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Posts Tagged ‘training’

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As I sat on my $98/night bed in Kamloops, half working on a course, half tuning in to the Lance Armstrong interview on Oprah TV, Oprah grabbed my attention with the question “Did you feel in any way that you were cheating”.  “Did I or do I?” Lance answered…. Interesting clarification….  “Did you?”.  Lance’s answer first surprised me, then upset me, and finally, forced me to consider my own point of view.

“I went and looked up the definition of cheat,” he added a moment later. “And the definition is to gain an advantage on a rival or foe. I didn’t view it that way. I viewed it as a level playing field.”

So, is it cheating if we all do it?  And what are we really upset about?  The cheating or that he lied to us?

At the end of the day, many people are equally offended if somebody cheats or lies, but what is it about Lance in particular that has unnerved us?  Is it that we trusted him for some reason, or is it that we truly feel that doping is wrong?  In my opinion, the public’s reaction has far surpassed the disappointment of a cheat, but has morphed into something more personal, something that for some reason requires Armstrong to deliver an apology that we believe, in a way that we individually think is right, with proof that he has, somehow, changed, and a punishment that will last long into his life.  For some reason, we require more than is required in most families, workplaces, and churches.  So how did it get to a point that he has hurt us this way? And what can we do about it?

I started to think about times in my life where I had been caught in a lie, or maybe didn’t play as fair as I could.  I know the magnitude is much lower, but maybe some of the conditions were the same – why did I do it?  I knew it was wrong, it didn’t really feel good, but I found a way to justify it in the moment.  I think that the common element was that I felt I had to do it to survive the moment.  Right or wrong, something was at stake… Now I can’t speak for Armstrong, but I can tell you that the world of sport can sometimes feel like everything is at stake. In fact, this is the intention of the organizations that run sport – they need it to feel this important to make money and build the brand.  I remember moments where I felt like I would do anything it took to win, to be successful.  It was the only way I would be able to pay rent, or buy food.  I was lucky in that my world did not include things like EPO, doping, millions of dollars and a reputation that was on the line.  My world was relatively small, and relatively protected.  But what if it wasn’t?  What if I had been approached by somebody that I trusted, and what if it was as common in my world as taking a vitamin C?

I’m in no way saying that I would have taken this path – on the contrary, I grew up in a household that vehemently defended clean sport, and a mother that won a medal clean in an environment that provided that opportunity for her if she was interested… but I can see the conditions that may have led Armstrong (and most others in his sport) to win at all costs, including his own health and potential public fallout.

So in an effort not to defend Lance, but to perhaps understand him, I again ask, why is it so personal?  Do we recognize the dark side of ourselves in him?  Does it scare us that even a hero like Armstrong could fall to temptations and greed – because where does that leave us?

I’m in no way saying that the penalties and fallout are not appropriate – in life there is cause and effect.  Instead I’m hoping that we, as a society, can use this as an opportunity to learn about ourselves and what we do to win, our view of sport and excellence, and how we react and respond when somebody fails – do we turn our backs or do we help them to rebuild?  Because this will be our legacy.

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Well here we are – it’s 2013 and I although I haven’t written on my blog in over a year, it seems that somehow the amazing world wide web has continued to bring people to my site.  As I received my blog stats via email, I started to reflect on the past – when I started this blog, why I started it, and why I stopped writing.

I think it was a mix of things… I got busy (coaching)… I got very busy (moved, got engaged)… and then I got even more busy (work, travel, wedding planning).  In fact, being busy is the exact reason I have for stopping most things in my life that I probably should keep doing.  I’m not saying that writing a blog should continue forever,  but there was something very important and perhaps cathartic in expressing my thoughts, feelings and ideas.  Maybe it was simply creating something that I could reread, or getting thoughts out that I had pushed away in the process of being productive.  but I think that more likely, it was taking a moment for myself- to leave the outside world for just a moment, and create a little world by myself in a small cafe.

I’ve tried to fill the gap with things like yoga, running and lazy days watching Madmen, but in some ways these relaxing endeavors have taken a life of their own and have become sweat sessions at Bikrams Yoga, half marathon training, and a little too much online shopping to find outfits like Betty and Joan.  It’s funny how “productive” these little moments for myself have become!

