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Tag: Physical Fitness

Physical Fitness encompasses the entire mind/body connection, because when your positive thoughts support you, you’ll consistently make good health decisions such as healthful eating, regular exercise and sufficient sleep.

Why I Participated in the 2019 CrossFit Open

I participated in the 2019 Crossfit Open. It was amazing! CrossFit teaches me to see every day as an opportunity to improve, get better, get where I want to be.“You dream. You plan. You reach. There will be obstacles. There will be doubters. There will be mistakes. But with hard work, with belief, with confidence and trust in yourself and those around you, there are no limits.” ~ Michael Phelps

Have you ever heard of the CrossFit Open? This year it’s happening between February 21st and March 25th. The CrossFit Games are world-renowned as a grueling test for the toughest athletes on Earth. It’s a five-workout competition. And it’s thrilling to see what people are capable of doing!

I love CrossFit and all that it stands for. I love its philosophy. I love its comradeship. I love the intensity. It’s my kind of workout. Every week I get to push my limits physically and mentally. I always learn something new about myself.

Since I started Crossfit over 3 years ago, it has become a metaphor for life: push your limits – find your strength!

Here are some life lessons you can takeaway from Crossfit training:

Your physical strength is fueled by your mental strength. When your body or mind says “you can’t”, try it anyway. More often than not, you can!

The more flexible you are the more resourceful, resilient and courageous you’ll be.

Progress doesn’t come automatically. There’s always a learning curve. Invest the time to develop skill “A” to get to skill “B” and so forth. If you jump from “A” to “Z” you’re going to hurt yourself!

There’s always some move you can make. Maybe you can’t do a Pull Up, but you can do a modified version of it, as you strengthen your body so that you can do it eventually.

Believe in yourself! Trust your coach and soak in the encouragement from your community. When you compare yourself to someone else, you hurt yourself. Use their success as inspiration instead.

Discipline and consistency build a reserve of strength, grit and conviction that gets you through the days when you’re feeling down. To become fit, you have to value your well-being over your desire to be a people pleaser

Can you see how these lessons apply to all areas in life? People say, “If I had known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself.” We have the choice to let life happen or train for the long game. I’m in it for the long game.

I never thought I would ever enter the 2019 CrossFit Open, never. I thought of competing with my friends, but not entering at such an international level. But this year I did! Why? Because I believe in these principles and I wanted to practice what I preach to others.

Here are my scores on the 2019 CrossFit Open Leaderboard

If you go to the leaderboard website, you will see that I was there. It’s an amazing experience! No, I’m not in the top 10. That’s not the point. I trained to push my limits, to see what I could do. I accomplished more than I would have thought possible a year ago. And I know that next year I’ll do even more!

Ultimately, I entered the 2019 Crossfit Open, because I wanted to communicate these important messages to myself:

  • I am good enough right now.
  • I only compare myself to myself.
  • I push my limits to find my strength.
  • Don’t take yourself too seriously.
  • Don’t take life too seriously either.
  • Life is short, go for it.
  • Happy is on the other side of fear.
  • Courage takes you there.

During the open an amazing thing happened! Right after each grueling workout (five total), and not before I could stand and breathe again, it would all make sense. The everyday training itself started to make sense: how to train, how to push myself each day and week, how to gradually increase my effort, and why all of this is important.

In life, as in CrossFit, you have to train hard (with substantial periods of rest and recuperation in between) in order to sustain even 15 minutes of intense work. Imagine practicing your public speaking every day for just 5 minutes in the shower and then getting to your public speaking event and feeling like “I can do this!” This is what Crossfit has taught me to do every day. It takes consistent, daily discipline to get to the critical moment where I can perform well, with ease and skill.

I know I will do the open again…and again…and again. And from now on, I’ll see every day as an opportunity to improve, get better, get where I want to be. Like we learned from the story of the Tortoise and the Hare – slow and steady wins.

Would you like to find the same kind of courage, determination and resourceful within yourself? Please join us at our Women: Bring Forth the Leader Within Retreat June 20 to 26th in Grand Canary Island. I know you have it …let’s bring it to life!

Create a Master Plan to Make 2019 Your Best Year Yet!

Create a Master Plan to make 2019 your best year yet! “Stay focused, go after your dreams and keep moving toward your goals.” ~ LL Cool

I can hardly believe we’re at the end of 2018 and that it’s time to get ready for a new year. It’s an exciting time to create the life you want and to define your success. To that end, throughout this month I’m going to be sharing useful tips so you can make 2019 your best year yet!

It’s always good to take some time and reflect on what you did well during the last year. This is when your journal will really be helpful, because we tend to minimize or forget our wins. Or you could write a letter to yourself about the lessons you’ve learned this year.

To up your game and maintain greater focus, it’s vital to create a Master Plan to make 2019 your best year yet. I find that some of my clients get sidetracked in the minutia of life and lose sight of their bigger picture. Where can you start and what needs to be given priority?

#1 Priority – Fuel your body, mind and spirit. If you don’t take care of yourself first, you will not be able to implement the following suggestions. A successful Master Plan will make your own physical, emotional, mental and spiritual wellness top priority. Feel free to download my 7-Point Wellness Assessment and it will help you begin creating a healthier YOU today! 

#2 Priority – Make restorative sleep a priority. Your health, mental clarity and ability to be productive depend on it.

