Not another 'New Year, New You' post (phew).
OK, I get it. New Year is all about reflection and resolve to clean up our act, right? If there wasn’t something we wish we could do better in life that might be quite worrying in itself! But ugh those posts … ‘New Year, New You!’ ‘Just try this new way of losing weight/giving up the booze/maximising your cardio, and forget the fact that all the other attempts you’ve made have failed after a couple of weeks. We take Paypal.’ Eesh. I’m so bombarded by exhortations to clean up parts of my life that aren’t even a problem for me (oh but aren’t they, really, deep down? And off down the rabbit hole of insecurity they drag us). If you’d like to make sustainable changes in life, read on.
I’ll let you into a secret. All this marketing focuses on specific issues, and all of these solutions – whether they admit to it or not – rely to a certain extent on willpower. That first milkshake meal replacement is delicious but the thirtieth of limited flavour options when we really, really fancy a baked potato and beans ain’t gonna cut it. Bam, we’re beating ourselves up for choosing a different healthy option and by the end of the afternoon the corner shop is wiped out of chocolate digestives. All-or-nothing thinking doing its thing on cue, there.
What’s going on? Well, addressing a specific issue in life without reflecting on why it’s become a problem means we’re doomed in the first place. No time to get to the gym because of demanding work hours? Renewing our subscription and really meaning it this time when we’re still tired, preoccupied and not truly prioritising our wellbeing isn’t going to cut it if we don’t make changes earlier in the stress chain. Ditto not hitting the wine midweek, cutting out the lunchtime fag in the car park or stopping our nearest and dearest from walking all over us.
There’s more. Shock time: relying on willpower is doomed to failure. Why? Because willpower resides in a part of the brain that tires. And if we’re still struggling with all the stuff we were struggling with in the old year (see above), it’s not realistic to expect ‘miracle results’ … we’ll tire, we just will.
So what’s to be done? We can take a broader look at what’s getting in the way of feeling better. Not being perfect, not getting everything done, just feeling better … and better … and better. I bet we know exactly what we need to do to sort out those ‘fixes’, and they don’t rely on expensive new-fangled programmes … don’t buy the wine in the first place, take up a more enjoyable way of getting active, find a sustainable, gradual weight management programme. Taking things back a few steps to see where the stresses are starting can be mighty powerful in using our natural resourcefulness to much greater benefit – so wellbeing deepens, making it easier to make better choices regarding the ‘hot spots’.
What about the willpower side of things? People will often say they achieved something on willpower alone but if you poke a bit you’ll find something else was also in play … emotions. These reside in a tireless part of our brain, which is why we’re never exhausted by loving what’s special to us. Being properly ‘fired up’ to achieve something will take us so much farther than grim determination alone. If our little drumming bunny is powered with emotional batteries it will keep its rhythms going long after the one fired up on willpower has ground to a halt. And if they’re fresh batteries in the first place … not already half-exhausted by powering something else, our bunny’s going to keep going, and going, and going.
I’m not going to give the hard sell here but if this makes sense I can offer a safe, non-judgmental space for you to explore your challenges, and our trance sessions will help bring your subconscious on board with your best hopes, beefing up your resilience to make the changes you’d like. Message me if you’d like more details, and please stop being hard on yourself!