Change Academy

Brock Armstrong & Monica Reinagel

Learn how to create a healthy mindset, sustainable habits, and a lifestyle that you love (and that loves you back). Brock and Monica are seasoned pros with decades of nutrition and fitness expertise and coaching experience. Together, they turn the tricky business of behaviour change into an approachable even enjoyable project. Whatever your age, your level, or your goals, this podcast will get you moving steadily toward success.

All Episodes

Some changes happen quickly; but most significant change takes time. And it’s important that your time frame for success be appropriate to the size of your goal. Otherwise, you may not be able to see--or appreciate--the progress you are making. Takeaways: As adults, our brains (and bodies) aren’t quite as plastic as they are when we are very young. As a result, learning a new skill may take a bit longer than you expect.  Even once you have a acquired a certain facility with them, new thoughts and behaviors still need time to become the new normal–especially if they are replacing very well-worn thoughts or behaviors.  Changes that we aren’t happy with (such as weight gain or loss of fitness) often happen so gradually that we don’t notice them until they are fairly large.  Reversing them takes time too–especially in a way that’s sustainable. Sometimes the best choice is to delay setting expectations about when you’ll arrive until the journey is well underway. Lab Experiment (download a copy)If you feel frustrated by a lack of progress, assess whether your timeline for success might be unrealistic or out of scale with the size of the goal. Specifically: Are you expecting to master a complex skill or achieve a big goal more quickly than is realistic?  Are you expecting to reverse in a few weeks realities that took years to create? Are you expecting to root out and replace long-standing behavioral or thought patterns with just a few repetitions of new patterns? After thinking this through, you might decide to adjust your tactics in order to accelerate your progress. Or you might decide to adjust your timeline for success to match the scale of the project. (Or maybe both.)

Dec 3

28 min 7 sec

All of us will experience our share of challenges, disappointments, and hardships as we go through our lives. We may go through things that are quite traumatic. Our ability to recover and transcend these things depends a lot on how we tell the story of our lives. In this episode, we’re exploring the power of narrative psychology and how we can each use it to cultivate more resilience. Takeaways  Life involves ups and downs, challenges and successes. The goal isn’t to eliminate those and live a flat life. Being able to tell your story in different ways is not about lying or obfuscating the truth. It is just framing the same information with a different lens.  The way we talk about ourselves and the events in our lives has a big effect on how we react, recover and overcome life’s challenges. It also has a direct impact on whether we will or won’t reach our goals.  It may make your life seem more exciting, more virtuous, more meaningful, or more dramatic to frame it as such, but your life is not a novel – and you are likely the only one reading it.  Lab Experiment  Identify an area of your life where you feel some frustration or disappointment in your progress or prospects. Write the story of how you got here. What are the challenges, the circumstances, the things that got in your way. What has gone wrong? Really lean into the ways in which you got a bum deal and are forced to deal with it. Now, rewrite your story, without changing any of the factual details, but see if you can find a way to cast yourself as the hero: Resilient, resourceful, doing the best you can with the hand you’ve been dealt and managing to do pretty actually well, actually. Look for the triumphs.  Read both stories. Is one more true than the other? Is there anything to be gained by sticking with version A?

Nov 22

25 min 9 sec

In this episode, Monica Reinagel turns the tables and interviews her usual co-host, Brock Armstrong, all about his new podcast called Second Wind Fitness.Monica and Brock chat about the impetus behind some big life changes that he made in the last year how middle-aged and older people are often misunderstood (and under-served) by the fitness industry why Brock is no longer willing to help people get fit for the wrong reasons We’ve even got an excerpt from the Second Wind Fitness podcast for you.If you’re interested in learning how to move more of your body, more often, and in more interesting and satisfying ways, we hope you’ll subscribe to the Second Wind Fitness podcast where ever you listen to audio.Click here to take our listener survey.

Nov 12

29 min 1 sec

There’s an important distinction to be made between top level goals and lower level tactical goals. Often, getting fixated on achieving your tactical goals can lead to being tenaciousness for the sake of being tenacious.We certainly don’t mean to suggest that tenaciousness is not a valuable trait.  Being committed to doing what it takes or sticking it out when the going gets rough is definitely a characteristic of people who reach their goals. But sometimes, being tenacious requires us to be flexible. And sometimes giving up is the best thing you can do. Takeaways:  Tenacity is a valuable trait when it is applied to the correct tactic. You can stay steadfast in your desire to reach a higher level goal but remain flexible in your path to get there. It can be painful to give up, especially if you have been working in a particular tactic for a while but it can still be your best path forward.  As tricky as this concept can seem, if you are honest with yourself and spend some time evaluating your situation, you can save yourself a lot of time and effort.  Lab Experiment: Is there a project that you feel you’ve been spinning your wheels on? Take some time to consider whether giving up might be the best way to move forward. Write down the goal of this project. What are you trying to accomplish? Why is achieving this goal important to you (beyond just the fact that you committed to achieving it)?  Is there a higher level goal beyond this one–a top level goal that this immediate goal is in service of? How else might you pursue that top level goal? What other tactical goals could get you there? Consider whether abandoning your current goal might be the best move. Why or why not? Even if this exercise doesn’t lead you to a final decision, it will almost certainly help you see the current situation from a new angle–which is always useful.

Nov 3

20 min 52 sec

We often talk about the importance of planning ahead–and sticking to the plan. But we also advocate for mindfulness: being attuned to your experience in the present moment. But what if being in the moment means you don’t feel like sticking to the plan? Which should you honor? In this episode, we explore the pros and cons of sticking to the schedule vs. going with the flow. It all comes down to finding a healthy balance between structure and flexibility.Takeaways:- Honoring your needs and wants in the moment can be a powerful tool in your journey to create change – so don’t forget to pay attention to them. - Making and sticking to a plan can keep you from getting derailed by in-the-moment impulses that aren’t aligned with your goals. - Modifying your plans (rather than abandoning them altogether) can be a way to respect your in-the-moment reality AND your long-term objectives.Lab Experiment:Apply the tenets of “flexible planning” to your goal or project- Make sure you have clearly defined goals. - Make short-term plans. - Listen to your gut. - Have a measurable way to track your progress. - Don’t force it.

Oct 25

23 min 3 sec

Everyone has lapses – small slips, moments, or even brief periods of time when you fall back into old habits and old patterns.Lapses can be an opportunity to learn something useful. But all too often, a lapse leads to self-defeating and catastrophizing thoughts, which lead to further lapses. Before you know it, a series of small lapses has snowballed into a full-blown relapse–or a return to an old behavior or pattern. In this episode, we talk about how to process and rebound from those inevitable slips.Takeaways- Lapses happen to all of us–even those who seem like they never struggle. - A lapse can be an opportunity that makes us even stronger. - Telling yourself that you “always” sabotage yourself is a particularly unhelpful story. - The more you can learn from a lapse, the better you can rebound from it–and make future lapses less likely.Lab Experiment- When you realize that a lapse has occurred, stay calm and be kind to yourself. - Remember that a brief lapse will not erase all of your progress. - Remind yourself of all the positive steps you have made. Don’t put all your focus on the one negative step. - Reflect on your purpose in beginning this journey. - Remember that giving up never moves you any closer to your goal.

