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Coaching Chronicles: Molly-Session #2

I handed Molly a colorful gift bag when she arrived.  She gave me a big grin and opened it.  I’d given her a six month subscription to audible.com, a set of beautiful pens, an essential oil diffuser with several different blends for peaceful clarity and focus, and The Five Minute Journal.  She hugged me with tears in her eyes and thanked me.

Molly: I really needed a pick me up like this today.

Jen:  It sounds like you have some things to share, but if you don’t mind, I’d like to start with your successes first. It’s a powerful way to set the tone for our time together.

Molly: Oh, yeah. We can do that. It’s actually a good idea. I do need to tell you about Friday, though.

Jen: We have time to get to everything. Wins are the starting place.

Molly: Okay. Well, I was able to get up four mornings in a row. I used the 5 Second Rule that I learned from the video.

Jen: Wow! Congratulations! We talked about two, possibly three times when we set the goal.

Molly: We did, but the first three mornings worked out so well, I decided to make it a new habit. That didn’t last long, though.

Jen: Last week we were looking for ways to add more time and peace to your day. In one week you found two hours. Two whole hours!

Molly: Hmm. I did.

Silence.

Molly: I don’t think I can make this a new habit. Don’t get me wrong, I really loved getting up in the morning and having that time. The first day, I prepped everyone else’s breakfast and clothing. And I cleaned very quietly. The second day I realized what a waste that was because I was supposed to use it for me. So, I did.

Jen: What did you do?

Molly: I listened to podcasts about motivation, and staying focused. I also found one on knitting, something I have always wanted to learn. I even listened to a guided meditation about relaxation. Oh, and I enjoyed my coffee every single time. That was a new experience completely.  Normally it’s in a travel mug so I can just take it where ever I go. I drank it out of my favorite mug.

Jen: Sounds like you started your mornings in an incredible way. Did you notice a difference on the days that you got up early? Did you feel more peaceful throughout the day?

Molly: Not the first day, but the next three I did.  The key is making it about me, even if there is laundry to fold and dishes to put away.

Jen: Now that’s a huge realization. You’re a quick learner. It often takes years to make that connection. But not you!  Day Two, lesson complete.

Molly: (Laughing) You make me sound like a genius!

Jen: You are a genius! You know what feels good and what drains your energy.  You’re a genius about your needs, your thoughts, your hope for the future.

Molly: (Laughing) Do I pay extra for the flattery?

Jen: (Laughing) It’s included.  And factual, not flattery.

Molly: (Laughing) I’ll think about it and let you know.

Jen: Deal. And in the meantime, I encourage you to keep an open mind about these new steps. Creating a morning ritual takes time. You’ll have days that it doesn’t go the way you planned, and that’s okay. You’ll also have days when it goes smoothly.

iMolly: I plan to keep the routine as much as I can, I just don’t want to disappoint you if I can’t do it every single day.

Jen: You never need to worry about disappointing me.  This isn’t about that at all.  Everything we do is to bring relief and joy to your life.  It has nothing to do with my opinion or judgment. Nothing.  The purpose of coaching is to help you realize your goals and then support your efforts to achieve them.

Molly: I’ll try to keep that in mind. But it’s like not having your homework done!

Jen: That’s the accountability portion, so let it feel that way if it motivates you.

Molly: It does!

Jen: Do you want to talk about Friday or simply make another goal for next week for your new morning ritual?

Molly: It’s really not as big of a deal as I was thinking. My youngest was fussy and I didn’t get to sleep until 2 a.m. Getting up early just wasn’t going to happen.

Jen: Sounds like you made the right decision for your body and mind. Can you imagine how that morning ritual would have felt if you would have forced yourself to do it?

Molly: I was thinking that I failed because I couldn’t get up, but you’re right. I would have been grouchy the whole 30 minutes, and probably the rest of the day.

Jen: Sleeping was much more important in this case. That’s not a fail, it’s a win because you listened to your body.

Molly: You just turned that around completely. Why was I thinking that it was such a failure? I really thought you would tell me don’t bother when I saw you today. Why in the world did I think that after that? I had a perfectly good reason not to get up!

Jen: If we allow them, and we do, our minds take these small incidents and begin telling tales. We listen and let them spin, and spin, and spin. Before you know it, a small thing turns into a major issue—in our mind. I like to call that, ‘Writing a Mini-Series.’

Molly: I do that all the time! If someone is late, if someone doesn’t return a message, if someone sounds annoyed on a text message…writing a mini-series. So true!

