Spencer and I started this business, Novo Veritas, over 2 years ago.
I love it. All of the work and hours and challenges and success. More and more every day. It’s a hell of a ride, an intense privilege to work with our clients and we’re currently taking this business in directions neither of us ever dreamed possible…
My personal favorite part of the whole business adventure? The privilege and honor of being invited into someone’s life at a time where their hearts and minds are more than likely vulnerable, ashamed, determined, brave, scared, fierce, focused and much more. They invite us in. Trust us with their stories, their history, their fears and deepest hopes.
And then sometimes, if it all works out just right, they even allow us to join their team.
Most of the people we get to work with approach us for one of two basic reasons…
- Tell me how to get started.
- Be on my team.
- (A close 3rd place would be….) Hold me accountable.
In the past few weeks a handful of people have reached out to me asking how to get started – and how to build their own teams. The following is a list I created about a year ago and pulled from one of my previous blogs. And it’s still the advice I give, still what I believe in my heart.
AND it also happens to be the advice I wish I could have listened to when I got started on this journey to change my life.
Here’s what I wish I had been told. And in the cases where I was told; I wish I could have embraced and BELIEVED it…
1. Your weight fluctuates. Daily. It will go up or down during training. If you have your period. If you eat too much salt. You smelled a cake being baked. The rotation of the earth. 🙂 Sometimes it’s really legit gain because you simply ate too many calories over a period of time. But you have to understand that your weight isn’t stable in the day to day. Not gonna happen. Quit even thinking it’s possible. And you know what? It isn’t meant to be. You thought you got to a number and stayed there with just a little effort? That this whole bodyweight thing was simple math and cut and dried? Uh… HELL NO.
2. Take measurements. I really WISH I had known how big my hips or belly or thighs were at my largest. I didn’t take measurements because — hell — who really wants to know that they have a 90” waist? You will wish you had those body measurements for reference and reassurance in the process. At any point when you’re feeling ‘fat’, stalled, discouraged or just wondering how far your journey has taken you — you can pull out a tape measure and be assured, well beyond the confines of a stupid scale, that you were NOT gaining anything but muscle or fitness.
3. Worry is wasted energy. Spend time looking for solutions and opportunities.
4. And for the love of ALL THAT IS HOLY quit beating yourself up. YOU, who you are at the very CORE of your being, has nothing to do with the number on a scale or the packaging of your body. NOTHING. Please, oh please, just believe me on this one. I’m in tears writing this. I am crying for you and for myself too. Because I know you won’t believe me, you can’t fathom what I’m trying to tell you… This is the last thing you can possibly wrap your mind around when you’ve battled your weight your entire life and a number is staring you in the face — a number you hate. A number so large you didn’t know the scale went that high. I know that feeling of panicked desperation and hopelessness as well as I know the sound of my own heart beating. Text me, call me, reach out to me and I will spend the rest of my life relentlessly reminding you of your value to our world. And if you can’t believe yourself, then trust that I’m a way better judge of YOUR value than a stupid mechanical piece of crap you bought at Costco.
5. Don’t pick a number for a goal. (See 1.) Don’t pick a clothing size either. That’s really just another number. Pick a feeling, activity, ability, destination. You want to climb stairs and not be gulping for air? You want to feel solidly OK with how you feel in your birthday or bathing suit? 🙂 You want to be able to hike, run, walk, move better…. PICK something that isn’t a transient, essentially meaningless, number.
6. Know that the BIG picture is worth all the little steps, mis-steps, concerns, questions, sacrifices. It’s hard work. It’s worth it. They’re points of feedback and learning. And this whole ‘get healthy’ thing is in NO WAY linear. No way. There is nothing direct, logical or straight about this path you are on. And you’re going to be making shit up as you go.
7. Do NOT let that scale dictate your mood to the world. So you can’t not weigh… I get that, but we should keep working on that. 🙂 So you step on the scale and it’s up a bit? DO SOMETHING about it. Don’t be a bitch. Or walk around like someone ran over your dog. Or have a short fuse with loved ones. Or start restricting food because you don’t ‘deserve’ to eat. Or start secluding yourself from the people you love because you feel you don’t ‘deserve’ their love or you’re deeply embarrassed. Stop allowing that stupid, effing, scale to affect your mood. Reach out. You may not have great control over how you feel, but you can ALWAYS choose how you act and react.
8. Please, please, please love on yourself. And believe in yourself. Hang tightly to HOPE. Hope is powerful stuff. YOU will do this. And you can’t see the day, but it’s coming; you will be healthy and happy. Your weight should not be allowed to dictate ANY of that. You have so much to offer the world. You’re an aunt. A sister. A friend. A daughter. A momma. A lot of really, really remarkable things that no one else in the whole entire world can possibly be! We were only given ONE of you. One. Do what you can each day to help yourself get healthy so you can be around and enjoy the life in front of you.
9. This isn’t a short-term investment. Trust the process. Life-time commitment. You will look at something daily and judge it as not moving, plateaued, failing. HANG ON and look at this from the 3,000 foot view, look at this from a 365-day investment. You will see growth. YOU WILL. Really! Keep at it. You didn’t gain the weight over night. You will not lose it overnight. Trite and irritating – but TRUE.
10. One of my favorite songs is ‘Live Like You Were Dying’ by Tim McGraw. If you are like me you’re living this weight loss journey with a lot of fear. Fear of going backwards. Fear of judgement. Fear of FAILURE… The ‘what if’s’ can paralyze you… Holy smokes. The fear you have embraced and live with could choke an elephant. What if you could just enjoy the journey for what it was and live each day like you are trying to be your very best? Living like you’re dying doesn’t mean you live with no consequences for your choices. It means you accept each day, each moment for what it is and keep moving toward the goal you want to reach… (And for back-up… See this video by Brene Brown.)
Trust the process.
Keep moving forward.
Love on yourself.
Happy trails. 🙂