Now that we’ve entered February, let’s do a little check in. What progress are you making with your 2019 goals, intentions or whatever you’re labeling them?
If you’ve been to your gym in the last week, that early January sense that the gym might be reaching capacity, is now beginning to dwindle. Some of those well-meaning resolutioners have already exhausted their will power and fallen back into old routines of picking up a pizza over picking up a weight. Why is that?
When we decide to make a change, what’s happening internally is we’re rudely interrupting a habit we’ve created. Habits carry immense power. We create them because they require less effort and save us energy. Habits allow our brains to run on autopilot. According to Charles Duhigg, Author of The Power of Habit, “Habits, scientists say, emerge because the brain is constantly looking for ways to save effort. Left to its own devices, the brain will try to make almost any routine into a habit, because habits allow our brains to ramp down more often.”
Translation, our brains seek out ways to be lazy! And by making a change, we’re declaring war on a habit and subsequently demanding our brains work at a higher bandwidth.
Our brains will go along with that plan, until energy reserves are exhausted. Then, we find ourselves between the push of Team “Create Something New” and the pull of Team “Old Easy Habits”. I’m guessing you’ve experienced this battle more than once.
Some say it takes 21 days to create a habit. Dr. Caroline Leaf believes it takes longer, in fact, three cycles of 21 days to create this new habit. If the change you seek is switching from mayo & brioche as daily sandwich ingredients, to mustard & sprouted grain bread, that’s one thing. A lot stays the same. The time of day you make your lunch, the number of items you put on the sandwich, where the bread is stored, and the location of the condiment in the fridge. Only two new decisions are made, the loaf of bread you grab at the store & the variety of mustard that’s thrown in your cart.
However, most of us intend to make a bigger change than two items at the grocery!
With a more daunting task, like creating a work flow to double revenue, rediscovering purpose & inspiration in your daily life or training for an Ironman, these involve more than a few sight tweaks. Each has complex components and needs a large investment of time to fully realize. In these cases, it could be very necessary to call in reinforcements.
So, how do you know time has come to call on a Coach to realize your goals?
1. How big is the change you want to make?
If it’s a large change, that has many moving parts, there will be more opportunities for things to derail. Each of those require energy and will power. A coach is an outside objective voice providing encouragement and support at each step of the journey. When we think we’ve come to the end of our own energy reserves, there are times we borrow another’s energy & belief to give us that little push to keep going when things get tough.
2. How much time will it take to get there?
We live in a microwave society and people tend to prefer immediate results. The longer it takes to see a goal takes to fruition, the more we can sometimes feel lost in its pursuit. The journey to every achieved goal it not without ups and downs. And though the temporary valleys we experience might be a dramatic improvement from where we began, it can be easy to give up when hopelessness is all we feel. A coach can help to develop a strategic plan, encourage foresight around potential obstacles and snap you out of an emotional spiral with a fresh perspective of the overall journey.
3. What are your energy reserves looking like?
Part of a Coach’s job is facilitating clients in reallocating their energy. If you know change is paramount, yet feeling overwhelmed is a permanent condition, hire a coach immediately! Coaches have tools to help minimize stress, assess where you can find energy and begin to once again take control of the direction you’re headed.
4. Do you know what to do next? And are you taking those steps on your own?
I’ve had enough potential client inquiries to know, some believe that if they try again and give it a bit more time, they will in fact make that change. Sometimes that works, but it’s rare! Inevitably, these same individuals reach out a few months to a few years later, finally ready to hire outside help. They needed a bit more time to unequivocally realize they’ve come to the end of themselves.
5. What’s at stake if you don’t make this change?
The answer to this question might be scary! If you can’t afford NOT to make this change successfully, get someone else on your team. Get a whole tribe of people on your team! You are certainly worth it and so is the outcome!
I hope you’re on track for 2019 and this isn’t a conversation for you! However, if your best efforts are waning and this change is important, click here to on my calendar right away for a complimentary 30-minute coaching session! We can talk through any business or personal challenges you’re experiencing and see if it makes sense to work together!