Yes. It is, sometimes. And sometimes it is ensuring that you get up and train hard and eat your 5 cups of veggies. Walking the fine line between pushing yourself, or strictly watching what you eat to reach your goals and being compassionate with yourself when you don’t is a very personal choice and an ever shifting decision.
Here’s the Wiki definition of self-compassion:
Self-compassion is extending compassion to one’s self in instances of perceived inadequacy, failure, or general suffering. Neff has defined self-compassion as being composed of three main components – self-kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness. Neff, K. D. (2003a)
- Self-kindness: Self-compassion entails being warm towards oneself when encountering pain and personal shortcomings, rather than ignoring them or hurting oneself with self-criticism.
- Common humanity: Self-compassion also involves recognizing that suffering and personal failure is part of the shared human experience.
- Mindfulness: Self-compassion requires taking a balanced approach to one’s negative emotions so that feelings are neither suppressed nor exaggerated. Negative thoughts and emotions are observed with openness, so that they are held in mindful awareness. Mindfulness is a non-judgmental, receptive mind state in which individuals observe their thoughts and feelings as they are, without trying to suppress or deny them.
Women are often very compassionate to everybody but themselves, giving kind words, encouragement, a soothing hug and a helping hand to everyone else, but heaping the criticism on themselves for perceived failures. Self-compassion is not a dirty word. It is absolutely not slacking off, it is simply giving yourself the same kindness, encouragement, compassion and forgiveness that you give everybody else.
Self-compassion is never an excuse to binge. However if you have been bingeing or slacked off it is the forgiveness that stops you from beating yourself up endlessly and helps to encourage you to get back up and get on with it.
The words “slacking off” are a self-judgement, which can be useful at times to help keep you on track if you are getting off course and your actions are not matching up with your goals. However it can become a tool to beat yourself up with and endlessly push for perfection, never reaching it.
I personally tend to define slacking off as when I’ve let my healthy habits slip to the point where my results are going backwards. I have a certain pair of jeans that are my guide. I know that when those jeans get a bit tight, it’s time to rein in portion sizes, bring my veggies back up to 5 or more cups per day, ensure I’m limiting my fructose and avoiding processed foods. I don’t define slacking off as a day off or even the occasional weekend off. I enjoy those times guilt free, eating whatever I feel like, enjoying the social aspect of food, knowing I will easily be back to my usual habits on Monday.
I have found it useful to think of my training and nutrition in phases, this gives me the flexibility to give myself time for rest and recuperation, or enjoy a holiday without guilt, and then push hard to reach body composition or performance goals at other times. All professional athletes use this method to a greater or lesser degree, there are times when they are ‘in season’ or ‘in training’ and times when they are off. In their on season they are very strict with their training and nutrition, and when they’re off they give themselves time to let off some steam, enjoy life and rest.
If you’ve been living with unhealthy habits for an extended time, you’re probably tired. It can be tough to get started from this place, to create the initial push to get yourself past the inertia of your current habits. Yes, it will be tiring the first few times that you need to get up to train, however this will soon begin a positive feedback loop that will propel you forward. Eventually you will find it difficult to stop.
If however, you’ve been training like a champion, 6 days a week for a few months and you’re tired, you might be over-training and may benefit from a self-compassionate full week off training, only doing light recuperative and restorative sessions. In this case you might think that giving yourself a week off is “slacking off” or that your results will go backwards, however what often happens is you give your body time to fully heal and you return stronger and more energetic than ever.
It’s just not realistic to expect yourself to be “on” your whole life. Yes, you can be consistently healthy when you incorporate some relaxed days or meals in your usual program, but who wants to live their entire life in some super strict, anti-social regime. This is diet mentality. It’s not sustainable. Take a few days off to relax, ease off on the rules, and see how your body responds, then reassess your plan, and you can get back into the swing refreshed.
The only way to know where you’re at and if you need to keep up what you’re doing, ramp it up, or give yourself a break, is to be honest with yourself about what you’re doing and what results you’re getting. Are you happy with your lifestyle? Are you happy with your body shape and fitness? Be mindful of the way you talk to yourself and your inner dialogue. Are you happy with that? What is working for you what what is not? Self-compassion is rooted in honest self-awareness, coupled with the understanding that everyone has off times and struggles. If you have been relaxed and want better results, then tighten up your routine, focus on just one or two leveraged changes. If you’re happy with your results and your lifestyle, keep up the good work! And if you’ve been pushing yourself and are tired, and plateauing, maybe it’s a good idea to take a break and shake it up with something different after some time off.
So cliched and so true. You need to find the right balance of your level of health, lifestyle choices, energy levels, food choices and exercise habits to optimize to your goals and values. Be compassionate with yourself about what you really want. If you really want to look like a fitness model, and have visible abs, your lifestyle is going to be very different to a person who just wants to be a “normal” healthy weight and still enjoy some dinners out and more relaxed daily eating habits. Neither is better than the other, its just different.