Oct 15

29 min 15 sec

Our guest on this episode is Dr. Nicole Byers. A self proclaimed neuroscience nerd, mom, and leadership/productivity coach, Dr. Byers helps busy professionals build confidence and get more done.Dr. Nicole Byers is a psychologist who specializes in neuropsychology. A few years ago, she left her dream job working in a top hospital and teaching at a university to become an entrepreneur. Now she helps professionals develop the mental habits that allow them to feel less overwhelmed, more confident, and to take action toward their goals. She also hosts a terrific podcast called The Bold Life.In this episode, Brock and Dr. Byers dive into the following topics:- Why we default to old (and perhaps unwanted) behaviours when stressful situations arise. - How we can avoiding all-or-nothing thinking and why giving ourselves some grace can actually keep us on track. - How our brain constantly tells us stories about the stressful events – and how we can challenge those stories. - When a circumstance is out of our control, the best approach can be to look at what can we control. - Why asking yourself “what story I am telling myself right now?” is a great tactic to help change those stories. - How a little stress can actually make us more effective – and productive. - The interesting fact that our bodies react to negative and positive stress the same way. - How the word stress got a bad reputation (should we start calling it the “twinkles” instead?) - How being too busy (or a workaholic) makes you less productive and less effective. And how this applies to trying to change too many behaviours all at once.

Oct 6

27 min 36 sec

It’s been well over a year since we first talked about unmet goals and we thought it would be a great time to revisit this topic. If you’ve already listened to Episode 6, this is your chance to revisit this topic with fresh ears. If you haven’t... let’s dig in!Takeaways: Unmet goals get heavier and heavier the longer you carry them around. An unmet goal can be a barrier (or an excuse) to achieving other goals Sometimes, it’s wiser to let a goal go than to continue to pay the “interest” Lab Experiment: Think about a goal or ambition that’s been on your “to achieve” list for a while. Take a moment to think (compassionately) about how much emotional capital you’re spending on that unmet goal. Think about anything you’ve been putting off because this particular goal is still unmet. Decide right now to either officially table that goal for now OR commit to taking concrete action this week.

Sep 27

25 min 30 sec

In this special extracurricular episode, we are sharing a little peek inside the year-long Weighless Program (https://weighless.life/enrollment) that you often here us talk about.What you’re going to hear is actual content from that program that we thought would be a great complement to the stuff we do here in Change Academy. This content is part of a year-long curriculum in which we help people create and strengthen the mindset, habits, and lifestyle that lead to weighing less without dieting.The reason we are sharing with you now is that our next group is going to be starting on October 8th 2021. Enrollment only opens a couple of times a year so if this is something that you have thought about doing, we didn’t want you to miss it! All the information on that program is at https://weighless.life/enrollment Whether you are interested in the Weighless Program or not, we think that this particular topic is relevant and useful to all of our listeners and we are happy to share it with you now.

Sep 17

10 min 32 sec

We encourage you to identify things that aren’t working (or could be working better) and design solutions. But sometimes, we end up designing solutions that are unnecessarily complicated or costly.We may even lose sight of our original objective and end up designing a “solution” that doesn’t solve the original problem at all. In this episode, we teach you how to notice when you are losing focus so you can get back on track.Takeaways:- Designing solutions that are unnecessarily complicated or costly may cause us to lose sight of our original objective. - Sometimes our brain distracts us from working on the bigger issue by dazzling us with something that seems like it will help but doesn’t actually move us closer to our goals. - Asking ourselves questions like: what is my current focus, what am I trying to create, or what is my real goal, can get us back on track.- Simplify your plan before you complicate it into oblivion.Lab Experiment:- Think about a system or solution that you’ve designed that’s complicated or costly. It could be for your business, for your home or family, or something personal. It could be one you’ve already implemented or one you’re just thinking about. - Identify the problem that this system was originally intended to solve (or what goal it was intended to achieve). - Ask yourself (and/or your team): Does that problem (still) need to be solved? Has the original goal been abandoned or achieved? - Is there a simpler way to solve the problem or achieve the goal?

Sep 6

22 min 51 sec

The things we do on a routine basis impact how we see ourselves. And the opposite is also true: How we see ourselves can influence how we act. In other words, our habits and our identity are closely tied to one another. In this episode, we talk about how to make sure that connection between our behavior and our identity is working for us and not against us. Takeaways  There’s an important difference between acknowledging a trait or circumstance that you’d like to change and allowing it to define you. It can be easier to persist in a new behavior (or set of behaviors) if we work on building an identity that supports it. Linking your behaviors to your core values helps to reinforce positive habits and identity  Who we associate with can have a powerful effect (either positively or negatively) on our progress toward our goals.  Lab Experiment:Try this CBT technique (called STOPP)1. STOP: If you hear yourself using terms to describe yourself that seem limiting, stop.2. TAKE A BREATH: Breathe in and out a few times slowly.3. OBSERVE: What am I really saying about myself? What do these words or terms cause me to think about myself? 4. PERSPECTIVE: Consider the bigger picture. Is this an important fact about me? Could there be a different way of presenting this aspect of myself? What would someone else say about you if they were asked?5. PRACTICE: Don’t just do this once. Replacing a well rehearsed identity will take time, so don’t give up!

Aug 26

27 min 3 sec

In this extracurricular episode, we’re sharing a preview of an upcoming workshop on incorporating more movement and fitness into our daily routines. Even if you’re an avid exerciser, it’s still easy to end up sitting for long stretches of every day. And finding those hidden opportunities to sneak more movement into our daily routines can make the difference between ending the day stiff and cranky or finishing the day feeling flexible and energized!We’re hoping this little snippet - about using a morning movement routine to both warm up your body and set your intentions for the day - will whet your appetite for more and that you’ll join us on August 19th for a full-length live workshop where Brock will show you how to squeeze more movement, fitness and fun into every day...no special equipment or clothes required. You don’t even have to break a sweat. The workshop is free but requires pre-registration, which you can do by going to changeacademypodcast.com/sitless

Aug 13

8 min 46 sec

This episode was suggested by a listener named Liz: “I have clients that I fear will let go of their habits when they don’t have me there to hold them accountable. How do you coach someone to create that accountability for themselves or hold themselves accountable?” Takeaways  Being more accountable to someone else than you are to yourself can be a red flag that either your goal is off or your reason for doing it is missing. When you can align your goal with your identity and values, you can become someone who acts a certain way whether they feel motivated or have external accountability or not. Cultivating more awareness of the intrinsic rewards can make you less dependent on external rewards (although you can still enjoy those as well). You don’t need to stay motivated in order to succeed. You just need to stay committed.  Lab Experiment When you find yourself searching for motivation, stop and ask yourself instead “Why is doing this thing or achieving this goal important to me?” Next, ask yourself “What’s required of me right now? Who do I need to be in this moment in order to become who I want to be in the future?”Imagine how you will feel after taking that next step–even if no one else knows you did it. Will you be glad you did it? If so, simply commit to taking that next step, whether or not you feel motivated. 

