How to Stop SELF SABOTAGING & Finally Get What You Want

If you'd rather listen to this post, check out my podcast episode about this topic!

Y'ALL. 

I had the biggest mindset shift this morning, and I had to share it with you. 

Do you ever say you want to do something, yet you don't follow through -- despite your BEST intentions?

For example, you SAY you want to lose weight (and you probably really do!), but you end up sabotaging your efforts by 1. not taking the time to prep food ahead of time 2. choosing the unhealthy option because that's what feels good in the moment, or 3. skip out on your workouts more often than not. 

I've been reading The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks, and it's one of those books that has changed my whole world. Seriously. It's that groundbreaking. Stop what you're doing, go to Amazon, and order it NOW.

*Amazon affiliate link. Thanks for your support!

But he talks all about how we each have an Upper Limit to which we allow ourselves to feel good.

Most of us, Hendricks says, spend our lives operating in our Zone of Excellence, but never take the initiative to operate in our Zone of Genius -- which is the only place where we can truly THRIVE. 

So why is it, in spite of our best intentions to (lose weight, meet new friends, meet the love of our life) -- we feel like we're always an arm's reach away from what we really want?

Long story short (I will do a whole recap of this book because I am that obsessed with it), it's this: we sabotage ourselves when we feel TOO good, mostly due to an underlying belief that we don't deserve to feel that good. So, we 'upper limit' ourselves to bring us back to our comfort zones.

For example, let's say things are going really well with your partner for a while, but then you find yourself randomly picking a fight for no reason. *UPPER LIMITING* Or, you're on a roll with prepping your food, choosing healthy options at restaurants, working out, and then you blow it at a friend's birthday party and eat a whole cake because 'you feel like it,' only to feel guilty later. *UPPER LIMITING*

MIND BLOWING, right? So simple, yet if we actually take this information and do the work to find out where we're *upper limiting* ourselves, we can really make some major shifts here!

So, now that we understand what the Upper Limit is and how it works, we can dive into something a bit deeper that will really help you go from *saying* you want to do something, to actually doing it. 

Ready?

How to go from SAYING you want it, to actually doing something about it.

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Step 1: Identify which areas of your life you're 'Upper Limiting' yourself.

Here are some common areas we self sabotage our success: career, relationships, body, spirituality, finances.

Identify where you feel stuck: meaning you feel like you genuinely want a desired result, but feel like no matter what you do, you never really get there.

Some examples:

  • You say you want to lose weight, but can't seem to lose the last 10-20 lbs. (or more)
  • You say you want a thriving relationship, but you always end up with the wrong guys or pick fights with the good ones
  • You say you want to save money, but that purse is just "sooooo cute!!!" -- one time doesn't matter, right? 
  • You say you want to feel more fulfilled at work, but you participate in office gossip every day, you haven't gone to your boss to let them know what would make you happier at work, etc.

Step 2: Ask yourself, "Are my thoughts congruent with my actions?"

This is where I had my revelation this morning. I literally made a chart, and on the left side I wrote "thoughts" and on the right I wrote "real actions."

I can't tell you how many times I've really examined an area of my life that I want to change, only to realize that what I SAY I want, is not what I'm actually DOING. 

For example, if your goal is weight loss, your chart may look something like this:

THOUGHTS (left hand side): I want to lose 20 pounds.
ACTIONS (right hand side): I only work out twice a week because I'm so busy. And I find myself always drinking wine and eating chocolate at night.

See how what you SAY you want and what ACTIONS you're taking to get there are actually totally different?

Here's the thing: it's not enough just to think about it, talk about it or even research about changing. You have to actually take the STEPS to change. And before you can take those steps, you have to identify where it is that you're not in integrity with what you say you want -- meaning your actions don't line up with your words. 

Do this exercise for all of the areas you feel like you're Upper Limiting yourself. 

Step 3: Identify your self limiting beliefs, and *HERE'S THE MOST IMPORTANT PART* how is what you're currently doing serving you in some way?

This is probably the MOST IMPORTANT step, but often gets overlooked — or never even considered in the first place.

