2/25/20: Spell It OUT!
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Of COURSE I speak my mind! My head would explode if I kept all of this to myself!
Hi! This is Coach MK, and THIS is The Morning Mantra!
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Hi, my name is MK Fleming. I'm a run coach based in Denver, Colorado. But this isn't a podcast about running, exactly. Don't tell my clients, but *whispers* we're never really talking about the running. When you know a crap-tastic event is coming it helps to have a mantra to keep you centered and focused as you move through it. You don't have to be an athlete to be hashtag #coachedandloved by Coach MK. And if you are here, then you are hashtag #winningatlife.
Today’s Mantra is: Spell It OUT!
This weekend, about an hour before the Fitness Protection livestream began, I received an email:
“Coach MK, I am frustrated. My baby is now a toddler and I really want to train for a marathon this year, or a fast half. I discussed this with my spouse, who promised to be supportive. It’s almost March and I don’t feel supported at all. I’m still doing everything for the kids, and when I ask for help I get heavy sighs and passive-aggressive pushback. Last week she told me that she still has goals and it’s not fair to ask her to forget them. I don’t know what to do, Should I give up on a race this year?”
You can hear my complete response in the Running Life podcast episode that will drop in the next day or so, but there’s an idea here I want to pick apart a bit: the notion of support.
Webster’s definition of support is, “to endure bravely and quietly.” But in this case, as in so many others, that’s what we get...but it’s not what we asked for. You have to go all the way down to the fourth definition which is: “to hold up or serve or act as a foundation or prop for” to get what most of us think of, when we think of support.
Here’s the rub: it’s easy to offer to support a person or cause that we care about. We will silently and bravely watch all kinds of things, meaning, we won’t actively work against them. Which means we will not reach the fourth definition, the thing we actually needed, was someone to hold us up, serve us, act as our foundations or prop us up unless we spell out EXACTLY what that looks like situation by situation.
Now, I am NOT saying that you aren’t getting what you want because you aren’t asking correctly. That’s bollocks. I AM saying that it’s easy to promise to be silent and get out of the way, it’s also easy to ask for it. It’s much harder to ask for a bulleted list of exactly what you need in order to be propped up, and that ask may be much easier to say ‘no’ to. Doesn’t mean you don’t deserve it. Just means we need to think about what support looks like, and be really clear about what we are asking for, silence or action….or both.
So, the Mantra:
In those moments when you realize your spouse, partner, co-parent, friend or co-worker isn’t doing the thing you asked them to do, STOP! Say to yourself, “spell it out!” then do that. On paper, make a list of what they are not doing that you expected, and ask yourself, “did they agree to this? Would I have asked for this?” make sure you do this without shame or judgment, just observation. Maybe we can split that list up between a couple of people….it sure is better to reel more people in than rule our dreams out.
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