How Do You Keep Up the Heat?
You’ve felt the heat of Discipline Coaching and you know it’s good for you, so what’s next? Well, there are many benefits you will experience, some of which are immediate while others are more long-lasting.
There are various stages you will pass through after a consultation and the trick in staying satisfied is to be aware of the phase you’re in and to know what to do about it.
You’ll Pass Through Phases…
You can’t expect one lone session to work miracles. As with almost anything in life, there needs to be follow-up or ongoing treatment for lasting change. I have identified 5 phases that people tend to pass through after one solitary session with me, as described below.
Immediately After: In the first few minutes after your consultation with me, whether in-person or over a secure connection, you will experience a range of reactions; it will be anything from wildly buoyant feelings to becoming quietly introspective. This is because you will have a lot to process and you will need time to allow your thoughts and emotions to resettle into new positions in the next few hours.
If you partook in discipline, your inner circuitry will be fired up and certain red blood cells will be restructuring and requiring nutrients. You should replenish your body with clean, delicious foods and drink good-quality water. You might feel like going straight to bed for a nap, which is a very good idea. You are either going to be the Energised Type or the Introspective Type, as described below.
Will You Be the Energised Type?
If you feel energised and light, as though you could run a marathon or take on the world, this is a good time to go for a walk or run. Basically, you are on a natural ‘high’ with dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin and endorphins having been produced in your brain in quantities large enough to hit your bloodstream and make you feel amazing. You’ll want to stay active and process all that is going on for you. Drink a lot of good-quality water to cleanse your system. Write down those new goals and intentions while you are on fire and make a pact with yourself to stick to them.
It will take a while for these natural chemical reactions to clear your system, so enjoy their positive effects while you can. You could benefit from the breathing exercise described below if you want to get control of all that is going on in your body. You might feel like eating a huge amount of food, so make sure it is healthy. Laugh, love, or get out and do something you’ve been putting off for too long!
Or the Introspective Type?
If you find you have a craving to be looked after, you might also be feeling vulnerable, similar to the way a child feels after being chastised. This is also a normal after-effect. You would be content to be held while you let go of further tears or vocalise your thoughts in a safe and caring space, and then tucked into bed for a restful sleep.
If you can’t get a hug from me or anyone else, you can do your own self-care to stabilise yourself, such as a breathing exercise (as follows). Be kind to yourself in the hours afterwards. Eat healthily, go for a nice walk, and do some journaling. This feeling of zero tension can feel odd, but it is enjoyable and incredibly good for the soul. If you can find a reason to laugh, do that as well.
Try a Breathing Exercise
Take some time to sit and breathe. Breathe deeply and slowly, right down into your belly. Try breathing in for a count of 4, hold that breath for a count of 4, then let go of it for a count of 4. With each inhale, think about breathing in the positive, healing effects of discipline. With each breath out, focus on letting go of your old ‘stuff’ to help release that old energy and the effects of trapped emotions that no longer serve you. Do at least a few cycles of this and you will soon feel calm and centred with all that oxygenated blood flowing from your lungs into your bloodstream.
After Your Self Care…
Once you have completed your aftercare, you will be in a good place emotionally, mentally and physically. That leads to the next part of the process.
Hours after: The effects of your consultation will still be felt in the hours following, especially if you received discipline. Even without that, a life coaching session will cause some serious shifts in your thinking and open you to new possibilities, all of which will leave your mind buzzing. It might even keep you up at night, and that’s a great sign that your mind is chewing over all those mental reframes.
Intellectually, you will know that you will have succeeded in at least one of the following:
- Forgiveness for any real-life transgressions, misdeeds, ill-thoughts, procrastination or bad behaviour.
- Mindset shifts and creation of new beliefs
- A general feeling of calm, well-being, lightness or joy.
- The emotional release of harboured guilt or repressed frustrations.
- Self-acceptance of your inbuilt need for discipline.
- The relief that comes from being able to confidentiality discuss anything on your mind.
- Memorable encouragement to fulfill your goals and create new habits.
Physiologically, if you received physical consequences, you may have some skin tissue damage. It could take an hour or so to heal and fade, or it could take a few days. You knew what you were signing up for in advance, so this warmth is a pleasant side-effect of all that the consultation accomplished. It will be your constant reminder of all that you committed to during our consultation.
