The other day I was talking with one of my long-time clients… a fellow recovering achievement junkie like myself, who was totally stoked about the new job he landed recently – a promotion, more direct reports, more money and more travel – but realized that once again he was falling back into old achievement junkie patterns. So I asked him to run down his entire day for me. He ran me through his entire treadmill routine… emailing before brushing his teeth, no time for meditating, yoga or breathing much for that matter, skipping lunch (no time) or eating it while glued to the computer screen, maybe getting in dinner before 7pm and finding little time for fun and friends without his fifth appendage (his iphone) distracting his attention and pulling him into the vortex of ‘to dos’. Other than the people he worked with, he and his computer were having his most intimate relationship.
What struck me in our conversation was that this entire cycle of achievement junkie behavior (which admittedly I used to fall into myself) started from the moment that he opened his eyes. It starts that way for all of us. From the moment we open our eyes, the choices we make in how we spend the first hour of waking determine the flow of the rest of our day… and determine whether that day becomes one that nourishes our body and soul treating them like the temple they are, or whether it becomes another day that our bodies and souls become slaves to all the ‘to do’s’ of the day. Even if those to dos are things that we enjoy, is being a slave through them really want we want?
So I got curious – that’s what us coaches do, we ask silly questions to see what pops up. I asked my achiever client and his workhorse body, tell me the first 3 things you do as soon as you wake up. I was super curious about what he was putting into his body before he even stepped out the door… this was his answer:
- Coffee. I make a cup of coffee and start drinking it. Okay, check caffeine and adreneline taken care of.
- Cigarette. I go outside and have a smoke. Okay, check, breath, albeit full of nicotine and toxins, but breath none the less.
- Computer. I go to the computer, check email and surf the net. Great, information filling the brain, check.
The three C’s! Wow. We took a moment to pause after he answered the question, and I asked him,”So what do you notice?” Another vague but sneaky coaching question. And his answer, “I am fueling my body with toxic junk before I ever leave my house. No wonder I crash about 11am, have more coffee, skip lunch alot, and then by 4pm I am dead tired, and have no energy for fun, friends or taking care of me.” I pointed out the fact that he had infact made his body into a sweat factory. And he agreed, ‘It’s like here you go body have some porridge and get back to work!”
The thing that I love most working with achievers is that once they realize that something isn’t working they will jump full in to making a change.
So I invited my client to join us all on the
My Body is My Moving Temple 40-day self love practice, and went on to invite him to make his first order of self love practice to change the first three things that went into his body everyday to…
1. Breakfast Tea. My acupuncturist told me that putting something warm into your body first things was the best way to tell your body, hello, its time to wake up. Welcome to the day. He also told me that coffee was the devil to your body temple, and even with clients who smoked, he asked them to give up coffee first. That says alot. Turns out that my client already had lots of great herbal tea and a good tea cup (the cup is super important. get one you love. My cup says I LOVE ME on it, of course!). I am a big fan of Mighty Leaf teas, Gypsy Tea and Yogi Teas myself… Licorice is my fave! By breakfast tea, I mean herbal, not black liquid.
2. Breath. Sans toxins begotten from puffing on the smoke stick. Just sit, set the timer on your stove, Iphone or blackberry for 3 minutes and breathe. In and out. Everyone can do this, no training required. You can get fancy and do alternate nostril breathing, where you plug one nostril while leaving the other open and then switch. Or you can do more advanced yogic techniques like breath of fire. But most importantly just close your eyes and breathe!
3. Breakfast Shake. I’ve already written about how trading in my breakfast sausage for a breakfast shake has changed my life… in fact i am sipping tea and a shake right now. I do them together. Fill it with super foods. Its portable. All you need to do is shop for food, get a blender and you are good to go! An achievers dream.
BONUS... I also added a fourth part of this self love practice, and that was taking a half day every week with no computer, no iphone, and only personal phone calls. He chose Sunday mornings til 2pm. A good choice, I myself have Christine Morning every Sunday, and it’s better than chocolate!
My client accepted the invitation of 4 B’s instead of 3 C’s for fueling his body temple every morning. And on Sunday, after 2pm, I got an email saying he was 2 days in, successful! Gosh, I love achievers!
So now, you and YOUR body temple. Here is my invitation to you.
1. Write down the first three things you do each morning.
2. Write down the first three things you fuel your body temple with each morning.
3. Make a conscious choice to change whatever fuel you are putting in that is not treating your body like the temple she/he is.
4. Listen to this weeks Self Love Studio interview with Dr. Deanna Minich on Fueling Your Body Temple. You’ll learn lots about your energy system, about cravings and about what you put in is what comes out. My favorite line from her book is this…
THE BOTTOM LINE IS THIS…
EAT THE ENERGY THAT YOU WANT TO BECOME!