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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Time Keeps on Slipping, Slipping, Slipping….

This morning, my husband David and I are giving an Energy Leadership workshop to 100 students in Western Carolina University’s Project C.A.R.E. (Committed to African-American Retention in Education), so I’m sharing a blog from my fabulous friend and mentor, Jennifer Barley.

It is hard to believe how fast time flies. In just a blink of an eye, it’s Saturday, August 25, 2012.  How did it all happen so fast?  Where does the time go?

Habits can easily enter our lives or disappear from our lives. We may have had the best routine going and then all of a sudden, it’s been two months since you tracked your food, ate healthy, got in a good workout.

Often we “awful-ize” the whole kit-and-kaboodle saying things like, “I can never get back in that routine,” “I can’t get my mo-jo back,” or “Once I lose my groove, I can never find it.”

That is so untrue.

A new habit is ready to bloom. You just need to start. Today. Yes, start today. And repeat tomorrow. And then again on day three. 

Time is going to go by anyway.

What new habit are you willing to start? Go ahead and make the commitment by posting your new habit in the comments field.

Jennifer Barley is a Professional Certified Life Coach, public speaker, Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC) instructor, author and former award-winning Weight Loss Leader.

It is Jennifer’s strong belief that every person can create whatever life they choose and she partners with her clients to make it happen. She has a strong talent for motivating, inspiring and adding humor to every situation.

Jennifer works with clients one-on-one, in workshop environments, and through online tele-classes. As the KickStart Coach™ Jennifer is committed to providing the support, encouragement, accountability, and motivation that her clients need to get inspired and get in the game.

You can learn more about her at www.jenniferbarley.com and read her blog at http://blog.jenniferbarley.com

10 Ways to Improve Your Day

While I’m in Charleston, South Carolina, this week participating in and presenting a couple of workshops, I thought I would share a few of my favorite blogs.

This one is from the fabulous Kristin Barton Cuthriell.

  • Smile at everyone you meet.
  • Write down at least two things that you are grateful for today.
  • Do something physical. (Get rid of the excuses. My friend who works out regularly will be running three miles, while my aunt who has had a stroke, will be sitting in a chair doing her foot exercises. One is not more difficult than the other. They both will be pushing themselves appropriately. What can you do?)
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Do something nice for someone else. (This does not have to be time-consuming. Sometimes it does not take a whole lot of effort to improve someone else’s day.)
  • Plan something that you will look forward to doing. (An evening walk, a dinner out, a vacation.)
  • Set and accomplish a goal. (Yes, accomplishing this list definitely counts.)
  • When you become upset or frustrated, remember that whatever it is that is bothering you may not matter next year, next month, or even tomorrow.
  • Pray
  • Take at least fifteen minutes to do something that you find relaxing. (Observing nature, talking a walk, meditating, taking a warm bath, listening to music….)

Let go of bitterness today and let life in.

Kristin Barton Cuthriell, M.Ed, MSW, LCSW

Kristin is a licensed psychotherapist and educator currently working in private practice, counseling individuals, couples, and families. She utilizes a hope based cognitive behavior approach to therapy and other empirically validated treatments to help individuals suffering from depression, anxiety, relationship issues, and difficult life transitions. Prior to entering the mental health field, Kristin spent a decade teaching first, third, and sixth grades. She received a BA in Education from Virginia Tech and went on to earn her Master’s in Education and her Master’s in Social Work. Kristin also enjoys speaking and writing and is currently working on a book designed to help people live more fulfilling lives.

You can read her blog at http://letlifeinpractices.com/

Inspiration for Today

While I’m in Charleston, South Carolina, this week participating in and presenting at a couple of workshops, I thought I would share a few of my favorite blogs.

This one is from the fabulous Kristin Barton Cuthriell.

Today

Today I will live with integrity.

Today I will reflect on what it is that I truly value.

Today I will make an effort to make my actions match my values and beliefs.

Today I will remind myself that living with integrity brings peace of mind.

Today I will not dwell on mistakes that I have made in the past, but I will acknowledge the lessons that I have learned.

Today I will open my eyes to the good things that surround me.

Today I will pause long enough to appreciate today.

