“Nobody likes to be changed. Not even a baby.”
This is a phrase my mother taught me early in life. Don’t try to change others. (Inspiring others and leading by example is not the same thing.) But what about when we want to change ourselves? What about when the change we want to create is within us not outside of us?
As a “Rebel Tendency” (gretchenrubin.com), I have a tendency to resist both inner and outer expectations of myself. Meaning, I don’t like to be told what to do, not even by myself. Naturally, this makes steering internal change a little more challenging than I’d like. Rebels wake up in the morning and think, “What do I want to do today?” This is opposed to other tendencies that wake up and think, “What do I have to do today?” And while the former is mostly true for me, I’ve also learned to override my own objections in order to be successful. And regardless of our tendency, when desire is strong enough, we will do whatever we think it takes to reach that desire. It starts with being willing to be willing.
In the last few weeks I noticed that things I normally do to maintain my mental and physical wellbeing were not working so well anymore. This isn’t to say those things I do to self-regulate or feel good will never work again, they just don’t work so well right now. It’s somewhat like when my phone gets a new operating system and I continue to use the old system in fear of the change. The old system works to a degree, but not effortlessly, and mostly it’s really frustrating and leaves me feeling pretty defeated.
One of the best-kept secrets I’ve found is: Rather than focusing on the problem, focus on the solution. Focus on the solution.
What we focus on increases. And what we believe to be real becomes real in its consequences. But sometimes, we just can’t seem to pull ourselves out of our current thought or action even when we know it’s not helping. This is where the quote, “Nobody likes to be changed, not even a baby” starts to hit home for me. While I have a lot of tools in my shed that I use to help myself to stay grounded, balanced, and positive (which rotate depending on my current need and state) what I remember when I get stuck is another golden rule: “We are not meant to do it alone.” It may be an inside job, but you don’t have to go it alone.
Even as a Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner and long-time fitness expert, I go through times when my current ways of eating and living don’t work so well. I don’t just mean that my clothes get tight, I mean I don’t feel as good. Even experts need experts. The last few weeks have been challenging for us all. And while the downtime has allowed me to examine parts of my life I didn’t even know needed attention, other parts get less attention, and the intensity of the outside world can feel so destabilizing.
Personally speaking, other than connecting with myself, the biggest help for me during this massive planetary upheaval has been working with outside professionals and connecting with others - my therapist, my friends and loved ones. Together, we discuss the problems but focus on the solutions. We are stronger in numbers, even when that number is one.
Written by: Audra Henderson, Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, Certified Personal Trainer and Master of Public Health.
Craving Connection? Join Audra for a virtual Sculpt class Tuesdays from 11am- 12pm on Zoom at https://alaska.zoom.us/j/7499111288. Suggested donation $8-20 dollars; if you can not donate to a class, your participation and energy is enough. You can schedule a private appointment with Audra at https://www.mooncyclemedicine.org/bookings-checkout/visit-with-audra-henderson-mph/book