The Best Things Happen Outside Your Comfort Zone

The July heat in Mississippi has got me thinking a lot about getting uncomfortable.  I love love love to exercise outdoors, but in this weather, it's not been quite as fun as usual.  Still, the fresh air (even if it is humid) is worth the discomfort of the heat. When I'm exercising outdoors, I feel like I'm so much more alive, and part of God's creation. It's my time to de-stress, let my thoughts wander, pray, and just marvel at creation (side note - I think I've seen at least 5 rainbows in the last month - and each one is a beautiful reminder of God's promises).  So, even though it's a little uncomfortable, I am keeping on exercising outdoors - whether it's 30 degrees, or 100 degrees. I've noticed more and more that getting outside my comfort zone yields great rewards. Case in point:  my friendship with the beautiful, knowledgeable, energetic registered dietician Rebecca Turner!

As I've been building my coaching business, I've recognized that having a relationship with a dietician whom I trust would be a huge asset to my clients.  I coach women on their relationships to food and their body from my own personal experience.  My goal is to help women find freedom and acceptance in the way they view their bodies and the food they put into it. I really don't want my clients to feel like they have to be tied to a meal plan.  That being said, learning proper nutrition and recognizing hunger cues is a process, and there are times that clients need  help beyond that which I can provide.

When I came out of treatment for anorexia, it was VITAL to me to stick to a meal plan to ensure that I was adequately nourishing myself.  I had no idea how to recognize hunger cues.  Starving yourself for four years will really take away your ability to know when you're hungry or not.  This was a time in my life where a meal plan approved by a registered dietician was crucially important to my recovery. I have known that while I cannot personally provide this for my coaching clients, I needed to be able to refer them to someone who could. 

After hearing her name dozens of times, I finally got up the courage to contact Rebecca.

But, oh, was it tough! You see, I looked at her website and saw how beautiful, smart and talented she was.  I saw that she had written a book, Mind Over Fork, that has RAVE reviews on Amazon (you can nab your own copy right here). In my mind, she was WAY too important to want to talk with me.  Surely she would just be annoyed if I sent her a message, right? She has thousands of fans, so why in the world would she want to connect with me?!

But then, I realized that I was letting my fear run the show.  And God has given me a very specific verse about fear. It's 2 Timothy 1:7.  It says, "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."

My fear was keeping me from reaching out to Rebecca, even though I knew that her work deserved to be shared with my clients.  My fear told me I was not enough to have a friendship with this woman who was so "on the ball" in her own work.

But then, I remembered a line from The Big Leap: "Fear is just excitement without the breath." When you breath into and through your fears, and carry on regardless, beautiful things happen!  And if you are a child of God (hint: we all are), He can carry you through the toughest and most challenging of situations.

So, I told myself that the worst that could happen if I reached out to Rebecca would be that she might ignore me and think I was stupid, and I decided that I could live with that.  Lol. I typed my introductory message to her, hit send, and carried on with life.  That message resulted in a lunch meeting where I felt like I was sitting next to someone I had known for years! In just the few short months that I've know Rebecca, her spirit and energy have so uplifted and encouraged me!

Rebecca has had me on her radio show, Mission: Nutrition,  twice now (you can catch the replays here and here), and it has been a privilege to share with her audience about the importance of having a vision statement and the positive impact of "flipping the switch" on our negative thoughts.  I now have someone to whom I can refer my coaching clients when they need a detailed meal plan (no more turning away clients who need this extra help!).  We're planning a live workshop for October 2016.  So many good things happening!!!

What if I had stayed in my comfort zone, afraid to reach out to Rebecca?

No radio shows, no extra help for my clients, no awesome live event in the works.  Sad!

But because I was willing to push past those fears, a beautiful relationship has begun and many people will benefit. Happy!

My goal is posting this is to encourage you to face your fears and be willing to walk into them, head held high, unwavering, and willing to face whatever consequences may result.  The most amazing things may be just around the corner, and you'll get them only by being willing to get outside your comfort zone and do something that may feel really tough to you.  Step out in faith, and watch the rewards pour into your life.

So many blessings,

Sara Anna