I've been talking a lot lately about the process of mentally preparing for transformation as I think it is a missing link in so many diets and nutrition plans. This week I'd like to continue that thread and discuss the importance of a support team. Tom and I recently watched a movie called "Smashed" about a woman who- after some cringey partying scenes- decides to sober up. Her husband and friends aren't interested in sobriety, so she has to look elsewhere for a support network.
Sometimes when we change dramatically, there is resistance from the important people in our lives. I do believe that you can set the intention that your healthy choices will inspire those around you, but the truth is that the only person you can change is you. If you do receive resistance or a lack of support from your loved ones, it will be especially crucial that you have a support system in place.
I was very lucky when I first decided to transform my health: I had a wonderful friend who was equally inspired, and we in turn convinced our husbands to join us for a four week cleanse. We had such a fabulous bonding experience that stemmed from a common goal. We could ask each other questions, share experiences, exchange recipes. At the end of the cleanse we celebrated with a healthy feast and recipe contest.
As ideal as this was, I realize that not everyone is in this situation. Some of you might be considering a transformation but your partner is not on board, or your kids are disgusted by the idea of vegetables. Perhaps your friends roll their eyes and say "Not another diet!" when you try to bring up the subject.
If this is the case, it will be especially important for you to create a support team. Here are some tips for places to begin your mission:
1. Blogs or forums. Mark's Daily Apple was instrumental in my transformation process. I've talked about the impact of the success stories before, but I also read every daily blog post by Mark and all of the comments from the online community. I loved how newbies could ask questions and receive so much helpful information. I know there are many such sites out there, but this is my favorite online community. Look around to find yours!
2. Social media. All of my favorite nutrition and lifestyle gurus (Mark Sisson, Mark Hyman, Melissa Hartwig) are active on social media. They are a wealth of information, but so are the people who comment on their posts. Dig around and find individuals who inspire you, or who are in the same situation as you. Follow them, and don't be afraid to reach out!
3. Your place of work, gym, church, kids's school. Have you noticed anyone make a healthy transformation? Ask them about it! I bet they are feeling so invigorated and inspired that they would love to answer your questions and provide information.
4. Community clubs and activities. What activities does your current or future self like to do? Join a dance/language/art/yoga class. Volunteer for community events. Start a hiking or walking group. Chances are you will find like minded people to join your support team.
5. A coach. Of course all coaches say this, but hiring a coach can be absolutely life-changing. I love my Coach Ginny. She was instrumental in guiding me to define my future self and become her. There were times when I felt frustrated and unsure, but Ginny held space for me. Her confidence in my abilities is unwavering and it feels amazing to be supported in this way.
I would love to be a part of your support team! Email me your questions or comments. As always, it's wonderful to hear from you.