Jen: Now that you are aware of it, it will shift. Your job is to catch your mind, as early as possible, and laugh at it. Spin that story into something so ridiculous that you have to laugh. With time, it becomes easier. For now, begin with simple awareness.

Molly: I can do that! Why make it ridiculous?

Jen: It shifts the energy from serious to light. It allows the thought to go from heavy and possible (in the opinion of the mind) to a joke. It’s a way to distract the mind long enough to stop the spin.

Molly: That makes sense. Those spinning thoughts can go to crazy places.

Jen: Not anymore.  You get to decide your thoughts. You’re in control.

Molly: I am. No more spinning!

Jen: Time to make a goal?

Molly: Each morning this week, I plan to get up 30 minutes early to enjoy all the goodies you brought me and my podcasts.

Jen: What if someone needs you at 2 a.m.?

Molly: If for some reason that I can’t control, I’m up late, I’ll make a decision which is more important, the sleep or the 30 minutes in the morning.

Jen: That’s a beautiful goal. So much good intention and self-love in that one!

Molly: I really like it. It feels peaceful and powerful at the same time.

Jen: That’s how I would describe you.

Molly: (Laughing) Thank you! I like that!

Jen: Ready to shift gears or should we sit in that for a minute?

Molly: Oh, I’m keeping that feeling!  It’s not going anywhere! But maybe I can distract you with photos of my kids so I don’t have to talk about food yet?

Jen: (Laughing) Please! Let’s see those babies!

Molly spends a few minutes talking about each child and showing pictures from her phone. Her love and devotion to her kids makes her shine and bubble with joy.

Molly: Crap. Food time?

Jen: (Laughing) We never have to talk about food if you don’t want to. Why did we make the goal about the food journal, do you remember?

Molly: (Frowning) In one word, fat. I do not like how I feel when I try clothing on.

Jen: Tell me about the food journal.

Molly: I meant to do it. I mean, I sent the pictures the first day. And I really did have a salad for lunch and salmon with rice and asparagus for dinner. It was so much harder Tuesday to be good.

Jen: Be good?

Molly: Yes. I wanted to eat healthy because I know I need to in order to lose the weight.

Jen: Do you mind if I read the goal from last week to you?

Molly: I can tell you what it was.  It was to keep a food journal.

Jen: Yes, that was it.

(Silence)

Molly: I did that to myself, didn’t I? I wasn’t supposed to think about eating healthy, just record it.

(Silence)

Molly: Damn. I made that whole thing up in my head.

(Silence)

Molly: Wow.

(Silence)

Jen: How do you want to move forward?

Molly: I want another try at this.  Is it okay to leave the goal exactly the same or does it have to change each week?

Jen: There are no rules. What feels right to you?

Molly: I want to try again. And every time I start to think about trying to eat healthy, I will remember this.

Jen: Be gentle. This isn’t a reason to be hard on yourself. This is about learning to listen and go forward in a mindful way.

Molly: I really put a lot of high expectations on myself.

Jen: You do.

Molly: I think it’s helpful sometimes, but maybe not for this.

Jen: Let’s keep playing with the idea of high expectations as we go along and see what works best. Just stay aware and tuned in.

Molly: Okay. But it seems weird or like I’m falling behind if my goals are almost the same each week.

Jen: Falling behind what? What is your expectation?

Molly: I should be losing weight each week.  Shouldn’t I?

Jen: Should you?

Molly: I guess? I don’t know. I guess I thought I would lose weight each week from the coaching. Not that I’m complaining. It’s just different than a diet. It’s more like, fixing my life.

Jen: Nothing is broken, Molly. And, in order to help you achieve the weight loss you want, we need to help you feel at ease in your life. It takes time, patience and practice. It’s a commitment to yourself.

Molly: I think I will understand that more as we go on. And I can’t wait to lose some weight!

Jen: (Smiling) Stick with it. The weight loss will come as a pleasant side effect of a joyful life.

Molly: (Laughing) And vegetables and working out, I know!

Jen: (Laughing) Definitely, but for now let’s stick to the goals you’ve made.

Molly: Sounds good. Thank you!

Jen: My pleasure. Have an amazing week!

Molly: You too.

Molly’s goals for Session #2

  • Continue developing a morning ritual, allowing for sleep when needed.
  • Record your food with pictures or a sentence. No measuring needed. No judgment. All foods are fine.
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