Helping You Stay In The Green Over The Holidays and New Year
By Josie Askin
Your Happy And Healthy Place
How does feeling happy and healthy look to you? What does it mean to you?
Being fit and having energy.
To bound out of bed with energy rather than needing to drag myself out.
Having the energy (physical and emotional) to go on adventures.
Having stamina and endurance.
Not getting constantly sick.
Eating well to fuel my body but not being restrictive.
Having fun and being fun to be around.
Being kind to my partner, being kind full.
These are some of the responses I get when I ask my clients what happy and healthy looks like for them. While the responses are always different, two things stand out:
- they always cover more than one aspect of wellbeing, whether it be movement (activity and rest), nutrition or mindset; and
- my clients always smile as they describe their happy and healthy place.
To feel happy and healthy is something we all want and strive for. We intrinsically know that to be happy and healthy is more than just exercising regularly or eating healthy. It’s about how you move, eat and think. Too much emphasis on one aspect of wellbeing can lead to other areas being neglected.
Achieving balance – you are how you move, eat and think
I often refer to wellbeing as a three-legged stool, with movement, nutrition and mindset each being a leg. To feel balanced requires equal weight to each leg. Without an equal focus on our physical and mental wellbeing, it’s hard to achieve energy, joy and kindness.
My clients are intelligent, driven and ambitious people. They know what they want in life and they work hard to get it. Health and wellbeing are no exception with many knowing what they need to do to feel happier and healthier. You may be wondering why do these people need a health coach if they know what they want and they know what to do.
Bridging The Gap
Most people are confused by the idea of a health coach due to our culture of treatment rather than prevention. Most people would agree that professional athletes would benefit from health coaching as their livelihood depends on it. Similarly, those at the other end of the continuum, those with, or at high risk of developing a chronic illness. They too have a need to prioritise their health and wellbeing as their quality of life depends on it. What about everyone else?
Simply put, we would all benefit from health coaching and from prioritizing our health and wellbeing. Although our clients know how to feel happier and healthier they are feeling exhausted, stressed, burnout, overwhelmed, unmotivated, sad, unfit, flabby and flat (their words not mine) because knowing and doing are two different things.
What prevents the “doing”? For my clients, it is never due to laziness or lack of will power. Instead, we all have deep-set beliefs stopping us from doing the things we know and want to do. By working with a coach you uncover, challenge and replace limiting beliefs so the “knowing” becomes “doing”.
These limiting beliefs are varied but carry a similar thread of permitting oneself to slow down. To come from a place of kindness, the same kindness we bestow on others. To focus on progress over perfection. To selflessly be selfish by prioritising time for our health and wellbeing as we need to place our own mask first before helping others.
We all know health is important. We all want to feel happy and healthy but often we invest our time in other activities that appear more urgent. Perhaps you prioritise work or caring for others over your health and wellbeing.
Keeping your account topped up
I compare health and wellbeing to a bank account. Make regular investments in your health and wellbeing by doing things that nourish your physical and mental wellbeing, and you keep your account in the green. Better yet, by putting in more than you take out you build up savings for resilience when you need it most.
Unfortunately, many of us do the opposite by operating in firefighting mode, focusing on the urgent tasks ahead of us. By withdrawing from our health and wellbeing account without any regular investment we enter the “red zone”. We are left feeling depleted, operating in overdraft and continuously in a state of energy deficiency. No wonder many of us feel so exhausted. It can take something dramatic like illness or injury, the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff mentality, that forces us to re-focus and make a decision to invest in ourselves. Often the investment required to get us back in the green is significant, and at the expense of other activities. As the saying goes “make time for wellness, or you’ll be forced to make time for illness”.
More energy, joy and kindness for the holidays
I believe in small changes for more energy, joy and kindness. As we go into the holidays, a time when many of us are in full firefighting gear, what is one small thing you can do today that will replenish your health and wellbeing bank account?
Perhaps it’s writing a list of things you enjoy doing that refresh and recharge as a reminder you and committing time each day to do one of the activities. Perhaps it’s reinstalling some healthy habits that you developed during lockdown like the joy of slowing down and spending more time with your family, a midday walk around the block, or connecting with neighbours over the fence. Commit yourself to do these by scheduling them into your diary or phone today.
Health And Wellbeing Is On A Continuum
For those of us who are feeling so far in the red that the green zone seems out of reach, remember health and wellbeing is on a continuum with ebbs and flows. All that matters is where you are today and aiming to do a little bit better. Focus on progress over perfection.
If you are in crisis and need of help there are a range of services available.
- In an emergency please phone 111
- If you need someone to talk to please free call or text 1737 anytime to reach a trained counsellor.
Remember, everyone benefits from the support of a health coach. We are all on a continuum looking to do a little bit better, to be a happier and healthier version of ourselves one step at a time. Spring Coaching is here to support you to bridge the gap between what you want and know, and what you actually do to achieve your goal.
In a nutshell
- We all want to be happier and healthier.
- To be happy and healthy requires a balance between movement, nutrition and mindset. You are how you move eat and think.
- A health coach bridges the gap between knowing what we want and taking the steps to achieve it.
- Health and wellbeing is like a bank account, make regular small investments to keep yourself topped up and in the green. Too many demands can put you into debt and into the red. Prioritise time for the small things that make you feel happy and healthier because prevention is better than cure.
- Health and wellbeing is on a continuum, focus on where you are today and aim to do a little bit better. Focus on progress over perfection.
- Reach out for professional support when needed.
This disclaimer informs readers that the views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the author, and not necessarily to the author’s employer, organization, committee or other group or individual.
Josie Askin is one of our Professional Coaches and owns Spring Coaching, a holistic wellness coaching practice. Spring Coaching specialises in driven and ambitious people to have more balance, energy, joy and kindness through small sustainable steps. Josie is an experienced long-distance runner, pilates teacher, facilitator and yogi with 15+ years in the Corporate world before establishing Spring Coaching. She knows the challenges of finding balance in a busy life.
Connect with Josie to learn more about how Spring Coaching and to arrange a complimentary discovery consultation.