Aug 9

32 min 43 sec

Molly is the host of the Breaking the Bottle Legacy podcast, in which she shares her own experience with changing her long-standing drinking patterns and creating a healthier and more peaceful relationship with alcohol. As you’ll see in this episode, Molly’s approach to behavior change aligns perfectly with what we talk about on the Change Academy, and can be applied to all kinds of behaviors and changes.  You’ll find the Breaking the Bottle Legacy podcast wherever you listen and Molly’s book of the same title will be available soon on Amazon.com 

Jul 30

31 min 12 sec

The Serenity Prayer (“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to tell the difference”) counsels us to accept the things that we cannot change. But often, the things that we say we cannot change are actually 100% within our control. In this episode, we explore whether something is truly out of our control or if we just prefer to believe that it is.Takeaways:- We may choose to believe that a situation is out of our control to avoid doing the hard work of change. - Taking responsibility for what we are, in fact, choosing gives us the ability to choose differently. - Being honest with ourselves about what we are actually getting from a “bad” situation may allow us to find other ways to serve those needs. - Ensuring that you are acting in alignment with your core values can help you stay on a more meaningful path, especially when your judgement is feeling cloudy.Lab Experiment:1. Identify a situation in your life that you’re not happy with and make 4 lists.2. What’s not working: Is it not creating the desired results, is it costing you too much, or creating consequences? What is working: How is the status quo actually serving you? What are you getting from this situation that you want or feel you need?3. What I can’t control: Make sure the things you’re putting on this list are truly things that you have no control over.4. Actions I can take: Refer back to what’s working/not working for ideas and inspiration.

Jul 19

23 min 43 sec

We all have those tasks or projects that, despite our best intentions, we find ourselves procrastinating.  It might be a new behavior or practice that we want to create a habit around, like exercising or meditating. Or it might be a personal or professional project that we want to accomplish, like writing an essay or report or creating a program or product.In this episode, we offer a practical strategy that can help you overcome the tendency to procrastinate or to simply not do the things that you intend to do. Takeaways  Procrastination may be a bad habit but it’s not necessarily a character flaw. Often, It’s just a sign that you need to put a better system into place. Seeing a large project on your to-do list often creates inertia and overwhelm, but seeing microtasks on the list can create clarity and fuel progress. Once the microsteps that initiate a task have been repeated enough times, you can usually stop planning them as separate tasks. Keep your greater goal (and objective) in view so that you don’t get lost in the tasks. Lab Experiment  Pick something that’s been on your to-do (or to-change or to-start) list forever without making any progress. Brainstorm the very first steps that you’ll take–or even the preparatory steps that you need to before you can start. Do you need supplies or information that you don’t yet have? Do you need to enlist someone else’s support or input? Are there barriers that need to be removed? Schedule the first step or steps individually into your planner. When will you start? When will you finish? How will you know you’ve completed that step? When the appointed time comes, execute that first micro-step no matter what. We’re betting that having taken the first step, you’ll find it much easier to take the next one. But if you need to, keep scheduling (and executing) those microsteps until you find yourself in flow.

Jul 9

24 min 43 sec

In this episode, we depart a bit from our usual format and welcome a guest to the show.Heather Hutchison is a singer/songwriter and author of the new memoir Holding On by Letting Go. Heather has been blind since birth and one of the things she hopes to do through her music and writing is educate people about disability and mental health.One of the concepts she explores in her book is this idea of Radical Acceptance, a term that Brock introduced in our recent episode on coping.So we thought it would be great to have Heather on the show to talk more about that. Please enjoy this conversation between co-host Brock Armstrong and Heather Hutchison.

Jun 30

27 min 24 sec

Coping mechanisms are not an inherently bad thing. If we can’t avoid or escape something unpleasant or even harmful, figuring out a way to cope with it is a good survival strategy.  But sometimes we use coping mechanisms to tolerate things that maybe we shouldn’t be tolerating. In this episode, we explore the difference between helpful and unhelpful coping.Takeaways:- Using external pleasures to help us feel better (or cope) in particular situations is natural and normal.  - When those behaviors start to impair your happiness or your ability to achieve your greater goals, it becomes a problem worth addressing. - Sometimes our coping mechanisms allow us to tolerate a situation that we’d be better off changing or avoiding.  - The first step in dismantling a coping mechanism is to identify what situation, emotion, or trigger leads to the unwanted behavior and then decide if we can react to it differently or work to eliminate it altogether. Lab Experiment:1. What problem am I trying to fix with this behavior? 2. Does this behavior actually fix the problem? (Sometimes the answer is yes!…at least for a little while) 3. Does the behavior cause a new problem? 4. How else might I find relief or solve this problem, so that I don’t need this “coping mechanism”?

Jun 21

19 min

To-do lists, checklists, scorecards can be great tools to keep us on track. But they can also seem like an overwhelming task themselves. Or worse yet, they can become yet another way that we judge our own abilities or self-worth.In this episode, we show you how to create a list that suits you and your goals. We also explore how to structure that list so it can keep you on track without being a constant reminder of how much work you have to do.Takeaways- When used well, lists or scorecards can help us manage our time, accomplish our goals, and track our progress.- Make sure your list doesn’t have more on it than you can reasonably accomplish in a given time frame. To-do lists aren’t just for work and chores.- Make sure you also include things that are fun and rewarding on your list.- Scorecards are more effective if used to track the things you want to do and not just the things you want to avoid.- Bonus takeaway: Whether you are keeping a to-do list or a scorecard, include a note about why each task is important to you or how you will benefit from it.Lab Experiment- If you have an existing to-do list, make sure it has only things you really plan to accomplish. Remove the dead weight and make a list that seems doable and important to you. If you don’t have a to-do list, start one by listing the tasks that you really want to get done this week.- Next, add the fun activities you have planned (or would like to plan) to the list.- Now, choose three new behaviors that you would like to adopt and add those to your list.- If the list seems too long or feels like a bummer, move items around, change the wording or remove items that lack meaning until you have a list that feels doable and energizing.

