So a lot of what I talk to my clients about is the idea that we should be working towards wellness, rather than away from illness. And yet, this past few weeks, I have to admit that I haven’t done too well in this space myself.
As a life and wellness coach, my hypocrisy meter has been going off a little. I’ve been thinking of Russ Harris’ quote a lot, where he says:
I don’t want you to think I’ve got my life completely in order. It’s more as if you’re climbing your mountain over there and I’m climbing my mountain over here. It’s not as if I’ve reached the top and I’m having a rest. It’s just that from where I am on my mountain, I can see obstacles on your mountain that you can’t see. So I can point those out to you, and maybe show you some alternative routes around them.’
I’ve had to coach myself to gain some perspective on my own mountain. I’ve been very tired recently. It turns out this is because my iron levels have dropped really low. Anyone who has experienced low iron levels will no doubt understand this. What this has meant is that I’ve had to practice a greater level of self-care than usual and I’ve had to practice self-compassion. This has meant addressing my self-talk and not beating myself up about not setting a brilliant example, or about not being able to be superwoman (not that I have any illusions of grandeur here!). I have practiced some of the stress management strategies I talk about, with ‘avoid’ being one I’ve used a bit, saying ‘no, not this week’ to a few non-essentials.
Please don’t get me wrong, it’s definitely not as bad as all that (far from!) and quite easily managed. However, it has highlighted to me once again how critical self-care is, how critical it is to fit your own oxygen mask first, and how important it is to work towards wellness, NOT away from illness.
I’ve also learned just how many women have experienced low iron levels at some stage in their lives. What’s lovely is that by showing my vulnerability, others have felt comfortable to do the same and we’ve had some great conversations that have been mutually valuable, supportive and informative.
In closing, I’d like to ask you a few questions:
I'm working on my own strategies as you read this!
Melbourne Based Life and Wellness Coach