I'm "aware"... now what?
In last week's post, I introduced “transformation” as somewhat of a foundation topic to be pulled part and explored over the coming weeks. I highlighted how personal transformation, more often than not, occurs when we are aware that change is required. When we become conscious that something in our method, preparation, process, execution is failing to get us from where we are, to where we want to be. It’s hard. You know I know you know I know (if you've read the previous posts). We hold onto the thing/s with all our might, we romanticise what got us 'here.' “It worked so well to get me here, surely it can get me there…” we'd say. Or we'd think, "why isn't what I'm doing working? I'm doing exactly the same thing as I did before.." and that's exactly it!
if nothing changes; nothing changes.
The 'game' changed, but our game plan didn't. Amidst our hustling, planning, and doing our thang, we may have missed the signs telling us that we'd unlocked and entered the next level of our lives. Sooner or later we realise that we have to up our game to continue or to get comfortable where we were because our current habits won’t be taking us any farther. That's for sure.
In order to transform ourselves, we must become conscious of our faults or wrongdoing, otherwise transformation wouldn't appeal as an option - because nothing needs changing!? Cool, I’m aware… now what? Now, consider the whakapapa (genealogy, connection, process, origins, evolution) that has brought you to exactly where you are right now, reading this piece of fine literature (which I appreciate VERY MUCH!!). For example, I'm in Perth with my lover today because on the day we met, he left his bag in Rotorua and had to come back to pick it up. He came to pick up his bag but left with feelings instead... the rest is history. Another scenario; I have a rollie puku (tummy) at the moment because what was meant to be one treat yo'self moment, grew into a lifestyle... ya with me?
So please, pick an undesirable circumstance in your life *within your control* (career, finance, health, etc.), trace it back to its source, and see how every event or situation between then and now, has been crafted by your own design. In doing so, you can identify where you fall off track, what may not benefit you anymore, what obstacles keep occurring etc. Then, reflect on where you've been/come from vs where you are now and understand that this is also how you move forward with designing (creating the habits to get you) where you want to be. There is whakapapa in everything and by understanding how to recognise and utilise it to our advantage, we can attract the tools to unshackle ourselves from the habits that have suppressed us from realising our potential - It's cliche for a reason; it's true.
Not so long ago, I realised that my habits weren't congruent with one particular goal I had set and aspired to achieve. I wanted to represent NZ in rugby, however the work I was putting in, was basically inadequate. I sacrificed plenty on this quest for the national team and came close, but I still held onto eating whatever I wanted, thinking I could get away with it not affecting my performance. I trained a lot - of course I shoulda coulda woulda been doing more but training was an area I was aware I needed to improve on, so I welcomed the extra sessions. My bad food intake on the other hand, I held onto for dear life because without it, I'd have no excuse for not making the team. I would have been doing everything in my ability and capacity to make that team. But I couldn't let go because I needed, no, wanted a fall back. I wanted to comfort myself that not going all in 100% into something I was passionate about was ok. It was NOT ok.
Just a heads up before we continue, it was never about the food. How do you get healthier; by treating the cause, or the symptom? My mental capacity was unhealthy and needed a remedy. I had to address the cause (why I wasn't willing to invest myself 100%), and the symptom (bad diet) would correct itself accordingly.
Up until this moment, I had a thing about putting myself out there - hated it. “Put myself out there you reckon, what if I do and it's not good enough? What if I give my all and I don't make it?” This was my motto for as long as I can remember (look at me now haha). But I wasn't aware I was doing this! There's the crux. For all I knew, I was putting 150% into achieving my goals and let me tell ya, the second I became conscious of my self-sabotaging ways; my world got flipped sunny side up, scrambled and poached all in one go. From that moment on, every time I saw Nutella or even thought about having seconds, desert or a snack, my conscience would drop its two cents, 'mustn't want that black jersey after all huh.. eat it then, "treat yo'self," you've done nothing to deserve it and won't "run it off later" but that's none of my business...' This was how the conversations in my head went to start with, until I built new habits and reinforced more positive behaviours, in-line with where I was and where I wanted to go.
I personally find it difficult to ignore my conscience. I set my own values and principles to conduct myself by, and if I measure a situation or action against these and decide I'm doing something wrong, it eats me up inside. This scenario and a few others have been great teachers of how important self-awareness is as a catalyst for any type of personal transformation, big or bigger.
To know where you're headed, it always comes in handy to know or understand where you've come from (whakapapa). Don’t allow yourself not to evolve from what got you here. If this, if right here where you are is all you've got in you, awesome! You should be proud. If it's not, why are you not sharing your gifts with the world?! Why are you settling for less? If you have the capacity to do something about and transform your current situation, do it! If you don't know how, Google my friend. You're welcome.
Anei he whakaaro, here's a thought by a prominent Te Arawa koroua (elder),
“Well, you may go on and live until you are 90, but you’re just as dead at 38 as you would be at 90. And the cessation of breathing in your life is but the belated announcement of an earlier death of the spirit.”
- Martin Luther King Jr.
Are you worth all your effort? The whole 100%? Is there a reason you're in the universe? Yes or more yes! How will you know if you aren't aware of your skills or how to affect positive change if you can't trace your movements to see how you've ended up where you are? Take time to take care of yourself. Be gentle on yourself as you grow and embrace the next level you's fresh outta the mix (ideally we'll all go through this process many times so plural you to include your future selves). There are enough people and things out there that will get in your way, don't add to the queue. Just remember that when you’re working on a larger vision or goal, you really need to work on yourself. Audit yourself, is what you're doing in harmony with where you want to go?
I tell ya, whakapapa trumps anything. Awareness is part of it, the first step in fact. After awareness, comes a decision to do something about it, or not. From my experience with the scenario I mentioned above, I would go with doing something about it.
Ngā mihi! Best wishes/ thank you!
ps: If you wanted the low down, by the time I became aware of my self-sabotaging ways in terms of eating and made the appropriate changes, I had picked up other habits that affected my ability to engage as much as I wanted to with rugby, which contributed to the 'overheating' I talk about in this post.