Wanting, Willing, Doing, and Being Transformed

While I’m in Washington D.C. giving two Energy Leadership workshops, I’ve asked a few fabulous bloggers to step in. Today’s guest blog is by Renée Vos de Wael.

It all started after my third baby was born.

I knew I had gained weight. And I had to go out to buy a dress for an upcoming wedding. So off I went to my favorite clothes shops, only I wasn’t able to fit into anything. After lots of shops—and even more tears—I found myself sitting on a bench asking myself, “What should I do?”

I knew that whatever I decided I needed to accept myself where I was at that moment.

Yes I had gained, and yes I didn’t fit into my normal size anymore, but this was definitely a crossroads. Is it bad to be a bigger size? No, because I still made new friends and my social life was wonderful. The only thing that was horrible was the way I spoke to myself. It was self-abuse and it was very painful.

From that day, I promised myself that this had to change and the choice was mine. I decided to take this moment as my turning point; from being this low I wanted to grow. How and when still need to be defined, but I left the shopping mall feeling lighter already. The dress came later and on that day I looked beautiful.

As I got off that bench, I knew something had to be transformed, but I had no idea how. But my thoughts were focused on what the goal was, and a I had a strong sense of “wanting.”

Not long after that, a helping hand was offered to me. My Mother-In-Law came to stay with us and gave me some space to make that important first step. My “wanting” turned into a “willingness”—my being willing to make a change.

The support was there and I needed to venture out into the world of new information. I was willing to learn more about what would work for my family—and me. This took the form of cooking courses, sport programs, etc.

Of course, after gathering the information, the “doing” was the next step. Let me be honest with you—it wasn’t always easy. I did a lot of different things, experienced pitfalls, and made mistakes that resulted in gaining weight back. It took me five years to get back to the weight I wanted to be.

But I got back there with a lifestyle that fits me. It was so worthwhile because through this process, I met myself again. I learned to really connect with others, to be able to show my vulnerability, and to accept where I am and how I see myself in the mirror.

For this journey, I’m very grateful for all the lessons I learned—even when I didn’t want to learn those lessons! It has given me so many new opportunities and new directions that the only thing I can do is to enjoy all of them. It feels like being offered a gift every day and the only way to figure it out is to open it.

Namaste,

Renee

Renée Vos de Wael (PCC) is an open-hearted and full-energy personality. She is a coach, educator, group facilitator, walker, traveler, wife, mother, and student. Being a globetrotter for over 10 years has given her an open mind and flexible attitude towards life. She is an intuitive who sees the beauty and light in people, even before they have noticed it themselves. Renee loves the idea that we can reinvent ourselves whenever we need—or want to. Working with and for people has been her passion. The different cultures where Renee has lived has taught her to view life from different angles, and engage in a life filled with challenges and opportunities.

A member of both the International Coaching Academy and International Coach Federation, Renee’s background is mixed in various spiritual philosophies. She has studied with many teachers, including Sonia Choquette, and is a trained Six Sensory™ Level 2 Practitioner.

You can read Renee’s blog at http://reneevosdewael.com/blog/

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What Did You Need?

I had an intense session with my coach, Kendra Thornbury, yesterday where we broke through some blocks that were showing up in the form of limiting beliefs and fear.

Whew that felt good!

The resulting clarity will help me move forward in achieving my goals.

But any time you do intense emotional work, you have to be aware of the impact it has on your body.

Our bodies and minds are much more significantly linked than most people realize.

So I slept in this morning, skipped my workout, and am treating myself gently.

It wasn’t too long ago that I would have made myself get up and workout anyway.

There’s a fine line between knowing when to push past mild resistance and when to ease up and give your body a break.

Here are some tips to help you figure out how to listen to your body and honor its messages.

How often do you give in? Are you regularly training yourself to go for the bigger win of a slim and healthy body by skipping treats and working out most of the time? Or do you scarf down every treat thinking it will be your last one? It gets easier to tell when your body needs a little TLC when you are more consistent in your actions.

Practice shifting your thoughts and emotions. Your thoughts and emotions will determine how successful your actions will be. For instance, if you want to start working out, yet you’re constantly thinking about how much you hate exercise, hate to sweat, hate the gym, etc., etc., your chances of maintaining an exercise program are pretty much nil.

