaned), but, just like a room that’s cleaned regularly, it takes less time and effort if you keep it up regularly.
So, if you want crave less stress, more joy, a habit of focus or productivity, start cleaning up your thoughts and beliefs.
A clean mind gets you weight loss, health, organization, time management and balance.
This is especially true when it comes to our mindset and our health. We are born and we are worthy and lovable. And then we are influenced by the world and outside influences… for years. As kids we’re sponges, absorbing the world and opinions and beliefs around us.
Sometimes our lovability is reinforced as we grow up and we learn healthy ways to love ourselves and others. Other times, we’re taught that nothing we do will ever be enough and we set out on a quest for perfection.
Because we’ve lost sight of love.
I believe that we somehow lose track of our love. We are always searching for it – sometimes in the wrong places (like food, careers, relationships, alcohol, drugs, etc). No thing can ever give us our own love or our worth.
You were born enough. You are 100% lovable. Always have been and always will be. You get to choose to believe this. And from this – your life can change.
No matter what you’ve been led to believe in the past or thought was true.
Finding this love and deciding to believe in it will get you where you want to be.
In health, in relationships, in work, in life.
You’re either knowing and trusting that you are worthy and lovable or you’re not. You are the one who creates ALL the love you feel or don’t feel in the world. So why would you choose not to feel love?
When you decide (and that’s truly what it is – your decision) that you are deserving of loving yourself and being loved – your whole world changes. Life becomes calmer, more joyful, happier. You can give love more freely because it’s abundant, and you trust that you will feel that love back again.
So, my friends. Whatever your question is – the answer is more love.
We went camping this weekend. It was a new adventure for us. We planned and executed this idea. My husband was ecstatic. I haven’t camped since I was a kid.
We made a list. We packed. We ended up forgetting our pillows because they weren’t by the front door. We laughed. It happens.
Then we started setting up camp. It was awkward. It was unfamiliar. I think we’ve all had that experience where something is brand new. And going through the process (in this case unpacking and setting camp up) was unfamiliar. And strange. And it’s easy to let the discomfort of this overwhelm you (I did).
And make you cranky. And want to give up. That’s how I felt after my 18th trip through each side of the car looking for 1 thing. Then repeating. Over and over.
This time though…I was consciously aware of the discomfort. And I breathed through it (not perfectly mind you…I felt a tantrum coming on… and luckily my chillaxed hubby talked me down).
And although I was uncomfortable, I also was excited.
I had two opposite feelings coexisting. And I was aware of both. Plus I felt anxious.
The point? Learning new things is uncomfortable. There will be awkwardness. The key to mastery and experience is allowing that obstacle of awkward discomfort and not letting it stop you.
Allow it, expect it, feel it, that’s how you know you’re doing it right and growing.
We had a fantastic time. S’mores and all.
I can’t wait for the next camping adventure.
You can do this with anything you want to try.
Try something new.
Move through that discomfort and see if you can watch your progress.
Change is always a little scary. So how do we change when we feel that paralyzing fear and worry and then god-forbid we start making changes and our brain kicks in… and OMG, the overwhelming anxiety and what if’s creep in…
The question is:
HOW DO ACTUALLY WE CHANGE WHEN THE THOUGHT OF IT IS SCARY?
Fear and doubt and worry hold so many people back; no doubt you’ve considered doing something* and held back out of fear.
*Examples include leaving or taking a job, going on a date, meeting a new person, trying a new sport, lifting a heavier weight, ending a toxic relationship, etc
Consider that fear is your brain’s natural response to ANYTHING new or different. Our brains are trained to seek pleasure, avoid pain and be efficient. Our brain always has our back to protect us from that evolutionary threat… the dangerous animal outside our cave. Now that we’ve evolved? It’s still working all the time, but only has time to flex when we want to do something that most likely ISN’T going to kill us (daredevils, I’m excluding you).
I know there are definitely things you wanted in the past and pushed through the discomfort of fear and the unknown to experience, like a new relationship, job, school, haircut or sport.
We all have, our else we’d never grow or change.
Doing new things may always be slightly scary. If you are willing to accept this and still move forward, you can create whatever you desire in your life.
THIS one skill is the key to freedom from the “what ifs”:
✅ Picture what you want to do
✅ Create a plan that makes it possible
✅ Expect and allow the discomfort and fear and anxiety about trying something new and different (thanks brain!)
✅ Execute plan then evaluate and adjust it as needed until goal accomplished
✅ Repeat as needed
We always think we need to feel comfortable and competent and motivated to take action toward a new goal but all of these emotions come from how we frame what we want – we actually create these emotions with our thoughts and beliefs about our idea.
You can allow your fear and accept it and move through that discomfort to achieve new things. You’ve done it before – you can do it again. So get out there and do it!
I love to learn (I ought to, I have spent half my life learning).
It feels good to know, to be intrigued, to be curious. It also makes us feel like we’re doing something.
Which, we are, unless we’re learning and reading and consuming information about something (like weight loss or changing a habit) that eventually requires us to take action. C’mon, if you’ve been reading, you knew where I was going.
