On this first episode, I share with you who this podcast is for, who I am and why you should stick around and hear what I have to say about wellness, and what we’ll be covering on future episodes of Empowered Wellness for Leaders.
As an entrepreneur who struggled with my weight and health for quite a large portion of my life,? I understand the unique challenges that busy leaders face when balancing their high-stress careers, family, and their own health. As a Certified Executive Wellness Coach, I have the tools and strategies to tackle those challenges in a way that may be a little different than most people are used to: this isn’t a diet plan or lose-weight-quick scam.
My approach to wellness is fun, sustainable, and encouraging. Why? Because you don’t have time for another plan that doesn’t work, that adds stress to your already-stressful life, and that isn’t sustainable. Today, I want to ask you to start approaching your life a little differently, with a little more noticing and a lot more curiosity.
Welcome to Empowered Wellness for Leaders, a podcast that teaches CEOs, entrepreneurs and sales leaders how to deal with the unique challenges of balancing a high-stress career, family, AND their own health. Here’s your host, Certified Executive Wellness Coach, Diana Murphy.
Welcome to the podcast. I am thrilled to be finally launching my show. It has been a long time in the making. But before I dive into this first episode, you’re probably wondering why you should be listening to me. Again, I’m Diana Murphy, I’m a Certified Executive Wellness Coach. I coach busy leaders on how to deal with the unique challenges of balancing a high-stress career, family, and their own health.
I’m fascinated and passionate about helping people to improve their health in a sustainable, personalized, and powerful way. My coaching work is all about teaching clients tools that help them to lose weight without losing their minds, reducing the amount of stress they experience in their lives, and taking care of their physical bodies with great fuel and fun movement.
I developed this podcast to share everything that my clients and I are learning through this empowering process called coaching. I know that taking care of yourself consistently can be frustrating and confusing. I love helping to make it fun, encouraging, and sustainable. So I hope you’ll listen.
I would love to share a little bit about me. So you know that where I’m coming from. I’m in Atlanta and although I would consider 27 years to establish me as a native, I was raised in Chicago and that accent has never left, y’all. I love football, so you may hear some sports analogies here and there, but it’s been a tough year for those that love the Falcons.
But for me, my journey around all this work started when I was put on my first diet at the age of nine. I had blown up in weight, I had been viciously teased at school, and my mom and the doctors knew not what else to do. So I actually found myself on a liquid diet at the age of nine. As you might imagine, I struggled with yo-yo dieting my whole life and really for me, it was looking always outside for the answer or the cure to something that was “wrong” with me.
And really I had those answers all along, but it took a while for them to all settle in and become a part of my life. I struggle with confidence and for me, the breakthrough was really a change in my mindset around the food and when I started looking for a more permanent approach to weight loss.
I lost my weight through Weight Watchers but I had those answers all along. I really looked for coaching when I realized I was kind of bucking some parts of the program, per say, and realized that I did have those answers internally. I did know my appetite. I was starting to understand what was really healthy and not for just losing weight.
It was an awesome journey. It brought me here. My journey to become a coach came after working for Weight Watchers as a corporate leader. I found The Life Coach School and coaching because I was really missing something in my work. I loved the one on one contact and wanted to be able to help people in a more personal way during their entire journey.
I was trained and certified as both a weight loss coach and a life coach at The Life Coach School, from Brooke Castillo, and I’ve learned so much from her teaching as well as Martha Beck, Brene Brown, Thomas Sterner, his book, The Practicing Mind, actually changed my life, and many, many more. And to be really honest, although I’m living with a lot of peace around food and wellness, I learn something new every day, and share the struggles that you face around living a healthy life while I run my business.
But taking time to build a more confident mindset while I lean on the helpful tools that I teach in my practice has made all the difference to me in my own life as well as to my clients. This is the place for you if your work environment and the expectations you put on yourself are causing you a lot of stress.
And also, if you really want to start showing up well for your family, being really present with them and your loved ones, also if you’re a travel warrior, there’s just nothing more than disrupting our wellness by late flights and less sleep and preparing for either presentations while you’re on the road. You know, it just naturally does cause a lot of physical stress.
So if any of these things are happening for you, you are absolutely in the right place. You know, the people that come to me in a personal coaching environment are those that are operating at a very high level. They’re concerned about their weight because they just can’t seem to get it off. They realize that the amount of stress they’re carrying is just disrupting their rest, and even just being focused during their day.
They’ve tried so many things because they’re not people to sit still. But nothing has worked long term. I spend a good deal of my time helping clients to approach their wellness in a much more empowering way. We have become victims of travel, not having enough time, the holidays. We’ve put ourselves in more victim mentality.
