As you may or may not know, I have spent the last 16 years – my entire career in fact – working as a coach in the fitness and nutrition industry, which was totally amazing and as I’ve written about so many times, I loved every minute of it (most minutes..) and worked my ass into the ground for it. However, things changed a lot for me in the last few years. I went through a huge transition as a coach, had a mini-meltdown (or meltdown-SS I should say) that if you followed or knew me then you may or may not have had the pleasure in witnessing! I burnt-out, lost faith in the industry, wanted to quit, cried a lot and basically realised that what I was doing just wasn’t fitting right with me any more. Subsequently, I stood back, reassessed, and decided to go back to school again to become a student of psychology, I just knew that there was so much more needed in order to truly help my clients than these diet plans and training programmes I’d become so stifled by, and as a result, I also began to completely change how I worked as a coach. So as a consequence of that one, incredibly busy, and slightly (well, a lot) scary year, here I am having now settled into a more specific area of coaching, an area that has become my ‘niche’ so to speak, and that is mindset coaching. So naturally, people have been asking me about what this means.
Well, your mindset is built from the beliefs that you hold about yourself, and these beliefs hold the key to absolutely everything in your life: what you do, what you don’t do, why you do what you do, why you can’t do what you want to do, why you think you shouldn’t do something and why you think you should.
I still work side by side with many PT’s / Trainers / Nutrition coaches, health is still, and always will be, my priority. I discovered during my time as a coach that if you embark onto a new fitness programme, or a new diet plan, it could turn out to be awesome and one of the best things you ever do. BUT, it also has the potential to turn into a disaster. There are two reasons as to why this may happen. The first is if you pick the wrong coach, who creates more fear than wellbeing within you, who wrecks your relationship with food by only allowing you to eat from a list of certain foods or really does anything that leaves you feeling more anxious about yourself (or food) than when you first started. The second reason it could lead to disaster is simply that your mindset is, and always has been, working against you. You cannot get to a place of self-love from a place of self-hate. So if you embark on a regime as a form of punishment for yourself or to correct what you see as flaws, it’s likely that you’ll end up feeling even worse six months down the line. One of the most common things I saw as a coach was women who came to me for a diet because they hated themselves, they saw themselves as something that had to be ‘fixed’, they lived in a body that would only be acceptable in their own eyes if it was different, smaller, leaner.
But what they didn’t understand is that a diet can’t fix that. It can change the external – their physical body – but the self-hate mindset doesn’t shift. So it then becomes about losing more, getting leaner, being ‘better’. That cycle is one big never ending, misery inducing, life sucking cycle.
This is why that woman you saw on the beach last year with the legs and the bum that you wished so badly you could have, was too busy to notice you because she was looking up ahead at the woman in front of her who had the long hair and amazing arms, who was too busy to notice her as she was straining to see the woman up ahead of her with the tiny waist and small thighs, who was too busy to notice her as she was fixated on the woman in front who was so tall and elegant with such amazing curves, who was too busy to notice her as she was focussed the woman next to her who looked so relaxed and happy as she sat on the lounger, who was trying desperately to wear her fake smile as she fumbled so quickly hide her body from the view of that women behind who was staring at her with her stunning eyes who was probably thinking how awful she looked….
Because you see, PERCEPTION IS EVERYTHING…
…AND YOUR MINDSET GOVERNS YOUR PERCEPTIONS.
No sparkly nutrition plan will ever change this, no new training methods have the ability to give to you the most fundamental aspect of self-belief that lives behind that feeling of confidence you are searching for, only by changing your mindset can you find this.
Everything you want is because you think that in some way, having it will make you feel better, right? So just take a few minutes and think about the ideal you that you hold within your mind.
Quieten your mind. How do you feel?
DESCRIBE it to me.
Use emotional words, do you feel calm? At peace? Fulfilled? Ecstatic?
Drink those emotions in and hold them there. Really, really FEEL them. What would it be like to really, truly be able to FEEL like that?
Well. You just did.
You just created that feeling within you.
Even for a split second you felt what you thought you’d only be able to feel if you physically changed. But you didn’t physically change, the only thing that changed right then was the mindset that you were present in.
It controls how you feel, not the physical changes you seek.
If physical change held the key to FEELING good, diets wouldn’t exist, we wouldn’t need them. We wouldn’t be seeing the worldwide diet failure rates of over 90%. We wouldn’t have those scenarios I described earlier of the women on the beach, but we do.