Jun 11

30 min 16 sec

Some of our goals or objectives require us to master a range of different skills. You’ll probably be naturally stronger in some areas than others. And sometimes, in order to reach our goals, overcoming or strengthening a weakness is essential. But it's not just about forcing yourself to work on the things that are hard for you. In this episode, we focus on identifying areas where you need more support--and seeking out resources that can help.

Jun 2

23 min 4 sec

In this episode, we’ll teach you how to identify and dismantle unhelpful cues and also build some helpful ones. We all have cues in our lives that prompt us to carry out certain behaviors, like putting a seat belt on when we get in a car, grabbing snacks when we sit on the couch to watch a movie, or pouring a glass of wine when we change out of our work clothes.Some of our cue responses are good (like seatbelts), and some are not so good (like snacks and alcohol).  Many of them probably developed over time without our conscious intention.We can, however, deliberately create cues in our lives to help us make decisions and perform behaviors that will benefit us.  Takeaways Bringing conscious awareness to our cued behaviors can help us break them. If we’re trying to break a bad habit it can be really helpful to eliminate or modify the cue as well as the behavior.  Purposely introducing new behaviors that are anchored to already existing behaviors can give us a nice head start. Introducing a level of fun and gamification to this process can make it more effective. Lab Experiment For the next week, see how many cues or prompts you can spot as you go through your day. Jot them down as you come across them on a notepad or in your note-taking app.   At the end of the week, review your list. How many of your cues are triggering helpful behaviors and how many are triggering unhelpful responses?  How can you use this information to dismantle unhelpful cue/response cycles? You might choose to eliminate or modify the cue. Or you might choose to replace the old response to that cue with a new one. 

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May 21

32 min 4 sec

Having a firm grip on reality is usually seen as a sign of good mental health.  But social scientists have discovered that happy and successful people routinely overestimate their skill, talent, and chances of success. In fact, that may be one of the secrets to their success. In this episode, we explore why being overly optimistic is not a cognitive defect that needs to be overcome but a constructive trait that we can cultivate.Takeaways  Being willing to believe that you’ll beat the odds can make it more likely that you will When you believe you’ll be successful in the end, it’s easier to cope with (and even learn from)  setbacks. Reflecting on past successes can be a good way to bolster your optimism about the future. Optimism doesn’t save you from having to do the work. But we’re usually willing to work harder for something that we believe we can achieve. Lab Experiment 1. Think of a goal or result you’d like to achieve. 2. Visualize what it would feel and look like to achieve it.3. Picture yourself taking the steps required to make that dream a reality. (If you can’t clearly picture what those steps are, spend some time figuring out what they would be.)  4. Allow yourself to feel confident and optimistic—and let that optimism fuel your determination to do the work.

May 7

27 min 10 sec

Monica and Brock are taking a brief Spring Break but we will be back in May with brand new episodes. In the meantime, this is the perfect time to go back and relisten to some of our previous episodes - in particular, the series about the "Eight Things to Make Changes that Last."You may also find it helpful to download the Lab Notebook at https://changeacademypodcast.com/notebookSee you all soon!

Apr 14

4 min 37 sec

A year ago, virtually every aspect of our lives changed profoundly: How we eat, shop, work, socialize, exercise, etc. These weren’t changes we chose but changes that were forced on us.  Now that we are beginning to imagine life returning to something more similar to pre-pandemic, we have some decisions to make. Are there new habits that we’ve adopted that we might want to keep? Old habits that we don’t want to return to.What’s clear is that we DON’T want to do is miss this opportunity to make a conscious choice. Takeaways:  For better or worse, the pandemic forced us to reassess/reinvent virtually every aspect of our lives. There may be things that we adopted over the last year that actually worked better for us. It’s worth pausing before we rush back into our pre-pandemic patterns to consider how we might want to return. No matter what we choose, we are likely to be happier and more fulfilled if we make those choices consciously. Lab Experiment:  Select an area of your life that you were forced to reinvent during the pandemic and will now have an opportunity to either revert to the previous stays quo or not. Make a list of all of the ways that the change benefited you all the ways in which the change did not benefit you. Think about those pros and cons in the context of your values. (Is convenience more important to you than consistency for example? Is quality more important than quantity? Is supporting local business more important than getting the cheapest price?) Decide what you’d like to do once your options are open. Will you go back to your original status quo, stay with your current status quo, or design a third option that works best of all?

Apr 9

35 min 1 sec

Behavioralist Schlomo Benartzi defines a default as “what happens if you do nothing.“ If we’re too busy, distracted, or fatigued to make a choice or decision, the default wins the day. And because we’re often busy, distracted, or fatigued we want to be careful and intentional about which defaults are operating on our lives. In this episode, we’ll show you how to do that. Takeaways  Some default mechanisms are imposed on us by society, employers, software, etc. Others we create and implement for our own benefit. Like habits, default mechanisms can be very powerful--both in ways that serve us and ways that don’t. Because defaults are often somewhat invisible, we may not always notice them. But it’s important to be aware when a default is operating in our lives. Defaults represent the path of least resistance. But does that path (still) lead where we want to go?  Lab Experiment  Option 1:Step 1: Identify a default mechanism that is currently in place in your life (whether it’s one that you designed or one that was put in place by someone else).Step 2: Ask yourself: does this path of least resistance lead somewhere that I want to go?Step 3: If not, how can you disable that default mechanism?Option 2:Step 1: Identify a goal or outcome you want to create. (For example, saving a certain percentage of your income, not reading emails during certain hours, eating more vegetables). Step 2: Ask yourself: What default mechanism can I put in place to make that happen? (For example, setting up an automatic savings plan, changing the settings on your email client, or subscribing to a produce delivery).

Mar 31

27 min 34 sec

In this extracurricular episode, we invite you to listen in to a group coaching session that we held recently with members of our year-long Weighless Program.The strategies and insights that came up in this session can be applied to any change you are working on.  And if you think you might like to work with us in the Weighless Program, be sure to listen to the very end for a special offer for Change Academy listeners.  (The next group begins on April 9th. Details are here https://weighless.life/enroll.)

Mar 28

14 min 19 sec

In the last episode, we talked about deciding which thoughts deserve our energy. But once we've decided that a situation deserves our attention, we need to decide how we want to engage with it. The words we use to describe (even to ourselves) what’s going on in our lives or our heads can make a big difference. Takeaways: The language that we use when we think or talk about a situation can affect how we engage with itWe may want to approach different situations with different language or attitude.Just because it works for someone else doesn’t mean it's right for you. Make sure you are choosing an approach that suits you.Trying on different approaches to the same thought or situation can help you find one that works best. So don’t give up after just one try. Lab Experiment: Choose a situation or thought that you’ve decided deserves your attention and write a few sentences about it. Then, see if you can pick up a tone by asking yourself: What verbs are you choosing? What metaphors are you using? How do these make you feel? Can you think of other language or metaphors that create a different feeling? Does that feel better or worse?Decide what way of engaging serves you best and start to use that language in relation to this situation.

