Recently I was having a conversation with one of my clients. They had been struggling for a while now with their food, consuming the right amount of calories, the right types of food and tracking it – the whole thing really. Now this particular person has already experienced huge success, so this was just one of those months that it just seems to be a bit harder to get back on track. Anyway – they had made the comment, “when things get better at work, I’ll be able to get back on track with the food.” Wow – I had heard this before, it sounded so familiar! It was ME! Only – it’s not my food I struggle with – it’s my checking account! So – we got into this great conversation and I drew this analogy for them – I thought this would be a good subject to blog on because I know so many of us feel so out of control by the end of Summer.
When I lose a handle on my finances (by the way – I’m reveling a lot here about myself, it’s like I’m letting you pinch MY fat! Ha ha) It’s because I’m not diligently tracking my deposits or withdrawals like usual, which may lead to an NSF fee here and there which I HATE! I feel horrible – it’s like a black cloud hanging over me. And, trust me, I could give you plenty of good reasons why this happens, so – what do I do? I ignore it, like it’s going to magically get better if I just turn a blind eye. I know I need to look at it, and just thinking about looking at it causes anxiety. When I fall into this mode, it’s like my life kind of ‘clogs up.’ I don’t have any good movement with my business. I don’t feel productive or like I’m going anywhere. It will spill over into my relationships, as I become easily frustrated and there is just no peace of mind. BUT, from past experience I know that if I just bite the bullet, look at my account and plan what’s coming in and what I have going out and just organize my transactions and get control of the situation – I feel SOOO much better!! It never fails, once I do this – all of a sudden there is flow and movement again in my life, growth with my business, I’m more productive and I see progress.
Now, you may not have the same issue with your checking account, but surely – I think most everyone out there can think of an area of their life where they can relate. This particular client (I’m assuming many of you out there as well) felt exactly this way but with regards to their nutrition. When they are tracking and staying within their caloric boundaries and making good food choices, they feel in control and have peace of mind and things are able to flow naturally in life. When they get off track, stop logging, are making poor food choices and eating out a lot – they feel out of control, the black cloud is hanging over them, they experience anxiety, the mind is filled with critical, unproductive thoughts which doesn’t allow the peace and quietness in the mind to create what they really want. And then soon, it’s affecting other parts of our lives – work, relationships, etc. But rather than going to the source and fixing that first, we try to control and fix the secondary problems (work, relationships), thinking if we fix that – we will feel better and then will be able to get back on track – when really, it is the other way around.
I know summer can do a number on us. It’s a love hate relationship for myself really. By the end of the school year, I’m SO ready for summer and can’t wait for the warm weather. I don’t have to worry about making sure the kids are getting their homework done or that dinner is ready by 4 so we can squeeze it in before the marathon of sports practices and games. It’s a welcomed relief after a long, crazy, school year. But by the end of summer – because it’s so much harder to keep a routine and schedule, things seem to easily, spin out of control.
I invite you to look at your life. What is it for you that easily spins out of control? What costs you your peace of mind and creates relentless, critical and unproductive thoughts? As hard as it seems, and as much as we’d like to continue ignoring it – I’d like to encourage all of us to use this new school year as a fresh start for ourselves as well as our kids. Is the payoff (what you are getting by ignoring the issue) really greater than the cost??