So here find myself in another cafe being “unproductive”… and it feels awesome!  As I sip on my americano, and watch the misty rain drizzle on the window, I can’t help but reflect on this past year of successes, and announcements, triumphs and tears.  One thing is very clear- it was an awesome year!  It wasn’t perfect, but I grew and I changed.  And to be honest, it’s taken me till Jan.1, 2013 to really appreciate and think about that.

My resolution next year is to take all of my goals and ambitions and plans and relationships, and find ways to create moments to reflect on and appreciate what is happening with them right then.  I’m not sure exactly how this will change any of the outcomes, and maybe it won’t… but I do think that in the moments of craziness and busyness, if I deliberately take time to reflect, I will be reminded to stop, breathe, and notice that there is goodness and beauty in all of it.  The wins and the losses.  Because at the end of the day, it’s all about learning and growing.

 

I’ll leave you with an amazing little 5 step program! A daily resolution of sorts 🙂

 

The Five Reiki Principles

BY DR.MIKAO USUI

 

I – Just for today, I will not be angry.

Anger at others or oneself or at the whole world, creates serious blockages in one’s energy. It is the most complex inner enemy.

Letting go of anger, brings Peace into the Mind.

 

II – Just for today, I will not worry.

 

While anger deals with past and present events, worry deals with future ones. Although worry is not always a negative phenomena, endless worries may fill one’s head, and each one bores a small hole in one’s body and soul.

Letting go of worry, brings healing into the Body.

 

III – Just for today, I will be grateful.

Be grateful from your hart inward. Inner intention is the important element in this principle. Simple things as thanks, forgiveness, smile, good words, gratitude can improve others life and make them happy.

Being thankful brings Joy into the Spirit.

 

IV – Just for today, I will do my work honestly.

Support yourself and your family respectably, without harming others. Earn a respectable living, live a life of honor.

Working Honestly brings Abundance into the Soul.

 

V- Just for today, I will be kind to every living thing.

Honor your parents, honor your teachers, honor your elders.

Being Kind brings Love into the Will.

 

Happy New Years and all the best in 2013 – something tells me that this year is going to be a special one…Unknown-1

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So about 10 years ago I sat in my seat, a stranger to almost every guest at the wedding, perm and bangs in tow watching the carwreck of a performance that the bride put on for the groom.  She was set to perform Christina Aguilara’s “I turn to you” – a romantic yet slightly cheesy ballad (perfect for a wedding) but after some technical difficulties decided to go with option #2- “Genie in a Bottle”.  As she winded her way down to the floor and implored him “you better rub me the right way”, I now have a permanent mental image and it haunts me!  Now, I’m not going to say that I would recommend this as a wedding day song today, but I actually think she was onto something with the Genie thing.  I mean, what if life was as easy as crossing your arms, twitching your nose and nodding?

I think that we all have things in our life that we literally believe and know can happen at any moment that we will it.  For some people, the second they want a boyfriend, they get one.  One of my best friends, May, literally decides that she wants a man, and he shows up – sometimes that very night walking down Granville street ;).  My mom always knows she’ll have a job – and as soon as one ends, she has another opportunity.  Another friend, Rachelle, can lose weight in a week.  She believes that if she stops eating one sweet a day, she will drop ten pounds in a week. And she does, and there’s no scientific explanation for this cause and effect in such a short amount of time!  For me, I always believe that things will work out.  And they do for me, and they don’t for other people that don’t believe that.  Which is what this blog is actually about.

Today I had 3 hours to get the following things done – wash and vacuum my car, go to my dr’s appointment (which took 1 ½ hours last time), exchange a gift, buy a gift, buy shoes, send 3 emails, do a load of laundry, pack, drive to the airport.  I spent about an hour last night figuring out how I was going to do it.  I looked at when stores opened, fastest routes etc and it literally was impossible. So Jill gave me some advice that seemed totally ridiculous.  She crossed her arms, twitched her nose, nodded her head and said “Genie It!”.

What?

No.  Seriously Jill.

“Just say it will happen.  Don’t figure out how beforehand, just say it will happen and then do it”.

But how can I do it if I’ve just proven, with mapquest and timetables, and routes and schedules that I can’t- it is actually impossible?

“Just try it” she implored me.