Mar 19

19 min 50 sec

Not all of our thoughts deserve our attention or energy. Some can safely be dismissed without further examination. But we often allow unworthy or unhelpful thoughts to take up a lot of real estate in our brains--and this can negatively impact how we feel, what we do, and ultimately what we accomplish. In this episode, we talk about why it’s so important to choose which thoughts you give your energy to. Takeaways  With all the thousands of thoughts going through our head, we are bound to have some that stick in our craw and that is OK.  Thoughts on their own are harmless. It is what we choose to do with them that creates negative feelings and emotions.  When we feel strong emotions like regret or shame over our thoughts we give those thoughts more energy and power over us.  Managing our thoughts takes time (like most meaningful change) but taking that time can free our mental energy to make progress on our goals instead of just thinking about them.  Lab Experiment Next time you notice that a thought is causing you stress or discomfort, write that thought down.Step 1: Ask yourself: Is this thought verifiably true? (If you said it in public, would everyone agree that it is true?Step 2: Ask yourself: Do I have anything to gain from continuing to entertain this thought? Is continuing to think about this going to make me feel better or help me make a better decision? Step 3: If you decide that a thought does not deserve your energy, make a conscious decision to put it down. Use whatever imagery works best for you: pick up the remote control and change the channel, pluck it out of your mental garden and throw it in the compost, pick up the cosmic scissors and cut the string, or make up your own. But whatever image you choose, take a moment to really act it out in your imagination. Step 4: Decide what you want to think about instead and spend some time cultivating that thought.

Mar 9

25 min 49 sec

We often feel like we have to make a decision, make a change, make a difference, or achieve a goal quickly. But if we want the benefits to be meaningful and lasting, shouldn’t we be willing to take our time? In this episode, we consider the downside of rushing into a decision to change without considering the realities of trying to create change in too much of a hurry. Then, we'll explore some alternatives. Takeaways:  Knowing or understanding how to do something isn’t the same as actually doing it and experiencing it. Better to gather less information and apply it than to gather lots of information but never to put anything into action. Sometimes, learning how to slow down and be more deliberate is part of what we need to learn to do in order to get to the result we’re seeking. Before deciding to commit to a new goal or challenge, be sure you understand what it will involve and whether you’re actually willing to do what it will take.  Things we acquire or develop through slow steady work have a better chance of becoming long-term habits. Lab Experiment: Think of an area of your life where you feel like you are in a hurry to finish or achieve something. And ask yourself: Is trying to get there more quickly actually serving you or just causing you to cut corners? How could slowing down actually enhance either the process or the result (or both)? What do you need to adjust about either your actions, beliefs, or self-talk to allow yourself to slow down? What parts of the process (rather than the outcome) can you focus on that will bring you pleasure and satisfaction?

Feb 26

24 min 36 sec

FREE WORKSHOP: Learn From Two of The Top Health Experts Online, Board-Certified Nutritionist Monica Reinagel and Certified Fitness Coach Brock Armstrong!https://weighless.life/toolkitFREE WORKSHOP: Saturday, Feb. 27th at 4pm ETBuilding Your Transformation Toolkit (The 5 things you need to achieve lasting weight loss)Plus: 6 things you think you need (but don't)SIGN UP at https://weighless.life/toolkit TO JOIN US LIVEYou'll Learn: How to create the right kind of habits The secret to getting (and staying) motivated How to clear away excuses and obstacles

Feb 19

3 min 38 sec

Our current actions are creating our future reality. Sometimes, we have to choose between what we want right now and what we want for our future selves. Research shows that the more emotionally connected we feel to our future selves, the more likely we are to make choices that benefit that future self. In this episode, we explore ways to form a more intimate connection with your future self. Takeaways: People who can picture their future selves with great clarity make choices that are more likely to support that vision. One way to picture that future self is to follow what is likely to happen if you continue to practice your most consistent behaviors and imagine what the outcome will be.Alternatively, picture how you'd like your future to look and ask yourself what (if anything) needs to change now in order to make that picture a reality.Don’t fret if every single choice you make is not in alignment with this vision, just make sure that the majority are. Lab Experiment: Step 1: Pick a specific date at least 3 but no more than 10 years in the future.Step 2: Bring the future you that will wake up on that date into focus: Look into the mirror. What do you see? What will your day look like? What’s going on with your health? Your work life? Your home life? Your finances? What will the world look like?Step 3: Now, write your future self a letter. Tell your future self about things you are doing today that you hope they will be benefiting from by the time they read this letter.  If you have concerns about the way some of the things you are doing right now might cause pain to your future self, you might want to talk about those as well. What would you like future you to know (remember) about present you?  What questions do you have now that future you will know the answer to? How will knowing those answers change you? 

Feb 17

26 min 26 sec

Having a plan allows us to convert our intentions into action. But having a contingency plan may be just as important. They allow us to recover when things don’t go according to plan. In this episode, we help you create your own customized contingency plan so that when life goes sideways, you can land on your feet instead of getting derailed. Takeaways No matter how well we plan, things will sometimes go sideways. We can either use that as an excuse to abandon our goals or we can pivot to a contingency. Having a contingency plan (and the ingredients to make that plan work) already in place can mitigate the stress rather than add to it. Viewing a misstep as an opportunity to develop a contingency plan allows us to learn and develop more and more resilience. In order for resilience to become a habit, we need to practice it - and that means creating and using your contingency plans again and again.Lab Experiment  Identify which of your plans get derailed most frequently.  Come up with 3 possible contingency plans that will help you minimize the damage instead of adding to the stress. Gather whatever information, ingredients, or materials you’d need to execute that contingency plan.  Keep your contingency plan in written form somewhere where you can easily access it when necessary.

Feb 6

21 min 8 sec

How well do your actions align with your values? Often there can be a disconnect between what we say our priorities are and the choices that we are making on a daily basis. That misalignment can lead to frustration if it keeps us from achieving our goals. But it might also reveal that we’re not being entirely honest with ourselves about what we value. Whether we choose to adjust our priorities or our actions, bringing them into alignment will make us happier and more successful. Takeaways: Looking at how we spend our time can help us be more intentional about making choices that support our goals.It can also help us be more honest with ourselves about what we value. Aligning our actions with our priorities can help us be happier and more successful in realizing our goals.Giving yourself permission to reevaluate your goals is often an important step in this process. Lab Experiment: Make a list of the things that are most important to you in life, your values and priorities. Make a list of all the ways you spend your discretionary time Notice whether your actions are aligned with your values. What can you do to bring them more into alignment?