Every habit we have, positive or negative, serves us in SOME WAY. Otherwise, we wouldn't do it!

I know, it's a mind f*ck, because you're probably thinking, "No really, Julie. I do want to lose 20 pounds. I don't feel like myself, it's making me tired and miserable, I can't fit into my clothes, my relationship is suffering because I'm not confident anymore. HELP."

But in some way, some how, that extra 20 pounds is serving you -- otherwise you would've gotten rid of it by now.

So here's what you need to ask yourself and get REALLY REAL (fo real) about: how is what you're currently doing serving you in some way?

This is where I had my current revelation this morning. I've been trying to lose the same 10 pounds for like, 6 months now. *Side note: It's not about the weight, it's just about how I feel and the way my clothes fit. And I decided to journal this morning, as I always do when I feel I'm not in integrity with what I *say* I want. 

TOTAL TRANSPARENCY HERE: I realized that the extra weight has been serving me because it allows me to play small in my business. Deep down, I have this self-limiting belief that I have to show up, physically, in a certain way in order to be taken seriously. Part of that is perpetuated by all the fitness chicks on social media with ripped abs *even though that's not my goal anyway. But I realized that having an extra layer of fluff allows me to say, "I could do a photoshoot, go to more events in the community, find clients in my new city, etc. but only when I lose the 10 pounds so I'm taken seriously." It's serving me because, even though I dream of something BIGGER for myself, it's a lot easier for me to hide behind an excuse that people actually GAF about 10 pounds. It's a lot easier for me to say, "I'll do it when I'm ready, 10 pounds from now" vs. just taking messy action NOW and figuring it out.

Ugh, realizing that was a huge gut check, let me tell ya. 

So this means in spite of my best efforts to lose weight: hiring a trainer, working out religiously, and eating mostly well -- I've been bringing myself right back down to my comfortable Zone of Excellence (because I'm doing just fine in my little bubble, thank you LOL) by reaching for cookies, eating off Mark's plate when I'm full, and frankly just eating TOO MUCH of the good stuff. 

Mind blowing, right?

Maybe it's just me, but this was groundbreaking stuff.

I hope you can find where you're Upper Limiting yourself and start taking steps toward your dreams. I tell you ALL DA TIME, but you are SO WORTHY of everything you want in this world. But it's not enough for me to tell you, it's up to you to believe it.

I believe in you.

Do YOU believe in you?

xo, TONS OF HEALTH & HAPPINESS!

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LISTEN TO THE BRAND-NEW PODCAST!

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My Main Goal Right Now

Hey my gorgeous,

How's your week going so far?

2018 is near, and you're probably thinking about all the goals and resolutions you want to set for yourself.

Don't worry - I have a few things up my sleeve so that you feel prepared & ready to enter 2018 with success, determination and love. Stay tuned for videos, podcasts and articles about planning, setting goals and more!

But today I wanted to share with you one of my main goals right now, and it's probably NOT what you think.

While I do have goals in the gym, in my business, in my relationships, in my personal development - the normal things people set goals for... this one actually has to do with myself.

Ready?

My main goal is to get better at being myself.

100% authentically, unapologetically me. Goofy, weird, passionate, creative: all the things that make up who I truly am at my core.

I don't know if you saw my Instagram post yesterday, but it talks allll about this. I'll insert it here because it's a goodie.

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A LESSON ON BEING UNAPOLOGETICALLY YOU

Don't wait for someone to give you permission to do what you really want to do or be who you really are.

For so long, I sought reassurance from people around me - good grades? Acceptance. New career? Praise.

I liiiiiiived for the feeling of a "good job" from others because that meant I was "good enough."

But what I've realized is that people will have their opinions about you no matter what you do. You could drive the nicest car, have the most prestigious job title, donate a million buckerooskis to charity, and there will STILL be someone out there who thinks your stanks.

Moral of the story (and I'm learning this more and more every day): BE WHO YOU TRULY ARE, deep down in your core. Be that goofy, silly, fun-loving you that you are with your friends and family... ALL THE MUFUGGIN TIME YO.