So I did.  I actually just went to bed and “Genied it” because I knew and had proven on my little scrap of paper that my way wasn’t going to work.

I woke up today and went and did it all.  And I mean all of it.  With some time to spare for facebook and cleaning my whole room!  It all just worked out and I could go into detail about how time seemed to stop and everything worked out so differently and perfectly than I expected, but it doesn’t really matter. In fact, it didn’t matter what I thought was possible or how I thought I was going to do it- it just got done 🙂  See, great minds have been saying this all along and we actually have so much trouble conceptualizing it that we do and try and work instead of just declaring what we want and GOING.  Less talk more action right?

Like winning a  medal.  I have no idea how to do it.  Why?  Because I have never done it before!  I can ask people that have and experts in sport, but my situation, talents and experiences are unique and are never the same as someone else’s or anything in the past.  So, same as everybody else in this world, I am treading new territory. I can set goals and objectives, but can’t get attached to one way or how things “should be” or what I have decided is possible or impossible because I might miss the unexpected things that the universe will bring me to help accomplish my goal.

And I think we all have those things in our life that we decide are hard or impossible and that is the exact place that we need to Genie It!  And if you are resisting this idea right now and want to tell me how wrong I am, consider that you may want to start with “Genie-ing” that this theory will work for you!  Cause this theory isn’t about being right or wrong, it’s about finding an access point to “a whole new world”…. which I think is the theme song to a whole other genie movie, right?

Some of the great minds (and their wisdom)- enjoy!

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you”

– Matthew 7:7

“Men often become what they believe themselves to be. If I believe I cannot do something, it makes me incapable of doing it. But when I believe I can, then I acquire the ability to do it even if I didn’t have it in the beginning.”

– Mahatma Gandhi

“Where the world ceases to be the scene of our personal hopes and wishes, where we face it as free beings admiring, asking and observing, there we enter the realm of Art and Science”

– Albert Einstein

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So I was in Edmonton this past week and it was awesome.  It’s really true that home is where the heart is.  I mean, I love the ocean, the mountains, the city, the sand… Edmonton has none of this but for some reason it felt right.  Some of my best friends, my family, and good ol’ wholesome values live in Edmonton, and as I grow wiser (note that I didn’t say older 😉 ! ), I see how important these things are to me.

I spent some major time with a couple of my best friends, who are married with kids.  Their perspective is really unique to me because almost all of my friends in Vancouver and LA are single, and spending almost all of their time building their careers and lives and looking for someone who fits into the picture.  As we grow older, we have become fiercely independent, exceptionally choosy, and are constantly seeking “the best”.  And yet we are looking for romance, for the total connection with another person, for that butterfly feeling that lasts all the time and a relationship without compromise.  Because if it isn’t all perfect, it’s not “meant to be”.  So why am I talking about this?  Well, it became painfully clear to me that this is not the way a relationship works.  In fact, this isn’t the way life works!  And for some of you, me making that statement is super obvious and not that impactful.  You know this.  Maybe because you have seen it in your parents or perhaps because you are in or have been in a long term relationship that has worked, or maybe you apply this to your career already.

So my friends were really honest and real about what they think it takes.  Which challenged some of my beliefs, including that a relationship should be based upon a feeling.  Their side is that it should be based upon a choice.  I started to think about how this applies to the rest of my life.  In volleyball, I have a goal – to be a Gold medallist.  So from there, I go backwards, figuring out the steps that it will take to make this happen.  Train hard, train smart, eat well, get the best coach and partner etc. etc. etc.  When there are days (and there are many!) that I don’t want to get up and put my running shoes on, and where I want to stay out late and have drinks with friends, it’s my commitment to my goals, and not honouring how I feel in that moment, that keeps me on track.  Is it a sacrifice?  Maybe, in the moment it seems like it.  But long term it’s not a sacrifice at all because my goals and my plans are far more important to me than sleeping in or getting a little tipsy.  With experience I have figured this out and I think it’s the reason that I am truly happy right now – my life and choices are aligned with my goals and values and I am committed to them.

