At the end of Les Mills Pump Extreme, the song “Let Me Be Myself” plays during cool-down and stretch. Not one to get overly emotional from music, especially music during a workout, I’ve surprised myself not once, but twice now, by tearing up during this song.
The workout is vigorous, so I thought the tears could simply be a huge expulsion of relief for finishing strong.
Today, however, three very clear thoughts rose to the forefront as to why THAT song cracked some emotions.
First, as I get to know other Beachbody Coaches via Facebook, both on their personal pages and through private groups, I see a number of commonalities via threads. I find that the unconditional support we have for one another is unlike anything I’ve experienced in other circles. It’s positive. It’s forward-thinking. We support, encourage, and challenge each other not only physically, but in other areas of our lives as well. I am not shy about my faith in these circles, and make no apologies for my faith being the driving force behind even choosing to become a part of Team Beachbody in the first place. I feel deeply blessed to be a part of this company – and not mainly for the financial benefits. No, even George has seen the change in how I approach life. I work with some very cool people. And I truly desire to help others find a solution for this area of their lives. The U.S. is facing an obesity epidemic, and it CAN be changed – by returning to the basics: exercise and proper nutrition. I’m on board with this. And do believe the country is in a bit of denial about the state of our health.
The second commonality I see on Facebook is troubling. I often read the status updates from Coaches who communicate that they are growing weary from comments from ‘friends’ who tell them they are “talking about fitness too much”, are “obsessed” or “addicted”. Comments that Beachbody is a scam, or that our programs can’t “touch this”, or “that”. I realize that FB is a breeding ground for this, but I can’t help wonder if we have lost the ability to simply tell someone “great job” and be on our way without having to talk down about their interests or success. Does everything have to be a debate? (I recognize that I used to be the one loving the debate – until I realized I was much happier staying out of them). And why can’t we just be happy for people? Some have communicated that they are losing friendships as they change their lives for the better. This makes me so sad, and is one of the huge reasons I chose to close my personal Facebook wall from comments and decrease my presence there, opting to hang on my business page.
Which brings me to today. I began reading through some older blog posts of mine and was struck at how “me” they were. Open. Candid. And while I didn’t think I’d changed my style over the last few years, it was quite clear after reading back posts, that I have. And I know why.
Fear of negative feedback. Of which I’ve received more in the last three years then in any years prior.
Today, I felt a strong nudge from my Heavenly Father, while hanging out in complete silence on my back deck in the glorious sunshine, that I need to continue speaking up about my experiences and what I believe. Sure, there will be the risk of being misunderstood. I will risk someone reading MY experience, internalizing it as their own, and responding negatively to what I’ve written. Thus, I’ve been holding back. I even remember the actual DAY and scenario which drove me to make the decision to be a bit more “decaf” here on Cuppa Jo. I’ve never felt settled with that decision.
When I Coach my team and the customers in my accountability groups – I do NOT hold back. I’ve been told I’m an encourager – albeit a firm one. See, I don’t believe encouragement means telling someone who has made a commitment, that’s it’s ok when they fall off the wagon. Rather, I feel committed to hoisting that person back up on the wagon and handing them the tools to stay there. Beachbody has taught me persistence. Hurdles are just “in the way”, and if I can’t leap over them, I’ll lift them over my head and throw them. I want that for myself. I want that for others. God has given me a voice and a platform on which to use that voice. This blog.
And this is where the song comes in. And the tears. We’ve been told we’re mean. Judgmental. Overly focused on this “exercise thing.” Even though this “exercise thing” as been a healthy positive force in my life. And in the lives of my friends. I was drowning in early 2010. I’m swimming the Channel now.
And those who know me (as in we actually we do that old-fashioned talking thing people used to do) are cheering me on and swimming with me. AND, kicking my rump back in line when I’ve faltered. I have “advisors” in my life.
So, I’m going to cease the self-censoring here on my blog, for I’ve switched to decaf solely out of the fear of making people mad.
I think I’ll go back to being more of me now . . . living a fully caffeinated live.
Thank you, Lord, for the chat today. Thank you, friends for letting me be me.
Wow, do I feel a whole heck of a lot lighter.
I think I’ll have a cuppa.