Related articles

Kristin Barton Cuthriell, M.Ed, MSW, LCSW

Kristin is a licensed psychotherapist and educator currently working in private practice, counseling individuals, couples, and families. She utilizes a hope based cognitive behavior approach to therapy and other empirically validated treatments to help individuals suffering from depression, anxiety, relationship issues, and difficult life transitions. Prior to entering the mental health field, Kristin spent a decade teaching first, third, and sixth grades. She received a BA in Education from Virginia Tech and went on to earn her Master’s in Education and her Master’s in Social Work. Kristin also enjoys speaking and writing and is currently working on a book designed to help people live more fulfilling lives.

You can read her blog at http://letlifeinpractices.com/

Don’t Let Them Stop You

While I’m in Charleston, South Carolina, this week participating in and presenting a couple of workshops, I thought I would share a few of my favorite blogs.

This one is from the fabulous Kristin Barton Cuthriell.

“Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing. “

-Aristotle

You have a purpose.

There is work to be done.

You can do it.

There is fun to be had.

You can have it.

There are people to love.

You can love them.

There are quiet moments to enjoy.

You can enjoy them.

There is love to be received.

You can receive it.

There is life worth experiencing.

You can experience it.

No matter what you do, there may always be someone out there who finds fault in you.

The truth is… we all have faults.

The truth is… we can always find a critic.

Are you going to allow those critics or the critic that lives within you to hold you back from living your best life?

Work hard, play hard, take time to rest, pray, and let life in.

When you live with integrity, you can ignore the critic.

Related articles

• Appreciation Is The Language of the Soul (mothermaryswords.wordpress.com)

• The love you give is the love you receive. (positive-thoughts.typepad.com)

• The inner Critic (wellnessspirit.wordpress.com)

 

Kristin Barton Cuthriell, M.Ed, MSW, LCSW

Kristin is a licensed psychotherapist and educator currently working in private practice, counseling individuals, couples, and families. She utilizes a hope based cognitive behavior approach to therapy and other empirically validated treatments to help individuals suffering from depression, anxiety, relationship issues, and difficult life transitions. Prior to entering the mental health field, Kristin spent a decade teaching first, third, and sixth grades. She received a BA in Education from Virginia Tech and went on to earn her Master’s in Education and her Master’s in Social Work. Kristin also enjoys speaking and writing and is currently working on a book designed to help people live more fulfilling lives.

You can read her blog at http://letlifeinpractices.com/

Painful Lessons: What I Learned from a Bulging Disc

While traveling for the next few days, I thought I would share the inspiring words of some other fabulous coaches.

Today’s blog is from my friend and fellow coach, Jodie Rodenbaugh.

As a certified personal trainer who lives and breathes wellness, it’s both frustrating and exciting to deal with the pain of an injured back. Frustrating for the obvious pain and helplessness, but exciting to have the opportunity to feel what numerous others go through when dealing with back injuries so I can empathize a little easier.

For more than two months, I was at the mercy of my body—a victim of sorts. I’m used to working out hard and fast five days a week and consider myself to be pretty strong. I’m not the patient who sits all day and has no core strength and stability, but I am the patient who didn’t listen to her body when it was trying to tell her she had to pause and pay attention.

The first eight weeks I went to a chiropractor and a massage therapist three times a week with no improvement. So I decided it was time to find someone else and by the miracles of the Universe, the instant I made that decision, a man showed up on Facebook and lo and behold he was a chiropractor!

He got to the root cause in the first visit and by the second visit I was not only seeing hope, but also getting a glimpse of feeling myself again. The physical cause—my muscle imbalances were pushing my hips out of alignment until they couldn’t support one another.

What a relief this was to me! I now have a cause and when we have a cause it’s easier to fix, right? Putting a Band-Aid on something will only take the pain away for a little while, but the pain will continue to seep out if we try to mask it in some way.

My muscles were a mess; tight in some areas but overstretched and weak in others. If I didn’t pausing to figure out why I was feeling these warnings from my body and actually do something about them, the effect–pain–was still going to be the same.

I’d been fooling myself when I thought the problem would go away if I didn’t acknowledge the warnings. I’m not really sure if I was afraid to see the pain, “Oh, no, this isn’t happening to me! I’m going to put blinders on,” or if I just felt put out enough to ignore it, “Ugh, I can’t believe this is happening to me. I am getting old and my body is breaking down. Poor me,” or if maybe it was a combination of the two.

