A coach is not a licensed mental health professional and any advice or commentary here should not in any way be considered medical advice. Depression can be a serious, medical issue. If you are experiencing depression, please seek out a qualified mental health counselor and do not use this discussion, or any other article, blog, or material on the internet as a substitute for a qualified mental health professional. If you are experiencing thoughts of suicide call one of the suicide hotlines: 800-SUICIDE (888-487-0468) and 800-273-TALK (866-699-0189). If you have a plan for suicide then go to the closest emergency room immediately for medical treatment.
In my own personal circle I am seeing an amazing rise in the levels of depression and people willing to be brave enough to openly talk about their struggles with depression.
Studies show that in the United States this is not a phenomenon that is isolated to my own personal circle as studies indicate that the number of people being treated for depression has swelled by 33 percent since 2013.
With these diagnoses, we’ve also seen an uptick in prescription pharmaceuticals to treat depression and different therapeutic approaches to helping people get better.
These conventional methods are life changing for some and only modest for others. The NYTimes pointed out thatresults for medication treating depression are relatively modest which makes it all the more important to figure out ways to manage your state and to root out anything in your life that might be causing you pain and suffering.
While coaching is not used to medically treat depression - there are some coaching techniques, when combined with the appropriate mental health treatment, that are designed to help you take control of your state, emotions, and overall well-being.
What if I told you that your life was being run by a 4 year old? Or maybe even a 8 year old a 16 year old?
Odds are that to some extent, I’d be right. And no, I’m not talking about your children.
We have all built our lives around key decisions that we have made in our past, filed away, and then never re-examined if it still made sense. These decisions changed the course of our lives forever.
Maybe in the 2nd grade someone embarrassed you, threatened your social status in front of all of your peers and you resolved the conflict by meeting on the playground after school for a fight. When you knocked the other kid to the ground and everyone cheered, you made the key decision that when you felt threatened, you settle your conflicts with violence. A decision that maybe worked out in the 2nd grade, but at 18 or 25 when you felt disrespected in a bar you ended up in jail. Your fight pattern certainly isn’t helping you navigate your corporate job.
News of Amazon CEO and future world overlord Jeff Bezos and his wife getting a divorce is splashed all over the front page of the news today.
While I’m not a coach to either member of the marriage, we can be fairly certain that in spite of the marriage ending and their friendship continuing, neither planned to get divorced 25 years into their marriage.
Women in America are very familiar with how difficult it can be to "have it all" in today's world. Men too are learning the difficulty of being excellent in their career, great as a lover and partner, spiritually fulfilled, awesomely physically fit, and an amazing dad on top of it all.
Having it all is a lot of work.
A young Kanye West once summed it up when he wrote “I don’t know what’s better, getting laid or getting paid, I just know that when I’m getting one the other’s getting away.”
A mentor of mine from the RMT named Mark Peysha, a brilliant coach, always talks about what he calls the “one push-up workout.”
A one push-up workout sounds like a ridiculous workout and to some extent it is. After all, you’re not going to build a ton of muscle definition and strength by getting down and doing one push-up.
However, it is an amazing tool for you to overcome your own personal inertia and your inability to “chunk” activities you don’t want to do. Afterall, when you’re hungry, you don’t focus on the difficulty of eating, you just grab something out of the fridge or call a friend and go to your favorite restaurant.
When you’re thinking about doing something new or something you don’t like it’s way different. Working out has like a million steps that you get hung up on: finding a gym or a workout program, changing your clothes, showering, washing your clothes, going to the gym after you find it, meeting new people at the gym, getting sold a gym membership, and a million other steps and barriers your brain will throw up in front of you to keep you from working out.
Do you find yourself being too empathetic to the point that other people’s problems are bringing you down with them?
Maybe you find yourself too caught up in your own feelings to see someone else’s?
Or maybe you can only see things coldly - like a third party not really involved in anything.
If any of these statements apply to you, then you’re probably stuck in one of the 3 perceptual positions. Once you understand this mental tool, you’ll no longer be a victim of your brain’s faulty default setting, but instead you’ll be capable of easily shifting to whatever position the situation demands.
Every one of us switches between one of three different viewpoints in the world - some do it better than others. The self, the other, or the observer.
Sports resonate with us because they are a metaphor for our lives with heightened drama and an in your face immediacy.
All the good and bad of life is mixed right into the sports that captivate the world’s attention - ups and downs, failure, success, heartbreak, teamwork, competition, excellence, hard work, a beginning and an end, and anything else you could think of…
Whether or not you like football - this is important.
The memories that impact you the most are memories that you can step into all over again. When you think about them, it's like you're reliving the experience and not simply watching it from afar.
This is called an associated memory.
If you've never taken control of your mind, your default setting is to make your traumatic memories associated ones. Your brain is designed for survival so it wants you to really live with the things that hurt you. This is ideal for running from lions or wooly mammoths, but not necessarily optimal for giving a great PowerPoint presentation at work or connecting with your spouse.
The best moments of your life, you will remember from a distance, like you're watching a movie instead of living it. Almost like it is a pleasant thing that is happening to someone else.
I can't say enough how powerful a tool it is to change this pattern - disassociate from your traumatic memories and associate your happiest moments.
I challenge you today to go back to a great memory - could be your wedding, a moment where you were flowing at work and commanding the room, or even an incredible sexual experience - and see it all again from your own first person perspective.
This will put you in touch with the most positive states you've experienced and change how you experience the rest of your day and ultimately will help you tap into the best version of yourself.