I fell in love with Psychology the moment I realised it existed. I've always found people fascinating and wanted to learn more about how we function and what makes us human. So, at the age of 18, I started my personal development journey and went off to university to study Psychology. It was a journey into the unknown and I had no idea the impact it would have on me and on my life.
When I was 11, I had a gymnastic accident which caused me to injure my neck, back and shoulders. The long-term damage this caused led to a diagnosis of Chronic Pain in my early 20's. Health professionals told me there was nothing more they could do for me and advised that I should expect my condition to worsen as I aged. I was devastated. I felt like I was being written off and knowing that I would have pain every day for the rest of my life was soul destroying. In that moment I had 2 choices…give up and accept I’d live a restricted life relying on painkillers to get me through the day, or fight. Fight for the life I wanted and knew I could have. I decided to fight.
I already knew the power of our mind because of studying psychology so I dove headfirst into behaviour modification techniques. I learned cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) and neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) and realised that I could change my reality by changing my thoughts, feelings, and behaviour. I studied pain management techniques and took control of my treatment plan moving away from medication towards desensitisation and building strength and resilience in my pain areas. The result? I went from experiencing daily pain rated 7/10 on the pain scale, to a pain rating of 3/10 and my condition has improved so significantly that there are some days when I experience no pain at all. I was determined that my condition wouldn’t stop me from living the life I wanted. I had no idea something else was at play that would.
Whilst starting my condition management journey, I found myself working in a job where I felt like I had to sacrifice my own personal values to meet the company’s standards. I would wake up every morning dreading going into work feeling sad and lost, weighed down by all these expectations and fears. I felt completely stuck. These expectations (from myself, my friends, my family, my colleagues, society) were telling me that I couldn’t quit because “I’m not a quitter, I’d be letting myself down, I’d be a disappointment to my family, quitting without another job just isn’t something you do etc.” I felt I was losing a part of myself every day and I was helpless to do anything about it. Then one day I found myself in a coaching session. This coaching session opened my eyes to the realisation that I had created a life based on other people's expectations. I was living the life they wanted for me, not the life I wanted for myself. This was LIFE CHANGING. Suddenly I was no longer held back by my beliefs. Suddenly I believed in myself more than I ever had done before. Suddenly I knew that whatever life threw at me I’d be able to handle it. And right there and then I made a promise to myself that I would thrive instead of just survive.
Coaching helped me break free from the thoughts, feelings, beliefs, values, and experiences that were holding me back from taking a risk and believing in myself. It helped me take better care of body and mind. It provided me with a clear direction to take my life (and work) in and most importantly it helped me build a strong sense of who I was and empowered me to stay true to that so that I was no longer willing to compromise on the things I truly wanted. I now have grit, determination and resilience in my body and mind. I tackle challenges head-on with the belief that I will find a way to overcome them. I control the things I can and let go of the things I can’t. I push myself to live outside of my comfort zone so that I continuously learn and develop from experiences, good and bad. I'm kind to myself knowing that I am doing the best I can, and I always have good intentions. Coaching has quite simply changed my life, and now I feel privileged to be able to help and support others to change theirs too.
We can't always control what happens to us in life, but we can control how we respond to it. Digging deeper into my own mindset and finding coaching meant that I could take things to a whole new level with my clients, helping them embrace and love every part of themselves, breaking down barriers and stepping into a new reality; a reality they create. The journey from surviving to thriving isn't easy and you'll often uncover things you weren't expecting, but it's worth it.
I didn't always have the confidence to show up as my authentic self. In fact, the most challenging thing for me was learning what it was that my authentic self actually wanted because I'd spent years prior to this feeling like I didn't have a voice; that life just happened, and you had no control over it. What I've realised is that thriving is not a destination, it's a mindset that needs continuous refinement. But if you put in the work, you can become who you truly want to be and do what you truly want to do. I'm proof that it takes a small change today to see a big change tomorrow. If you're looking for some support to make the change that matters, you've come to the right place.
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Subscribe to my newsletter to receive a FREE copy of my how to thrive guide along with easy-to-follow self-coaching steps sent directly to your inbox twice weekly designed to set you on the path to thriving.