Either way, the body doesn’t like to be ignored, and mine said enough! My imbalances were bad enough and were ignored for long enough that when my back finally said, “No more!” I had a bulging disc in my lower back.

Now, having said all that, there’s another side to the story that I feel is important. As a Core Energy Coach and someone who knows thoughts create feelings, which then produce outcomes, I have been well-versed in the concepts of “what we think we feel” and how it has a tendency to show up in our bodies.

I believe my thoughts were contributing to my pain, but it’s not always easy to figure out what our thoughts are telling us because some thoughts are not in the conscious part of our minds. I had no idea what I was telling myself, so I sat with it for a while thinking of what was going on in my life and testing ideas out. “Well it could be… or maybe it’s…” But, nothing was standing out to me so I knew the thought had to be locked down deep in my subconscious possibly something I’ve been hiding from or avoiding.

Wanting to explore my current back pain and the mind-body connection, I was drawn further into the research of Louis L. Hay. She is known as one of the founders of the self-help movement. Her first book, Heal Your Body, was published in 1976, long before it was okay to discuss the connection between the mind and body.

Louise explains how our beliefs and ideas about ourselves are often the cause of our emotional problems and physical maladies, and how by using certain tools we can change our thinking and our lives for the better.

She has found there to be two common beliefs that cause lower back pain. The first one is a fear of money and the second is lack of financial support. The affirmation she suggests is, “I trust the process of life. All I need is always taken care of. I am safe.”

Now, I know this may sound a little crazy, but it totally makes sense for me and I can’t wait to dig deeper to untie this knot that has been holding me back. (Literally!). And even crazier still, I’m kind of grateful for this injury. It has given me some valuable insight into my own mind-body connection and helped me relate to the pain of others.

Pain is such a beautiful mess!

 

Jodie Rodenbaugh holds a Masters in Education and spent 16 years dedicated to teaching children the love of learning and eventually expanded her practice to coaching teachers.

Her decision to leave education, a Masters degree, and a full-time paying job in which she was comfortable enough not to ever worry about money came from the experiences she had after suddenly becoming a young, pregnant widow.

She followed her heart and the many clues she was given from God and the Universe and took the biggest leap of faith in herself as she resigned from education to share her lessons and passion for life. She helps others untangle from their fears, overwhelms, and pains that are suffocating their hearts and controlling their thoughts so that they are free to live and love again.

Learn more about Jodie and read her blog at jodierodenbaugh.com.

 

Living Life By Choosing a Woo to the ‘Who’

While meeting a deadline, attending a workshop, and traveling over the next few days, I thought I would share the inspiring words of some other fabulous coaches.

Today’s blog is from my friend, mentor and coach, Jennifer Barley.

Every day I feel like I am living a bit more authentically—the true me. I am recognizing patterns that don’t serve me as well as the patterns that do serve me well. I am letting go of putting pressure on myself to do more, be more, and show the world more.

I am having fun finding out who I am. Exploring the various sides of me. Understanding myself more and more. Questioning thoughts. Thinking about answers. Continuing to shake up my ‘Who’.

I have found that I do really well when I take the time to slow down. I think back on my prior ‘Who’—always rushing from one thing to the next, working all the time, my mind constantly racing and not slowing down—only to be exhausted at the end of the day. I was always going a thousand miles a minute.

My new ‘Who’ is about ease. Not resisting. Not defending. Not going against the flow. Approaching my day with ease. Enhancing my work by leveraging the things that I am doing. Being grateful for the ease that has been created in my life.

I can still get wound for sound—and it is with ease that I remind myself to breathe.

I am working on eliminating my “shoulds” in life and working on the “want tos.” I am working on straightforward conversations. I am working on not changing Who I want to be.

I am feeling a true Woo-Who!

Jennifer Barley is a Professional Certified Life Coach, public speaker, Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC) instructor, author and former award-winning Weight Loss Leader.

It is Jennifer’s strong belief that every person can create whatever life they choose and she partners with her clients to make it happen. She has a strong talent for motivating, inspiring and adding humor to every situation.

Jennifer works with clients one-on-one, in workshop environments, and through online tele-classes. As the KickStart Coach™ Jennifer is committed to providing the support, encouragement, accountability, and motivation that her clients need to get inspired and get in the game.

You can learn more about her at www.jenniferbarley.com and read her blog at http://blog.jenniferbarley.com