The right people will be attracted to your energy.... and the rest? They don't have to live your life, only YOU do. So you better make sure it's a life you enjoy living!



So what does this actually look like in my day-to-day life?

It means not second guessing whether or not to post something on my Instagram for fear of it 'not being liked.'

It means continuing down the path of helping women and men become the strongest version of themselves - not just through fitness; but through personal development, habits, intentions, goal setting, and things that have had the most impact on my life.

It means sharing content that I find truly valuable.

It means showing up for you guys - on Facebook Lives, Instagram stories/posts, through these newsletters, in my [free] Strong & Sexy Living Global Community - Facebook group, YouTube, all the ways I show up - as 10000% authentically my weird, funny, goofy (sometimes #passionranting) self.

It means making choices that feel good in MY body - because it's my life and I'm the only one who has to live with the consequences of my choices.

It means working out in a way I love and when I love - not when or how others say I "should."

It means eating in a way that nourishes my body and makes me feel amazing, not based on some "diet" or "trend."

HOW ARE YOU SHOWING UP IN THE WORLD TODAY?

Are you being 100% you? Or are you showing the world a perfectly crafted, tailored version of you?

Because it gets boring to fit into a mold - trust me, I tried to do it for YEARS. And you never really win, anyway, because as I said above... there will always be someone out there who doesn't like you.

But they don't have to wake up as you. They don't have to live a day in your shoes.

Only YOU do.

What kind of person do you want to be?

How are you showing up in the world?

Let a little bit more of your true, authentic self shine today.

The world needs more of YOU, not more copycats or clones of others.

You are special. You are unique. You are the only one with the special formula of gifts and talents you possess.

And it's selfish of you to not share that openly, genuinely and authentically with others ;)

SO GET TO IT.

The world is waiting for you.

xoxo

LOVE YA, you beautiful unicorn, you!

Julie

P.S. If you're not in my Strong & Sexy Living Global Community - Facebook group, what are you actually doing with your life?! We'd love to have you join us in there!

What to Do If You're in a Fitness Rut

My relationship with fitness has changed a lot over the years.

In fact, I realized when writing this post that fitness and relationships are VERY similar: there's the honeymoon phase when you're super obsessed and in love. Then, sometimes it feels like you lose that initial 'lust' and it takes grit, dedication and true love to keep pushing through when things get tough.

In today's post, we're taking a look at my fitness journey and hopefully you'll be inspired to know that even as a *fitness coach,* we ALL have our ups & downs in our relationship to fitness.

Whether you're going through a rough patch with fitness right now or you're completely in love with it, I hope this article inspires you to keep coming back to fitness - even if you fall completely off track (as we all have at some point).

The Ups & Downs of Any Fitness Relationship

Back in 2013, I started to become increasingly obsessed with fitness and nutrition.

I was in college at the time and had gained the 'dreaded Freshman 15.' I quickly realized that without the help of multiple-hour high school dance practices, I was actually going to have to work out and not eat foot long Subway sandwiches every day if I wanted to stay in shape. *Sigh*

So I hired a personal trainer.

This is when I fell in love with lifting weights.

I started my first blog in 2013, called Health Nut Julie (shout out to all you OG peeps who remember that one!) to share my personal experiences with getting fit, sharing recipes, all the typical health blogger things.

From 2013-2015 my obsession with fitness continued to grow:

- I became a group exercise instructor.
- I started creating meal plans and workouts for people to follow online.
- I became a certified personal trainer.
- I kept blogging (kind of) and started an Instagram account for my fitness business.

In 2015, I got so busy with my fitness business that I decided it was time to take a leap of faith and leave my full-time, salaried job in Advertising.

Since September 11, 2015 when I left my full-time job, there have been SO MANY CHANGES:

- I got the opportunity to intern at Strength Camp which turned in to a full-time position for all of 2016, putting my own business / blog / content on the back burner.
- I became a certified nutritionist.
- Mark and I got engaged in January 2017 and decided we wanted to start our life in Canada.
- We traveled to Texas from March - June so he could pursue his lifelong dream of becoming a firefighter.
- We moved to Canada, where I'm in the process of becoming a permanent resident.

