Can Changing Your Words Change Your Life?

In my last post, I talked about the power the words you to yourself have in your life. One of my readers responded by sharing this story. I LOVE it. Such a simple idea that can make a huge difference. This is the story of a man who changed his password to a mantra. An intentional statement about what he wanted to change in his life. It worked so well the first time, he started making it a monthly habit. The new passwords brought  abundant opportunity into his life. Read the original story here.

When I work with my coaching clients, one of the first things we do is craft their vision of success. We work together to envision the end result; the vision of their lives once the goals have been achieved. One of my first clients was a little skeptical. She even said “Just saying something is true doesn’t make it happen.” I’d like to challenge her statement. This story clearly challenges her statement.

We invite into our lives the very things we focus our attention on. Think about it. Instead of wondering “How am I going to get this done?” think about what you will do when it is done. Invite the reward into your life. What have you got to lose?

So what is your Vision of Success? If you would like some help working on it, let me know. You can get more details here. Meanwhile, go change some passwords. Be intentional about what you invite into your life!

Blessings,

Heidi

Are you planting Words of Success?

Plant seedsWords are one of the most powerful tools we have in life. Each and everyday we have the choice to use them to inspire and uplift or to discourage and demean. In this era of “viral” technology, our words have the potential to have even wider impact whether for good or bad. We seem to be pretty clear on this when we think about  the impact our words have on others, but have you ever thought about the impact your words have on your own perspective of self? The words you speak and think have the same influence on you that they have on others. Are you speaking words of success or failure when you talk to yourself?

 I have been paying a lot of attention to words lately. One of the words I’d like us to eliminate from our vocabulary is “can’t” or more importantly “I can’t”. How often in life do you say “I can’t” when what you really mean is “I don’t” or “I choose not to”.  Sure, life is full of obstacles and challenges, but when you really look at things, it all boils down to personal choices.  So when you find yourself at the office in the morning and someone has brought in doughnuts, when you think  or say “I can’t have one of those”, you have already set yourself up for failure. Your mind is already telling you that you have been deprived of something that you want and value. Since willpower is an exhaustible resource, the next choice you have to make will be that much harder.

  What might happen if you turn it around though. Think about it, when you are faced with the doughnut, what might happen if you say ” I don’t eat doughnuts. I know that I will feel awful after the sugar crash and totally regret the calories later.” Now you feel strong and empowered rather than deprived and punished. You have stepped up and successfully faced a challenge. This feeling of accomplishment will make the next choice a little easier to make rather than  harder.
 
It is so important to plant seed of success with the words we use. As they grow, we get stronger in our resolve and focus. Each moment of empowerment fuels the next situation with strength. 
 
Blessings,
Heidi

The Freedom of Imperfection

Imperfection is a form of freedom

Imperfection is a form of freedom

“Imperfection is a form of freedom” 

I love this quote. Nothing  has held me back more in life than waiting for perfection. Releasing myself from the need to be perfect has opened a world of opportunity and adventure. Let’s face it, something is better than nothing. Since perfection is so unattainable, it often leads to nothing.  No action. No attempts to fly. Just sitting on the edge of the nest waiting in fear. When so little in life is ever perfect, why do we use this as an excuse not to act?

As little kids, we so easily attempted things we were likely to fail. Can you imagine where the world would be if all toddlers waited until they could confidently and securely take that first step or make that first mark on a piece of paper? Reality is, we learn, grow and become competent at stuff  simply by doing it; by attempting and failing and readjusting for the next attempt.

Sharing my weight loss journey has been one of the scariest things I have ever done. Despite my success, I wanted to wait for perfection; for some level of achievement that was eluding me. I remember on the day I weighed in 101.7 pounds down from my start weight. A woman at the gym said “now comes the hard part.” At the time, that seemed a little harsh, but in retrospect, she was totally right. The time since that day, struggling with the last twenty pounds. Wondering if I can even consider myself successful if I don’t make fitness magazine standards.  Can I still talk about fitness and healthy living when my own idea of perfection for myself is yet to be achieved?