Jan 26

19 min 57 sec

When we are trying to change an unwanted behavior, we often get so focused on trying to find ways to say no to it that we miss the step of understanding why we say yes to it in the first place.While learning how to say no is a valuable skill (and one we’ll look at in a future episode), understanding why we say yes can ultimately be more important and more effective than just getting better at saying no ourselves.Takeaways:There are times when simply getting better at saying no to yourself (or your inner toddler) is the perfect thing to practice.But when saying no becomes unsustainable and you find yourself rebelling more often than you are succeeding, it is time to take a closer look.The reasons we give ourselves for choosing an undesired behavior are often rooted in some cognitive distortions or at least wishful thinking.By identifying why we say yes to something that we should say no to (or vice versa) we can start to dismantle our faulty thinking and develop the skills to stay on track with ease.Lab Experiment:Think about the reasons why you say yes to a certain behavior.Make a list of: What you think this behavior gives you or how it benefits you. The reasons others (friends, media, society) give for why people indulge in (or abstain from) this behavior. How you feel about others who exhibit this behavior. Reflect on how you feel about this behavior now that you understand it from more angles. And keep this list handy for the next time you feel like saying NO isn’t going to cut it.

Jan 16

26 min 11 sec

If you start your week or your day off full of focus, determination, and vigour but find it waning by the weekend or the evening, you are not alone. In this episode, we teach you a strategy to solve each of these issues by rethinking how you plan for and execute your time.Takeaways: Mentally breaking your day and week into smaller parts can make following through on your plans feel less overwhelming and exhausting. Setting aside time to review your goals as well as your objectives and compelling reasons can help refresh your intentions. Schedule a specific ritual (whether it’s a midweek goal-setting or after-work refresh) strategically for the time when you typically start to lose focus or resolve. Having a written record of your goals/objectives/whys can help provide a reminder when you need one. Lab Experiment:Option 1: On Wednesday night, set aside an hour to prepare yourself mentally and logistically for what you want to accomplish personally in the week to come. Write down your goals, intentions, and objectives. Think of your week as a 2-day sprint, 2 days of rest and recovery, followed by a final 3-day effort.Option 2: At the end of the day (or before you make dinner), set aside 5 minutes to do some yoga, go for a quick walk or just sit and do some breathing or journaling exercises. Review your goals, intentions and objectives. Think about why these are important to you and what it would feel like to stay in alignment with those goals.

Jan 6

29 min 59 sec

Have you ever felt that you were simply too busy to make the changes you’d like to make in your life? In this episode, we challenge some of those stories we have about how busy we are and how much time change requires. We’ll also offer advice on how you can fit the work of change in around other obligations and priorities.    Key Takeaways:  Being too busy is often an excuse that we use when there’s some other reason we’re avoiding taking action, like doubt, avoiding the discomfort of the unfamiliar, or fear of failing or making a mistake. A lot of us aren’t nearly as busy as we think we are--and the other side of that optical illusion is thinking that something will take much longer than it actually will. Or, we are making ourselves busy with thing that we don’t really value. By being more intentional about how we use our time, we can make room for the things that are most meaningful, including making the changes that we want to make.  Lab Experiment:  In her book Time Smart: How to Reclaim Your Time and Live a Happier Life, Ashley Whillans recommends cultivating time affluence by evaluating areas of improvement. Think about a typical day you had. What are moments that brought you joy and what were moments that brought you stress? Of all those activities that aren't bringing meaning or pleasure, and that are unproductive and stressful, choose one very specific activity to do less of going forward. Once you have identified a habit that doesn't serve you well, write down a strategy for avoiding the activity, and put the written reminder in a visible spot. This is where you can reclaim some time and use it for change. 

Dec 2020

24 min 33 sec

It's an Extracurricular episode! We'll be back to our regular episodes soon but for now...Join Monica Reinagel (and Brock Armstrong) for the 30-Day Nutrition Upgrade on Jan 3, 2021. More info at https://nutritionovereasy.com/30-day-nutrition-upgrade/ Spoiler: if you listen to this very short episode you will get a special discount code!

Dec 2020

4 min 39 sec

When designing your life, you can choose to lean into your superpowers and do more of the things that you're really good at or you can choose to address your weak spots and focus on building up those things that you're not naturally good at. You'll hear people arguing both sides of this coin. Let's explore what makes the most sense and how this fits into our work in creating our ideal selves.Key Takeaways: Conquering the things we struggle with can be very rewarding but not everything is worth the time and effort. Sometimes it makes sense to outsource things that we don’t get value or fulfillment from doing ourselves. Give yourself permission to not excel at everything! There’s nothing wrong with you just because other people can do certain things better than you. Focusing on our strengths can allow us to achieve more (in a limited arena) than we can if we’re trying to be good at everything. Lab Experiment:Step 1: Identify an area of weakness...where you feel like you lack skill, talent, or affinityStep 2: Consider how/whether strengthening this weakness could move you closer to your goals or your ideal self. What’s the minimum level of competence/comfort/mastery you would need to achieve and what would it take to achieve that?Step 3: Consider the costs of addressing the weakness (opportunity costs of time not spent in strengths?) What (if anything) could you put into place to compensate for your lack of ability in this area.Step 4: Make a conscious decision whether to address this weakness or allow it.

Dec 2020

31 min 25 sec

Sometimes, our desire to change is rooted in the belief that we are not good enough--and that we need to fix whatever’s wrong with us in order to be happy or fulfilled. But rather than being motivating, this can actually be a very limiting belief that makes it more difficult to create positive change. In this episode, we’re going to explore the idea that we are good enough… even if there are things that we want to change. Key takeaways:  When we are always striving to become good enough, we live our lives from a place or not being good enough - or being broken, needing to be fixed. When we make peace with the fact that we aren’t perfect, but we are good enough, it liberates us to devote our lives to simply getting better. Making peace with our imperfections does not mean that we stop trying to better ourselves, it just means that we don’t have to delay contentment for that elusive day when we finally reach our goal.  Lab Experiment: Take some time to reflect and consider how the limiting belief ‘I’m not good enough’ affects your own life. To help guide your thinking, ask yourself these questions: In what ways and what areas do you recognize this belief in your own life? How does this belief manifest in different areas of your life? How has your life been affected by believing this? What results have you achieved or missed out on? Think about the past events where you learned to believe that you were ‘not good enough’ and consider how you could re-interpret these events now? If you make the decision to choose to accept the fact that who you are as an individual is fundamentally ‘good enough’ then how might you change or modify your expectations of the future? (do you think you might start that business, plan that investment, ask that person out for coffee?)

