Warning: This might be a little longer read, but it’s more for me than it is for anyone else. 🙂
CIRCUMSTANCES lead to
THOUGHTS which create our
FEELINGS which drives our
ACTIONS which creates our
RESULTS which is evidence supporting our thought
It’s all well and good to know these things, but what does it look like in real time with a real human brain?
A year ago last week I began my coach certification process. I was working full time as an office manager for a small manufacturing company (shout out to Epic Manufacturing) with 2 high school kids living at home and 3 adult kids living out of state.
Certification was a 6 month process with reading, videos, zoom classes, practicums, coaching practice and evaluations, etc., culminating in a test and at last certification. Then I started another 6 month program to help me continue to develop my coaching skills. I also left my job as the office manager with a busy summer ahead of me and uncertain plans as to what I wanted to do with coaching.
There were 2 options for the continuing program curriculum, Entrepreneur or Applied Coaching. With the underlying belief that I am not a good business person I, of course, chose the Applied Coaching track.
Slowly over the course of those 6 months I decided that maybe a small private practice would be an option for me. I don’t have to be “not a good business person”. That is just a judgment and a thought on my part. This business could look like whatever I wanted it to. And there was no rush for me to make this happen.
That was around the middle of July. “I can start small and figure it out as I go. No pressure, no big deal.” If only my brain remembered that plan. 🙂
I would start by listing myself on The Life Coach School’s Directory of Coaches….EASY!!! I just need a picture, a description of who I serve and what I do, and a live website. Okay!!!…. “I can figure out a website! It doesn’t have to be perfect.” That took a few days but I had a live website and submitted my items for the directory on August 6th.
Since I had a website now I should write blog posts and share them. And I should probably post on Instagram. But I’m not going to do it all the time!! Enter “The Calendar”. The calendar is a 12 month, 3 ft x 6 ft calendar to use in my office. So I will write a blog post every Monday, that’s easy enough. And I will post on Instagram on Wednesdays and Fridays. Done! On the calendar! Just follow the schedule.
I’m Michelle. I am learning how to minimize my overwhelm, perfectionism, and people-pleasing and I am ready to help you do the same. I’m a certified Life Coach and a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Come with me and learn how.
When I follow the schedule I show myself that I can keep my word to myself. Easy enough!! I managed to do that for 6 weeks in a row!
And then there is the planner… If I am going to make this a real business maybe I should learn something about business. A year long program with Jody Moore seems like a good place to start! Self-paced, low-key with calls twice a month to help me along. Sounds like a plan!
So last week, just a few highlights of my circumstances:
- My daughter was injured in the last 3 minutes of her 2nd Varsity football game and we needed to figure out what was wrong
- We saw an orthopedist on Monday morning
- Monday was the closing webinar for my Applied Coaching track. It was complete and I could take an exam by Friday
- Early on Monday I was notified that I had 48 hours to take a proficiency test and submit the necessary items to be considered for a coaching position opportunity
- We went to have an MRI Monday evening
- A blog post was not written on Monday
- She had a previously scheduled appt on Tuesday
- Tuesday at 8:45pm I submitted my items for the coaching opportunity
- We saw a second orthopedist on Wednesday for the results of the MRI
- Her ACL was fully torn, MCL partially torn and she will require surgery
- We attended the high school volleyball game to support friends on the team.
- We had a church youth group activity Wednesday night that I was helping with
- I did not post on Instagram on Wednesday
- It was her birthday on Thursday
- She had an away football game on Thursday
- With not going to football practice before school we were on a different schedule than before
- I didn’t do my daily walking 4.25 miles with my friend all week
- Saturday her soccer team did team and individual pictures before the game
- Saturday there was a surprise party for her planned by her friends at our house
So….. in the sea of all those circumstances it is curious to me that my brain continues to focus on the things not done. The loudest “neon light thoughts” were things like:
- “Here you go again! Not keeping your word to yourself. Your business will never go anywhere”
- “How can I make this better for my daughter?’
- “You can’t even take the time to write a blog post?”
- “Not even an Instagram post?”
- “You have 8 more hours before you application items submission is due. It’s not due until 5am. You should look over it….rerecord the video…..analyze the written answers……analyze them again. You know they are not good enough for you to be considered.”
- “You should have done something to make her birthday special”
- “If you were a better mother her birthday would have been different”
- “Why are you wasting time on your phone and/or the computer?”
- “You are so lazy! You haven’t walked all week!”
and on, and on , and on……….
I have the tools to recognize that these are just thoughts and not facts. And most of the time I could “manage” my thoughts. But what I wasn’t doing was allowing the disappointing emotions to be there. One of my coaches, in an effort to help me process some of the disappointment I was feeling, gave me a great analogy to see it. It’s like that emotion is your young child. And you are busy with at task when they come up to tell you something. You “shhh” them and tell them “just a minute,” putting them off, and putting them off. But that doesn’t make them go away. And sometimes, the lack of attention can cause an emotional erruption. I told my daughter it was okay for her to be upset, and she didn’t need to think, “It’s all good!” in that moment. It wasn’t all good. And it might be a long road before it was. But why couldn’t I give that same grace to myself.
Here is the thing, tools and strategies that I have learned and that I teach to others are wonderful ways to move forward through challenges we have, or towards things we are trying to create. But when we use those tools and strategies as weapons to punish ourselves for having human thoughts because “we know better”, just adds unnecessary suffering to our disappointment and pain. It happens, but it is often exhausting. And with the help of coaching we can recognize there is another way… because let’s face it….. life happens to all of us! And that is a wonderful and messy thing that we get to experience and learn through and grow in. How amazing is that?
So even with out a blog post or Instagram posts, my business is still moving forward. I have no power to make things better for my daughter, but I can help her learn that it’s okay to allow herself to be upset about it for a while and process that disappointment. She was where she wanted to be on her birthday, on the sidelines with her football team. Would it have been better if she could play? Sure, but that is just arguing with what is for the present. With the help of her friends I was able to be a part of a special birthday surprise and a fun night of celebrating her! And sometimes wasting time on your phone and/or computer allows you the mental space to handle ALL. THE. THINGS. That is life.
Maybe you have a lot of Circumstances in your life as well. I would love to help you look at how you are feeling about them and where those feelings are really coming from. We can even work through and process some of those feelings and learn ways to help yourself alleviate some of the emotions we sometimes take on ourselves.
And if you made it this far…. you are a true Champ!!!
If you are interested in checking out what thoughts are bringing you unnecessary pain or discomfort, or if you would like to work through your models with me just “Contact Me” and send me a quick email. Or you can “Schedule a Consult” to get started.
And as always…..Remember…..It’s ALL good!!