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Happy New Year! How this Health Coach Set Her Intentions for 2018

January 3, 2018

By Kim Brame McGimsey, NBC-HWC

Going into the past few “new” years, instead of setting “resolutions,” which, to some, is a dirty word, I’ve adopted the tradition of choosing a word or series of words to guide my intentions.

For 2018, it’s “CREATE.”

As I was pondering what that might look like for me, I remembered a recent training, offered by the National Association of Corporate Directors, on effective board service. One segment focused on the value of creating a positive culture on your board with five recommendations. Though within the context of board service, they struck me as apropos of the many dimensions of our lives, whether it falls under the heading of volunteer, professional, or in our personal life.

So, to think outside of my normal box, I decided to ponder these recommendations to further shape my intentions for 2018. Below are my ponderings and intentions.

Create a culture of constant improvement

This challenges me to consider how I will stay fresh and relevant.  As a private practitioner, without a boss driving me or my work, it is up to me.  Whether you have a boss or not, I think it inspires positivity and possibilities, because you get to decide what you want to create that challenges and inspires you.

  • Take at least one class that will make me a better coach, mentor, and/or instructor
  • Identify 10 books to read and incorporate key take-aways into my training, coaching, or blogging
  • Develop/deliver at least two new workshops/trainings
  • Blog twice a month
  • Create a feedback loop using mastermind group, business partners, and coaching colleagues
  • Take movement/brain breaks throughout the day
  • Be kind to myself no matter what

Identify best practices that you currently utilize in work or life

It is empowering to take an inventory of the strengths and habits that support you currently (or previously).  Your self-efficacy will motivate you to do #5 below and tackle the inevitable obstacles along the way.

  • Prioritize daily grounding routine: Daily devotion with journaling, mindfulness practice, and movement
  • Mind map ideas/plans/agendas with colored gel pens (I like the Paper Mate Ink Joy gel 0.7)
  • Call each of my parents at least twice a week
  • Get at least 8 hours of sleep a night
  • Ask for feedback
  • Avoid sugar, wheat, and dairy
  • Volunteer with passion
  • Be curious, but not nosy
  • Prioritize relationships/community: family, neighbor, and home group gatherings, professional, Board and church relationships
  • Drink lots of water
  • Delegate or ask for help
  • Send my husband off with a romantic kiss every morning before he goes to work (I’m sure this is TMI, but it’s supposed to add 7 years to his life)

Mentor and/or be mentored

How do you want to think about this?  Compensated or uncompensated? Formal or informal? An authentic mentoring relationship is often raw and vulnerable.  My experience is it’s both humbling and invigorating when someone speaks into my life as well as when I have the privilege of speaking into someone else’s.

  • Identify a new area in my life for mentoring
  • Ask someone to mentor me
  • Meet bi-monthly

Contribute to the bright future of the people you touch and the organizations where you work and/or serve

This makes me think of legacy, what I hope people and organizations are left with through our relationship or interaction.  My hope is for others to know how special and unique they are, to feel that their contributions are valued, to believe they can accomplish their heart’s desire, and to challenge any thinking to the contrary.

  • Mindfully listen to the person in front of me
  • Acknowledge the person in front of me
  • Encourage the person in front of me
  • Create/offer group programs for others to learn/grow

Go after the “big guns” in your world, stretch outside of your comfort zone and be prepared to make bold moves  

Before you consider this challenge, flesh out how you want to handle the saboteurs that might get in your way.  For me, it’s me. My insecure inner critic wants to protect me from rejection or failure, so I must remember my strategy for dealing with that inner voice. If you’ve taken inventory of your strengths in #2, review those when you need a boost of confidence. And when I get stuck in thinking and research and development mode, deadlines and accountability support me.

  • Pitch/launch new offerings in larger corporate settings
  • Create a website that will generate leads
  • Blog with transparency
  • Say yes to opportunities that align with my vision and values, especially when they scare me

I hope this framework and pondering process stirs up something new and fresh for you.  It reminds me that it takes intention, planning, and execution to bring my “A” game. It also takes understanding that my “A” game is not about perfection, and that I require self-compassion – knowing it is the best I’ve got in that moment.  Some days are better than others, and I’m learning to embrace them all.

So happy pondering and Happy New Year.

Are you looking for ways to create a culture of constant improvement in your life?

Duke Integrative Medicine’s public programs and professional trainings offer many opportunities to receive mentoring, learn how to utilize best practices in your work or life, and stretch outside your comfort zone. Health coaches can consider registering for the IHCPT Certification Course, which provides individual mentoring to improve and strengthen your coaching skills. Many other program opportunities are available for personal and professional development. How will you choose to move forward in the New Year?


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