Why you WON'T hit your 2019 goals...

Why you WON'T hit your 2019 goals...

Now is the time of year when companies, businesses, friends, etc. are hosting "New Years Resolution" workshops, classes, and gatherings. Now is the time when we reflect on 2018, what we did, what we didn't do, and what we desire to accomplish in 2019 come midnight, January 1st. The energy in the air is that of excitement, novelty, and motivation.

In fact, I recently attended an intention setting class with a few colleagues of mine just last week. I felt this playful, inspiring energy moving through me as I wrote down exactly what I wanted to achieve this new year.

So - how long do you think that energy is going to last? Until Jan 10th? Until Feb 10th? MAYBE even until March or April?

I call it the "Honeymoon Effect." Similar to when you're in a new relationship, everything is NEW, FRESH, and exciting! Your brain LOVES new things, my friends. However, unless you consistently remind yourself of that initial, deeper WHY behind your actions, goals, etc. (you know…that warm, exciting rush of energy you got when you first said YES to your partner OR started thinking about all the cool things you want to do this upcoming year), that motivation will fizzle. Period.

So how DO you hit your goals in 2019?

My dear colleague and professional TRANSFORMATION coach, Betsy Koepke, laid it out so brilliantly at her latest workshop (check out her amazing work here).

Everything we desire in life begins with our WHY, sprinkled with our core foundational beliefs.

To put it simply, to help be consistent in reaching our goals throughout ALL of 2019, we MUST remember WHY we MUST achieve the goals in the first place. AND we must remember the PAIN of NOT achieving them as well as the PLEASURE we will experience when we do.

What do I mean by WHY?

Take your family or kids for example…how will they be impacted if you reach your goals? How about your career? Your physical body…what is the FEELING you experience when you imagine reaching your goals? How does it feel when you imagine NOT hitting your goals?

Turn your goals from a WANT into a MUST - this can make a tremendous difference during those moments when doubt creeps in, you’re tempted by others around you, you want to hit the snooze button, or you’re simply losing internal motivation. Remember that pain/pleasure FEELING and practice that FEELING daily.

BELIEFS

Whether you are conscious of them or not, beliefs about yourself dictate your life. YUP. Let’s be honest - we all know what it takes to be healthy. It’s pretty simple - eating real foods, avoiding sugar, sleeping 6-8 hours a night, drinking plenty of water, moving/exercising often, keeping your body in alignment, etc.

And yet….we STILL don’t do it…WHY? That which is simple to do is also simple NOT to do.

The deeper reason? Because we don’t truly BELIEVE we can. Our subconscious mind runs deeper thoughts and beliefs that have been engrained in us since childhood - maybe that we are not worthy of ridiculous financial abundance OR that we do not deserve the marriage of our dreams. Perhaps we tell ourselves how much we dislike our body or look in the mirror and say “Yeah, right.”

Think about it…if you are constantly telling yourself these kinds of beliefs, imagine the types of actions you’ll take (or NOT take, for that matter). ACTION follows BELIEF. A person who BELIEVES they are strong, confident, successful, worth, and abundant WILL take action that aligns with such beliefs in order to help our nervous system feel a sense of congruency with reality. Our brains are always working to match our outer world with our inner experience.

Changing your inner beliefs and dialogue

My dear coach Dr. Lacey Book, taught me this one powerful strategy that has helped me shift my entire belief system (it’s still a daily practice, by the way).

For every negative belief you have about yourself, write down the exact opposite of that belief.

For example, match the belief of “I hate my body, I’m never going to lose weight,” to instead, “My body is getting healthier and healthier every day. I LOVE giving my body what it needs to be more vital and whole.”

A key point here is to write it out in the PRESENT tense. That way, you affirm to your brain that it’s happening right now. Repeat these mantras and new beliefs day in and day out and I promise you, your ACTIONS will change.

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Stress: It's NOT in Your Head, it's in Your Nervous System

Stress: It's NOT in Your Head, it's in Your Nervous System

(original article by Melody Walford; excerpt from upliftconnect.com )

Have you ever been told when you’re stressed to stop worrying and just relax? That it’s all in your head? It would be nice if it were that simple. But it’s not…

Physiology research shows that the stress response memory lives in your nervous system. Take for example exposure to a stressful event. One in which you felt helpless, hopeless, and lacked control. In this case your autonomic nervous system (ANS) is engaged. This is the part of the nervous system responsible for controlling unconscious bodily actions like breathing. To be more specific, it was the sympathetic branch (fight or flight) of the ANS that kicked in while you were strained. In addition, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis of the midbrain began firing. A signal from your hypothalamus sends a hormonal message to your pituitary gland that stimulates to your adrenal glands.

To further activate this fight or flight response, stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline are released from your adrenal glands. They help our body suddenly mobilize to flee danger. According to Peter A. Levine, trauma expert in the field of psychotherapy, trauma occurs when this biological process is overwhelmed and a person is unable to release and process the stressful event. It is possible to avoid a traumatic response by discharging the energy generated. For example, shaking, crying, and screaming can allow the individual to physically process the stress.

However, if the stress response is not processed, it remains in the tissues of the body. When a subsequent stressful event that does not pose a serious threat occurs, the traumatic memory is recalled. A large amount of stress hormones are released. Blood rushes to extremities, pupils dilate, muscle tone increases presenting as tension, breathing rate increases, the heartbeats faster, and sweating occurs. Hence, the nervous system responds as if this small incident is life threatening.

This biological response is clearly beyond the ability to rationally control. You can’t think your way out of it. Chronic stress leads to dissociation or immobility, a state of sympathetic charge and hormonal release, which is health damaging. The brainstem (the primitive part of the brain) governs emotional experience and biological response. When the brainstem is activated by the fight or flight response, it trumps the more developed front of the brain, the prefrontal cortex. It is therefore not possible to be in the primitive state of fight or flight and also to think rationally and critically (as the prefrontal cortex would have us do).

Unprocessed stress becomes traumatic memory that lies dormant in the body. A present day trigger can cause the stored memory to resurface. Understanding what is happening inside our body and brain, gives us compassion. Learning why our body responds the way it does, leads to awareness and empowerment. It moves us out of being isolated, fearful, victims. By caring for our bodies and understanding their self-protective responses, we can release shame.

When we comprehend the physiologic process that is trying to keep us safe, from an old memory or trauma, we can replace inner judgement with kindness. Self-love becomes possible. It may not be serving us in the present but in the past it did. In fact, this same response helped us survive.

The work is then to re-train the body. This can be done by invoking practices such as felt sense oriented meditation, deep breathing, chiropractic, acupuncture, vocal toning, spontaneous movement and dance, yoga, listening to soothing music, spending time in nature, running, or hiking. Or simply receiving a hug from a loved one, which releases oxytocin, a natural hormone produced by the pituitary gland that promotes bonding and connection.

These are tools to deactivate the sympathetic response and activate the opposing parasympathetic response, called the rest and digest mechanism. The goal is to feel safe. To regulate breathing, slow the heartbeat, and circulate blood back to the vital organs

These powerful practices change our physiology and affect our mood. The next time someone suggests it’s all in your head, you will have a different response. This knowledge empowers us to heal past wounds. Through acknowledging the power trauma plays in your life and understanding the mechanisms by which healing occurs, you can create a more embodied, joyful life.

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