We need to take what we have learned, interpret it for ourselves and then apply it to our lives. Wah, wah, wah…
This is a big place where I see people get stuck (don’t worry, it takes one to know one, I’ve spent plenty of time in stuck-city myself).
It’s so easy to get stuck in the consuming phase.
The reading, learning, gathering information phase.
All under the guise of “learning”.
But at some point, we have to take that first step to applying all of it. And I can tell ya, no amount of learning is going to outweigh the learning of real life experience.
I was thinking about this while running earlier today.
I spent years consuming and learning information, about self-help, about weight loss, about life.
But it was so cozy there, and it felt so productive to keep reading and learning. Like wrapping myself up in a blanket of knowledge.
Then I had that “awww crap” moment (most likely from one of those learning tools). I actually had to do something. Nothing would change if I didn’t take any action.
And it scared the crap out of me. The unknown? To actually take action? Oh geez. Yeah, those warm and fuzzy “this is easy” books left that part out. Dang it.
So I started to take action. Again and again.
And some lessons I had to learn the hard way (by doing), multiple times.
There is a saying that you will continue to be presented with situations, challenges, etc in your life until you learn the lesson that you need to continue to move forward.
Well let me tell you – this was very true on my food journey. I was a champion of overeating. And stuffing myself until my stomach hurt. Of feeding an upset stomach (with carbs and sugary baked goods or ice cream or whatever sounded palatable at that time) and wondering why it got more upset, or why I couldn’t lose the weight that week. Or why I couldn’t eat the same way and lose my weight.
I beat myself up over it. I joked about it (duh, this is why I can’t lose weight… must be genetics… believe me, I had every excuse in the book).
I minimized it. Until one day, something shifted. I started seeing what I was doing for what it was – making excuses.
Because of what I was telling myself. It was all up to me! Those freaking books had been right all along. All that corny, woo-woo, blah blah blah, the power is “within you”… It was true. And my refusal to accept it was holding me back.
Well. That took a while to wrap my head around. But then I started to embrace it. And change my actions to be more in line with all of that learning. And things started shifting! The weight started coming off. And, since then, I have lost all of the weight. I reached my goal (30 lb total). I can maintain it easily now. I don’t worry about it.
Of course I challenge myself to continue to grow and evolve (I like a challenge, what can I say).
Now I teach other people how to find where they are stuck and help them move through it to the body and the life they love.
I know it can take time and I truly believe that everyone has their own path of growth. You may not be ready now. You may still be in your gathering and learning phase.
What I have learned is how to take that knowledge you are gathering and apply it to get to your goal.
To use it to be confident, to feel comfortable in who you are and sexy and awesome in your body. It just takes being open to changing.
You don’t have to fully believe it can happen when you start – you only have to believe it is possible.
I encourage you to ask yourself and check in. Are you learning and consuming or are you taking action toward your goal? It is easy to go down the learning path and feel like we’re changing when we’re really just consuming. It’s okay to learn and apply along the way. Just don’t forget to keep learning by doing. That is where the greatest progress is made.
You’ve got this, my friend. Go out there and believe in your possibility. Believe in yourself. I believe you can do it. If I can, everyone can too.
Changing our thoughts will change our life. Super simple, super easy. It all starts with a thought. No problemo!
As we discussed last week, recognizing that our thoughts are the culprits of our emotions can be a game changer.
We previously talked about watching your thoughts, starting to become more aware of them and choosing to look at them and change them, especially in situations where you may be upset, anxious, or scared.
We did not discuss how to change them though.
Our brains want to be tricky, they want to hide and not change.
Even thoughts about changing ANYTHING can lead to resistance. Bummer, right?
Because change is something unknown.
Our brain wants to panic, it wants to protect us, it wants us to run the other way. Avoid pain, seek pleasure, good old trusty primitive brain.
But instead, we’re asking our adult brains to lean in. To assist, to guide us.
You can see where this creates some distance between our primitive brain and our evolved, adult brain. Like parents and children, the battle wages on, but inside our heads. With every chance to change. I know, I’m exhausted just writing about it.
For my lively explanation of the 2 contrasting parts of our brain, click here.
Our brains also like to be efficient. Thinking the same type of things, doing the same thing daily. Less brain power, so to speak.
This does not serve us while we’re changing but can be very powerful after we have adjusted to a new thought or thought process.
The first step of changing our thoughts (as with everything else) is awareness. You need to know what’s not working for you or serving you.
Next, you need to decide how you want to feel. What you want to do. Where and who you want to be.
Once this is established you can get to work.
We all have the thoughts we’re thinking now that are creating our current reality and then we have to find the thoughts that will create where we want to be, what we want to do, how we want to feel.
You still with me?
Next we can create bridging or ladder thoughts to get from here to there. This is where a coach like myself will be a huge benefit as we guide you from A to B faster and more easily that you can guide yourself (remember, your brain will want you to maintain status quo). You can also endeavor this on your own, but like with a ladder you climb to paint the house… having extra support is never a bad idea.
