I thank the universe for my incredible life coach and now business partner, Simon Ellis. I was teaching a juicy class, one of those ones where I’m right up on my soapbox (poor students…) and I could see Simon was really getting into it. It was his first class, and he got stuck in, I love those sort of newbies! At the end of class he came and introduced himself, and asked what sort of training I had done. I was surprised at this question and explained my story. He mentioned he had done lots of Tony Robbins training and could see there was a lot of overlap. We now know that Tony Robbins and Baron Baptiste (the founder of my school of yoga) work closely together! We also had in common that in my advertising days I was flying over to Sweden and Germany to my SCA clients, and they are also one of his main clients. The world works in funny ways, and eventually, one way or another, we were brought together, and honestly, Simon’s coaching and the support he and his family have given me whilst being in Worcester has changed my life and saved me, several times.
We began having private yoga classes which ended up being mostly discussion based, as I’m studying to be a psychotherapist, and he being a fully qualified Tony Robbins coach, we compared and contrasted the benefits of coaching and counselling and the different schools of thought in those areas – are goals healthy or egocentric etc? And then we would chuck in a couple of downward dogs and headstands because we were supposed to be doing yoga! After a couple of months, Simon had a good idea of who I was, my values and my business and he offered to invest. Typical me, I was entirely reluctant and terrified to take help and let my guard down, but somehow, he had earned my trust, so I said yes, one of the best decisions I have ever made.
A few months later I found myself on a plane to Florida, with Simon, a guy I barely knew, my loved ones were terrified that they would never see me again. Simon had booked us into Tony Robbins, Unleash The Power Within. At this stage, I was very anti-coaching, I thought it was the cheap /cheat route for those who didn’t want to put the time and effort into becoming a psychologist. I now eat my words, I advise everyone to ‘get a coach’! I hated Tony Robbins, I was not going to be walking on any hot coals, ‘drinking the cool-aid’, or high-fiving strangers. And then, day 2, I was doing all of that, as well as dancing in the isles. I had NEVER felt so out of my comfort zone, and so, I had never learnt so much about myself. What was it in me that couldn’t ‘look silly’, ‘be positive’, that had to ‘be cool’? It was so annoying, I wanted to get stuck in but I was cringing SO hard! And then, finally, I let go of all that self-judgement and self-criticism, I told that voice in my head to get lost, and I went for it, another life changing experience. There are SO many learnings from Tony Robbins’ work, but the one which helps me daily and is really my compass now, is around Rules and Values.
It’s a pretty simple equation (which poor Simon has had to explain to me countless times, only last week I wrote it out again because I felt stuck)…
We have Life Conditions (LC’s = our current circumstances)
And we have a Blue Print (BP = our idea of what our life should look like)
If Life Conditions don’t match our Blue Print we won’t be happy
So, there are only two ways to change how we feel, we can either change our LC’s or our BP.
Life Conditions take time to change, but we can change our Blue Print in a second, we just have to make a decision to do so.
Tony always says, ‘humans create a super quick highway to pain, and long dirt track to happiness’, why? We set our goals so high that we end up dissatisfied everyday, but if we changed our goals so that they were attainable every day, we could be happy. So now I create a set of achievable goals to get where I want to go. Rather then staying angry, identify your Blueprint, and the gap from where you are now to where you want to be, and close that gap.
This is also closely linked with his work on Rules and Values. We all have a set of rules, we may not realise we do, but we all do. Which might look like…
I have to have X amount of savings in my bank to feel safe
I have to be independent to feel safe
I have to work out X amount of hours a week to stay in shape
I have to be a size X to feel attractive / loveable
I have to do X amount of hours work a week to feel worthy / not lazy
I have to achieve to be loved (my big one…no unconditional love there!)
And the list goes on…
And so we have to ask ourselves – Is that really true?
When we start to speak honestly to ourselves… ‘the truth will set you free’ we can adjust the rules to make them attainable to make ourselves happy. We just have to identify our rules and then be honest with ourselves.
I found this so hard, but now I look back I can see it much more clearly, previously, I valued…
Money over happiness (city job)
Achievement over happiness (work myself into the ground)
Career over health (work myself into the ground)
Independence over love (wouldn’t give up my job for any relationship)
Looks over health (bad diet, sun-beds, etc)
And eventually, through working on myself, learning the above, being able to see my patterns and practicing new ways of being, I have been able to shift my values. This was also fast tracked by losing my Dad to a heart attack, realising life was too short, and seeing the affect his rules and values had on his happiness and length of life. It really is a case of grow or die.
So now, health and love are at the top of my list. And I check-in with myself daily, am I living in accordance with the order of my values? Does this decision I’m about to make move me towards or away from what I truly want?