Showing posts with label Suzannah Sabin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Suzannah Sabin. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Do You Know Your Own Strength?

By Suzannah Sabin, RN, BSN, NC-BC
Integrative Health Coach

If you are like most people who come to a health coach, your primary thought is on what you would like to change about your health. Naturally, this is most often the case, because the role of the health coach is to facilitate and partner with you to create positive change.

But it is important to take some time to uncover the strengths that you already possess, and find out how to apply them to the achievement of your health goal. 

I have found over and over, that many people don’t know their own strengths. When asked, many clients have a difficult time identifying their innate strengths, capacities and positive qualities. Finding these is important because these developed traits can be an important key to creating change.

Being in touch with what we do well underpins the readiness to change,” says David Cooperrider, the co-founder of Appreciative Inquiry. This means that focusing on our already developed character strengths can be empowering and transformative. We can learn to apply the strengths that have served us well, to the new area to be developed.

Here are some ways to begin to identify your strengths:

1. Take stock of your past successes and make a list of your personal attributes that contributed to the success. Some examples may be: Persistence, Courage, Detail-oriented.

2. Ask friends or family members to share the ‘stand-out’ traits that they see in you.

3. Explore the VIA Institute: www.viacharacter.org, an organization dedicated to helping you find your character strengths.

When we proceed from what we already have, our specific strengths, and align our actions with the deliberate changes we want to make, the results are sure to follow!

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Cultivating a New Response

By Suzannah Sabin RN, BSN, NC-BC
Integrative Health Coach

When I ask people the first question of health coaching, What change would you like to make?, most people have some ideas of what they are hoping to create as their new health outcome, but they often  don’t know how to get there. In order to create new behaviors that will help you reach your health goals, it is important to come up with a new plan for dealing with the triggers that activate the old, unwanted behavior. This is an important step, because, as Marshall Goldsmith states in his book, Triggers, “our environment is a nonstop triggering mechanism whose impact on our behavior is too significant to be ignored.”

Triggers can be found in a person’s internal and external environment either as emotional responses to situations or as triggers in the environment. Since one’s daily life is often full of triggers, there are two helpful ways to cultivate change.

Our first step in a coaching session is to raise awareness and begin to notice the specific triggers that start the behavior. For example, we will work together to understand what it is that creates the behaviors and choices you are now engaging in.

Another key to behavior change is to develop flexible thinking for how to respond to the triggers that you have identified. This is how you cultivate a new response and gain mastery over your triggers.

Through conversations with the health coach, it becomes easier to identify and understand the impact of the various triggers in one’s life. Together, we can come up with new ways to approach the trigger so that you are able to have mastery in your response. Some of these approaches may include mindfulness, self-regulation, self-compassion, creativity and problem solving.

Over time, and through the process of cultivating new responses to triggers, sustainable behavior change is possible.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Finding the Answers Within Us

By Suzannah Sabin R.N., BSN, NC-BC
Integrative Health Coach

I became a health coach because I care deeply about helping others navigate the process of personal growth and change. Many times, we know we need a change, or we know we want to change, but the process is hard, so we let it go and fall back into familiar habits and patterns.

What I have learned over many years of working to create change is that oftentimes the answer to the question, “What is my next step?” lies within us. A key part of growth is learning to ask the questions and to listen deeply to the intuition and guidance from our deepest wisest center. We can learn how to do this. We can practice asking questions and finding answers.

This is not a process that our modern culture necessarily supports or facilitates. It is not a process that many of us know how to even begin to approach. It is a process that takes space, time and often periods of silence. I have learned personally that developing a ‘listening attitude’ is key.

When I work with individuals on creating change, an important part of the work is to find what they deeply value. We create change from this place. When we are aligned with our deepest values, we become energized, motivated, and activated for change. Then we can work to explore and practice new behaviors and cultivate new attitudes to support the desired changes.
 
Another key discovery in my own process of making personal change was learning to embrace my feelings of ambivalence. In every effective behavior change that I have made, there has been a part of me that has wanted to make a change AND a part of me that has not wanted to change. As I learned to identify this part of me that didn’t want to change, and the reasons that the behavior served this part of me, it became easier to create the desired changes. I had a new ability to work with that aspect, instead of trying to use willpower or might to push through. I have often found that when I allow this part of me to ‘be there’ and I listen to the messages it is sending, it changes effortlessly.