The truth is that commitment hasn’t ever been my strong suit.  Passion and purpose are, but without commitment I’ve noticed they are simply pipe dreams.  I had an amazing conversation with my mom and her one biggest piece of advice for me with volleyball was to choose a team, choose a plan and just go with it.  Win or lose, know that I did everything I felt I needed to do with the information that I had, rather than thinking that something better was around the corner, or that there was a “secret or advantage” that was out there somewhere.  Because it doesn’t work that way.  There are a lot of ways to accomplish this dream- not just an elusive “best” way, and the key is to focus on whichever one I choose and commit to it.

Which brings me back to relationships (ha, I’m sure you saw this metaphor coming!).  If I actually looked down the road at what I wanted and went back from there, rather than starting from a feeling, would my choices align and would this all seem simpler and more fulfilling?  So let’s say (and this is just an example for the record!) I want a husband, 2.5 kids, a white picket fence and a minivan in the suburbs.  If that is the vision, then who would I choose?  Probably someone on the same journey, with values and goals that align with this.  Because no matter how cute and funny and exciting a person is, that goes straight out the window if I have to spend my life convincing them to work harder to afford those things, or to move out of the city, or to commit to me.  If I looked at a person to see how they aligned with where I wanted to go, then looked to see if we had chemistry/attraction etc, then it would be clear if it was something worth investing in.  I certainly have had feelings about someone who is on the opposite path and the feelings got in the way of what I knew I wanted. These guys were my friday night beer or my saturday morning sleep in when I should have been training.  I wanted it, but did I really? To take this back to sport, I was sitting in front of the TV watching the 2012 Olympics and knowing I could have gone for it and didn’t, would I feel like staying home and resting  instead of going out with friends was a sacrifice or would I think that choosing not to train was the actual sacrifice?  It’s all a matter of perspective.

So my final answer is this.  Life is a game of choice.  Chocolate or Vanilla, choose.  There is no right choice, no wrong choice, no best and no worst… just choice. Fulfillment comes with aligning choices with your vision and goals.

So I choose the game of vanilla.  I commit to vanilla – even though chocolate will keep showing up, looking all creamy and exciting and different… As long as my vision is aligned with vanilla, I will keep choosing vanilla, honouring my commitment to vanilla, and keep finding ways to remember how much I love vanilla. And I mean, if you think about it, even if I started one day eating chocolate, wouldn’t vanilla start to seem creamy and exciting and different anyways?

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model shauna eve struts her badass self! http://www.vivvos.com

Let me take you back…. yesterday, Tuesday, 4:53pm.  The moment of confusion, then realization, and finally of morbid awareness.   I went back in time, play by play and moment by moment dissecting if anyone had noticed, and if they had, WHY didn’t they say anything?  And then again, what can you say to a girl with a hole in her lululemon pants… right in the middle of her bum?!

I think looking back, I might have noticed that there was a little more of a draft while performing my perfectly prescribed deep squats in a 3 way mirror, or that I just happened to catch the eye of a couple extra guys as I lay flat on my back, legs in the air doing sideways leg lowers.  Or perhaps during my physio appointment, where Dr. Harry Toor (envision physiotherapy) expertly adjusted my T11 and T12 vertebrae, and halfway through randomly pulled the bottom of my shirt down as far as it could reach…  YES, there were, in fact, signs and like it or not my booty made an appearance.  All.  Day.  Long.

The funniest part about the whole thing, however, was that rather than being super concerned about baring my skin, it occurred to me that I had just shown the world a side of me saved for the select few granted access to my collection of underwear and lingerie…  I had displayed a private piece of myself and though at the time it seemed ridiculous, my grandmother’s words suddenly made sense “always wear great underwear- you never know when you’ll die and you don’t want to be buried mismatched!”

My underwear collection has morphed and changed over the years.  It started at 10 years old with Costco and comfort.  Yes, I thought full-bummed undies were the most comfortable and I had no concern for the lines under my jeans or the peekaboo granny panties that would creep up when I bent over.  As I grew up and started playing volleyball, it was clear.  Full bummed undies were NOT flattering under a pair of spandex and as my volleyball career began to mould my fashion sense, intro the thong tha thong thong thong.  Colour, style and brand were not as important as price and convenience.  I would wear whatever I got – usually in bundles in my stocking at Christmas.  I remember the dreadful Christmas morning when my mom decided to go with a “sexier” look.  I was 17 and the look on my dad’s face said it all.  In similar fashion to a company “Going Public” my underwear selection had officially “Gone Private” in the Allinger household.

