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Three Questions To Clear Your Brain

Three Questions To Clear Your Brain

Often when I talk to client I hear...  “Well, life has been crazy but… normally…” 

And out flows the perfect world scenario. When things are going well and you have time to plan, prep, and focus. You know, when things are running smoothly. 

As if this is typical. As if this is life.

The reality is life gets lifey. 

Mindset is a jerk

Your brain is your best and worst friend. 

Thoughts are tricky things. 

What I see over and over is misguided motivation. A "motivation" that is fueled from self loathing. 

The interior dialogue that goes something like "If you don't do this you are lazy".

"If you don't go on your run today you are terrible."

"If you don't hit up yoga you are worthless."

Or the track playing might be something more like "You are so fat and ugly you don't deserve that piece of cake."

Or "What is wrong with you why can't you stick to anything?!"

Or "You just ate that whole bag of tortilla chips you have no self control!"

Or something else where you relate an action to your worth.

It's exhausting.

And painful. You are building an extremely rigid relationship with yourself and the activity that is bound to break. 

So what do you do? 

You start to pause.

Every time you notice yourself in a pattern of limitation.

Take a moment and pause. 

Does this belief or thought serve you? 

Does it open or constrict your body?

Ask yourself.

And then ask yourself -

What is something that you like about yourself? What goal are you trying to achieve and why? What kind of life do you want to lead?

The act of pausing pulls us out of the automatic reaction and allows us to be present and proactive. 

Believe you can change. 

Bring in self-compassion which allows for elasticity and sustainability when it comes to achieving actual lifestyle change.

Permanent results. 

You can change

Belief is crucial

It's our beliefs that drive our behavior. 

We may want things in life. 

More money, better relationships, more sleep, to lose weight, a more active lifestyle, more down time... and so on.

But what do we believe we can achieve?

What do we believe we deserve?

It is important to visit these questions. If you don't truly believe you can change, or believe you deserve to change - you won't. 

Life is weird, uncomfortable, and yet magical

Where does the road lead?

The road pictured above is the street that I grew up on and if you kept walking you'd see my mailbox pop-up on the left hand side. 

I literally know where that road is going to lead. 

But in the bigger picture the question is not so answerable. Not to get all "we've had too many drinks let's talk about life" on you, but MAN LIFE.

It is weird, uncomfortable, and yet magical. 

I love goals and I think there is value in setting a trajectory in place. The way to start to push your journey into a direction is to have intention

But. 

That doesn't mean you know how the hand will play out. 

It just means you are now part of the equation. 

But.

Sometimes surrendering is also of value.

To bask in the unknown. 

To sit with the uncomfortable.

To understand that you don't have control.

Not really.

And that is the weird contradiction of life.

The balance between doing and accepting.

But, do you actually want to change?

And the year begins anew. 

A lot of us use this time to be a bit introspective, do a bit of reflection, and then think into the future. 

What did you accomplish last year?

What did you WANT to accomplish last year?

What do you hope to do THIS year?

We all have goals.

You may not be the kind of person who makes resolutions, but I bet you have simple hopes and dreams... like staying healthy or successfully making it through the day. 

So my question to you is do you want to change?

You might say, "Yes, Annette, I want to change. I'd like to have more energy, I'd like to loose 10 pounds, I'd like to think better, I'd like to be happier, I want to run more."

And I would say to you - do you believe you can change?

Having the want to change is one thing - but - believing you CAN change is the magic.

Sit down and think about it, what do you truly believe about yourself?

Then, what do you need to do to prioritize the thing you want to change? 

And start

Welcome to the first of December

I remember being a kid and LOVING an advent calendar. 

My mom had several, one was this big puffy tree thing that I got to put ornaments on each day. 

I loved counting down the days. LOVED IT. 

This morning I thought about how this month is unique in the way that most of us count down the days together. This month can be somewhat of a ticking time bomb. There are a lot of expectations built into the holidays. Lots of warm fuzzy commercials that we all might aspire to realize. 

And through that aspiration we might get stressed, short, and caught in trying to make something... something more. And then we miss out on what actually is, what is here, what is now.

At the beginning of each month I take a moment to write down three goals for the month on a sticky note (I love a sticky). One of them was just to remain present. 

What are your goals for this holiday-infused month? 

WRITE. IT. DOWN.

On paper. 

I have said it before and I will say it again (and probably again) but there is a beautiful simplicity in taking pen to paper.

Example.

I have a bar hanging above my doorway. I would like to spend time ON that bar hanging from it, doing lat pulls, practicing pull-ups etc.

Maybe... I will take action and do these things because the bar exists. Maybe.

There is only one way to ensure that I take action.

Writing it down.

I mentioned this technique on an earlier post on how I got to my first pull-ups. It is so simple.

So perfect.

So easy.

What do you say you want to do, but don't?

Have you tried writing it?

 

BAM! I am awake - now what?

Your alarm is sounding. 

Buzz, buzz, vibrate, or some melodic piece of music. Whatever you choose picture it in your mind. You are lying cozy in bed, warm, peaceful, and BAM alarm. 

What do you do next? Let's pretend we made it past all the snoozes (if you are snooze inclined) you are ACTUALLY getting up from your bed.

