How would you describe yourself? I replied to this question on the first day of my masters as ‘I’m an athelte’ as precociously as you could imagine. Unfortunatly, that is what I do, not who I am. Would you answer similarly? Possibly. So how would you descibe yourself? I replied with, impatient, fairly grumpy at times, a bit self-orientated, perfectionist and highly self-critical. Much like the rest of my class I focused on my shortcomings. I have tried this on a few teams that I worked with as a Sport Psychology Consultant and they also answered with negative attributes. Society has taught us to focus on our shortcomings, be it from work appriasals to our failed new years resolutions.
Awakening your inner power comes with 6 easy steps.
Step 1: The river of life
Tell me your wonderful properites…your talents, your quirky personality traits…anything good, anything positive. This is the beginning of flowing with the river of life. Going with the flow of the river, for example the Amazon River, is fairly easy, the current is strong and you expend little to no energy. It can be pretty terrifiying at times as we are used to fighting and battling, but trust me, considering the strength of the amezonian current, relaxing expends far less energy.
Consider a situation in life where you could have turned around and gone with the current…
Step 2. Structure
With the intention to begin a new path of health or fitness, goals are key.
- Set goals personal to you – Relating goals to the life of your friends is useless because you are constantly comparing yourself to them, leading to negativity.
- Go to the stairs in your house – Place your long term goal on the top step. Then place a medium term goal half way up the step with short term goals on the steps in-between. As you go up the stars the goals must increase in difficulty.
- Upon achieving each goal congratulate yourself and do not even consider any negatives on your journey to that goal. If it took longer than expected who cares, you got there.
Step 3. Don’t go it alone
Although I advise not to set goals relative to others I do think trying to exercise alone is horrific. It’s completely unsustainable, especially if you are not used to exercising. Contact a personal trainer and get a deal for you and a friend to train together, join a sports club and build relationships, or begin a 12 week programme with a group of people. It’s up to you. What I’m really saying is you need support and you need to be able to build and sustain relationships in fittness.
Step 4. Remove control
We all struggle with that controlling person in our friendship group or the boss who micro-manages in work, so why allow yourself to be in a highly controlled health & fitness environment? It’s not sustainable. I’m personally against calorie counting apps on your phone/tablet – what do you do if you cannot find the food you are about to eat on the app? Starve yourself? If you’re out to lunch do you spend half the time updating the app with your food choices? No thanks! Enjoy your life. Cut out the processed food garbage and eat natural whole food with good protein, healthy fat, unprocessed carbohydrate sources and loads of water.
Step 5: 15 minutes
Just do 15 minutes of exercise or 15 minutes of looking up some different food recipes. When you get to fifteen minutes and you need to move on to something else, no problem. However if you feel you can go for an extra 5, great, if you can make it to 30 minutes, super! You may even find you can reach an hour. Despite this, you still achieved what you set out to do, 15 minutes.
Step 6 (The Most Important): Three Good Things
Its Simple – get a diary and write down three good things, big or tiny, that you did well that day. Nothing else. Every day for two weeks and see how you feel.
Written by Leah Moore
Leah holds a Masters degree in Sports Sciences specialising in Sport Psychology from Brunel University, London. Leah works as a Sport Psychology Consultant with various sports teams. She also works with temas as an athletic development and speed coach, while she is also a Level 4 Personal Trainer. Leah also works with The Q Café Company as a Business Wellbeing Consultant to increase employee happiness & productivity through healthy food, motivation seminars and exercise prescription. Leah has written for the prominent sports psychology website TheSportInMind.com focusing on athlete welfare, positivity and body image. She has gained much of her insight into health & wellbeing from her extensive experience as a 100-meter and 200-meter sprint athlete.