Welcome to 2019! I hope it has begun well for you and yours.
I spent time at a beautiful health retreat in Queensland and then four weeks with my immediate and extended family. My cup is full and I am happy to be back into my work.
Every year, my family and I spend time in Thredbo, a beautiful alpine village in New South Wales.
We spend our winters here skiing and our summers mountain biking and running. Well, I run, and my husband and children mountain-bike.
I have always said that “going down hills fast” is not something that I enjoy, but I have learned to ski (not fast or down big hills) and so I thought I would give mountain-biking a go this summer.
A few days earlier, I had entered an annual race called The Crackenback Challenge, running/hiking race under the longest chair lift route in Thredbo. A 2km race, but with 600m elevation.
My daughter asked me if I was nervous.
“Yes. I am always nervous before a race.”
“Why, you love running?” she replied.
“I get nervous because it matters to me. If I wasn’t nervous, I wouldn’t care.”
I feel the same about speaking and presenting; the moment I stop being nervous is the moment I would have to reassess.
On the morning of my mountain bike lesson, my daughter asked again, “Are you nervous?”
“No”, I said.
“I’d be nervous,” she said.
A few hours later, I find myself at the beginners’ class standing in front of my instructor (a woman in her mid-twenties, who is a champion downhill mountain racer) and an eager 10 year old boy called Tom.
We were a motley crew.
Our instructor, let’s call her Megan, asked us to follow her, and she and Tom rode down a hill that seemed very steep to me. I slammed on my brakes and said, “I’m not really comfortable going down the hill quite yet, downhill scares me.”
“Not a problem,” she said, “walk the bike down.”
So I did.
We then did some very simple drills that I found easy to do.
Then Megan told us that we would now do the beginners’ downhill track and to follow her.
As I reached the top and looked down, I thought, “beginners???”
It is hard to describe the gradient of the slope I was looking at, which would be mere piffle to many I am sure, but not to me. Using a running metaphor, I felt like I was someone who had run 5km on a level track, and I was now being asked to run a marathon on an uneven trail.
There seemed to be some steps missing for me, but I thought, she is a champion and a renowned teacher, so go with it.
That was what my head logically told me anyway, but my body was saying “I am not going down there”, or maybe it was my head? Something was definitely instructing my wheel to not move forward and my body to not stand up “to make it easier”, as Megan was telling me it would.
I did manage to go down a couple of times by dragging my feet on the dust and praying hard. Meanwhile, Tom has now done the track about 6 times and has been instructed to go to the next level.
As I square up to go down “the beginner’s track” a 3rdtime, I say to Megan that I find it really scary as I feel I am going to go over the handlebars.
“If you are committed, you will do it.”
That was exactly what I needed to hear.
I turned to her and said “Actually Megan, I’m not committed. I have no intention of becoming a downhill mountain bike rider. I have no goal or desire to beat this fear”.
Interlude: Early last year, I hired a running coach to help me overcome my fear of downhill running because I love running. I knew my fear was holding me back, and because learning to do it better meant I could enter some more challenging races, I was 100% committed. It has been a year of practice, and I am so much more confident running downhill now; I even experience moments of joy when doing so.
Back on the course, Megan checked in with me. “Are you sure you don’t want to give it another try?”
“Megan, I am powerfully choosing to leave this lesson. I think Tom will benefit so much more having you to himself.”
As I stepped off my bike, the only thing I felt was utter relief. No shame. No guilt. I had nothing to prove.
Back at the lodge, I had a really good book that I was committed to.
It is so easy for us to fall into the trap of taking on what is not ours to take on. We get pulled into the “shoulds” and they strip us of what is really important to us.
Do what you are committed to this year, not what you think you should be committed to; you will be happier for it, I promise.
What are you caring about in 2019?
What are you committing to in 2019?
What do you need to let go of in 2019?
Do you need support in 2019?
I currently have availability for 4 new clients so if you would like any support this year with your commitments, your goals, your relationships or your leadership, please do not hesitate to book in a discovery session with me.
A discovery session is a 45-minutes complimentary session where you can experience the coaching process for 30 minutes and then ask any questions you have for the remaining 15-minutes. We will both know by the end of the session if we are a good fit.
All you need to do is take action and email me email@example.com and we will take it from there.
“I decided to work with Kemi because I knew I needed support and external accountability during my first year in business. From our first discovery call, I felt complete trust in Kemi and was already moved by her insights and clarity. Over six months of working together, Kemi expertly created a space for me to explore a full range of emotions and uncover powerful insights into both my personal and professional life. At the end of our coaching series I know myself better, I have better strategies for managing my challenges and more inspiration to celebrate my strengths. If you are lucky enough to have the opportunity to work with Kemi, grab it with both hands.” – Elly Baxter
“I decided to invest in a coach at a period of my life when I had just gone through a great deal of personal and professional upheaval. I had recently been made redundant from a company I had given a great deal of personal commitment to; six months prior I had left a 15 years relationship, I’d moved house and started from scratch. So it was a time of my life when I decided I needed to focus on my needs, on my passion and on my personal growth.
From the one-on-one coaching with Kemi, I gained the ability to see through my internal thoughts and accept that it was okay to have bad days, it was okay to feel like things were hard, and it was okay to fail. But most importantly I learned more about who I am as a leader, who I am as a mother and who I am as a founder. I am not trying to be like anyone else, I am not going to change for anyone else. I will remain authentic and deeply committed to whatever I put in front of me because that is who I am. I am a deeply committed, authentic leader who cares about people, the planet and creating change.
Kemi is a thoughtful coach, who takes her time to consider who I am and what I need. She does not make me feel like just another client, I believe that Kemi wanted to get to know me and what was needed for me. I appreciated her humour, her calmness and her ability to cut through the crap to the core. What I learned about myself in 6 months with Kemi has set me up for a much brighter future as a leader, a change maker and a founder.” – Vicki Stirling