As I shared some of these thoughts with a friend, she blessed me with the statement “your expertise is not that you have mastered anything, it is that you struggle well.” I love that. My expertise comes my willingness to share my imperfection; from letting you know this is not a battle to be won or anything that can be mastered. It is about making peace with the struggle. I have been living in this much more healthy, much more fit, yet still imperfect body for several years now. Will I ever make it to perfect? Probably not. Can I live with that? Most definitely. I will do my best to continue to struggle well and share the journey with you. I hope it inspires you to struggle well with me.

Let’s all exchange perfection for freedom.

Happy Independence Day!

Heidi

Be Where Your Feet Are

Untitled design (1)It is hard to believe we are half way through the year. It’s July 1st. The first day of the second half of 2014. When I got up this morning, I was thinking I would post about July being the new January. My plan was to encourage all of you to do a goal check. Evaluate the last six months and make plans for the next. But the first thing I saw in my newsfeed was a picture of someone’s feet at their vacation destination.

Then another.  

And another.

I couldn’t help thinking about something my coach has been saying a lot lately. “Be where your feet are.” We take these lovely pictures of our toes on vacation to prove we were there. We were in a place apart from our regular life. Most of us can let ourselves be totally present on vacation, but the idea needs to apply to everything we do.

“Be where your feet are.”

When you are working out. Be totally present. Make the most of the time you invest and push yourself. When you are with your family. Be totally present. Slow down the chatter in your head about the past and future. When you are working focus on the right thing for this chunk of time. Don’t let yourself be distracted by worry about the future or disappointments from the past. 

Just be where your feet are.

Blessings,

Heidi

The Kettlebell Cult: How our communities keep us on track.

Kettlebell CultThis week, I was reminded once again of the power of community. One of my communities is a little group that gets together for a Saturday morning kettle bell class. Those of us who love it, well, we really love it. Somewhere along the line, someone referred to us as The Kettlebell Cult and the name just sort of stuck. For several years, that Saturday morning appointment has been pretty much written in stone for me. This spring, after my family decided we were going to sign up for the half-marathon, I had to make some training choices. With long runs on the weekends, heavy duty weight training was not going to happen on Saturday mornings. But when the races were run, the training over I didn’t go right back to my Saturday morning workout. When I was already out of the habit of prioritizing that work out, somehow other Saturday morning commitments just kept coming up.

So last Saturday, I found myself back, finally hanging out with The Kettlebell Cult. It felt like coming home. I was surprised at how quickly the muscle memory kicked in. But more than that, I was surprised at the immediate sense of gratification that came from the workout. It reminds me a little bit of when I get lax on  my food plan. When I let sugar and wheat back in for more than a meal or two, suddenly the old habits come back. Then I get back on track and feel so much better. I said to my trainer the other day “why do we so quickly forget how much better we feel?” She said that she hears that all the time.

I guess it’s like riding a bike. Once you have learned a habit, it is so ingrained that you can pick it up again after long periods of change. Our old habits of not prioritizing workouts or making poor food choices come back to us as easily as riding a bike after we haven’t in  a long time. So how do we defend against falling back into old bad habits? We lean into our communities. Our friends and supporters remind us how much better we feel when we are “on track.” In The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg equates this to the success of 12 step programs like AA. They connect people who remind one another to stay on track. The group offers the support and rewards of connection. That community is invaluable.

So who are your communities? Are you connecting with like-minded people who push you and support your goals? If you can’t easily answer that questions, start intentionally seeking out communities that you know will support your goals. My Let God Mess with Your Mindset class is open for enrollment. It is a great place to connect with other Christian women who are looking to make peace with their daily decisions about food and fitness.

Blessings,

Heidi

Brief aside here, kettlebells are awesome in my humble opinion, but it is important to make sure you are working with an instructor who knows what they are doing. If you are in the Cary, NC area, I highly recommend the classes at Excel Body Fitness. If not, one of my favorite places for info online is Thrive as the Fittest.