A Taste of My Own Medicine
Here I was in a situation where I knew what to do. I also knew what I wasn’t doing. I had associated for too long with the problem, but I wasn’t improving upon it.
Along came an opportunity to act as coachee for a supervised trainee coach. Here’s what happened…
The Coaching Process
- Session 1 got the ball rolling on fixing the issue. One week of short term focus and actions
- Session 2 focussed on what I had learnt. From that I gained an understanding of some deeper-rooted aspects of that final 10% eating journey I had been struggling with and not completing
- The time between Sessions 2 & 3 was challenging. For that period I had allowed myself to slacken off the focussed eating plan. Eating as I was before Session 1 (BTW, that was an agreed action!). Guess what? I didn’t like it. I much preferred what I’d done in the targeted first week
- Clincher! We had kick-started the change
- Session 3 has nothing to do with reviewing my diet. It focussed entirely on re-affirming certain principles I believed in, identifying certain goals I wanted to maintain, assessing whether my ideals were attainable or pie in the sky, as well as being honest & trialling my own levels of commitment; even understanding how I felt about failing… and pulling all of that together into something that I could & would do from here on
Having someone’s outside perspective of my situation was the kick-up-the-jacksy I needed. It wasn’t what they thought that was enlightening. But feeding back to me what I was saying.
Fundamentally, my bad eating was a self-imposed hurdle. So, as I suspected at the outset, the issue wasn’t about not knowing what to do. It came down to understanding why & what for.
My Lessons Learnt
Sounds irrational, doesn’t it?!
If I could get the other stuff to work, why wasn’t I improving upon this this eating thing?
I was also aware that rewards we want are often hedonistic. We want quick positive rosey outcomes for any sacrifice or additional effort we outlay, and it doesn’t really work like that!
I needed to update my thinking:
- In terms of moving this on, I needed to remember that I was responsible for what I wanted to achieve. My frustrations were of my own making. My ability to fix this, equally so! Unfortunately, M&S is not responsible (well, not entirely!)
- I had tested how I did and did not like to feel over the last few weeks. I can learn from that. On days I ate well, I felt positive. On days I ate badly, I felt negative. No prizes for working out which days I want more of
- I can accept that a bad day is simply a bad day. A single bad day doesn’t necessarily a lifetime of bad eating habits make. My aim, quite literally, was to work on doing something better about what I ate day-by-day rather than regretting what I hadn’t done
- Milestones, for me, are very short-term. I can do 1 day & 1 week at a time. A calendar month is as long as I like to go. I’m happy to roll months into Quarters or a longer time frame, but I know that my stamina will last only a short distance. I’m a sprinter. I’m happy to go all out on a sprint, followed by a short rest and then to sprint again
… and For The Proverbial You
So, the proverbial you may think you have all the answers in your head. But that doesn’t necessarily work on the first pass because all the problems are in there, too! Clouding your judgement and denying you a true sense of direction.
- By talking out an issue you are able to clear the decks of feeling stuck/frustrated/angry/a failure
- With a cleaner slate you can start to create a manageable approach to being where you want to be – re-building positive links & foundations – or even to put it another way, to make sense rather than no sense
- In my case, what & how I eat fit into a framework that connects eating well with feeling well and living well. My eating is better & cleaner now because each thing I do has a context and meaning, even if it’s only for that meal or that day (they all add up and hopefully outweigh the off-piste days)
You can learn a lot from cheesecake!