Saturday, January 23, 2016

Tough love.


Skip-bo has become the house favorite card game...although we've spiced up the rules a bit...
 
A little espresso to kick off a day of hunkering down, yum. I love the bialetti stove top maker.
 
  Chicken, salsa, coconut rice. Perfect and easy. 

Shrimp, butternut squash, guac, salsa, sour cream and cilantro to garnish. E-Z.


I have been accused in my life of having a 'tough love' approach that is not always effective. Perhaps that's true, perhaps not, however, what I do know is that I have a tremendous amount of empathy as well. Empathy as a coach with athletes, a mother and as a friend. The most effective motivators and mentors have the perfect balance of these two elements: tough love and empathy. 

To make change in one's life, true lifestyle habit change, takes tremendous honesty and effort. It is not something that someone stumbles upon and has accidental success with. On the contrary, it will take a lot of failed attempts, discomfort and an almost constant questioning of whether the 'juice is worth the squeeze'. However, there is one critical component that it will require in addition: support.

"Support"

  1. 1 :  to endure bravely or quietly :  bear
  2. 2a (1) :  to promote the interests or cause of (2) :  to uphold or defend as valid or right :  advocate <supports fair play> (3) :  to argue or vote for <supported the motion to lower taxes>b (1) :  assist, help <bombers supported the ground troops> (2) :  to act with (a star actor) (3) :  to bid in bridge so as to show support forc :  to provide with substantiation :  corroborate <support an alibi>
  3. 3a :  to pay the costs of :  maintain <support a family>b :  to provide a basis for the existence or subsistence of <the island could probably support three — A. B. C. Whipple> <support a habit>
  4. 4a :  to hold up or serve as a foundation or prop forb :  to maintain (a price) at a desired level by purchases or loans; also :  to maintain the price of by purchases or loans
  5. 5 :  to keep from fainting, yielding, or losing courage :  comfort
  6. 6 :  to keep (something) going
I've never actually looked up or read the definition before and in doing so it made me smile. Too often support feels like it is synonymous with enabling, however in reading the true definition it is so apparent that it is far more. Support is about the 'best interest', to 'endure', to 'keep from losing courage' and 'to keep something going'. None of those are feasible without some tough love and honesty.

As a coach and leader in our community, I take to heart each and every athlete and their quality of life. We constantly ask ourselves, 'what will make their experience better?" and "what will allow this individual more success at (xyz)?" The answers might not always align with what someone wants and certainly not what is the path of least resistance for them. However, the advice and solutions will not be adjusted or hidden because of their potential 'sting'. Enter the empathy. "I understand", "I've been there", "I AM there". It is crucial to embrace this piece of the individual's experience. This is the credibility that allows for the tough love to potentially follow.

Perhaps it is very obvious...but I am here as the coach to fulfill that role because it's not always an appropriate one for friends and family to fill in an individuals' life. Tough love and empathy relative to these lifestyle changes can can complicated when it's coming from someone in a more 'intimate' relationship. It can also be complicated because the goals of that individual that they require 'support' for may not align with other peoples' in their life. Their coach is their mentor and light at the end of the tunnel to assist.

Bringing this back to the realm of today and what is ahead for 2016 or even just tomorrow...we have a G360 kick off that has been pushed out until next Saturday. I understand lives are busy and there are things on the schedule that take priority. I know all too well the fear of signing up for something and disappointing yourself if you do not meet the 'perfection' you set out to achieve. I know what it is to be frustrated and feel like you are not doing the best job you can with yourself or your family's best interest. And I also understand that the thought of 'what am I really going to learn or get out of this' crosses ones mind. Empathy.

But.

Are you happy with your health? Are you making healthy food for your family 80% of the week? Are you responsibly fueling your kids now and for their futures? Do you feel good about yourself? and....How many excuses are you making about why you are not making the changes you want? Tough love.

We are not doing a 30 day challenge. We are not doing a 60 day challenge. We are doing a 1 day challenge. All you need is 1 day to decide you are going to try. 1 day to agree to embrace a little tough love from your coach and perhaps yourself, and take that first step. I promise you will be armed with resources, education and community. 

Today we are all snowed in. What a great day to sit down for 30 minutes and think about what you want and what challenge you might like to embrace relative to your health this year. Just maybe we can help you get there.  

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