So please, be honest and compassionate with yourself. When you’re struggling, imagine what you would say and do for a loved friend who was going through the same situation and then do that for yourself.
“Having ongoing training is essential for our team and our business. It’s important to look after the people that look after others. Kylie has the experience, professionalism and knowledge to engage with our team and help them understand about human behaviour and why people do what they do. In the wellness and health industry it’s a different sales and service delivery and it’s imperative to keep on top of these understandings to perform at our best to help others. We couldn’t recommend Kylie high enough.”
“I have worked with Kylie over many years. She has helped me as a Business Mindset Coach, as a motivational speaker for my gym clients at both Vision Personal Training & now at Flow Athletic.
I bring her in to train my Personal Training teams in mindset, communication and how to coach our clients better and excel in our own personal mastery as fitness leaders.
At my recent Fitness Business event, my gym owner colleagues were blown away by her talk, saying she is the best speaker they have ever seen.
After every event we always get rave reviews about her talks and training.
I highly recommend her work.”
“I finished the Spiritual Awakening Course yesterday and I found it truly amazing. An incredible next step after our coach training. I feel so much more enlightened and “opened-up”. It has really opened my eyes to the power of the universe and the energy flowing in each of us. I loved it – thank you.
I am feeling so lucky at the moment. So many things are just falling into my lap. I visualise it and set my intention to manifest it and it comes. Things such as getting more clients, needing help to put my business online, not knowing how to get known in my local community etc. Courses / insights / clients have just fallen into my lap at the right time.”
Of course I am still learning and growing, but the course has really helped. Thank you”
“Before I met Kylie I was feeling very lost working full time in law in Sydney CBD. I’ve known my whole life that I was here to help people, but I just didn’t know exactly how. So when I found Kylie, it just was really fitting that it was going to help me ground my magic. I started the coach training and had an amazing time. It was beautiful to go through the process of having a mentor that had that spiritual element and that holistic element, as well as the very grounded science-based knowledge as well. So that really helped me to conjure that for myself.
I started my business before I even finished the course. I just started putting myself out there. And now I’ve gotten it to a point where I’ve got really grounded solid message, and two years later am running a multi-6 figure coaching business as a leading pioneer in my niche, helping clients all over the world.”
“Before I signed up with Kylie I had a busy PT business… I was exhausted and on the brink of burnout and no matter how hard I tried, I had reached a ceiling in my income that I just couldn’t break through. After completing my NLP Coaching certification, I found my true voice and the energy of my business has been completely transformed. I’ve created an online program, up-levelled my entire business and totally smashed my previous income goals. I make decisions more confidently and I can help my clients create change in their life even faster. On a personal level, NLP gave me the inner strength to leave a toxic situation and rebuild myself which lead to me discovering the love of my life! Today I am living the life that I’ve always wanted – but just hadn’t been able to put into words. I have never been this happy or this powerful. If you want to manifest the life of your dreams I would not hesitate to reach out for help from Kylie.”
Before attaining my NLP Coach certification, I was an online trainer who was getting excellent results for “some” of my clients. I used a mixture of experience, intuition and an exhausting “helicopter-parent” style of accountability coaching. It was like the 20% of the clients who weren’t getting good results took up 80% of my effort, and it was draining my passion for my business. This meant my income was never predictable, I worked way too many hours, and I was constantly putting out spot-fires for energy-vampire clients.
Completing my Certification with Kylie has been the best decision of my career. The very next month after finishing I created a new and improved program with better boundaries and made $30,000 in new sales. I now have a repeatable system to coach my clients and I can get them both immediate AND long-lasting change, sometimes in less than 40 minutes.
In the past 12 months, I have doubled my freedom and fulfillment in my business I have created raving clients who snap up my offers and I’ve breathed fresh air into my business creativity. My income has remained the same, whilst I have halved the amount of work I was doing. This has given me the freedom to be a present mum and earn an excellent income from home.
I signed up with Kylie because I knew that to have a bigger effect as a PT I needed to improve my understanding of how the mind works. Through NLP Coach training I now have great coaching techniques that break through all sorts of negative behaviour patterns. I’ve noticed big improvements in all areas of my life including my own personal finances and my client retention. This has allowed me new freedom to work on scaling my business and helping even more people with less one on one time from myself. The coach training has given me the ability to fully unlock the power of your mindset and those that don’t have this skill are only tapping into a small amount of their potential.
This morning I had a kick-ass coaching session with Kylie Ryan.
We’ve been working together for a couple of months, and she’s the perfect person to help me integrate the rapid transformations I go through regularly. I’d been getting this vision of my fully mature creative and entrepreneurial self. His discipline, commitment, and command of wealth was 10x what mine is now, but it wasn’t really about money for him. Our coaching sessions usually roll with me saying, “Kylie, I want to be, do, and have EVERYTHING” and Kylie helping me find the archetypes and parts that aren’t integrated and bringing them together. MAGICK HAPPENS EVERY TIME.