Dealing With Fear

I was privileged to work with some fabulous clients this weekend. One common theme when we were looking at future goals was the role of fear.

Some of those fears were tangible, real, justified – if you’re going to climb a mountain, then you need to prepare and things can go wrong, of course.

But so many fears we talked about were intangible. Nebulous, “what if’s?”

Let’s make a distinction between a genuine thing to be rightly concerned about, like a health scare, attempting something genuinely dangerous, and a fear. For the purposes of this piece a fear is an unlikely and undesired outcome (that scares us) about something in the future that hasn’t happened yet.

I suffer from this myself. I call them the 4am terrors. Those irrational nibbling thoughts that sneak in when your subconscious is strongest and your rational mind is weakest.

Again, sometimes this terror can be serious. Proper problems that need attention. All too often though they’re (in the cold light of day) inconsequential things.

So what do you do when your fears are blocking you from achieving, or even attempting, your goals?

One useful tool is reframing.

We tend to have quite a limited perspective when it comes to ourselves and dwell on the negative outcomes of things that have happened, or could happen.

How often have you replayed an event in your mind thinking, “If only I’d said this. If only I’d done this?”

Yep, we’ve all done it.

We get trapped in our narrow frame of perspective.

What happens though if you look at your issue in a broader perspective (a bigger frame) and look at the positives (or potential positives) if it’s a future worry?

Here’s an example. Your relationship has finished. Of course that is a major event, traumatic, you’re sad. You’re dwelling on all the negative aspects that now brings to your life. You’re lonely. Will you find another partner etc?

What if we now look at that event within the context of your entire life and the opportunities it now brings.

Maybe you weren’t really suited to that person. Actually the relationship wasn’t so great. Now you have time to invest in yourself. You can meet new people. Take on that hobby you wanted to do for years….

You’re not trying to bury your feelings or re-touch the past – but what you are doing is giving yourself a broader frame of reference, which will help make the event easier to deal with and allow you to move forward.

Another tool you can use, is disassociation.

When we’re emotionally connected to our fears (of course!) it can make give us a limited perspective (as seen above with reframing). Those fears are closely associated with us.

Here’s two ways you can disassociate.

What if we were to pretend that the fear belonged to a friend of ours, rather than ourselves? What advice would you give them looking in from the outside…not emotional involved? We’re naturally limited by our perspective, so if we change perspective, how does that change our view of the fear?

Another way is to look at the present fear along a future timeline. I use this one a lot. In 6 months time, will this thing that’s giving me a racing heart at 4 in the morning, have any kind of significant impact in my life? How about in 1 year, 5 years?

When we start looking at fears like this we gain the perspective of distance, and we can see how that disagreement we had at work that we’re replaying and replaying, and worrying about, actually won’t matter AT ALL in 2 weeks, let alone in 2 months.

Naturally we all have things to genuinely be concerned about. Issues to overcome. That’s life. But so often the fears that stop us are those fears are our sub-conscious sabotaging us through over-protection. Those irrational, unlikely, night terror fears that we all succumb to.

Fear is always going to be a player your life.

Learn to play with it and don’t let it stop you moving towards your goals.

You’ve got this. I believe in you.

James x

Is It Time You Non-Conformed?

Engaging With Non-Conformity

When we work with clients one of the things we do is explore existing beliefs and values – so that we have a good idea of the mental filters that client has in place.

Why? Because our pre-conceptions and filters play a role in our own perception of our reality. My reality is different to your reality, and both are different from the actual truth. If we can look at our own reality dispassionately, then we have the power to change it.

Our amazing minds, in an effort to help us process the myriad of information flying at us, carry out a process of filtering renowned psychologist Chomsky broke down into: generalisations, deletions, distortions and personalisations.

For example, if my experience of going to a gym was that it was smelly, I didn’t like the machines, the PT I had was mean and nasty, and that after 2 weeks I got no results – then my filters are likely to round this up into “the gym doesn’t work for me”, or something similar.

This is a perception and clearly not a truth, but that perception is my truth. For now. This is where engaging with non-conformity comes in.

Now, by non-conformity I don’t mean slinging on tie-die clothes and heading off to live in a commune. In fact, I live in Ibiza where many of the ‘non-conformists’ actually all dress and act the same – they confirm to their own social norms. Their non-conformism has paradoxically become their own conformism.

What we are talking about is being prepared to challenge your own filters and beliefs. To “non-conform” with your own set of rules for the world. Why?

Because doing what you have always done is only ever going to get you what you’ve always got.

Fine if what you’ve got is working for you. If it’s not, you’re stuck.

So you need to be prepared to engage with your non-conformity, challenge your rules and beliefs and be prepared to change and grow.