So the first step in starting your workout program isn’t joining the gym, but is figuring out all the reasons you want to exercise and making those reasons your predominate thoughts. Then when you join the gym, the action of going is easier. As you practice shifting your thoughts and emotions you are better able to hone in on what is actually going on in your mind and body.

Take out the judgment—yours or anyone else’s. Just observe what’s going on with you. Skipping an occasional workout because it feels like what you need in the moment doesn’t mean you’re a slacker—no matter what anybody says. When you take out the self-criticism, you can tell if there is a pattern of negative thought that needs to be shifted, or if this a positive step of self-care.

You are the only one who truly knows what is best for you. Learning to listen to yourself and trust your judgment takes practice, but is an important part of loving your way slim.

Together we can do it!

Photo by Lindsay Miller

Where Are You Headed?

 

One of the challenges with creating the body that you want is that you are always carrying the body that you have around with you. It’s a constant reminder that you are where you don’t want to be.

When you think about the Foundation Principle that “Energy Attracts Like Energy,” also known as the Law of Attraction, it makes sense.

Our thoughts are energy. If you are focused on the fat you don’t want, or your lack of fitness or beauty, you will not only attract more thoughts like that, but more circumstances that support those beliefs.

Getting the body you want requires continually tearing your attention away from where you are and focusing more on where you want to be.

Only, this backfires if you don’t believe you can get where you want to be.

So how do you mentally walk this fine line of being in the body you don’t want—and having to look at and experience it all day every day—but not quite believing you can achieve the body you really want? Particularly when you are so used to thinking negative thoughts about your body, you don’t even know you’re doing it?

This is why a coach is so helpful. But ultimately, whether you have a coach or not, you are the one who has to navigate this mental path forward.

So here are some tips:

Pay attention to your emotions. How many thoughts do you think a day? A lot! It will just make you crazy trying to monitor what you’re thinking. Instead, pay attention to how you are feeling. If you’re having negative, catabolic emotions, such as frustration, overwhelment, hopelessness, blame, etc., these should be like signal flares letting you know you are headed where you don’t want to go.

Then you can determine what you were thinking, or better yet, just begin to shift your thoughts in the direction you do want to go. Such as:

“Clearly I’m not where I want to be. But that’s OK. I am where I am. And the good news is I caught myself. That right there is progress. And I am doing a lot right. I’m paying more attention to the food that I’m eating and I’m moving my body more. And I’m noticing that my stamina and energy levels are improving. I feel really good after my workouts, and every day I’m seeing a little bit of progress. I didn’t get where I am overnight and I it will take a little time to get where I want to be, but really, I’ve come a long way. I’ve already lost a few pounds, my clothes are looser, and I’m feeling more confident. With just a little consistency and persistence on my part, I am going to see significant changes. It doesn’t have to happen all at once. I know I can get there.”

Now you should be feeling a sense of relief, which is all you need to feel to let you know you have shifted your energy.

Change the mental subject. When you catch yourself looking in the mirror and being self-critical, find something else to think about that you do feel good about. Maybe it’s another body part that you can praise. Or maybe it’s how much your dog or child makes you laugh. You can even make a list of things that you enjoy, and then read it when you catch yourself heading down the road towards body shame.

Go take a nap. Or meditate. Or even just take three deep breaths. If you catch your catabolic thoughts picking up speed, do what you can in the moment to just to ease your foot off the gas pedal. Slowing the negative momentum will make changing thoughts smoother and easier.

Your thoughts lead your life. Shift your thoughts consistently in the direction you want to go and your body—and life—will follow.

Together we can do it!

 

 

 

Signs of Progress

One year ago today, I published my first blog on this site.

That was me lining up my thoughts and beliefs with my actions and desires, and saying a big “Yes!” to the future I envisioned.

Since then, I have not only published a wellness tip and a blog six days a week, but I have interacted with you fabulous readers, read some amazing writing on others’ blogs, been inspired and hopefully given inspiration—maybe even to you.

I also successfully dealt with my own wellness challenges—including a major surgery—improved my nutrition, and have maintained my weight and fitness level.

