I find some of the comments people write on my Facebook ads interesting.
Some people are supportive and thank me, others think I shouldn’t charge anything for coaching (they don’t realize how much I give away for free), others suggest that al-anon is the only way and I’m wrong for offering an alternative or supplement to it.
That’s like saying anyone who wants to be physically healthy has to be marathon runner.
There’s no single way to maintain mental health. I look at it like maintaining my physical health. I can try any exercise, sport, or a combination of all or any of them. Whatever works best for me is what I do.
12-step meetings changed my life, counseling with an amazing counselor changed my life, and hiring a life coach changed my life yet again. It all works together or separately.
I don’t have to run marathons. I can walk, do yoga, play tennis or do each one on different days and get the increased benefits of cross training. Same thing with coaching. You can do it alone or add it to counseling or a 12-step program.
When you coach with me, I give you the owner’s manual to your brain. I teach you the easiest way to make changes. When I first start coaching moms, they are trying to make changes by taking different actions. It’s like they’re swimming against a strong current with the water splashing in their face. Progress is slow and exhausting.
My client; let’s call her Susan, is trying to start going to the gym. When I give Susan the owner’s manual to her brain and she understands there are two critical things that come before different actions, it’s so much easier for her.
Of course there’s still discomfort. She has to experience discomfort to change, but if she understands that, the discomfort is just discomfort. She doesn’t have to make it mean anything has gone wrong.
There’s discomfort because she’s going against the motivational triad of her primitive brain.
Humans have evolved to be motivated by survival. Our goals as humans are to seek pleasure, avoid pain, and expend minimal effort. In order to expend minimal effort our brain mostly operates on auto pilot using the same thoughts, reactions, and behavior patterns.
To learn something new we have to engage the prefrontal cortex (PFC). It’s the most evolved part of our brain where executive function takes place, but it also uses the most energy.
If Susan goes to the gym but thinks the same thoughts which creates the same feelings, starting the new habit of going to the gym is like swimming upstream.
Our brains work on a think, feel, act cycle. We think a thought, it produces a chemical that we feel in our body, and that feeling motivates us to act. We have to change in that order. It starts with changing our thoughts first.
If Susan thinks this sucks or I hate working out, then she is creating a feeling like dread. That feeling of dread is going to result in either not going to gym or going and having a bad experience.
But, if Susan knows the think, feel, act cycle she can be intentional with her thoughts about going to the gym. She could think it’s possible that she could learn to like going to the gym or she could think how proud she will feel if she goes three days this week. It will make her feel motivated or inspired and she will go to the gym and have an experience that is shaped by those intentional thoughts.
It takes three steps for Susan to make this change and use the think, feel, act cycle to create a positive workout experience:
1. She has to create awareness about her thoughts
2. She has to choose new thoughts
3. She has to practice the new thoughts until they become a habit.
Once the thoughts become a habit, going to the gym becomes part of the auto pilot program in her brain and it no longer takes extra effort.
When you have the owner’s manual to your brain, things don’t have to be so hard.
A confused brain always says no and resists.
I said no to so many opportunities before I realized how immense the cost of not changing was.
Now I have clarity when I make decisions and the structure my brain needs to create new neural pathways for intentional habits. Instead of sitting in worry, fear, and inaction, I have the capacity to create the thoughts and feelings I need to take action and get the results I want in life.
Growth and change can be exciting and exhilarating instead of daunting and exhausting.
If you want the owner’s manual to your brain so you can end the daily chaos that your child’s addiction brings into your life and know you are making the best decisions for you and your family click below to sign up for a free mini coaching session with me.
Maybe you’ve lost hope and think no one can help you. I spent years in misery because I thought nothing could help me or my daughter, but when I’d suffered enough I took some chances and my life started transforming. I’ve helped many mothers already, and I can help you too.