My story starts in March 2012. I was working for a market data company in the City of London; my career had spanned about 17 years but I was bored and unfulfilled, and self-medicating against my increasing stress levels with alcohol (lots of it, daily). I found myself looking at the little clock on my PC wishing the hours away until 5pm and Friday came. I felt like I was wasting my life, bouncing from pay day to pay day and living in an increasingly unsustainable way.
Things came to a head one afternoon in March, which I still remember very clearly. I was crossing over London Bridge having left a client meeting and had just received bad news about a deal I was expecting to hit my sales target. I was burned out, chronically abusing alcohol and several stone overweight. In addition to that, everything I was doing and saying lacked authenticity. I wasn’t dressing the way I wanted to dress, and I wasn’t mixing with the people that I associated and related to. It was time for a drastic change.
On Monday morning I resigned. I was free, but unemployed and with very little in my savings account. It was a nervous time because I had no clear plan about what I was going to do next. One thing I was clear about is that I knew that what I was doing didn’t in any way match my values. The problem was timing, but I eventually just had to accept that there is never a good time to leave a guaranteed and decent salary, so I just did it and decided to figure the rest out once I’d recovered some of my mental and physical health.
I realised that what I wanted to do was really at the intersection of two things: business and health, so that was the genesis of Bodyshot as an idea. The reality was that my personal circumstances were far from ideal for setting up a business, and I had some important health issues that needed sorting out. I knew that the first thing I needed to do was make an investment in my health. The problem was, I had no cash behind me, so I choose to put several thousand pounds worth of investment in my health on a credit card. This felt scary at first because I had no income, so no certainty about when I could repay the debt. I also thought about deferring the investment to ‘a better time’, but ultimately, I felt it couldn’t wait.
Once my health had improved, I signed up to train as a personal trainer – another sizeable expense that I put on a credit card because I knew an investment in the business would soon reap dividends in terms of sales. As it turned out, I very quickly recouped that money. I also knew that if I was healthy enough to build and run a business, then I would be able to generate the sales that would soon repay that £7,000+ investment I’d made in my health. At the same time as making that investment, I committed to change. I really focused on why I wanted the change – why was I making this health investment for myself and why was I building this business? And more importantly, why was now the time to do it? I also understood that successful people invest in themselves, so I got a coach to ensure I stayed fit (I’ve had a personal trainer for over a decade now and always will), and a business and public speaking coach further down the line to ensure I was at my best.
From 2012 to 2014, Bodyshot progressed from me as a personal trainer to a small team of personal trainers. And my own health transformed. I lost three and a half stone, predominately through avoiding alcohol and sugary drinks, eating a diet tailored to my genetics and becoming much more physically active. I also started eating healthy food, prioritising provenance over price and eating locally sourced and organic produce wherever possible.
And as for Bodyshot, we’re now an award-winning health and wellbeing consultancy that creates total solutions to optimise mind, body, and wellbeing. We predominately work with corporates to deliver wellbeing solutions that create happy, healthy and productive teams that transform your culture and bottom line. We also have a small amount of capacity to coach individuals for 3, 6 or 12 months, solving problems around sleep, mental health, energy, body composition, digestion, and fitness – what we call the Six Signals®. our unique methodology. We’ve helped hundreds of people to better health, and that’s the kind of work I want to be doing – meaningful and important work that is also a lot of fun to be a part of.
If you’re interested in transforming your health, as a first step I suggest taking our Health IQ Quiz. It takes two to three minutes to complete, and you get a scorecard and a 39 page report entirely free of charge. You could also email me personally at firstname.lastname@example.org.