At the end of my free initial conversation with my first coach, I told her I needed to talk to my husband before making a decision about continuing on. Even though I knew I wanted to work with her, knew it in my bones. But it was an investment, and I wanted him to be on board.
When I brought it up with him, that night after the kids were asleep, I had only talked for about a minute when he said, “I support you. Besides, I appreciate the courtesy of talking to me first, but it’s clear you’ve already decided.”
So I swallowed hard and jumped. And so many important things have changed since that day.
Including, my husband. A few months later, he came home and said, “I signed up with a personal trainer today.”
“Oh really?” I said. “That’s great! How often are you going?”
“Three times a week,” he chirped. A routine he’s kept up for years now and which I fully support. Not just for the health benefits and his guns (as we call his pumped up biceps), but for the stress outlet it provides. I had been worried, and expressed concern, about how he didn’t really have a constructive release valve for stress since we were first married. Not only did I not have to worry about that any more, he and I and our kids all got to enjoy the benefits of his having a place to blow off steam. It was big.
And this is the kind of thing that happens when you step up for yourself. You open a door in the minds of the people you love. Hey, maybe that kind of thing is possible for me too.
Don’t believe me? Or don’t trust that focusing on yourself could really have that much of an impact on others?
Imagine your kids knowing that their Mom knows how to take care of herself and keep growing. Even more powerful, imagine them learning how to do it for themselves, simply by seeing you do it. (Modeling is far and away the biggest way we teach our kids.)
Imagine your husband knowing that he doesn’t have to be the only outlet for your stress anymore, and enjoying his deepening relationship with you. Imagine him being inspired to do the good things for himself that he’s thus far avoid or ignored.
Imagine the deeper connection to your siblings and friends you’ll have when they see you growing and confide in you about the changes they’d like to make too—and not simply complain about what they don’t like.
Imagine the people you’ll be able to help, whether that’s in your work, your volunteering, or simply your chatting in the line at the grocery store. One encounter with an awake person (meaning, you) can help another person begin their own process of waking up too. It’s about raising your energy level, and it’s infectious.
Imagine your parents telling you they’re proud of you because they’ve noticed the ways you’re blossoming, and feeling closer to them because of it.
I mean, hey, some people get freaked out by change in general. Some people in your life may be turned off by what you’re up to. Or they may secretly like it, but they will never admit it. Fine. You’ll be clearer on the people in your life that you no longer need to worry about pleasing. And that’s ultimately a relief, even if it may be painful too at points along the way.
So, whatever personal change you’re thinking about making, do it for you. And know that you’ll also be doing it for others. It’s an exhilarating ride, I can promise you!