For the next 10 years I think my sister wardrobed my underwear drawer.  She had great style, and a passion for the right thong or booty short.  She understood that there was an element of self expression in selecting what to wear for the day – that maybe only you knew about, but that would change the way you would strut down the street, with your little black lacy “secret”.  And I knew one thing, following a 2002 volleyball game mishap  – not only is it important which underwear we choose, but it is SUPER important to choose to wear underwear.  period. No matter how you justify it 🙂

What we put on reveals our secret badass self – the self that only our best friends, lovers, and our journal know about.  The self that comes out after a bottle of wine, and the one that throws caution to the wind on vacation in Mexico.  When we get to choose our underwear, it takes away the clothes we have to wear for work and the latest trends.  If we get to see a persons underwear, we know who she truly is…

The Thong – there are so many thong styles that it really depends.  This woman cares how her clothes look, and is definitely a vixen in the bedroom.  If she wears the same one in different colours, she is dependable, reliable, and probably knows her body well.  She knows what works and she goes with it. If she changes it up, perhaps she’s unsure of what she is, or maybe she just loves  the variety.  Without a doubt, this woman will keep you guessing.

Then there is the string thong.  A step above nothing, goes under anything.  This woman has a really wild side and contains it for the sake of adhering to a couple of societal regulations – I mean, Britney got slammed for displaying her poon in public so no need to repeat that mistake!

Lacy, girly, pink and pretty is the Charlotte (sex and the city) of thongs.  At the end of the day, she’s pretty vanilla but definitely has a little spice.  And if a woman is tough on the outside and sports a feminine lacy pair, she wants to be recognized as having a soft sultry side – this woman could be interesting… as interesting as the girl who wears the floral summer dress and sports a pair of red satin ones.

The Full-Bum: I have a theory about this one…  A woman that wears grannie undies cares deeply about comfort.  She is conservative, or maybe she just missed the thong revolution and can’t possibly ever imagine a permanent wedgie (for the record, it doesn’t feel like that!).  She usually has pretty strong views about the discomfort of thongs 🙂  Now, everything I have said so far is null and void if  1. The underwear are see-through and 2.  They are brazilian boyshorts (see next category)

The Boyshort: These are the Vera Wang’s of underwear.  Put a pair on, your butt looks higher, rounder.  They are chic and urban with the comfort of the full bum undies.  The woman that wears these is all about style, all about trends, and depending on the colour and style she chooses can range from a badass to sporty chic to soft and feminine.  She also knows how to keep something to the imagination and is a bit of a tease. She’s hot, and she knows it.

Which brings me to yesterday.  You might be wondering what I had on?  What my underwear said about me.  Well, mine happened to have a bigger story than just being a pair of underwear, as most women’s underwear would.  I chose the Vivva Diva Thong (www.facebook.com/vivvos).   I didn’t want lines so I chose style; I needed to move, so I chose comfort; and I wanted my day to be successful so I chose colours that were bold and powerful.  And these underwear are special to me.  They are built by a woman who believes in empowering others, in fulfilling dreams, and in community.  She believes in me, and so in some strange way, when I put these underwear on, I believe more in myself.  AND, if I were to die today, and be buried in my underwear, I’d be proud of what I had on because it represents who I am today.  And maybe tomorrow a sexy lacy black pair would do that but I doubt it – I mean, how would I explain that one while at the gym doing deadlifts?  😉

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Paleo-Pup has figured it out!

Meet Izzy, aka Paleo-Pup… this is my coach, Brian MacKenzie’s pitbull.  She’s the sweetest, most gorgeous, and sickly athletic dog I know… I fell in love with her at first sight, and it goes without saying that we’ll be buddies for life.  I’m kind of hoping to get one of my own soon but until then, I get to puppysit!  I chose this picture cause I totally identify with her being injured- the difference is that I’m still nursing mine 1 year later and she was out of the cast and running in 2 months!

