When we work with new students we talk about the philosophy, the Art, the Way, the "mental game" a lot. But these conversations aren't as helpful and robust as they can be without also implementing how to practically apply these lessons to life.
At the base, students must come to us with a desire to improve their health and wellness somewhere. From there we take an assessment- usually in the form of a free 30 minute phone call- and see if we are a good fit for each other.
Most of these phone calls consist of us asking a few short questions and then listening not just to the answer, but what might be going on behind the answer.
A lot of questions we ask bring up things people might never have thought of before or consist of gaining a bigger picture on how we might map a possible journey in order to get to the desired outcome.
This isn't really the business of your health and wellness, it's the business of listening, habit arrangement, and building mental clarity, acuity and resilience in you.
The latter gets us to the former.
Our fight is against depression, cardiovascular disease and obesity. The top killers in the world today. When our students find health, wellness and vitality, we all win.
Here are the 3 practical places all our students need to begin... and where we all can come back to when we get lost.
1. A balanced budget. We often think of budget in terms of our financial needs. This doesn't have to be seen so one-dimensionally and can serve is in all spheres of our life.
A balanced budget doesn't mean everything, everywhere gets the same investment- your mortgage is much bigger than your electric bill- it means we give each need its due attention.
A balanced budget is a matter of harmonizing energy, income and debt in order to live debt free.
What needs the most attention right now? What needs the least? What can you cut out? What can you cut back on? What do you want in the future that you need to budget for now?
Quite a few of your life needs are much like your financial needs. Treat them with this kind of practicality.
We help people identify their budget needs, first. An attentive outside eye (re: coach) can help you cut right to the chase.
2. An organized schedule. Once the new life budget takes shape, we must look at how things are organized. How is your life currently organized and what needs re-organized to get you where you want to go?
This is actually the hardest part. This is a matter of creating new habits, new methods and new paradigms for most people. Outside help is crucial... most of us are too close to "the project", re: ourselves!
If we are not careful, this can be a very frustrating time.
If we have not addressed our emotional root, if we think we can simply "will" our new schedule to be so, if we do not remain patient, self-aware, honest, let go our self-judgment and keep our sense of humor, we may get so fed up with the challenges of forming new habits that we quit.
For most students, there is a dichotomy here that must be embraced: we are creating a lifestyle, not a quick-fix. Thinking long-term is crucial to managing the ups and downs of the short game. At the same time, our short game, is where we must spend a majority of our time and attention: doing the small things consistently that create long-term, consistent happiness.
For most of our students, when they are brand new, we don't program more than 1-2 weeks of work at a time for the first 2-3 months. This keeps the "bites" small and the pressure low.
Much of my work as a guide and a coach are done in this sphere.
3. Continuing education. The work never stops. Like eating and moving and breathing, we must also continuously feed our mindset and spirit the right nutrients if we want to continue feeling whole and vibrant, healthy and well.
A lot of people's "old ways" come calling after they stop working with me. If we have taken the time to set the proper habits together, the student can roll with "the slide" and continue to grow.
Most people I work with crave the right nutrients physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. We have a program for that. A program that serves the body, challenges the mind, strengthens the spirit, and creates a cohort of accountable, happy people after they get 1-3 months of the intensive work done.
This program is like a well-lived life. There is always much to teach, much to learn, much to share, much to be thankful for and much more to be done.
Properly focused continuing education isn't just valuable, it's vital. It refreshes, renews and reconfirms the good stuff we are all seeking more of.