So I help my clients and I hope to help you every single Monday to really approach things on the inside so that you’re feeling more empowered in taking more actions that just work intuitively for you. Then looking outside yourself like there is something to be solved.
You are not an extra thing on your to-do list because you are the essential operator of your business and your life. And if you do take radically good care of that, I know this for a fact. You will have amazing results in your life. But so many times we get stuck, and I know you might want to stop me here and say, “You know, I have been working on this a long time. I have tried to be intuitive about it. I have tried to take this out of a headspace and struggle and try to do this really with more ease, but life gets in the way.”
You know, we’re just asking the wrong questions. We’re looking for the food, the diet, the exercise plan, the right instructor, the way to reduce stress. And we’re putting so much energy into it. We’re giving it our all. But then real life happens. Work goes way past our favorite workout class, they bring in birthday cake again for lunch. We cannot seem to get motivated because we’ve just – we’re doing so much that we just don’t want to do any fresh shopping at the grocery store.
What we do in these moments is absolutely everything. And what I’m going to help you find is some ease in flow in every situation that disrupts your best intentions. And to help you right now, I’m not going to leave you hanging. If you’re really frustrated with your results, if you’re working on things right now, I want you to stop and just take a really relaxing breath, know that there really are answers for you, and answer this question for me. What can you do right now? What would be one thing that if you just pivoted and took that step you would get a little traction in your day-to-day?
Could it be a green salad at lunch? Could it be just getting some fresh air and getting a fresh air walk? Or at the mall, if it’s too cold and snowy? Could it be just stopping right now and writing down everything that is bothering you right now? Everything that you need to do so that you can get it on a list and you can get started working on it?
That is the magic sauce. Managing our minds so we’re not so overwhelmed, getting more intuitive about what we need to eat and what works well for us. How does my approach differ? Well, first of all, it isn’t a diet. There are no good and bad foods, there is no one right way to approach exercise, so I’m not all about a method. I’m not about eating the right things and having a strict food list.
In fact, leaving judgment off the table helps us to take really good inspired action. Get curious about foods and exercises that you love to do instead of judging what you’re putting in your mouth and how often you work out. Because what I know is this. Judgment slows us and curiosity helps us to move.
Being intuitive and eating to your appetite is absolutely the focus of the work I do, and I’ll tell you how it really works. I literally took a two and a half week trip. I’m going to share this story with you, because I really wasn’t even trusting my own tools when I first was a coach. Well, I was able to put it to the test. I was invited to a three-week cruise with my mom, which included great food before and after in New York City and Quebec.
I realized that during this trip I would not have a lot of choice about everything that was going to be offered to me. So fresh food shopping wasn’t going to be the key, right? But I knew that if I honored my appetite and only ate when I was hungry, which is what I call the hunger scale, I knew that I might just be able to maintain my weight, or not gain as much as I do usually. Most of us do on a vacation.
So I double down on only honoring eating when I was hungry and stopping when I was full. That one tool paid off tremendously for me. I only gained one pound during that trip. It took a little practice, it took leaning into what I knew might work for that situation, and it absolutely changed everything for me. I trusted this work at a higher level.
Now let’s talk about stress because this isn’t what to do after you’re stressed, but getting some insight on why you’re stressed and dialing that down, creating less stress in our lives. This is about disrupting that ugly thought that we have that creates a lot of stress around our life situations.
For example, we can spend our entire day stressful that we’re not going to get all our work done. So many of us have this thought, and because we think we aren’t going to get all our work done, we leave our offices totally agitated because really, no matter what we got done during that day, it wasn’t enough.
So to disrupt this cycle of leaving work totally agitated, really looking for a way of release, and this can come for some of us with food on the way home from work, but most of us, I want to talk about wine o clock. You know, this is one we use wine, it feels so good to calm our minds down in that moment. But we know it’s not working. Does it look like this for you? I know it did for me.
I would spend most of my Mondays in a highly agitated space, just thinking, “I’m not going to get all this done”, and of course, I did not get it all done by thinking that way. I left work and turned things off – I work at home. Liar, I did not leave work. I immediately wanted to have a beer with my husband. So I did, and I relaxed and I talked about my day and immediately felt better. But then I was kind of foggy that evening and had planned on doing some writing. That never happened.
And you know, I ate a little more than usual, as I had that second beer I felt kind of puffy. Didn’t like it, and woke up the next morning with a slight headache. Slept a little later than I wanted to, and I couldn’t wait to get a cup of coffee. Here we go again.
