Part of my day job is wellbeing within organisations. I create and deliver courses about wellbeing, and I coach people around their wellbeing and their life work balance (if there is any such thing). Many of the people I work with are women who are balancing work, families and domestic stuff.
Many of us are so busy in the everyday, so focused on the needs of others and trying to get through the never ending to-do list, that we forget about ourselves. Our own wellbeing gets neglected or slips down the priority list. We just don’t think about it enough. My role as a wellbeing coach is to help people think, reflect, plan. To bring their wellbeing to the forefront. Like many coaches I have questions that I use regularly. They are a way to get the conversation started and help the person I am working with to really think about where they are and what they want. They provide an anchor for future discussions.
Reflecting on our wellbeing on a regular basis is something that many of us can benefit from. Here are a few of the questions that I often ask my coachees.
What does wellbeing mean to you?
How would you describe your current state of wellbeing?
What makes you thrive?
What gives you energy?
What is your biggest wellbeing challenge right now?
What is the thing that you most want to change about your wellbeing?
What’s the first, or easiest, step you could take to improve your current wellbeing?
Thinking about your wellbeing, what does success look like to you?
What gets in the way of you prioritising your wellbeing?
What do you want to achieve – and by when?
When did you last think about your wellbeing – and make yourself your priority?
I did it.
Despite all the wondering if I still could, it went just fine.
My time was good, better than I had hoped for.
Even if I did get overtaken by someone in a giant bumble bee costume.
It has been three years since I ran in an organised event, and today helped me remember just how much I loved it.
Arriving at the start, number pinned to your shirt. People watching. Standing with the crowd, waiting for the signal. The noise of hundreds of runners all around you, feet pounding on pavements. Shouts of encouragement from the crowd. The kindness and generosity of the volunteers. The last push to the finish line. Another t-shirt for the collection.
I am back in the game.
Now what can I sign up for next?
I started running a few years go when a friend dragged me a long to a Couch to 5K group. After we completed the course and bagged our freebie t-shirt, we started to go running by ourselves, near her home. We figured out a 5K route and once a week or so we would run and walk and talk in between.
Typically we’d just set off and see how it went. We’ll run until we get to that tree and then we’ll start again at the next lamppost. And so on.
One night, we’d only done around a kilometre when it started to rain. Just a light drizzle that rapidly turned into a downpour. We figured we would get wet anyway if we turned back so we might as well carry on. Because of the rain we decided not to walk and just see how much we could run so that we could get home as quickly as possible.
And we ran all the way. The full 5K.
It hadn’t occurred to either of us that we could, so we hadn’t.
Sometimes, we don’t know what we are really capable of, until the moment presents itself.
So when that moment comes and finds you, seize it.
Last night I went for a run. For the last few months I’ve been doing a variety of run / walk combinations. I set off, with one eye on my watch, counting down until the first chance to walk.
And then I decided not to.
My legs were protesting but I know from experience I always struggle for the first kilometre or so before I warm up enough to find my rhythm.
I decided not to stop and walk.
So I didn’t.
Once the decision was made it didn’t even occur to me again at any point during that run to walk.
A reminder that when it comes to this fitness stuff, your mind-set matters. The things you tell yourself about what you can do and what you can’t, become your reality.
Decide. And then do.