In addition, I completed my coaching certifications and my business has taken off—I’ve even hired a business coach to help me with it. I’m super excited about the changes I have coming as a result, including a new website, coaching programs, e-book, beach-side Love Your Way Slim retreat, and much, much more!

More importantly, I love my life—and the people in it—more than I ever dreamed possible!

My intention with this blog has been—and will remain—to inspire and provide value to you fabulous readers. Each blog is an expression of how much I appreciate your time, your energy, where you are in life and on your wellness journey, our connection, and Who you are as a person.

Thank you for all the follows, likes, awards, support, and comments. They have all been felt and appreciated. And the greatest honor of all has been your letting me know when a blog has moved or inspired you.

And I especially want to thank all you readers who have been with me from those early days. Knowing you were reading and cheering me on made all the difference in the world. Much love and appreciation to each of you.

Here’s to the changes and growth we will all experience together in the coming year. I look forward to connecting more deeply with you as we share our personal wellness journeys.

Together we can do it!

 

PS Just for fun, here is my first post. I’ve come a long way, baby!

Celebrate the Signs!

Posted on September 3, 2011

Wellness Tip of the Weekend: Have faith in your ability to make the decisions that will create optimal health—and then follow through with them.

Every moment of every day we are creating our life. Each decision will either hold us in place or move us towards the person we want to become. If you want to be fit, strong, and lean, then consistently make the decisions that someone who is fit, strong, and lean would make.

Each successful decision, each pound lost–each tiny sign of progress–is like the scenery passing by on a car trip. It is the landmark on the map showing you that you are moving towards the person you want to be. Celebrate those signs, no matter how small! It means you are succeeding!

Together we can do it!

 

 

What’s There to Celebrate?

It was almost exactly a year ago that I decided to become a Certified Professional Coach (CPC) and began exploring what that commitment would look like. I selected the most rigorous and challenging program I could find (a minimum of 9 months and 350 hours) and set out to achieve that goal.

Yesterday I received notice from the Institute for Profession Excellence in Coaching (iPEC) that I had passed my oral exam and am now a CPC. As I look back, it has been an incredible year of personal and professional development that was more challenging and rewarding than I could have imagined.

The release and satisfaction that I feel at having successfully achieved this goal is awesome!

So while I still have a week’s worth of intense work to complete my second certification as an Energy Leadership Assessment Index-Master Practitioner, I am giving myself permission this weekend to relax and enjoy my success.

And I encourage you to do the same. Give yourself permission to relax, smile, laugh, and enjoy this weekend—and your life. Celebrate your success, whatever that may be. Pay attention to the connection between lightening up emotionally and physically.

Together we can do it!

Do You Know Who You Are?

What if Who you are at your best is Who you truly are? That your very core is the person who responds with a kind word, helps others, and engages with and loves life?

What if all you had to do to be the best possible version of you was to accept that higher vision as Truth, and let go of some long-practiced inaccurate thoughts, feelings, and beliefs about Who you are, what you deserve, and how great your life can be?

Would being that bigger, brighter, happier version of you be worth the time and effort to let go of everything but the belief that you can be that person?

If you at least hope that these words are true, then you can become the best possible version of you.

If you don’t believe they are true, then that is all that is holding you back from doing the same thing.

During coach training this weekend, I got some clarity on all those things that I think and tell myself that hold me back from being the best possible version of me.

It all boiled down to old messages that I picked up along the road of life that are not true.

Thoughts like:

  • “Don’t try because it will only lead to failure and rejection.”
  • “No one listens or cares about me.”
  • “I’m not capable.”
  • “I should have known and done better.”
  • “I am stupid, forgetful, thoughtless, lazy, etc.”
  • “Life is hard.”
  • “I have to do everything myself.”
  • “I must protect myself.”
  • “I must control all aspects of my life.”
  • “Eating helps me relax.”
  • “I don’t want to be told what to do.”

There are of course lots more, but I expect you get the point and might even recognize some of these as thoughts and beliefs that you’ve had.

Your negative, catabolic self-perception and world-view is all that is holding you back. Whoever told you those things was wrong. Those conclusions you drew were inaccurate.