Emotionally, you may be surprised at how you can think about your situation without those old emotional charges that used to trip you up. You are now free of unwanted emotional baggage and you will find that life seems less complicated as a result. It will be easier to get things done and to communicate with others without being triggered into unwanted arguments. You may find that you become warmer and more affectionate towards your loved ones. Now that your immediate needs have been met, you are better able to help others with theirs.
A week or so later: It is typical that within a week, the chemical boost will have settled down. Meanwhile, you will be left with the memories of all that passed during the consultation. If there was a life coaching component, there are learnings and mindset shifts that will remain in place, as well as your new commitments and goals to work towards. You will already have made some improvements in how you do things and you must continue with these new habits.
If there was a discipline component, any changes in attitude will still be present and I expect that you’ll continue to strive to make the best of yourself. Traces of your discipline will begin to fade from here on, so it is important to remember your learnings and stick to the promises you made to yourself, and to me, at the time of your discipline.
Months later: It is not ideal to leave it too long until your next consultation. However, if you do wait for months or longer, you will eventually find yourself in the Ashes phase, which tends towards nostalgia. Honestly, I do not want you to end up here as it can be an unfulfilling and dull place. It might seem okay for a while, but you will eventually feel frustrated.
When you are in the Ashes phase, you will have recalled the details of your last session so many times that the memory loses its intensity and the details start to fade. You will become numb to your passions and you may become angry or impatient with those around you.
Worse, this is where your former motivated state will slip away as you grind once more into inertia. You may become prone to the same poor decisions and ultimately, to the same poor behaviour that sent you to me in the first place.
How Do I Avoid Being Stuck in the Ashes Phase?
This can be avoided, to a large extent, by maintaining contact with the world of discipline in the weeks and months after your session. There are certain methods available.
The Direct Method To Avoid Phase 4
You already know how effective coaching and/or discipline is for you, so you can simply book your next consultation. You’ll be happiest once you have a plan for recapturing your former excellence with the aid of your discipline coach. In the meantime, you could draw on your memories of all that transpired in your previous consultation and make note of what you most benefitted from (and put it into your next email to me), so these things can be repeated in your next session. Arranging your next session will pop you into the Wood-Gathering Phase, where you will enjoy the stimulating effects of anticipation as you plan for your next session.
You have an appointment to look forward to. It’s like collecting wood for a bonfire, knowing how much fun it will be once you can light a match into the pile of wood you’ve built. There’s the combined dread and excitement as each day passes…yes, you’re in the phase where the satisfaction of a good fire is imminent. It would be fantastic to go into this phase on a regular basis and there are some people who do, which starts them once more on the cycle of heat.
What If I Can’t Book Another Consultation?
For many people, regular or ongoing in-person meet-ups with your discipline consultant can be difficult to arrange due to logistics, availability and financial constraints. In that case, I recommend partaking in regular contact with your discipline coach. It doesn’t have to be difficult or costly to maintain. Read on to understand how.
Eternal Fire Phase
Once you have forged a disciplinary relationship with your discipline coach, you can move into the phase of Eternal Fire by staying in touch with your coach and in touch with your need for discipline. This is the ideal phase for those who choose to stay connected to their results so that they can continue to enjoy the heat. It’s best when this is achieved in a predictable and structured way.
How to Stay in the Eternal Fire Phase
There are several ways to stay in touch with your Discipline Coach:
You may consider bi-weekly or monthly audio/video calls for ongoing remote coaching and more personal contact with your discipline consultant. This is an intensive approach and is for those who like to maintain external pressure in keeping them on track with their successes.
You could join in an online forum or community, where you can hang out with like-minded souls and stay in touch in a less direct way with your discipline consultant. This option is an affordable way to keep on track with your progress and is less intense than online coaching. Some people prefer this more relaxed approach for the long-term.
At the very minimum, you can keep your head space primed for discipline and coaching by listening to my podcast, which will continue to inspire you on even your worst days. You’ll be reminded of the principles of discipline and you’ll be less likely to deviate from them.
You may think you know yourself best, but I know what is best for you. Get yourself into the phase of Eternal Fire and I will look after you for years to come.
And what if you’re in the Eternal Fire phase and then you book another session? Well, you will continue to burn a little as you gather wood, which will lead to a greater fire in the end!