Allll during this time, I've been trying to stay on top of my fitness and trying to keep my business going.

And I'm not going to lie: things change when you turn your hobby/passion into a full-time career.

What was once my 'outlet' and something I genuinely adored, suddenly became a self-imposed 'obligation.'

I felt like I HAD to work out, eat healthy, be this walking image of health in order to keep growing my business and be in alignment with who I was being online.

Duh, right? All of those things make sense. And when you love something, it should come naturally to you to want to do.

But if you've been following me on social media for the past year or so - throughout all these changes, the LAST thing I've wanted to do is post my workouts or my meals, create the same YouTube vlogs that everyone else is doing.

Honestly, at times, I didn't even feel like working out or eating healthy whatsoever.

All I felt like doing was eating tacos and watching Netflix.

So, just like any relationship, you go through rough patches.

There are ups and downs. Times when you feel super in love and like everything is just falling into place (the honeymoon stage). Followed by some times when you may wonder, "Is this what I really want for my life?" Followed shortly by, "OMG I LOVE THIS! I'm so grateful to have it in my life. It makes me feel amazing, strong, sexy, confident and on top of the world!!!" Followed by, "I'm so over this. I need a break for a bit."

Who knew fitness and relationships were so similar? ;)

So while my relationship with fitness has ebbed & flowed, I'm definitely back in that honeymoon "I love this so much" stage.

I'm back in the gym consistently.

I'm back on track with my healthy eating.

I'm loving my workouts again and don't feel like I'm going to the gym out of 'obligation' to fit a certain mold or standard of what a fitness coach 'should' be.

I'm feeling stronger, sexier, more vibrant and alive than I have in almost a year.

If you're in a 'rough patch' with your relationship to fitness, keep pushing through.

And if you really want this to stick for the long haul...

Don't put pressure or expectations on yourself to be perfect or love your workouts or feel super inspired and motivated all the time.

Let yourself go through the ebbs and flows.

In the times when it doesn't feel natural, remember WHY it's important to move and how amazing it makes you feel.

Even in my 'rough patches,' I never used that as an excuse to stop working out completely. There was a period in Texas where literally all I did was walk and a few 20-minute at-home workouts per week. But THAT WAS ENOUGH for me at the time -- I was doing something to get my body moving, get my endorphins going and make myself feel amazing while still respecting my energy and what my body needed.

Whatever stage in your fitness journey you are right now, accept it for what it is.

Know that if you've fallen off the bandwagon, there's nothing wrong with you. You're not lazy, unmotivated, unfit.

You're just going through a rough patch.

Find your reason WHY you fell in love with fitness in the first place, and let that inspire you to create change in your life because YOU WANT TO do something positive for yourself.

What's your current relationship with fitness like? Leave a comment below and let me know!

I Used to HATE My Body

I used to hate my body.

I used to stand in the mirror, say mean things, call myself fat, grab my love handles, cry. [Side note: this is when I wore a size 0.]

Photo by the lovely  Katelynn Carlson Photography

Photo by the lovely Katelynn Carlson Photography

I received compliments often, but not from the person who mattered most: MYSELF.

I wasted SO MUCH TIME trying to change my body. I micromanaged my food. I wouldn't leave the house if I felt fat. I let the scale dictate my mood for that day.

I let my pursuit of perfection in my body ROB me of my joy and happiness.

My obsession with my body made me play small. It kept me stuck. It prevented me from sharing my message and gifts with the world because I never felt worthy or good enough.

So while you may view me as someone who's confident in their own skin, who "has it all together" (lol that one is my fave), and who loves herself no matter what... IT TOOK ME MANY YEARS TO GET HERE.

And I'm still not done improving - I never will be.

I've worked on loving myself every single day for the past 5 years. Some days it comes easy to me, other days it doesn't.

But what matters most to me is that I SHOW UP for you every single day, whether I feel good enough or not.

I have a purpose to fulfill in this world, and it will not be achieved by shrinking down, hiding, playing small or feeling bad for/about myself.

WHO'S WITH ME? 🌎💗