The “Scott” Process

I have been working with Ginger for over thirty-eight weeks now, and my weekly coaching sessions have become very important to me.  I need them as bad as I need my basketball and exercise time.  I need them almost as bad as I need my insulin and CGM.

Through all of this time and all of the little steps we are making towards my goals, we have recognized a “change process” that I unconsciously follow.

Scott notices a “problem” in his lifestyle or habits that he knows logically he “should” want to change. As Scott considers what it would entail to actually make these changes in his life, he gets overwhelmed or intimidated by the idea of making such drastic changes. He knows he should for the sake of his health and happiness, but he doesn’t want to. As Scott steps back from actually committing to making those changes, he still exposes himself to new knowledge and research around those topics. He dabbles in new foods, dabbles in new exercise routines at his own pace. Over time, Scott makes a transition naturally to those changes because he’s chosen to make those changes in his own time.

Ginger recognized this pattern of mine and put it into words.  The first time I heard it I was mesmerized.  It is a very dense paragraph, and it seemed so full of truth.  I had to let it all sink in for a minute, then I said “YES!! – that is EXACTLY how it seems to be for me!”.

Let’s break it down a little bit.

Scott notices a “problem” in his lifestyle or habits that he knows logically he “should” want to change.

For example, I know I should eat better, but I don’t want to change my diet.  Or I know I should drink less Diet Coke, but I don’t want to drink less Diet Coke.  Change is easier when you really want something.  When you want it, you find ways around the challenges and obstacles.

As Scott considers what it would entail to actually make these changes in his life, he gets overwhelmed or intimidated by the idea of making such drastic changes. He knows he should for the sake of his health and happiness, but he doesn’t want to.

Ever get overwhelmed when looking at what you think is a major life change?  That’s pretty normal, right?  If you’re anything like me you will jump too far into the change process, thinking you have to make drastic, quick, radical changes.  Of course, those types of changes will be overwhelming! Duh!

As Scott steps back from actually committing to making those changes, he still exposes himself to new knowledge and research around those topics. He dabbles in new foods, dabbles in new exercise routines at his own pace.

The key things here are 1) exposure and 2) at my own pace.

Over time, Scott makes a transition naturally to those changes because he’s chosen to make those changes in his own time.

That exposure, at my own pace, let’s me experiment with slow change without that hard commitment and deadline.  As I learn more about what I’m working on, and start to experience some positive feeling from doing good for myself, I begin to want that change.

It starts slow.  It starts from the inside.  I like to think of it as “planting a seed of change” inside me.  It doesn’t go from a seed to a giant tree quickly.  It takes time, patience, and nurturing.

Life throws a mess of trouble at me sometimes, and I feel that I have to tuck into my protective shell to get through the shitstorm.  When that happens, all “forward progress” work stops, and I even take a few backward steps.  Maybe even a lot of backward steps?

But that little seed of change is a persistent little guy once it starts growing.  Once things settle down I feel drawn to start working again.  Once I start working again, it doesn’t feel I’ve lost as much ground as my mind would have me think.

I hope that sharing this is of some help to some people – it was pretty enlightening to me.  It also made me feel perfectly comfortable with slow change.

Ginger would tell you that this is exactly what her coaching is all about.  Change from the inside out.

 

Disclaimer: I don’t feel comfortable touting Ginger’s awesome coaching abilities without disclosing that I am not paying cash for her coaching services.  If I had to though, I would pick up another part-time job to pay whatever she wanted to charge me.  Millions even.  She is very skilled at this, and I’d be lost without it.

 

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Scott K. Johnson

Patient voice, speaker, writer, advocate. Living life with diabetes and telling my story. Patient Success Manager, USA for mySugr (All opinions expressed are my own and do not necessarily represent the position of my employer).

Diagnosed in April of 1980, I recognize the incredible mental struggle of living with diabetes. Read more…