Let’s look at the original example of the bad gym experience. If I’m prepared to challenge that I can reset my filters: “other people get results from going to the gym”, “I just didn’t know what I was doing last time, now I have an expert coach”, and so on.

Be prepared to look at your filters, really look, accept them without judgement and see your own reality as it is with the rules you have put in place.

Take a look at your life and see what filters might be holding you back, and where engaging with non-conformity might give you the opportunity to learn and grow.

With love

James

If I train more, will I get better results?

“If I train more, will I get better results?”

We get asked this all the time. How much should I train. Should I train more to get better results?

The very simple answer is that you should try to move your body every day.

However, the in-depth answer is a more complex. For best results you really should structure your week based on goals and lifestyle.

So what’s your goal?

Are you looking to lower body fat, add muscle, get fitter or a combination?

Next be realistic. How many times a week would you like to train, and for how long. There’s no point committing to a 2 hour training session 6 days a week if you’ve only got 20 minutes twice a week.

FYI….as a minimum you want to be training for 20 minutes, three times a week. Ideally with a day of rest in between each session.

Now onto how you might structure a week…

If your goal is to get fitter and or strip body fat, you might want to focus on a HIIT workout twice a week with one resistance circuit. Or just straight out HIIT three times a week, say on a Monday, Wednesday, Friday.

If you’d like to condition the muscles for a lean strong look and blast body fat, then an option could be to go for 2 resistance sessions a week, say Tuesday and Thursday, with HIIT 3 times a week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

If adding mass is your goal, then focus on more resistance training and less HIIT and cardio. If you’re going to do full body workouts then 2 to 3 times a week with a day of rest between. Or you can split into push and pull movements and do 4 sessions a week. Or break it down into body parts and do a part a day (yes the options might seem endless!)

FOR MOST PEOPLE…
Mixing up 2 to 3 HIIT sessions with 2 to 3 resistance training sessions three times a week is going to get you awesome results.

But, remember everyone is different. Listen to your body and track your results over a decent amount of time so you can see what works for you.

People tend to give up on a workout programme too early. Always give it at least 2 weeks before you decide to change it. But do change your programme completely every 6 to 8 weeks as your body will adapt and your progress will plateau.

A final word…
Don’t forget to add in some of what you love – a run at the weekend, a long walk, a bike ride and do try to get outdoors at least once a week.

OK, a final, final word!
Remember, if you’re easing back into training after time off, or you’re new to it, take it steady. At the other end of the spectrum, more can be less. Overtraining will see you going backwards and becoming ill. Recovery is as important as the exercise.

How can we support you?
In our Academy, we have a bunch of 4 week training programmes which our members follow. They’re also great for learning how to put together, and formulate your own plan.

On our retreats we’ll aim to get you through as many different types of workouts and methodologies as we can (with recovery time!) so that you have the knowledge and tools to go home with. We also give you a follow up training plan.

And if you do want some more personalised help and support, please get in touch as we take on a handful of clients each month to work with on a one to one basis.

38nacademy.com

SELF ESTEEM is acknowledging your flaws but still holding yourself in high regard…

⭐️ SELF ESTEEM is acknowledging your flaws but still holding yourself in high regard…

🚫 The more I learn about myself, the more I realise that it’s not about getting rid of my flaws.

🤕 Neither is it about putting sticking plasters on them or pushing them away like they belong to someone else.

🧘🏻‍♀️Inner contentment comes from looking at those gnarly bits of yourself. Without frustration. Without self blame or pointing fingers.

👀 Yes seek to understand. But once you do, don’t carry on dissecting.

Just sit with them. Accept them as part of the glorious make up of you.

And know that every new day you get a chance to be the best version of you.

⚡️ Sometimes the old sh*t will fly up in your face. Sometimes your gnarly bits will nip at your heels.

Don’t dwell on them. It’ll bring you down.

And you have too much to give right here, right now to let that happen.

🙏🏻 You’re a gift. Hold yourself in high regard.

Much love xx

Time To Get Your Sweat On – Looking After Your Relationship

Exercise and decent nutrition can be game changer in a relationship.

💥OK so this is a little controversial…..💥

❗️LOOKING AFTER YOUR BODY DEMONSTRATES SELF RESPECT❗️

AND QUITE FRANKLY….THAT’S DAMN SEXY.

When we first get together with someone, we want to be our best. We make an effort.

🤯 As time goes by, life sh*t gets in the way. We have stressful jobs, family lives, financial concerns.

It’s totally understandable that looking after ourselves goes on the back burner.

🖤 But here’s something to consider. Not only is it not great for you, but it’s not great for your relationship.