Because your mindset doesn’t react to you losing a dress size like you expect it to. It doesn’t immediately switch you over into self-love mode, but oh how simply life would be if it did, huh?
Not only does your mindset control the likelihood that you will achieve a certain goal in the first place, but it also controls how you will feel once you get there.
Your mindset is the difference between you failing or achieving.
Your mindset is the difference between you feeling amazing or feeling worthless.
Your mindset is the difference between you feeling content or lack.
Your mindset is the difference between a belief that you CAN or that you CAN’T.
Your mindset holds the key to those feelings that you are searching for from the external changes you seek.
What you could achieve with a change in your mindset, well, the world truly could become your oyster. But that change all starts with a decision, and that decision is ultimately up to you. You have to have the passion within you to make that change. As a coach I am not a magician nor will I ever hold all the answers for you; you hold the secrets, not me. You hold all the answers that you want, they lie within yourself and within the life you are currently leading. But what I can do, is help you find them and help you to become your own biggest asset.
Mindset coaching aims to give you your spark back. One of the first rules in creating any change is first of all having that firing passion within you to do so, and this must start by going on a rampage of appreciation for who YOU are. Knowing that you deserve to feel good. Knowing that you deserve to live a good life. Knowing that you deserve to treat yourself with love and compassion and knowing that all of this is already within you, just waiting for you to make the decision to unlock it.
Forget about diets for a while and instead work on you. Look at YOURSELF; as the woman, the mother, the friend, the person. Look at your life; your job, your home, your surroundings, your environment. Look at your feelings; are you happy, sad, frustrated, calm, stressed.
Look at your VALUES. What are your values in life, write them down, what do you value most and then tell me, do these fit the life you are currently living?
A person who struggles consistently with life, with weight, with stress, is likely living without listening to, or prioritising, their own core values, they often tend to be foregoing something that is important to them in life..
This could be something so small when looked at by other people. For example, you may be a person who lives for being around nature and only feels at home when walking in the woods or on the beach or craves the sun on your back, but yet you live in a built up inner-city with no fresh air to breath, no nature to be seen.
Or a you are a women who has got so caught up in the societal pressures in life and ended up stuck in an office job that gives you no fulfilment, you chose to gave up all of you dreams of following your artistic or creative passions, because you felt it was too risky to even try to make them real.
These are examples of women who are not living a life that matches who they really are. They are not living the life they originally wanted. They are expected to just “settle” by society, because we give people the impression that it’s a bad thing to want more out of life. We tell people it’s not acceptable to want to pursue their dreams because we are told it’s “un-realistic” and “not possible” to do so.
So then we see that those missing feelings of happiness and contentment begin to be sought out in other ways. If a woman’s only comfort is a bag of Haribo at the end of her 12 hour shift, we do not need to be chastising her for “choosing” to eat those sweets. Telling her to just “stop” or even more ridiculously “just eat a carrot instead” is just not going to work in her life as it currently stands.
That could be her only pleasure in her whole entire day. And we expect her to swap her gummy bears for kale?
Way to make her even more miserable.
Am I saying then, that then it may become about a choice between her job and her weight? Yep, it may well be.
We are told we should feel grateful for everything, even things we don’t want. I have been the first one to say “you have to be grateful for what you have got…” as yes, that is 100% TRUE as an attitude of gratitude is one of the most important aspects in a tuned-for-success mindset..
…BUT, that doesn’t mean you have to stop striving for more, being grateful doesn’t have to mean that you need to cap your potential in life in order to show it.
You can do both.
It’s your mindset that tells you that “it’s just the way it’s always been!”
It’s your mindset that tells you that “not everyone can have success”
It’s your mindset that tells you that you can’t change things.
It’s your MINDSET that stops you from even trying.
Showing the world your true self and using your life to showcase the passions and talents you were born with is what you are here to do. And if more people did this, I’d hasten a bet that the world would be a far happier and peaceful place to live in.
But as a coach, I can’t decide what you truly want and what your heart really craves. I can’t be there every second of the day, watching you and helping you make all your decisions in how you live. But I can help to help you to see that change possible, an I can help you to initiate that change, and I can be there with you, at your side, supporting you in that change.
If the feelings that you truly crave do not match up with the life you are currently living, I will stick my neck out and say that in my opinion, you will forever struggle to really get to a true place of happiness; physically, mentally or emotionally. But don’t just accept that, push for it! Push for what you want. This is your LIFE.
And the first place to put your focus and attention to change that life, is your mindset.
“It’s not who you are that holds you back, it’s who you think you are not.”
With love & awesomness, H xx