May is Mental Health Awareness month… and I am going to talk about it!!
Many of you know that I worked as a social worker for 12 years before “retiring” to focus on a career in health and fitness. What you may not know is that I probably do more “social work” now than I ever did working in the field (my caseload is in 100+!)
My lens is just different! I still consider myself a facilitator of change and I get to help people become their best self -with A LOT less paperwork!
I meet with each prospective member prior to them joining at CrossFit 1936.
This gives me an opportunity to get to know our athletes, what their goals are and what has held them back in the past. I am also not naive to the fact that though anyone CAN come to our classes- CrossFit isn’t the right fit for everyone.
I have done hundreds of these interviews and ALL of them have something in common…. Every single one of us want to FEEL something. Feel strong, feel sexy, feel energized, feel confident, and feel like we belong. What does that mean?
Plain and simple. Every single person wants to have a positive feeling.
Do we want to look good in a swimming suit? Of course!
But most people said they want to feel confident in a swimsuit… hear the difference?
I love working through this with our members. It's not easy and is often messy… but it's worth it!
So often we ignore our feelings, we maybe don’t know how to understand them or even be able to identify them. But they are THERE! They are a part of who we are! Ignoring them is like leaving a child home alone... ( They MAY be okay for a little while- but they may burn down the house!)
I cannot tell you how many times people refer to their workouts as (or in addition to) their therapy. It is time, space and energy put into something really hard to do. Little by little, burpee by burpee, you can do harder and harder things.
Little by little your confidence grows and as you feel more and more connected to those around you- You start to FEEL.
When we workout we cry, swear, scream, laugh and sometimes we just lay there unable to move.
Sometimes we need to be reminded to breathe...
Just. Like. Mental. Health!
Now I am not saying simply attending CrossFit will make everyone's mental health struggles just go away.
Not even close… I believe that you owe yourself one hour a day for self care. CrossFit, yoga, reading, dancing, writing, meditation, painting, music… whatever it is for you- you owe it to yourself!
One hour of your day. 1/24 of your day… less than 5%.
If your self care plan includes therapy- awesome! Medications or herbal supplements?- Great!
My point is that you need to be able to be and feel YOU.
I know from personal experience and that of hundreds of people we have trained, that exercise not only changes your body, it changes your mind, your attitude and your mood.
We coach mindset just as much as we coach fitness. Our thoughts become our words and our words become actions.
I love that in our 1936 CHAMPS- Youth Empowerment~ we focus on repeating “I am strong” “I am confident”. In hopes that when the kiddos are faced with really hard situations those words are going through their head rather than “I can’t..” or “This is too hard”.
We coach that for our adults too!
May is mental health awareness month…
I challenge you to look at it as being aware of your own feelings, emotions and mental health- and NOT being judgmental in others. What I love most about the community that Sheldon and I have built is how fiercely the tribe of people show up to support, empower and encourage each other- in and out of the gym!
I encourage YOU to show up for others… and to seek the help of others when you need it. Check in on your friends, be kind to strangers and find a community of people that want you to succeed.
I hope you know you are capable and brave and significant~ even when it feels you are not.
“I believe that health is more than merely the absence of disease. It is a total state of physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and social well-being.” ~ Dr. Frank Lipman