#3 Priority – Develop systems. Goals are fine, but if you want to create real change, it helps to have supportive systems in your life so that you perform important tasks automatically rather than relying solely on using willpower.

Before you proceed, please, take care of yourself with these priorities first! Then the following suggestions for developing and maintaining your focus will help you make 2019 your best year yet.

Remove distractions. Use the rest of this year to get rid of the clutter in your house, mind, desk, email inbox or schedule. This will help make room for any opportunity that arises.

Define your goals. When you define your goals according to a yearly, quarterly, monthly, and daily schedule, you’ll be less likely to lose your focus. Yes, that’s a lot of work to do before the year begins, but it’s worth it. It’s how you connect each day’s activities to your significant life goals.

Divide each goal into small tasks. Do you find yourself saying, “Where do I start?” “If” and “then” are small words, but they are indispensable tools in your productivity arsenal. Ask yourself, “If I want to accomplish my big goal Z, then what absolutely has to happen? If I want to work on Y, then I need to finish S, T, U, V, and W.”  Baby steps and microhabits are your best friends for making progress.

Work on hard things when you’re fresh and energized. Days can pass without accomplishing much toward your big goals, if you don’t learn to work to your strengths. Whether you’re a morning person or not, be selfish and keep the first hour of the day for yourself. Start with something that gives you an immediate win, like meditation, exercise and setting your intentions for the day. As you’re feeling confident and centered, you can turn to working on the hardest project of the day. Leave running errands and repetitive tasks for lower-energy moments.

Create and stick to your boundaries. Especially if you work at home, you’ll benefit from creating boundaries about when you answer emails, the phone, the doorbell or when your family can interrupt you. I like this reminder from Steve Jobs:

“Focusing is about saying No.”     

Hold breaks as sacred. Under Oregon law, the typical adult employee who work eight hours must receive at least a 30-minute meal period and two ten-minute rest breaks. Yet many people who work for themselves will not treat themselves that kindly. They push until late at night, skip meals, and work through break times. And their bodies hurt! It’s time to listen to your body and heal yourself from that abuse.

Reward yourself. Celebrate every small or big win each day. Get up and dance, grab a latte, cuddle your cat, buy a flower. Make each win memorable, because that’s how you’re going to know at the end of the year that you really did make 2019 your best year yet!  

If you’re tired of going it alone and are looking for an accountability partner, please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype). Let’s work through the rough patches so you can make 2019 your best year yet!  

Supercharge your Power of Concentration by Learning How to Focus Better

how to improve your focus so you can supercharge your power of concentrationAre there times when you struggle to focus on the task at hand? Perhaps that’s because there’s too much going on in your attentional field. What’s that? It’s a term used to describe everything within your attention span – your thoughts, emotions, physical sensations, sights and sounds around you. Right now your attention is on the website reading this, but you may at the same time be distracted by other things like the mug of tea you’re sipping, the sound of your child or pet in the background, the thoughts of a deadline looming later today.

Focus is the ability to attend to internal cues (what’s going on inside of you, your feelings and thoughts) and external cues (what’s going on around you, like the knock on the door) in your attentional field. In all areas of life, whether you’re giving a presentation at work, having an important conversation with your spouse or training for a marathon, in order to excel you need to be able to focus.

What can you do to learn how to focus better? Here are two main skills you’ll need to master:

  1. In order to tap into the tremendous power of concentration, determine what the relevant cues to the task at hand are and learn to focus only on them. We learn to selectively focus on or block out cues every day, otherwise the background noises and activities would drive us crazy.

Think about a star ball player. He must be in tune to his technique, his opponent, the score, the referee, the coach, and time remaining on the scoreboard, to name only a few cues vying for his attention. What would happen if his focus shifted to the pretty girl in the bleachers? He, in all likelihood, might miss the ball flying towards him. Hence at this point and time, that pretty girl would be considered a performance-irrelevant cue that must be ignored.

  1. So the second skill for achieving better focus is determining what the performance-irrelevant cues are so you can ignore them as you strive to excel. These would be anything that would hurt your performance when you must accomplish a task.

There are two types of harmful cues that you’ll encounter:

Interfering cues are those that directly hurt your performance such as negative thoughts, anxiety, and concern over what others think.

Irrelevant cues are those that distract you from an effective focus including what restaurant you’ll go to tonight, the project that you must finish by tomorrow, or that pretty girl in the bleachers.

Each of us has a different dominant focus style, which is what we default to under stress. We pay attention in two distinct ways. These two focus styles are…

Internal-focus style. These people are totally and consistently focused during a specific activity like a presentation, a practice session or a competition. They need to keep their focus narrow, thinking only about their performance all the time. The down side of this intensity is that they also tend to be easily distracted by their surroundings.

External-focus style. These people only focus on their specific activity when they’re about to begin the event or competition. They function better by taking their mind off of the activity at all other times, because they tend to over-think, becoming negative, critical, and anxious. For them to excel, they must focus on other things when they’re not actually performing.

Neither approach is right or wrong. The important thing is identifying your focus style and utilizing it to improve your powers of concentration. If you’re trying to force yourself to adopt a style other than your own, you’ll find that under pressure you’ll revert back to your normal style and that could really throw you off your game.

Would you like assistance in utilizing your personal style to excel at everything you do? We can work together in person or via Skype. Please contact me and I’ll be happy to help you identify your weakness and learn how to tap into your strengths.

A good place to begin is by taking my 7-Point Wellness Assessment. You can download your free copy by clicking here.


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