As we head into the new year, this is a great way to begin. Ever wondered what it takes to be in a continual state of motion, a state of growth and development in all areas of our lives? Well, carry on reading … it is as simple as a state of mind?
Change your mind and the rest will follow…
All change starts with a change of mind. You have to start by changing your thoughts about want you want to change.
Constantly trying to change behaviour will rarely create long-term and lasting change.
In changing the way you think about something you immediately change your perception and consequently the way you feel about it.
“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything”
– GEORGE BERNARD SHAW
Change has a negative connotation for lots of people. On a deep emotional level, we are creatures of comfort and automatically seek out the things that feel good at the moment. We long for comfort and this usually comes from the things we know; those things that are familiar to us.
Once we can comfortably deal with and “know” all the “unknowns” we can “relax”, because our nervous system and our mind is designed to find and attach a meaning(s) to everything and therefore something new is always a confrontation between that which is and that which will be in your mind.
The unknown is always something that our mind and our nervous system have to “unravel” afresh and this process feels uncomfortable on many levels. When something becomes comfortable you get used to it as you remove all the “unknowns” and your automatic behaviour can take over again. Our nervous system works primarily by conditioning and by repetition we notice and assume patterns that are consistent. This system is really there to serve us in helping us be more efficient and to be able to do more and more, more efficiently.
Your mind is designed to always look for the best way. Through repetition, we learn certain orders and sequences in which things happen and we learn to recognise and respond according to these sequences. Every emotion you experience, for instance, is nothing but the result of a sequence of events and reactions triggered by your unconscious awareness that generates and creates the actual feeling which is nothing but a sensation in your nervous system.
To change anything you must, first of all, become aware of these patterns. You must become aware of what goes on under the surface of your conscious awareness. This is not difficult and everybody can do this. You don’t need to understand everything about the human nervous system to use it. Simply be aware of the fact that there is a part of you that responds and acts “automatically” based on your past experiences and associations.
The challenge is to go from one pattern, one that does not serve you, to one which does. You quite literally have to change your mind in that you have to change the way you perceive yourself and your life. Doing things differently will feel uncomfortable at first, but you can rest assured that the “uncomfortable” will become “comfortable” as you start to form new associations and new patterns of association.
The process of making the “uncomfortable” comfortable or making the “unknown” known is the way we grow as human beings. What you are comfortable with represents your comfort zone which includes all the experiences that you can comfortably deal with. If you don’t expand this “zone” then you simply won’t expand yourself as a person.
The need to grow and become more as a person is a deep emotional need that all humans have. Without growth, you simply won’t be happy. All growth, although it feels uncomfortable in the moment always feels immensely fulfilling in the long-term and it is this feeling that we all crave; the feeling that we call “good”. You can do something that feels comfortable and “good” at the moment by staying with what you know, but true fulfilment comes from pushing beyond your comfort zone and creating a sense of pride in yourself. Growth means change and change involves risk and risk is the process of stepping from the known to the unknown.
The truth is that all of life is constantly in a process of change. Nothing ever stays the same. It is the nature of all of life, including you. Even if you do nothing life will still change.
For you to progress, you have to decide to consciously initiate and create the change. You have to consciously put yourself in the uncomfortable place where you can grow and as you do this you progress. Progress is by choice while change is automatic. To be in control of your life you have to consciously choose to change and to keep changing yourself to become the person you want to be.
All change starts with a change of mind. You have to start by changing your thoughts about want you want to change. In changing the way you think about something you immediately change your perception and consequently the way you feel about it. When you change the way you feel you change your behaviour and that is how you progress.
Constantly trying to change behaviour will rarely create long-term and lasting change.
Change your mind and the rest will follow!
If you don’t change then you simply won’t grow and if you don’t grow you are not really living…
It seemed appropriate given that I learn as I live, let me explain.
Rather than using hindsight to review my actions and results it seemed to me that this year has called for a much more proactive approach from me, its been as though I've needed to have one eye focused on the rear view mirror as I've pushed ahead with my vision for my business and how I see my life unfolding.
Being the overachiever I am, this time of the year usually does two things for me. It gives me time to reflect on the successes and lessons of the year and provides an opportunity to refocus my energy into planning the next one.
There were so many lessons this year, it is difficult to choose just 4, so I've picked out 4 that have helped to shape the way I live, how I spend my time, how I treat the lessons and blessings life brings, appreciating those close to me and safeguarding my health because at the end of the day that's why I look after myself.
Lesson #1: Time Doing Things You Love Make The Other Stuff Worth It
The biggest events of the year for me have catapulted my business forwards and at times left me spinning my wheels. I have had moments of pure joy and delight and also total overwhelm and what I call analysis paralysis. With that said I am really excited about what the next year holds. I feel like the last two years of graft have helped to set me up for this coming year. The investment I've made in working with coaches both financially and in time, the resources invested in business development and creating systems to underpin it all plus the hours and hours of creating content and serving my amazing clients have resulted in solid foundations that will move me forwards.
It's not surprising therefore that it feels like this year has gone in a flash.
So where did it all begin?
The closure of my studio in March and the shift of my attention from 121 personal training to running my Ultimate Body Formula Coaching Program, meant a shift in the way I delivered coaching to my clients. I've developed an incredible formula that helps women uplevel their importance on their priority list with some incredible results.