Dec 2020

22 min 7 sec

The key to solving any problem is first understanding what the problem truly is. In this episode of the Change Academy podcast we define the three types of problems that crop up and teach you how to identify which one you’ve got. Then once you recognize what type of problem you’re dealing with, your chances of solving it go way up. Takeaways:  If you’re not sure what needs to happen in order to solve the problem or create the result you want, you have a what problem. If you know what needs to happen but you don’t know how to make that happen, you have a how problem. If you know what needs to happen and how to make it happen but you find yourself not taking action, you have a why problem. Why problems cannot be solved with what or how solutions. Lab Experiment: Identify a place in your life where you are stuck or not making progress.Step 1: Can you write down in a sentence or two exactly what needs to happen or change in order to achieve the goal or solve this problem? If not, focus your energy on identifying the best approach. If yes, proceed to Step 2.Step 2: Can you write down the concrete actions you need to take next? If not, focus your energy on identifying what your next steps are (which might be researching, planning, or taking some small action.). If yes, proceed to Step 3Step 3: Can you write down 5 detailed and compelling reasons that you want to do this now? If not, spend some time digging for your why (or maybe your why not)?

Nov 2020

22 min 44 sec

In this episode of the Change Academy podcast, Mitch Harb joins us to talk about his “easy wins” approach to creating sustainable behaviour change.Mitch is a personal trainer and nutrition coach. He is certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine and is the co-owner (with Zach Smith) of Hidef Seattle, a fitness studio and physical therapy practice that offers both in-person and virtual training and coaching. Take Aways:  Small interventions can also be big wins. And those interventions don't all have to be "one hundreds" they just can't be "zeros." Often, process-oriented successes (like being consistent) can be more effective than goal-oriented successes. Figuring out how an individual goal supports or reflects your larger life priorities can be a powerful motivator. Keeping momentum is easier than starting up again and again. Lab Experiment: Choose one area of your life that you’d like to make a change in (eating habits, sleep, exercise, or any other area). Spend this week collecting some data on your current habits and patterns.  For example, keep track of what time you’re going to bed, getting up, and how rested you feel each day. Notice what happens when you break from your normal patterns. Do you feel better or worse? For example, does running after work or on a trail feel easier or harder than running around the neighbourhood before breakfast? Use the information you’ve gathered in Step 1 and 2 to identify an easy win that you can incorporate into your daily routine.  For example, adding one extra serving of vegetables into your meals every day.

Nov 2020

32 min 47 sec

Some habits are just habits. We do them because they take us down the road of least resistance. But some habits give us pleasure, and we often think of those habits as being more like an addiction - something that is going to take willpower and determination to break. But what if we told you that you can break a highly rewarding habit without resorting to a monastic lifestyle? That is what we are going to cover in this episode. Key Takeaways:  Breaking any habitual behaviour can be challenging but when that habitual behaviour is highly rewarding, it can be even more difficult. Sometimes things that were once rewarding become less rewarding (or more costly) over time--but they’ve become habitual. Replacing a rewarding (but costly) habit with a different rewarding activity can make it easier to break a habit We can create a more rewarding life by choosing our habits (and our rewards) more intentionally. Lab Experiment:  Make a list of activities that you find rewarding or that give you pleasure. Make it as comprehensive as you can. Review your list and put an X next to anything where the cost (in time, money, energy, or health) is greater than the reward you get--or even just more than you want to pay. Review your list again and put a checkmark next to those things that would make your life better if you did them more often. How can you use this information to create positive change? NB: For more detailed instructions, listen to the audio.

Nov 2020

24 min 38 sec

Being easily distracted can be a bad habit and also a barrier to change. But we can also use distraction as a way to break bad habits or ingrained behaviours. The trick is being more intentional about when, why, and how you choose to distract yourself. Takeaways:  Distraction is when we allow an unplanned intrusion or diversion to pull us off focus or task. Redirection is when we consciously choose to redirect our attention. Distraction (unintentional) can cause harm in two ways 1) keep us from doing what we need to be doing and 2) may cause us to engage in behaviors or activities that aren’t serving us. Redirection (intentional) is 1) making a conscious decision that you would benefit from refocusing you attention on something else, and 2) choosing the alternative focus/activity thoughtfully Intentionality is the key.Lab Experiment: Next time you find yourself in the grips of an unhelpful thought or emotion (such as anxiety, worry, stage-fright) try the mental flashlight technique:Step 1 - use your other senses (not your monkey mind) to identify (or shine your mental flashlight) on something you see, hear, smell, or generally are “aware of.” Step 2 - Simply say the words (out loud or in your head) “I am aware of ____” without attachment or judgement. Just simply be aware. Step 3 - Repeat: Become aware of something else around you (not inside you). Use as many different senses as you can to list all the things you are aware of.

Oct 2020

27 min 36 sec

In this episode, we explore how and why we often talk ourselves out of making the changes we want to make - and give you some tools that will allow you to push through that self-sabotage.There’s an odd but very common phenomenon where we identify a change we’d like to make in our lives, we get excited about it (we may even take a step or two toward making it) but then, we abandon the effort before we’ve really even tried long enough to succeed (or fail!). Resources mentioned: Workplace Hero podcast episode: Work Expands (or contracts) to the Time Allowed Key Takeaways: Your brain is wired to seek familiarity, comfort, and efficiency. Change is by definition unfamiliar, uncomfortable, and inefficient.Talking you out of change--by convincing you that change isn’t possible or that now is not a good time--is your lower brains’ attempt to keep you safe.Often these thoughts are operating below the surface or your conscious awareness.By tuning into these thoughts with your higher brain, you can decide whether or not they are actually serving you. Lab Experiment: How are you talking yourself out of making a change? Identify the reason or excuse your brain has come up with and write it down as an "Unhelpful Thought."Then use the following questions to assess the validity of this thought: Is there substantial evidence for or against my thought? Am I trying to interpret this situation without all the evidence? What would a friend think about this situation if I consulted them? If I talk myself out of change, how will I feel a year from now? How about five years from now? Now, see if you can rewrite your unhelpful thought in a more balanced, rational, and helpful way. With practice, this can become a very effective tool for thought management in all realms of life.