The Truth is the only way to succeed is to have fun trying, and to learn from each experience until you get the result you want. You are fully seen and loved beyond measure. You are more capable than you can imagine. The process of learning how to do better is incredibly valuable. You are worthy and brilliant. All-That-Is (God, the Universe, Source Energy, Higher Coach—whatever works for you) is working on your behalf, if you will let It. There is no one right way to do anything and the way others do it is valuable. You are perfectly safe. Your life is unfolding just as it should. All of your emotions are valuable and are worth feeling fully. Finding the solution that works best for everyone is the best way to work with others.

Create a vision of Who you are when you are at your best. What are the thoughts, feelings, and beliefs that are holding you back? What can you do today to be the person you truly are?

Together we can do it!

Photo by SOMMAI/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Feel the Relief

Every feeling you have is either a derivative of love or fear. Like opposite ends of a magnet, the feelings that you have are moving you closer to one pole or the other. Where you spend most of your time is reflected in how you experience life.

Is what you are feeling most of the time closer to joyful, appreciative, content, hopeful or frustrated, angry, overwhelmed, depressed? As a result, do you see the world as a happy or scary place?

While many people think their feelings are out of their control, this isn’t actually the case. What you are feeling is tied directly to what you are thinking.

You may believe that what you are thinking about a situation is etched in stone. The situation is the situation after all. It’s either good or bad, right? How could you possibly think something different about it?

We begin to take control of our thoughts and emotions when we recognize that what we think and feel is a choice.

For instance, I can focus on the rain that is falling right now, the thunder that has my dog anxious, and the gloomy sky, or I can focus on the mild temperatures we are having in the middle of January, how our drought-lowered water table is being refilled, how animals in the wild have plenty of water to drink, and come spring, the wild flowers that will be abundant.

And if a situation is truly so bad that you can’t shift your thoughts about it, then as often as possible, figure out how you can take your mind off that topic. You will not be giving it freedom to get worse if you give your mind a rest to think about something that you do feel good about.

Letting go of your grip on worry and stress—even for a minute here and there throughout your day—can actually help you see solutions that you otherwise would have missed.

This is where it’s helpful to tap into your spiritual beliefs. You can feel a sense of relief when you put your mental burden in the hands of a power bigger than yourself, that understands the story behind you and to come, that has such a broad perspective that the solution is clear, and that has the capacity to create the Universe and that will use all of its resources working on your behalf.

However you can get there, a feeling of relief is all you need to strive for. Trying to jump from depression to joy will just bring you crashing painfully to the ground. The small step of a feeling of relief is all that you need to move you closer to the love-side of the magnet.

The more you step your thoughts towards love, the more you love your life.

What can you do today to alter your thoughts to create a feeling of relief? Do that, and repeat.

Together we can do it!

Photo by dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

You Have Response-Ability

I’ve been struggling with writing an article all week. The more time I spend on that article, the further I fall behind on meeting my other deadlines, which results in a feeling of stress that zaps my energy and makes writing the article even harder.

How often do you get caught in this same kind of negative catabolic-energy spiral? Maybe what you want to accomplish is working out, but you’re too tired or busy and you miss it, and then you start beating yourself up, which makes getting in your next workout even harder. You can insert any task that you’re struggling with into this type of catabolic-energy loop.

It’s time to stop this crazy train!

What I know is that I have the response-ability for bringing my purpose, commitment, and spiritual connection into everything I do. So yesterday, I put aside the article for a bit and thought about how I want my sense of purpose to support me in this task. I also wrote out a list of all the reasons I love writing for a living.

Taking the time to shift my perspective helped generate a more positive anabolic outlook that allowed me to tap into and be supported by my spiritual beliefs and connection. Taking the time to do that helped bring me some clarity and focus, so that I was finally able to make some significant progress on the article, which I will finish this morning.

The task I was faced with didn’t change. What changed was how I felt about doing it.

It doesn’t matter if the task you’re facing is a mountain of laundry, a million-dollar deal, or being the best parent you can be to a rambunctious kid. Think about how you can bring your purpose, commitment, and spiritual connection into everything you do.

When you stop expecting the task or situation to change or go away, and instead use your response-ability to shift your energy, focus, and feelings, you begin showing up as the person you want to be.

Together we can do it!

Photo by Suat Eman / FreeDigitalPhotos.net