Finally, we practice our new thoughts to reinforce them, then we choose consciously to continue to practice them until we achieve the new result and then reinforce them until we accept these new thoughts and they become automatic.
Easy peasy, right?
Go get ‘em tiger. I just gave you all the steps to change your thoughts and to change your life into what you want it to be. You’re welcome.
If you are confused, feeling stuck, or otherwise don’t think you can go it alone – email me at email@example.com and set up a time to chat about how this WILL change your life.
I used to eat emotionally all the time. Why? Because it was how I coped with life. Happy? Eat. Upset? Eat. Lonely? Eat. I went along my merry way but also lamented that I felt tired, ugly, fat, and wanted to change things but felt helpless to start or succeed. I wanted someone to show me what to do, to tell me what to do. To help me “fix” my problems.
I didn’t realize that nothing was wrong with me. I didn’t realize that I just hadn’t yet found the greatest tool of all: life coaching. Not even related to nutrition or food intake! What?
I tried multiple diets. I restricted, I counted calories, macros, did food timing, intermittent fasting, giving up whole food groups. Some of it worked temporarily. Some of it helped me keep some weight off. Sure, my habits improved, I gained nutritional knowledge, but I still felt like something was missing. I knew that there was more.
I stumbled on life coaching when I was looking for a permanent solution to my weight loss problem. I started working with a coach and she opened me up to what was missing and holding me back in my life. I dug in and have never looked back.
I lost my last 7 lb, which previously had hung like an albatross around my neck. They fell away like they were nothing.It was the mental weight I was losing.
Recently, I realized I was slipping back into some emotional eating. It snuck up on me like an old friend.
This time though, I had the skills and awareness to recognize it for what it was, acknowledge it and move past it.
With confidence. With grace and kindness. With love.
I coach busy professionals who want to stop overeating emotionally and instead enjoy their meals and love their lives.
I help you get from where you are to where you want to be in your thoughts about food, dieting, health and balance. You want to love their body. You want to confidently navigate ANY situation. I know how to help you find your true self and lose your mental weight in the process.
Schedule a call with me today to learn how to be free.
Love your body and your life. Start today.
p.s. Join my private FB group to learn more about how you can lose your mental weight by using the same skills and habits. You have nothing to lose, except your weight.
When your mind is watching your thoughts, it cannot be in your thoughts.
You are either actively thinking your thoughts or you are watching them.
This is one way to temporarily pause a strong emotion or feeling if you are overwhelmed.
Your thoughts create your emotions, so retraining your brain to become aware of your thoughts when you find your mind racing is a great way to become more aware of what is causing that emotion.
Being curious about your thoughts is a great way to watch them neutrally and bring yourself back to center.
This technique can help you if you have a tendency to be anxious, to catastrophize or snowball when something negative or difficult occurs.
I am still discovering thoughts that I never knew existed until they occur and elicit a strong emotion in my body.
We tend to notice our emotions more quickly than our thoughts. Our feelings command our attention. Ever felt scared, startled, or frustrated? I usually react to these emotions before I am consciously aware of what thought has caused them.
So how can we harness this skill to help us with our journey in life and eating healthy?
Whenever you find yourself in the pantry, driving through the drive-thru, standing at the freezer eating ice cream or otherwise pining for a sweet or savory treat, check in with your brain. What thoughts are you having? Where is your mind going? What are you thinking about that is causing you to eat RIGHT NOW.
I have trained myself to watch for (aka notice) a feeling of resistance inside me when discussing a topic or navigating a circumstance that is uncomfortable or different for me.
This resistance usually means there’s an underlying thought or belief that is butting up against the current thought or situation.
For example, when I feel uncomfortable, sugary food is my savior, my distraction, my hero. It comforts me and transports me away from the sensation in my body (aka my feeling I’m trying to avoid).
Also, I have noticed that my brain is pretty sneaky, it likes to avoid me and run away when I am looking around and cleaning out old/outdated thoughts and ideas.
For example, one of my defensive mechanisms is to be logical and analytical to avoid feeling (man I could probably write a book on this one). This coupled with eating delicious treats were my two solid ways of coping for years. It didn’t make me healthier, but it sure as heck allowed me to avoid feeling those icky feelings.
When I made the choice to be healthier in both mind and body, I sought ways to work through my mind drama and face my difficult feelings in a more healthy, productive way.
I have had to learn to notice a feeling and then shift to looking for the thought behind it. This one technique has helped me immensely.
If you are not well versed in noticing your thoughts or stopping your thought spiral as your emotions build, put it into practice, see what happens. I promise you that it will change your life if you practice it and master it.
At first it may be challenging, or you might identify situations in hindsight where it could have worked but you forgot to try it.
No worries, better late than never. This one simple skill can transform your life.
The more you practice, the easier it gets to do in the moment (like riding a bike, right?).
Start this week – when you notice a strong emotion – practice asking “what thoughts am I thinking right now” and see what comes up.