So why do we call her paleo-pup?   Well, her diet is clean.. I mean, super clean.  She eats only raw food, and it’s paleo style which means, in laymans terms, she eats like a caveman (or woman 😉 )  Now, I’m not going to get into the price and the inconvenience of feeding her, BUT today when I was sitting down with a nutritionist, it occurred to me two things:

1.  I need an intervention because I’ve been justifying cinnamon toast crunch as a “healthy grain” and

2.  I feed my dog, my plants and my lawn more purposefully than I do myself

This is coming from a girl who, without a doubt, has tried it all.  I’ve been a vegetarian… had to get woken up by my coach before every practice because I didn’t realize that being vegetarian meant more than eating vegetables!  I’ve done the Zone, measuring and weighing every ounce I put into my body, and filling my parents fridge with countless containers of  “1 1/2 portions of lettuce”, which is about 8 cups!!.  I’ve also done Paleo, where my bank account took a beating and I gained  20 lbs of muscle and lost 4% bodyfat in 6 weeks.  And then I sunk in the sand…  I’ve tried supplements, vitamins, protein shakes, chia seeds… you name it, I could tell you about it and exactly what kind of result you can expect if you do it.

And where does that leave me?  With a whole lot of information, and no plan.  So today I met with Orsha Magyar, who is a holistic nutritionist  (just because I know a bunch of people are going to ask… if you want to get ahold of her, phone 604-737-0799).   She was so practical, so knowledgable and so giving of her time – and gave me REAL advice about how to recover from this injury (anti-inflammatory foods), how to eat to perform both physically and mentally, and how to get the most from supplements.

So why am I blogging about this? Well, I started to think about how important our health is, and what awareness we have about what we put into our mouths.  Do we actually know what we are doing to ourselves?

For me, I have trouble prioritizing something that I can’t see.  Like, okay, if I want to lose weight, then I know I need to eat less calories, right?  So I know that I need to choose certain foods to accomplish that.  But what about some of the effects of eating that we don’t see… and that maybe we attribute to something else.  Is it simply coincidental that I was diagnosed with ADHD 2 years ago when I had cut carbohydrates out of my diet?  I had never had problems focussing, and all of a sudden I can’t keep my head in the game.  Or what about when we get sick?  Is it fair to assume that what we fuel ourselves with impacts our immune system, our ability to fight off sickness and disease?  So can it really be healthy to drink Diet Coke, even though it’s calorie free?

And does it make any sense at all that we know more about what is in our dogs food, or what type of fertilizer we need to use to grow better grass, than we do about what we have for lunch?  Now I don’t mean to have an intervention with everybody about what they eat because god knows I love a good piece of chocolate, but do you think, just possibly that if we saw our own body as a  powerful machine that we have control over, possible of anything from running a marathon, to having amazing healthy children, to fighting cancer, to aging beautifully and gracefully, to winning a gold medal in 2012, that we would change what we do?  I think that if we looked at ourselves this way, we only gave it the absolute BEST because we would love and appreciate it.

And it is impossible to stop at just our bodies if our mind shifts in this way.  Wouldn’t we then only expect the best in other facets of our lives?  Our dating lives, our marriage, our education, our jobs…  Because that which we do one thing, we do everything.  If we cut a corner in our job, what is the chance that we don’t justify cutting a corner with our relationship with our family?  When I lie to myself about what I ate in a day, don’t you think it’s likely that I’ve lacked integrity in another area of my life?  If I continuously honour everything over my own health (like deadlines, kids, job, drinking), then who and what will I attract into my life?

Our health is so vital to accomplishing anything in life.  We are more confident, strong, focussed, and energetic.  And I challenge anyone to tell me one thing that we do in our lives where that wouldn’t be a benefit.  And if that is the case, then why are so many people ignoring this part of their lives?   With this injury, for me, has come a lot of clarity, including the importance of rest and recovery (nutrition is a big part of this!).  Having goals and a plan for this aspect of our lives is as important as making a budget or investing money wisely.  And then honour it; honour yourself because without your health, your mental clarity, your fitness, you truly can’t enjoy the rest of your life! Most people can attest to the fact that our bodies will stop us and make us take notice one way or the other…

Let’s take a little lesson from Paleo-Pup.   She eats 4 times a day, exercises daily, naps, and cuddles often!  And she’s awfully happy 🙂 –  doesn’t everyone want to be  HAPPY?!

“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there”

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So I was thinking today… as usually precedes my blogging 🙂  I was thinking of what stops action.  What stagnates people and what, as my friends and I say, causes us to “jammer”.

