On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being not happy, and 10 being very happy, how do you rank your relationship with your health? Your money? Your body? Your willingness to change?
I was watching the Biggest Loser and the contestants were answering questions on childhood obesity. A shocking statistic was that 75% of parents with obese children view those children as normal or underweight. How can that be you might ask?
From a coaching perspective, these parents might be in a pre-contemplative stage– not knowing there is a need to make a change. When a person comes to an awareness that there is a problem, they move into the contemplation stage of change. At this point in the example, a parent may say, “I should do something about my child’s weight.”
Preparation is when a client decides they are going to do something about the situation. “I am going to a class on childhood obesity.”
Action is when there is consistent forward movement for one to six months. This may include setting up meetings with a nutritionist, emptying out the pantry and purchasing healthy foods. It may mean adding exercise everyday.
And finally, when there has been consistent action for at least six months, a person moves into maintenance mode. This is the stage where good habits are being solidified and they become part of the normal fabric of our everyday lives.
Any adjustment in our schedule, work, transitions, etc. can throw us back into earlier stages of change, but hopefully, with a proven track record of consistency, we can refocus quickly.
Why does this matter to you? Where are you on your own journey? Are you at a place where you know you need to make a change in your health? Are you taking consistent action to make that change? How willing are you to change?
These are all good questions, ones that I may ask a client as we are working together. Sometimes I am the cheerleader, sometimes the accountability coach, but always I am the one walking the path with my clients, asking the right questions, affirming right action, encouraging change. Wherever my client is today, at this time in their life, is where I begin.
What stage are you in with regards to the changes you are making in your life?