Talking about incredible results ...
I wanted to share a video I created about Marilise's journey with me over the last year, she has done so incredibly well and seen real transformation in many areas of her life. I am super proud of her, as you can probably tell.
CLICK HERE TO WATCH
Lesson #2: Celebrate The Blessings & The Lessons
In an effort to find more time, I decided to give up teaching Body Pump after 10 years of delivering the program, that was a big step for me but one that was necessary to free up my energy and focus so I could do what I needed to do.
My mission is to help as many ambitious women as I can, put themselves first, to feel and look fantastic and to understand how to maintain their health because it is so simple and everyone deserves to feel confident and beautiful in their skin.
I've realised that people come into our lives for two reasons, that is as a blessing or a lesson. I believe that either we succeed or we learn, failure isn't an option. All we do is pick up and try again right?
I think about these things as the flip side of the same coin ... and try to take the positive from each situation rather than focus on the negative or take things personally ...
I've had clients this year who have done exceptionally well and others who have fallen off the radar and for whatever reason have become totally unresponsive, people subscribe to my newsletter and others unsubscribe, people, appear in my life and others disappear from it for no rhyme or reason. In balance, we all take what we need from those around us to progress and I've come to accept that that is life. More often than not we have no idea who we inspire, so for every person that leaves, it creates an opportunity to engage with someone new, for every door that shuts another opens .. that is the beauty of life in continual motion.
Like a coin being flipped in the air ... we have no idea of the outcome ... whether it will land on heads or tails? All we can control is how we react and respond. Both sides call for celebration. We learn we grow, we evolve we love.
Lesson #3: Health Is Everything
About 8 years ago I had a motorbike accident, I took all the impact of the collision on the left side of my body. I landed on my side and slid across the road, my Yamaha Virago between my knees ... luckily I got up and walked away from the accident, however, a crushing injury on my left knee and hip meant that when I went back to teaching I had to be mindful of an imbalance developing in my body. While I thought I had fixed it 'managing' really came to the fore. I had been heading to my favourite chiropractor every 6 weeks to be manipulated into place, I then went back to teaching, exercising and doing what I do, until I needed to be manipulated again. A continual cycle of pain management and function. This is so so true of the human condition .. we learn how to cope. This was by no means optimal for my performance or my health but I managed it or so I thought.
When I stopped teaching Body Pump, a lot of the repetitive nature of my classes disappeared and as a consequence, the weight training I was doing in the gym started to demand more of my body and the old injury's started to show, I was in agony and very quickly realised that I had to go back to basics with my training and address the imbalance properly and focus on getting stronger before I got back to competing.
So I made the decision not to compete in September and to focus on getting stronger. A decision that was tough and left me feeling frustrated and low about the whole thing, but as I say Health is Everything! and I am now fighting fit and ready to focus on next season.
Lesson #4: Life Is A Tapestry We Weave
My husband celebrated his 50th birthday this year ... yes I know he looks 25! This is a big event in anyone's life and this birthday was no exception. We live in the UK our family lives in South Africa so a family celebration was almost impossible for us, plus he decided he didn't want a party or a big fuss, just to go away and get some sun. OK?
When I was growing up my family made a big deal of birthdays, we celebrated them, in fact, any opportunity to celebrate anything we did. So this was a bit of a weird request, so I thought ok, he wants to go away, let's do that and then and I'll arrange a surprise party on our return. Wags'nTales in Surbiton did a fab job to accommodate us, with delicious food and cake in his favourite flavours! Friends arrived before we got there, no one spilt the beans, he had absolutely no idea. So yes it was a big surprise! It put a smile on his face for days after that. Feeling loved by those closest to you is an absolute gift. Something that lifts the spirit and helps you fly.
Life is a tapestry we weave, you only get out what you put in. In the high moments, we forget about the lows and in the lows its the memories of the highs that pull us out. Its special moments where we connect with each other that brings the magic to our relationships. Being present and engaged is one of the biggest challenges we all face as busy people with a million things going on at once, if we can remember this and act on it there will be lots of beautiful colours woven into the tapestry of our lives, precious time shared and memories made.
Part of my promise to Rod this year is to give him 50 cakes .. one for every year. So far I think I've done at least 10 .. we've got some way to go - lol
So there you go my 4 Biggest Lessons of the year.
To find out more about how you can get some incredible results this year, simply download my Woman In Motion Cheat Sheet. Reach out to me and let's see how we can work together.
“Do you know what, I need to just look after myself. I need to take care of me.”
When you start living like a healthy person and start eating like a healthy person, do you know what happens? All of those other things come into balance. I have developed programs, that help to support people in their fitness journey because we are all at different stages of our fitness journey. We’ve all got different challenges.
So I thought I would tell you a little bit more about what a typical journey looks like when somebody starts to work with me.
I had just finished teaching my 16th class for the week and was feeling knackered, my body and my mind were exhausted. I felt like I needed to hide away somewhere and recharge, to withdraw into my shell like a good little crab. The only problem is that I still had...
There are a few moments in life that stick in our minds, this is one of those for me. I can remember having a conversation with one of my clients who was heading towards a big birthday, she explained that she felt like she was becoming invisible ... puzzled by this...