Oct 2020

24 min 34 sec

People seem to love these short-term challenges where you give up sugar for a week, do 25 push-ups every day for a month, or give up alcohol for SoberOctober. While these can be fun, and an interesting challenge, do they ever actually result in permanent change? In this episode, we will give you a recipe to make the most of them.Resources mentioned: The 30-Day Nutrition Upgrade Key Takeaways:  Habits aren’t made or broken because we did something (or avoided doing something) through willpower alone, for a set amount of time. Doing short term challenges can actually delay the process of making more meaningful changes. If you want to use a short-term challenge as a springboard for longer-term change, make sure you’re not just counting down the days, but using that time to gain a better understanding of the role that a particular behaviour plays in your life. Be sure to think past the end of the challenge: what happens at the end? What do you want to carry forward into the future? Lab Experiment: When you find yourself considering joining in the latest 7 day, 21 day, or month-long fad, take some time to ask yourself some questions: Why is this attractive to me?  What do I hope to learn from this temporary challenge? What plan can I put in place to ensure I don’t just return to my previous behaviour as soon as it is done?  Am I using this as a delay or distraction from the deeper changes that I know I want to make? (see episode 6: the hidden cost of unmet goals) Thinking carefully about these questions before you embark on a short-term challenge can make it about more just a temporary exercise in willpower.

Oct 2020

24 min 4 sec

Sometimes we get excited about an idea, we follow through on a goal, and are very successful at it. But while everything should be peaches and cream, we realize that this isn't the happy reality we thought it would be. Or maybe our feelings and values have simply changed. That is when we are faced with the problem of "what do we do next?"In this episode, we ask our guest, Naomi Rotstein, why she decided to leave her successful career as a competitive body-builder and how she went about redefining her new objective and, ultimately, created a freer and more satisfying life. Key Takeaways:  Keep an eye out for warning signs that what you have achieved isn’t healthy or sustainable. Using your willpower can be addictive… not in a good way. Even if you have a history of being a bit of a control freak, you can learn to relax and shake that all-or-nothing mentality. You can change the values of your goals to make them more sustainable, without abandoning them altogether. Sometimes we can’t see what’s next until we clear away what is here. Lab Experiment:  Take a look at your current goals and consider whether they are truly allowing you to live your best life. If this goal is no longer what you want, stop pursuing it. Think about your perfect life or your ideal day, what would you want to be doing? What are three steps you could take that would bring you closer to your ideal life? Which one of those steps could you take this week?

Oct 2020

32 min 7 sec

Most of us have a long list of things about our lives (or ourselves) that we would like to change. And while that is a great place to start, when you are working on creating a more fulfilling life, the problem is that when we try to make a bunch of changes at once, we end up changing nothing. That is why knowing what to focus on and when is essential. Key Takeaways:  All goals feel and are important, and doing them in a particular order doesn’t mean you don’t value or will forget about the other goals. Focusing on one new behaviour at a time -- instead of trying to change everything at once -- can actually help you accomplish your goals more quickly. Cultivating the ability to prioritize and focus can help us with other aspects of our lives When choosing what to focus on, prioritize behaviours that you perceive to be impactful AND that you feel ready to tackle now.  Lab Experiment:  Make a list of all the changes that you’d like to make. Consider their potential impact and your readiness to do them. Choose no more than three to focus on and put all the others on hold - for now. Estimate how long you will need to focus on each one (in order to either accomplish it or create a solid habit.) Decide what the very first step for each one will be, including when/where/how you will take it--and then take that first step!

Sep 2020

26 min 44 sec

It's hard to keep believing that change is possible when all the evidence seems to point to the contrary. And that's why it's so important to collect some evidence that a different choice is possible.Takeaways:  You can’t lie to yourself - you need evidence to convince your brain that this is true, possible and worth doing. Evidence can come internally or externally. It takes deliberate practice to collect enough evidence to make it stick. One success is unlikely to convince your inner skeptic. Habits that have good evidence behind them, gain momentum. Lab Experiment: Choose a behaviour or habit that you have struggled with but failed to change in the past. Those past failed attempts could be considered evidence that change is, in fact, not possible.Collect at least one piece of counter-evidence. This can be either an example of someone in a similar situation or (ideally) one time in which you actually succeeded in changing your long-standing behaviour.Think about how many pieces of counter-evidence you would need to collect in order to believe that you do, in fact, have the ability to change this pattern in a more lasting way.Then, start collecting (and counting!) that evidence. You may even find that it doesn’t take as many pieces of evidence as you thought to begin believing something new about yourself.

Sep 2020

24 min 8 sec

We humans like comfort. We believe that making ourselves comfortable is a good way to take care of ourselves and make ourselves feel content. But is this desire truly helpful or is it simply a way to keep ourselves stuck exactly where we are?Most of us place a certain value on being comfortable. And sometimes, something that is comfortable is very pleasurable (like putting on a favourite comfy sweater or connecting with an old friend). But often, it’s simply familiar (like the way your family celebrates holidays).By the same token, something that is uncomfortable at first, because it’s unfamiliar, may end up being very rewarding. But if we are unwilling to be uncomfortable, we’ll never find out.FOLLOW the Change Academy: Subscribe to the podcast (and leave a review/rating) Sign up for our newsletter at changeacademypodcast.com (and you’ll get a downloadable copy of each episode’s lab experiment) Connect with us on social @changeacpod Drop us a note about what you’re working on and how we can help

Sep 2020

28 min 20 sec

You have probably heard the term 'grit' thrown around but what does it actually mean? Our guest on this episode boils it down to “getting back up, one more time.”In this episode, Monica interviews guest Rebecca Louise, of the It Takes Grit podcast about why we feel stuck what it takes to get unstuck.Rebecca has helped millions of people improve their mindset and achieve their goals. The secret behind Rebecca’s success isn’t just her (as she says) cheeky British humour; people come to Rebecca because she’s shared many of the same experiences as them – so she knows what’s it’s like to feel lost, unable to find the right career, be broke, divorced, and struggle with an unhelpful relationship with food. It wasn’t until Rebecca changed her mindset and started to become the master of her habits that she was able o truly find her way to a career that she loved and a lifestyle that matched. Key Takeaways:  The only way you can fail at something is if you quit. Instead of saying that you are stuck, admit to yourself that you have stopped and then find a way to get going again. Action creates motivation, not the other way around. If we are so locked to our identities as someone who defined by their past or in need of fixing, we will find it hard to make change.  Don’t take advice from someone you wouldn’t trade places with. And then make sure you actually follow their advice. Lab Experiment: Think about the last time you asked for help, heard some good advice on a podcast, or found some helpful knowledge in a book you read.Then think about whether or not you actually took action based on what you learned.If the answer is “no” or even “sort of,” see if you can identify why you didn’t take action. Was it because you are too tied to your identity as someone who is X, Y or Z? Is it because you were scared that it actually might work? Or did you think it was going to take too much effort?Learning how to do this type of introspection can help you avoid that stuck feeling and help you become the curious experimenter that we all want to be. Resources and Links: Resources and Links: It Takes Grit podcast episode:  How to get unstuckRebeccas's new book, It Takes Grit

Aug 2020

27 min 31 sec