There’s a sentence that keeps popping up in my mind… it goes something like this:

I like/want to ______________ (fill in the blank) BUT __________________

It’s the sentence of death of an idea.  The sentence of overthinking.  The sentence of inaction.

Whatever reason  follows BUT is meant to justify why we can’t have, do or experience what we want.  It’s a glorified excuse for continuing to do what we have been doing, and, like it or not, the consequence is that in life we get the same results we have always gotten.  How can I say that?  It’s the notion of “That which we do one thing, we do everything”.  So if we live one part of our life in the land of BUT, there is no doubt that we are doing this in other parts as well.  Because we made it acceptable…

Let’s go with the most common BUT sentence I’ve heard- it’s come up for me as people often want training advice…

“I want to work out and get into shape BUT …

  • I don’t have the time
  • I don’t know what to do
  • I can’t afford it
  • I have too much to lose
  • I don’t believe in restricting my diet
  • I’m so tired after work
  • I’m injured

So what if I was to tell you that you don’t need to pay anyone if you can’t afford it, you don’t have to completely change your diet, you only need 20 minutes a day and you can work out at home if you want, your injury will get better, and I will help you figure out what to do.  Problem solved?  Nope.  I can’t tell you how many people I have said this to, but they would rather hold onto their BUTs than find their solution.

And what about this one:

“He’s so great, I like him so much BUT…

  • he’s not _________ enough
  • he lives too far
  • he’s too old, too young, too experienced, too inexperienced
  • I don’t know how I feel about him

You get the point 😉

So what am I saying – that the BUTs should be ignored?  That we shouldn’t notice these things as potential issues and problems?  That’s definitely not what I’m saying.  I mean, in the case of a relationship you are choosing to be in, you have to be aware of all of the good and bad points in order to make a great decision for yourself.  What I am saying is that perhaps we need to omit the word “BUT” and replace it with “AND”.

AND is a word that doesn’t limit.  If I say “I want to work out and get into shape AND….”  it has to follow with an action.  It’s not that some of the BUTs are not considered in that action, but it’s no longer an excuse to continue to live the exact same way, complaining about the exact same things!

So I’m going to share my excuse and my new possibility.

OLD exuse:  I want to be completely healthy by June BUT I don’t know who to train with, physio and trainers are expensive, I don’t know if it’s worth it since I am missing the first half of my season, I feel like I don’t have control over healing.

NEW possibility:  I want to be completely healthy by June AND I’m going to be creative to find a way to invest in myself so that I can kick ass on the world tour and AVP.

And this isn’t just semantics.  I think that the importance of language can never be overstated… thought precedes words, which precede action.    So every word that has come out of our mouths, has been a thought and, at the end of the day, will inevitably become an action.  If we focus on the reasons something is hard, or impossible, then there is no doubt we will continue to experience it in this light.  If we focus how to make it happen, and are clear about what we want, we’ll make it happen – we will prioritize it and find a way because damn it, we are powerful!!

It’s like Sir Mix-A-Lot – he didn’t say “I like big butts BUT it’s hard to find a girl who’s little in the middle but she’s got much back…”.  He just stated what he wanted.  And I’m pretty sure that since he wrote that song, he’s had the opportunity to see the biggest butts the world has to offer!

And for those of you who are in the amazingly interesting, challenging and hilarious dating world – without negating the values that you need a potential partner to have, what about trying these statements on, even just as an experiment, and see where life takes you:

“He’s so great AND…

  • now we are going to figure out how to visit, skype, text, call each other enough to keep this relationship going
  • I’m going to stay open to dating someone older/younger/more or less experienced and see what it’s like! Maybe it’s just what I need.
  • I’m going to talk to him about how it’s really not cute when he wears black pants with white socks 😉  (and if you are reading this and realize you do this… yes, women feel this way across the board!)

So with this newfound power to create and express ourselves, ridding our lives of excuses and reasons “not to”,  let’s not embrace our BUTs but instead focus on embracing the right kind of BUTT  and once we accomplish our goals go ahead and “Shake ya ass / But watch ya self / Shake ya ass / Show me what you workin’ with!”.  It’s a lot more fun, don’t you think?

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