There’s a saying, “when you know better, you do better.” I’ve found in my personal and professional experience, that although well-intentioned, that’s not necessarily true. In fact, it’s been closer to an experience of frustration and discouragement that after incredible training, vast amounts of enthusiastic digging and passionate reading and research, although I “should” be able to change, I couldn’t quite make the leap in certain areas and I wound up feeling even more disappointed than ever with myself.
You (and I) may wonder time and time again why are we still behaving a certain way or unable (unwilling?) to kick a habit when we know better.
Why am I …
…still eating way too much sugar, cakes, cookies
…sneaking a cigarette
…swiping social media until my head aches
…not getting enough activity
…destroying pints of ice-cream
…stressing out all day
…running around like a chicken without a head
…putting myself last
…losing my mind, health, peace, balance – CENTER?
Would you like to know why?
Because “Knowledge does NOT equal behavior change.”
Like me, you may feel like you know some things. Things like an understanding of what to steer clear of compared to what is nourishing to eat. You may know sleep is vital to optimal function and that sleep hygiene is enormously important to health. You probably understand the importance and value of exercising and regular movement.
I bet you learned there’s a lot more to nourishment than just food: environment, family, friendship, connection and sweet, sweet self-care. So what’s the deal? Why are we not always able to do the things we understand to be healthy, the things we may even want to do? Why are we not able to CHANGE?
Beliefs hang out under the radar and are so low-key that they often aren’t even languaged yet, let alone in one’s consciousness. But believe me, Beliefs put the function in Functional.
For any prescription, from diet to lifestyle to more “traditional” interventions to “work,” an integral part of that medicine is one’s BELIEFS.
It’s an excavation and a treasure hunt. We must really drop into the world of our beliefs and spend some time there, go exploring …
– sugar reminds me of when mom was still around,
– wine has my back in this crazy day,
– sneaking a cigarette gives me alone time
– swiping through social media numbs me out
– not getting enough activity helps me not feel like a loser when I can’t run or walk as far as I wish
– Cake = loved
– Ice cream = carefree childhood days
– Burning the midnight oil = I’ll show them, I do matter! I’ll belong … meaning – I don’t belong now.
So how does a transformational coach like me work and when does knowledge get to equal behavior change? How do we become masters of habit change, how do we facilitate that for our clients?
Through conversation, various techniques and exercises we go spelunking and rappelling – like two Indiana Jones together – on a treasure hunt to uncover these once very useful, but now outdated, programs that are running the show in the background. We get to upgrade the software and we INSTALL it together.
I use the term “upgrading” because this is a vital distinction. We don’t necessarily replace anything, as these beliefs are there for very good reason. The awareness alone that they are not being replaced can encourage change right there. They take much more kindly to being around during the upgrade, even if they just sit it out on the sidelines. So we work with them.
Someone trained in the archaeology of belief and the awesome power of updating behaviors, beliefs and identity, can engage with the most integral collaborator of all – you. We take all the clues we find, create a recipe, and get to refine it over and over (and that’s the good news!) Changing gets to be something we look forward to and a lot of fun. When you meet with success time and time again, you start to look around and wonder … “hmmmmm, what can I update next?”
Learning these tools with the guidance and skill of a transformational coach can powerfully enhance your compliance, results, life and your affect in this world. Because who you are BEING while you’re doing, changing, sleeping, eating is everything. It’s the power of the placebo.