Free Your Mind and the REST will Follow

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     Illustration: John Holcroft

Illustration: John Holcroft

Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t – either way you’re right.” Our brain is amazing yet it can trip us up when we let it be our sole source of information.

Which thoughts hold you back? Do you think you can’t?

If you chose a different thought would you be able to do what you think you can’t do? 


On my way to the gym I had a goal in mind on how fast and how long I was going to run on the treadmill...half way thru cramps in my side, cramp in my leg, contacts acting up, my body was screaming "Just stop" too many distractions. I had to speak to myself louder than my body...girl you can do this! You're a beast! That cramp isn't your business!

Reach your goal! Fight through it!! You are 1/2 way there! Don't quit now!  

Well..the outcome...I won - I defeated what the situation was screaming and I ran faster and went longer that what I had set out to do! To all by FB family and friends who are pushing, fighting, and climbing to better yourself...Don't quit! Don't stop! Complete what you have set out to matter what "it" - one word...FINISH!!!  

This was a Facebook post written by my niece Karyn.


Many of her friends “liked” the post including me!

We connected not only with her (she’s very likable) but also with the struggle she was having on that treadmill.

What I love about the post is the passion you hear in her struggle. Karyn is in the moment and she takes us right there – we are with her saying, “Yeah! Go, girl, I’m there with you, I’ve felt that same cramp!”

What I also love is that this demonstrates the struggle between the thoughts we have about what we can do and how we use the information we get from our bodies.

Hmmm, this is my topic and not much gets my juices flowing like this…besides, well ice cream…mmm, mmm…ice cream – I digress. Okay I’m back!

I’ve said it before the body never lies! Yet what do we do with this information? What does Karyn do?

Karyn’s body was telling her the truth.

Houston we have a problem! -- Reporting cramp in the side, cramp in the leg, contacts acting up!

Waiting further instructions -- Houston! Houston?! (Apollo 13 reference for those saying, “what!”)

Karyn’s thinking about the information from her body is a moment we all have. The moment we have control. Control to choose the thought that is aligned with our true selves. The moment when we can see choices and make an informed decision that best suits us and feels right for us at that time in that place.

Sometimes this moment slips by us unnoticed or worse we think we don’t have a choice.

I don’t believe Karyn’s body said, “Just stop.”

That was an automatic thought we have when we feel pain. Stop whatever it is that is causing pain. Pull your hand away from the hot stove! So, “Just stop” was a thought from the brain to protect her. In an article by Julie Beck from the Atlantic according to Dr. Rick Hanson, a neuropsychologist and author of the book Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence, our brains are naturally wired to focus on the negative. He explains that through evolution our brains are optimized for survival not happiness.

Karyn’s just stop thought was a thought that did not feel right for her. The original goal she had on the way to the gym still felt right.

The beauty comes in in what Karyn does next. She changes the thought! She spoke “louder” than the just stop thought. She chose a thought that was aligned with her goal. The goal she had on the way to the gym. A goal that felt good in her body when she originally made her goal and still felt right. If it didn’t feel right she would have felt worst not better.

Let me be clear! If stopping felt good, felt right - then that would be the best thought for Karyn at that time. 

Our pursuits in life should feel good – let me repeat – THEY SHOULD FEEL GOOD… the truth always does.

When we choose thoughts that are in accord with our true selves we go above and beyond our original goals.

Karyn does! She said, “I ran faster and went longer than what I had set out to do!”

I love it! I absolutely love it!

Her original goal felt right, she had a survival thought that interfered with her goal, she changed this thought, then chose a thought that was aligned and supported her and as a result, she exceeded her goal.


On my life coaching page I ask, what thoughts stop you? It is not meant to be rhetorical; it’s a question worth investigating. Partner with your body’s wisdom as you investigate your thoughts.

Warning: expect to exceed your goals. Not without some work - like pushing through obstacles.


This past week I had a lesson that is perfect for this post. I’m developing a group-coaching program (stay tuned) that will launch mid-January.

I was in the midst of researching technology for using conference calls, recording the calls, writing curriculum, testing out the exercises and asking colleagues to be sounding boards. Yet, I kept double-checking myself, asking more questions, seeking more advice. I felt stalled. I was having conflicting thoughts. However, when I thought about the new coaching program I literally felt giddy!

I knew (scratch) felt the program would be fun to create and fun to do. I was looking forward to promoting it – yet other thoughts were pushing me in another direction and that direction did not feel good. It felt like fear.

I got still. Took a breath. Thought about the program and I felt giddy – something I truly wanted to do and share with you.  So I chose a different thought to move me past the fear!


I will be introducing the program in January! I’m so psyched! So excited! I can’t wait to tell you about the specifics.

For now I’ll say, if you choose to join me on this adventure, we will dig into our awareness of the body and poke holes in our thoughts.

We will tackle the hard stuff that confronts us everyday – not in a grimy way but a fun supported way.

Stay tuned for Body Conscious: A different type of awareness

It will be a small group, we will support each other, be compassionate toward each other and laugh, and laugh, and laugh our way through it…


Acknowledgment, love and BIG thanks to Karyn for letting me use her real name and post.  

I'ld love to hear from you!

In the comments below tell me...

How this resonates with you?

Or, how you've noticed when you use your body and brain to work together.

I can't wait to read your experiences and chat further in the comments below!