For me, that just was not a really good well cycle. But it all started with my thought, “I wasn’t going to get enough done”. So what I’ll be bringing you here are really sound solutions at disrupting the stress cycle so that we don’t have a wine o clock cycle or any other cycle that we’ve been using on the backside to stop the stress or to start feeling better that really isn’t working for us. It isn’t working and we need to find other healthy ways.
What I’ll also be bringing you with this work is you don’t have to change everything in your life to become healthy. Absolutely not. We – you know, sometimes, so many of us think we have to leave our jobs so that we’re not stressed as much and we can take better care of ourselves, but this is just so not true.
You know, I’m working with an attorney right now that works very you know, long hours, and as she started really realizing that and giving herself a break from all the strict diet plans and workout plans that she was on, that she was feeling quite a failure around, and started just really listening to her appetite, she made this minor tweak of just switching to eating what really energized her and she is literally losing weight even during vacation. She did not have this leave this intense job. She needed to just start honoring what she was starting to learn that her body really needed, and get off the perfect plan mentality.
And it just has really worked for her. She’s able to be very present on vacations because she’s not worried about gaining weight again. This is also not about accountability. Many of us think we need to be judged harshly and called under the carpet at the end of our week if we’ve not done well. You know, I know trainers and many other people that do this, and for some of us it works kind of in the moment and we keep very intense and push ourselves to do something really great, but it just does not have sustainability.
This is where judgment stops us in our tracks and curiosity creates movement in the things we most want to do in our lives. So this work, what I’m going to bring to you is not about being harsh with yourself every week, but my favorite. How can you be proud of yourself on what you have done and take an action on, and get curious about those places that aren’t working? Get curious about why you had three beers on Thursday night.
Just ask. What’s going on there? “I’m stressed because my boss asked me to do something new.” Wow, okay, that does create some angst, right? But you can handle it. You can look back now at that situation without judgment and say, “Hey, I’m going to take a deep breath and just write down five action steps that I want to take when I’m asked to do something new. And trust that I was asked to do something because I know what I’m doing and not react to those fear triggers that are natural when we’re in a new space.”
So it’s not about accountability and judgment. It’s about curiosity. And it’s all about performing well. I want to leave you with my most favorite story. I had been working with a gentleman for a while and he worked for a large Fortune 500 company, was in charge of a creative group, and I realized how important how we think of ourselves, how our mindset works, especially around the tender subjects of food and how we take care of ourselves.
And he, like myself during most of my life, was really feeling like a failure around dieting. And what was so fascinating to me is it was starting to affect his work. See if this is true for you. He would start his day intending on being really great at this diet, and by one o clock, he realized he had had three cookies and to him, that meant failure. So, of course, this talks to my judgment piece, but I want you to step back in this story and really hear what I’m going to say.
The way that he was thinking of the way he was taking care of himself, that judgment, that loop of, “Now I’ve failed” totally disrupted the rest of his day, and it’s so unnecessary. You have so many better things to do. You are so much more important than how you do a diet. You’ve got work to do, and it affected his performance. He literally went into a meeting, as he shared in our coaching conversation, feeling absolutely horrible about himself because of that “failure” to the diet.
And he brought that right into that meeting and as we processed how he ran that meeting, he was really mortified. He ran it quickly, he was worried about being overwhelmed with more work, and instead of stopping and actively listening to his team and feedback was really huge value for him, so it disrupted even something that was most important to him.
And look, it all tracked back how he felt like a failure around dieting. So listen to me very clearly here. You are not a failure because you are not running a 5k right now. You are not a failure because you didn’t stick to your plans this morning. You are so much bigger than how you stay on plan with your body, and there is a better way. And you can simply start this week by noticing that judgment and honoring your true appetite and stepping back and looking at some of your stress triggers and knowing that some of these are optional.
Now, that may seem too simple, but what I’m really asking you to close with today is to get really, really curious because curiosity will help you move and create the best day ever. I’ve created a fabulous resource for you just for today. It is called The One Thing. What I’ve realized in working with so many individuals is all of us get overwhelmed trying to change all of our wellness habits at once. And many times, there’s just one that really can create a cascade, a domino effect.
So check out in my show notes and go to dianamurphy.com/theonething, and this is going to show you where you can start. It will be individualized for right where you are, ask you a few questions to help you get started now. I hope you’ll go there right away. In addition, I have created an amazing video series. It’s very short but very impactful to help you go on a deeper dive.
You can find this on the front page of my website, dianamurphy.com. Hope to see you there. Please email me if you have any questions, and everything you need should be in the show notes or on the front page of my website. Again, dianamurphycoaching.com. Have a fabulous day.
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