A case study.
A client of mine, let’s call her Amy (not her real name) came to me because she felt tired of flying by the seat of her pants. She was exhausted, financially all over the place, in a not so great relationship and struggling with her overall body wellbeing. She was also wonderfully successful, deeply magnetic, when she entered a room, all heads turned and everyone just knew they wanted to be in her gaze. She felt like a fraud as behind closed doors she felt a mess, whereas in public she was quite the opposite.
Her original coaching topic was to get her body back into better shape and feel more energetic, her logic being that if that happened, the rest would follow. A girl after my own heart, clearly.
After doing all my foundational sessions, it was clear that Amy was predominately yellow energy (I love to know what drives us a individuals and what the core, go-to style my clients have in terms of communication, habit making/breaking style, how they recharge, how they best achieve etc. Over the years I’ve developed a version of Insights, have used it for years, I sometimes incorporate some aspects of astrology only because I’m a total astro geek but it all comes together to help me understand each client better and for them to start to see what I see which is always pretty mind blowing). Understanding that a classic yellow energy trait is to go full force into projects but often run out of steam/motivation/enthusiasm when results aren’t fast flowing, that’s when boredom sets in and then it’s back to how things were. #slowprogress.
Knowing this for Amy was the most powerful insight she’s had in a long time. The trick was to use her natural style, take all the power and purpose behind it and adapt that into the parts of her life she felt were out of control. The aha moments about why things in the past had played out as they had were coming thick and fast, it was how to make the changes for the future we now turned our attention to.
We started with three changes that can stop that feeling of skating on thin ice pretty well over night:
- Evidence based thinking,
- The plan behind any motivation.
Evidence based thinking.
Feeling like a fraud, getting down and out on yourself are all symptoms of listening to your emotions rather than gathering the facts. For every single worry and concern Amy had, we went fact finding to see if it was emotionally charged thinking, or if there was an actual issue that needed dealing with (other than the emotional thinking).
99% of the time, it was Amy’s emotions that were causing the issues, they were not based in fact and, in most occasions, didn’t actually exist in the real world. Our subconscious brains don’t know what’s real or perceived. It doesn’t know if something has actually happened or if it’s our imagination going wild. This is both a good thing and a bad thing.
Manifesting is based on this subconscious trickery, think something enough in the present tense and it’ll more often than not materialise (with a bit of action thrown in). That’s where the phrase self fulfilling prophecy originated. The same is applied to our unhelpful thoughts and emotions, the physical sensations that can be created by these thoughts create stress, leading to fight, flight or freeze and before you know it, you’re a hot mess. Amy saw how she’d been getting herself in that hot mess, which helped us work out what strategies she needed to stop the crazy and instead embrace the fact.
I call this the secret sauce to behaviour change and it’s all linked to the human condition to need love, safety and belonging in our lives. The secret is, however, how you create that for yourself without needing external factors to provide it for you. Amy’s relationship spoke to this concept very well. She was unconsciously expecting her partner to make her feel loved, when she wasn’t making herself feel loved first. It didn’t matter how he was behaving, he could have been the most loving partner in the world, but until she learnt to love herself, nothing was going to change. Always needing that essential feeling to come from another was causing a great lack of self worth. We want self efficacy, and self belief only.
Safety wasn’t an issue as Amy was financially independent, had her own property and felt secure in her work and career trajectory. She was providing her own safety. But belonging was an issue (even though it took us a while to tease that out!). Because of her career aspirations and driven personality, she always felt a little left out, like she’d not yet found her tribe. Add to that being yellow energy, the life and soul of the personality colour wheel, it was becoming apparent this was hindering her progress and happiness. That gave us two definitive topics to stop Amy feeling she was still wearing ice skates, learning to love herself and creating her own tribe alongside backing it all up with evidence.
The plan behind the motivation.
It’s a myth that you need motivation to get anything done. Motivation is fleeting at best, it comes and goes and is never there when you need it the most.
When you’re designing a new project, activity or change you want to make, you feel fired up and ready to achieve great things. This, we call the honey moon period. How long it lasts is unique to you, but there will come a moment when that motivation just disappears. You’ll crash and want to burn, this is when a very high % of people chuck in the towel.
Not very long after this crash, you’ll get another motivation lift. It’ll feel like it’s come out of nowhere, and you’re feeling back on track. And then comes the crash again. This motivation rollercoaster of highs and lows is a thing that never actually stops. It’s just what motivation does.
Knowing that, however, changes everything. It’s not personal, it’s not because you’re not capable, good enough, strong enough, it’s just how it is.
That’s why having a back up plan, with steps that are scheduled, organised and pre planned is crucial to change anything or do anything new. And that’s why coaches exist!
Amy was blown away by this concept. She’d heard about this before, but when it was applied to her life and we were able to see how it has been running the show, it gave her the evidence she needed to make some seriously amazing changes in her life.
And that was just the start. Amy revolutionised how she felt about herself, who she wanted in her life, how she wanted to feel about all the important stuff and how she was making this kind of thinking her natural go-to mindset.