Welcome back to this three-part blog series on the importance of health and wellbeing for the over 40’s. What did you think of last week’s article? I hope you found it inspiring to read Tori’s powerful story of determination, desire and a laser-focus on her ‘why’.
What do I mean by why?
So in the first blog post I explained why health and wellbeing is important for over 40’s. Last week you were inspired by Tori’s story, so if you’re ready to get started on your own personal goals, this blog post is for you.
Starting a health and wellbeing program can be a daunting thing, and most people give up in the first few weeks. So, why is it that some people manage to transform their health and others don’t? I’ve worked with hundreds of clients over the last few years, and I’ve observed the differences between those who success and those who don’t. Having a strong sense of why you’re embarking on a program of lifestyle changes is critical to making it a success. Experience has shown me that if there is even a small degree of ambivalence, then there’s a good chance you will give up or not get the high level of results you’re looking for. Connecting with the ‘why’ is crucial.
Take the example of one of my clients, D. His big hairy audacious goal (BHAG) is to be alive to celebrate a milestone wedding anniversary with his wife, which will require him to be in very good health in his 90’s. He is very wedded to this goal (pun intended) and so far he’s been very successful in the changes he’s made. Any difficulties or challenges are generally negated because he finds it easy to stay motivated – because of his goal. It matters to him so much that the desire to stay healthy to celebrate that anniversary overrides a desire to eat badly, consistently skip exercise sessions or throw caution to the wind in other regards.
Unsure of your resolve? Try answering these powerful questions or click here to answer online:
- What is your intent?
- I want this because
- I want this now because
If you struggle to answer these questions, it might be that you still have some work to do in terms of focus and mental clarity. Don’t be disheartened though; there is a process that we all go through before we are ready to make changes – it’s called The Transtheoretical Model (Prochaska & DiClemente, 1983; Prochaska, DiClemente, & Norcross, 1992). The stages are:
Usually a client has ready for Action by the time they approach us, but not always. The three powerful questions I asked earlier will help you understand which stage you are at, and help you focus your mind on your reasons. When I recorded the case study with Tori, we did it live using my phone to record then transcribe the words. What you will have missed was the raw emotion that was apparent when Tori talked about her daughter. That’s her why. What’s yours?
I’m clear on my why. What next?
Here’s what you need to consider if you want to reach a successful outcome.
You are fully invested
Successful people know that in order to succeed, you need to invest, and I don’t just mean in time and money. A client who has what it takes to transform their health will be fully invested emotionally, physically and intellectually and very focused on their desired outcome.
You have patience
Implementing lasting and sustainable changes is a slow game. Think a marathon not a 100m sprint. You need to be patient, and focused. Appreciating that things take time is essential to the outcome, and you won’t be in a rush.
You trust the program
Holding on to preconceived ideas and limiting beliefs damages the chances of success. Trust in the person you’ve hired to help you. Believe in the power of two people focused on a common goal with an unswerving desire to make it happen. Allow yourself to be guided.
You make it personal
Recognising that everyone’s different is essential for success. Focus on your needs, your goals and aspirations. Don’t compare yourself to others. Don’t accept the one-size-fits-all approaches. Make it about you. Do what works for you not everyone else.
You show up
When you show up, you’re fully engaged and present. You are prepared for coaching sessions, have done the homework and remain open-minded and focused. You understand that you still need to do the hard work, but need the expertise of a professional to help you execute.
You take a holistic view
Changing your health requires a holistic view. An issue with sleep for example might be affected by nutrition, hormones, stress, digestion or any number of factors related to sleep hygiene. Being able to look at the bigger picture is essential.
You have trust in your coach
There’s a whole load of conflicting advice our there about health, fitness and nutrition. If you want to stay focused and be successful, find someone you trust and listen to them. It’s okay to stay informed but if you cast the net to widely, you’ll end up conflicted and confused.
The Six Signals™
We’ve identified the main issues that clients typically struggle with: Sleep; Mental Health; Energy; Weight; Digestion and Fitness. At Bodyshot, we call these the Six Signals™. A client will have red flags going up in one or more of these areas – usually two or three. If you are struggling with any of these issues, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or take our Health IQ test to find out how you score.
Leanne Spencer is an entrepreneur, coach, TEDx Speaker, author of Remove the Guesswork, and founder of Bodyshot Performance Limited. Bodyshot is a health and fitness consultancy that helps busy professionals get more energy by removing the guesswork around their health, fitness and nutrition. Visit www.bodyshotperformance.com or email email@example.com to register your interest in our services and connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.