What do you do first?

What are your first thoughts?

Do you grab your phone and run through your email? Facebook? Instagram? 

Do you jump up and run to make coffee? To put on your clothes? To make it out the door?

What would happen if you gave yourself a moment in the morning? To set your mind. To take a deep breath. To choose your day instead of letting it run you.

 

 

Breakfast OMM NOM NOM!!

"The most important meal of the day... not to screw up. "

These are the words of Dr. Cate Shanahan who was the awesome doc to completely revolutionize the Lakers' diet. Which is a pretty great story. There are people in this world that can eat ANYTHING and still perform better than most people, but(!) are they performing at their best potential? I will leave you with that thought and refocus on the bfast times.

BREAKFAST.

Nom. Nom. Blood sugar crasshhhhhhing!

Nom. Nom. Blood sugar crasshhhhhhing!

Dude. You guys. This is important. This flavors your WHOLE day. This starts the decision making process of making nutritious choices that come easily or not so nutritious choices that seem to be made for us.

THEY BROUGHT IN TOP POT DOUGHNUTS! WHAT WAS I SUPPOSED TO DOO?

Solid question. 

Answer: Don't. Eat. 'Em. 

I know! It is rough, like super duper rough, but the only way to form the habit of NOT is by NOT. Now, I want to remind you we are JUST tackling breakfast right now. Just breakfast.

(I am not going to touch on the pizza that comes in later in the day... yet.)

Now. I want to be clear EVERYONE is an individual and there is no everyone must do! That said, there are some general principles that tend to deliver benefit consistently.

So, what are you saying Annette?

1) Eat Breakfast - it doesn't need to be huge, but if you are experiencing lower energy, more cravings, and lack of willpower in your day... eat breakfast.

Men - you have more leeway here, you lucky guys can often operate from a fasted state and do okay.

Women - eh, most of you perform better with a bit of protein in the morning. Truth.

2) Eat Protein and Fat. Only. No fruit, no grain, no fruit juice, no juice, no smoothie, no yogurt, no granola, I'd personally avoid nuts too!

Okay, okay you can have veggies too if you'd like them - just nothing that is sugar dense. 

Choose high quality protein (e.g. grassfed and finished) and high quality fat (coconut oil, butter, MCT, ghee, etc). 

Try it out, see how you feel. I am not saying your plain greek yogurt is bad or that your super organic natural nutty granola is terrible, I am saying I have seen HUGE benefit when people switch it up and start with protein and fat.

So, I recommend you test it. Try it for ten days! Note how you feel, see if you like it.

If not, DO AS YOU PLEASE!

If so... well, you're now informed and DO AS YOU PLEASE!

It really is all about you. 

If you want more info, have questions, or just want to chat hit the button below and be whisked away to my coaching area where you can also send me a rad message.



Sleep.

I'll SLEEP WHEN I'M DEAD!

There was a time in my life where I subscribed to the philosophy “I’LL SLEEP WHEN I’M DEAD BITCHES!!!!” Go, go, go, so much to do all the time! Never time to miss the FUN. At the time, I had a few friends that were SUPER into their 8 hours of sleep every night. And I remember thinking -

 WEAK!

They were made of frailer stuff than I. I who was doing AWESOME on my 4 to maybe 6 hours of sleep. I WHO WOULD RULE THE WORLD.  If I could just stay focused long enough... and not fall asleep on my desk... and not... zzzzz.... what? what just happend?

Looking back I want to shake young me - SLEEP IS SO IMPORTANT - I want to stress this so hard that you tell me to shut up, you tell me ANNETTE WE GET IT, CALM YOURSELF!

Sleep is magic for your body.  People pay a crazy amounts money on powders, supplements, cleanses, detoxes, etc. when a more effective cure is free and overlooked.  Sleep is way more powerful and impactful to your health than you realize.  

Sleep affects how you see the world.  It affects how you make decisions.  It affects your mood.  How you recover. Aging, your digestion, how you learn, how you retain.  It affects weight loss (or lack thereof).  It affects your stress levels.  Your focus.  Your memory.  Your ability to be patient.  To be kind. To be grateful. Sleep plays into all of that.

Mark Sisson over at Mark's Daily Apple wrote a great guide to sleep, worth a gander. 

I know a lot of people have the best intentions when it comes to going to sleep, but have trouble shutting down. There are a few things you can try to make this transition easier:

1) Get off your devices - do this at least an hour before you intend on going to bed. The light is stimulating and messes with your body's understanding that it is time to shut down.

2) Night time ritual - I recommend tea and writing. Dim the lights, make some tea, write down thoughts of the day, or a few things you are grateful for - doing this regularly will make your body understand ahhh this is the thing we do before going to bed. It is like a puppy, sometimes it needs to be trained.

3) Bring down the lights - transition into a more nighttime looking world.

4) Focus on breathing - calm your mind by sticking with your breath. Breathe in - count one, breathe out - count two, breathe in - count three, breathe out - count four, and so on until you reach ten - then repeat.

 

Sleep is money on the table.

Pick it up, put it in your pocket - see how awesome it feels.