Or how your partner sees you.

Yes I told you this this is controversial.

After all – your partner should love you and fancy you no matter what. And of course that’s true. It most definitely shouldn’t be a deal breaker (and there may be reasons you can’t exercise due to illness etc)

🗣 BUT I’m talking to people that are healthy and able. But choose to do NOTHING to change their circumstance.

You may not like what I have to say, but is it possible that you’re hiding from the plain, hard, cold truth that it’s simply not attractive when someone gives up on themselves?

🔺 Imagine this. Subject A. You berate yourself in the mirror. You call yourself fat all the time. You have zero energy. You don’t want to have sex because you hate getting undressed in front of your partner (and yes this entire post applies to BOTH men and women).

You complain about being unwell and overweight but you sit there every night stuffing your face with a take away in front of the TV (and you take the car everywhere)

🔺 Now….subject B.
Same situation. But B finds the courage to reach out and seek help. You begin getting up 20 minutes earlier three times a week to exercise. You take a packed lunch to work instead of eating in the canteen. You make a stand and quit the excuses.

⭐️ A stays stuck. B develops new habits.

⭐️ A’s confidence dwindles. B’s expands.

With this in mind, can we see how the self love and discipline that comes with B’s approach might begin to positively affect their relationship (and many other areas of their life…?)

⚡️It’s empowering. Sexy. In control.⚡️

And we don’t think there’s a decent relationship out there that wouldn’t benefit from a bit of that stuff.

Better still. Start moving your asses together. Make it a shared interest. Release some feel good endorphins. Show each other you think you’re worth it.

🚫🚫🚫🚫
It’s not too late. You’re not too old. And you haven’t been together too long to change.

Much love,
Claire xx
(and James of course!)

PS: James and I have seen the positive effects first hand. Time and again lovely couples come to our retreats and we see them transform in front of our eyes.

They see each other in a new light. Stronger, fitter and more determined. Going outside their comfort zone in a way the other one didn’t think was possible.

If you’re interested and want to take the bull by the horns(!), we have spaces available on our March retreat (7-10).

We’d love to see you there.

thirtyeightdegreesnorth.com
38nacademy.com

#traintogetherstaytogether #selfpride #endorphins #noexcuses

Don’t Let Comparison Steal Your Joy

We live in an amazing, high tech, ultra connected world. We basically have the world’s knowledge in a device in the palm of our hand. Just stop and consider for a few seconds: you, right now, are living in the most scientifically and technologically advanced time the human species has ever known…

If we look back through history civilisations have come and gone. Vast tracts of the planet have lost their knowledge and learning and regressed.

Right now we are so so privileged. Self driving cars, intelligent devices, breakthroughs in medical science, in quantum theory. Make no mistake, this technology and what it delivers is amazing. Even 15 years ago what we have now would have seemed inconceivable (I know – I was working in mobile content back in 2000 – no one really understood or believed how these devices would advance and transform our lives).

Yet this technology also has a dark side. The paradox is that although we are now the most connected we have ever been in our entire planet’s history, we have soaring levels of loneliness, of depression, of dissatisfaction.

That’s because we can see into each other’s lives like never before. Or rather, we think we’re seeing other’s lives… Twenty years ago you pretty much knew your friends and family well, and what you knew about them, you knew from hanging out with them or them telling you. Today you can monitor your friends’ activities thousands of miles away via your social feed. Not only that, you can see right into complete stranger’s lives as if you know them. And don’t their lives look wonderful?

Social media breeds a false intimacy on multiple levels. Two of which are that you don’t actually know that person at all. The other is that you only see what they want you to see.

You have a perception that their life is soooo much better than yours. Yet what they post may be an illusion too. That travel blogger always on a beach bragging about “laptop lifestyle” is actually lonely and broke. The fitness blogger that always has the perfect body and posts indulgent meals. But they’re not eating those meals. Those pics were taken months ago on a cut. They’re hungry and tired…and loathe their body.

I could go on. The intimacy that social media brings bypasses our filters. We want to believe what we see. Our lives don’t stack up, we slip into negative thought patterns, or worse, negative self-beliefs.

Stop it! Now. It will destroy you.

I bet you have so so much going for you right now.

Comparison is the thief of joy.

Right now just jot down 10 things you’re grateful for in your life – anything that gives you joy or you’d be miserable without.

Take 5 minutes each morning to count your blessings. You have many. This will help to build a positive mindset, and when we give out positivity we begin to get it back 🙂

Do your gratitude list. Apply your filter. Embrace the world with a positive mindset for what you have and what you can achieve.

SHUT OUT THE NOISE. It’s not real. And it has zero bearing on who you are and who you can become.

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