Stories, Writing and When life Happens [3min read]
I had a hip surgery that went wrong. Now months later I still have 30% of my left leg not working, unable to contract part of my calf and limited sensation from the knee. I won't lie its been tough, much harder than training for an IronMan or 24 hour spartan race.
Friends would describe me (amongst other things :-)) as a "teacher" or "coach". I have coached clients to lose 50% of their body weight, teams to be unbeaten, athletes to successfully compete in their first Iron man, or 10k. I have coached clients to regain health post pregnancy and senior business men to balance their LIFE, but as of the last 18 months the most challenging client has been myself.
I have always been the "fit" one, the one who gets his "Zen" through hiking, cycling and working out but now that was taken away from me and will not be accessible for some time.
Perhaps down to sulking or an inability to accept reality, I have lacked the motivation to do the things "that are beneath me". I've expected results without effort, I've pushed away others support as I'm a coach and I "know what I should do". Perhaps the only thing I have been successful in is causing strain in my relationships by not accepting support and not supporting myself.
The story I had created around what I thought I should be able to do and what I could actually do were worlds apart creating anxiety, stress and stagnation. I had lost touch with reality, I was not being honest with myself, not accepting support from others and and sabotaging any growth I could have made in this time.
I had spent so long creating a story as to why I could not move forward with my health goals ... I was starting to believe it.
That is until I stumbled upon an old book and a quote that resonated with me...
“I will keep constant watch over myself and—most usefully—will put each day up for review. For this is what makes us evil—that none of us looks back upon our own lives. We reflect upon only that which we are about to do. And yet our plans for the future descend from the past.”
—SENECA, MORAL LETTERS, 83.2”
The above quote is 2000 years old yet still holds so much truth. I had been so anxious of how far I had to go to regain my health that I had failed to acknowledge how far I had already come and the skills, tools and knowledge I possessed to keep moving forward.
Over the last few month, I had started to feel myself again. Looking at the story I had created and how far from reality I had let it get to was the starting point. Through writing in the form of journalling I allowed myself to be open, allowed myself to be honest and allowed myself to rewrite my story.
I had got myself into a vicious cycle with unhealthy actions leading to further unhealthy actions. Journalling was the tool I used to shine a light on the stories, actions and patterns that were showing and quickly turn my vicious cycle into a virtuous one moving me forward with my own health.
The concepts in Journalling need not be a complicated process, starting with what three things are going well and what one thing do I need to adapt (and how) is a great start.
All my successful clients have used journaling strategies to highlight what is working and what is not (I share many in my ebook "When LIFE Happens")
Journalling need not be a complicated process, starting with what three things are going well and what one thing do I need to adapt and how is a great start.
I am still a long way from where I "want" to be but whilst I am now trending in the right direction, I am more content, less anxious and can see a path forward.
I am still only able to do 1/5 of what could but that is okay as looking back I can see...
I am now a father, I have moved flat twice, I have invested heavily in a company that supports individuals and organisations to support better health and wellbeing, I have started to complete tasks, I can now empathise more whole heartedly with my clients.
I have finally completed my book...
When Life Happens
Through "putting each day under review" I quickly realised that I personally need 'priming' each day so as to set myself up for success. One way of doing this was carrying out something for me such as a 5 min journal/mediation/read/listen.... before I looked at all the things I was yet to do.
This simple act doing something for me before seeing how much more there is yet to do I was able to engage my human mind over my Monkey mind.
There are 100's of triggers that can work, many are so simple you may not even know it is a tool that can work for you.
My Book "When Life Happens and how to deal with it" contains 100's of these triggers, tools and reflections to support the reader in creating a healthy life and I would love for you to start reading it.
It really means a lot to me knowing that you would take time out of your day to explore your curiosity and take an interest in what I have to say Thank you very much and speak to you again soon.
Take care, be well.