Current Events

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Weight Loss...Continued

Hardly a day goes by that I don´t hear some kind of advice about weight loss, new research results, new diets, new exercises. It is difficult to discern what works. How come, so many people are still struggling with that topic, despite the abundance of offers to help lose weight. What comes to mind is "What you focus on expands"...

When we focus on being relaxed and happy, we end up being relaxed and happy with the help of the many clues and hints we come along every day. That´s how it works. That said, if we focus on losing weight, it works in a different way. The subconscious mind works in images. There is no NO in images. An image is, or it isn´t. Try this: "Don´t think of a pink elephant!" Impossible. It is right there, big and pink. What does that mean for weight loss:

I can give my own example. Unfortunately, I struggled with my weight until my mid twenties, always unhappy with my body, always on a diet of some sorts. I did not ever achieve my goal, however. One day, my health check-up showed I had elevated cholesterol and sugar levels. I was shocked. After all, I was pretty much only eating diet foods, with hick-ups in between, plus, I was young!

This changed my motivation completely. Losing weight was not on my agenda anymore. My new goal was to restore my health. That image of a pristine state of health was very powerful to me. It started to guide my choices, I started exercising and nourishing my body as opposed to starving it. Most of all, I started be-friending it, loving it and being grateful for it. My cholesterol and sugar levels have now been fine for many years, and the pounds came off within the first year as a nice side effect.

It even took me a while to realize that I had achieved my long standing goal from the past, because it was not my main image anymore. And that image had been weight troubles. Our subconsciousness is our trusted servant and works around the clock - even when we are asleep. I found it to be very effective to be mindful of powerful images of our goals. Struggling with weight was not getting me anywhere, but "seeing", envisioning a healthy body was. I would even imagine the numbers of my next check-up back within the normal range. I looked for behavior that supported my image of a healthy body, without ever experiencing a feeling of struggle.

With a little practice, this habit of defining our goals in powerful images is easy to do and even fun. In my work with clients as a coach, I help them achieve their goals. We determine those powerful images, which are very individual to each of us. One thing I have learned about behavior change is that it will not happen, if it is accompanied by uncomfortable feelings. Just imagine how struggling with weight feels, as opposed to returning to a vibrant, healthy body.

I find it wasted time to go for goals that have this unpleasant vibe around them. Life is so precious, and time does go by whether we want it or not. My credo is to live every day the best while creating an even more amazing tomorrow. How neat is that! Enjoying what we are doing, taking the responsibility, loving making decisions for our own goals, our heart´s desires. I have also found that our heart goes for what is best for us and not what brings a good taste into our mouth for a moment at our health´s expense. Trusting that has been very powerful for me as well as my clients.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Biographies: From Steve Jobs to My Grandmother

In a class I took about biography writing I heard my talented teacher Jim Ruland explain that the bottom line in writing any biographical or autobiographical material was that it had to pass the "Who cares?!" test of the reader.

I was impressed, and started to apply this "test" to my own little and big life questions, with me being my own audience. This made decisions often easier for me. It also got me to thinking that biographies are happening all the time. It is kind of a "starting with the end in mind" approach.

For as long as I can remember I have been fascinated with people and the decisions they made in their lives or what they make of things that happened to them, when stripped of the decision. Of course, one can learn a lot from reading the biographies of famous people. After all, they got famous for a reason. But I find the life stories of family members just as rich and inspiring. Plus, they left a little bit of them through me on this world. That fact makes their story somewhat more relatable to me, maybe also a little more interesting.

The thing about fascination is that it usually tells us something about ourselves. The relation to our own being, our own personality makes things fascinating for us. In that respect we are quite self-centered. Otherwise, how could we decide one thing from another, with many many things out there? It would be overwhelming and all the same, bland, boring and too much. Fascination brings us closer to our own talents and meaning of life.

So, what kind of people do you find fascinating? Is there a theme? Later we can ask where this theme shows up in our own life, and how we could incorporate more of it. It is a wonderful distilling process, and it works like a charm. Sometimes it takes the assistance of a life coach in order to find the theme and to go towards it. It always makes life more fulfilling and enriched, it always leaves me in awe.

Sometimes, reading biographies is simply entertaining, relaxing, interesting; without any noticeable connection to ourselves. That is fine as well. Usually, a true life theme shows up more than once, in various forms. Reading one interesting biography does not bear any significance for our own life, yet. It is when we find the same topic in movies, stories, etc., and it still fascinates, moves, highly interests us that we can assume a relevance for our own life path.

It is wonderful when we figure a new piece to our own truth out. It seems to show up when we are ready to tackle it, to learn about it (and us with it) and play with it. I find biographies to be one of the most direct ways to get to know yet unknown corners of our own personality and psyche.