Imagine Yourself Podcast

Failing Her Way to Weight Loss Success: How Erin Tennant Did It

January 21, 2023 Imagine Yourself Podcast Season 4 Episode 23
Imagine Yourself Podcast
Failing Her Way to Weight Loss Success: How Erin Tennant Did It
Show Notes Transcript

We love a good success story, especially when someone finally achieves a goal after years of defeat. For those trying to lose weight or just get healthier, Erin’s story will especially resonate. Her loss of a whopping 130 pounds was preceded by countless diet attempts with calorie or entire food-group restrictions. These would either not work for her or she would gain the weight right back. She calls herself a “recovering dieter” who finally found a path to success by figuring out what had and and hadn't worked in the past, by talking herself through things and with trial and error…or as she would say “trial and correction.”

Erin Tennant is a Mindset Coach & Consultant for Personal and Professional Wellness. Her company is called “Grow Well Coaching.” She now works with clients not only with weight loss but also achieving other goals though her “conscious living” method.  In this podcast, though, we focused mostly on her weight loss journey and how she accomplished something she once thought to be impossible. As she put it, she was able to find success in so many other parts of her life, but weight loss had always escaped her. 

As well as some of the specific tips and tricks that worked for Erin, we talk about understanding our relationship with food, the difference between hunger and emotional eating (Erin says both can be OK!), finding the motivation within yourself and most importantly giving yourself the grace and space to fail and try again as many times as you need to.  

There will be no body-shaming in this episode. Erin is quick to point out that there are plenty of people who live in bigger bodies who are healthy and happy. But if you want to lose a little weight or a lot…or just want to find out how her methods could help with any anything that makes you feel stuck, click play and be inspired by Erin. 

 

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Sandy Kovach  [00:00:01]:

Welcome to Imagine Yourself podcast where we help you imagine your next chapter of life with grace, gratitude, courage and faith.

Lanée Blaise [00:00:08]:

Welcome to a world where you can imagine yourself fit, fine and fabulous. And once you have imagined it, please believe that we have a guest today who can help you achieve it. Erin Tennant is the owner of Grow Well Coaching and she's all about mindset weight loss for wellness. She has made some super life changes and she lost over 130 pounds without dieting. So I think that I don't need to say anything else except help us out today. Erin, Sandy and I truly thank you for joining us and sharing with us today at Imagine Yourself.

Erin Tennant [00:00:51]:

Thank you, ladies, for having me on. I am so excited to chat all things with you guys. Yes, I am Erin Tennant. I am a mindset coach for personal and professional wellness and one of my specialties is sustainable weight loss without dieting. I am a recovering dieter. I would like to say spent years trying to follow diets to lose weight and I was the expert at failing at all of them, every single one of them. I was like, either not losing weight or I lost some weight, but I could never keep it off. And finally one day I just said, you know, enough is enough. I'm going to figure this out. I'm a smart lady. I was able to bag myself an incredibly nice, fine looking man as a husband. We have two wonderfully, high functioning, intelligent, loving, kind children. So I think we're doing good on the parenting aspect. It's hard, but we're doing it. I'm able to maintain relationships. I'm able to get myself an education. I am confident and competent in so many areas, but I cannot figure this weight thing out to save my life. But I'm going to give myself the opportunity to do so. And I did. I lost over 130 pounds and I have been maintaining it for a couple of years now. And it feels really good to know that I did this for myself and I was able to give myself freedom from something I felt very attached and shackled to and I struggled with for a very long time. Wow.

Sandy Kovach  [00:02:32]:

Before we get into some of your tips and tricks for our audience, because I know I'm sitting here wanting to know how this all happened, but a little about your personal journey, when you were going through all of this, how did you not quit? How did you not give up? Because it had to take a long time.

Erin Tennant [00:02:47]:

Yeah. So I knew that I had this one thought and I still have this thought as I grow my business and I'm still challenging myself in other areas and trying to grow is I will figure it out no matter what it takes or how to do it and how long it will take. So I give myself a lot of space and grace to figure it out. And I use that theme when I set goals, when I set constraints or rules for myself that I want to follow, when I try to build healthy and rewarding behaviors and habits, I give myself a lot of space. So even though I am failing, even though I am maybe not getting the result I want, or I'm learning a behavior and I'm not getting that immediate result, I give myself a lot of space to succeed. And I think that's something that I've struggled with for a long time. And I think that's why diets didn't work for me in this restrictive mentality, because it backs you up into a corner and it gives you very little room to succeed because you have to follow this and that to the T. And if you're a recovering perfectionist like I am, you're just going to fail ahead of time. So I try to do two things. I try to front load it by saying, okay, I'm going to try not to view things as failures. But if I do, because I have a human brain and we will view things as failures in our life, and that's a healthy process to do, to be able to manage failure. Because as we all know, you can't succeed and learn and grow without failure. It's required. You need to do it because all the learning happens in the failure part of it. So I tried to change my perspective and insight about failure, but also when I was going through failure and I truly believed I was in failure, I was able to create a mindset that this was necessary, I had to go through it. And this is where all the value is. And so for me, as when I'm working with my clients and myself, I don't say trial and error, I say trial and correction. Love it. Everything is a trial and you just have to correct it. It's not an error. Nothing went wrong. It went exactly how it was supposed to go, but it just didn't give you the result you want. So what's the correction? You're smart. Figure it out. I really spend time believing and understanding that failure is necessary and failure is an opportunity for growth. So that way I can kind of reduce that friction I feel about failure before I started the weight loss. It's not so serious, it's not so heavy, and it's not going to keep me from holding myself back or stuck from growing.

Lanée Blaise [00:05:21]:

So that's a good start. Like you said, you start off with kind of defining what you're going to have, even the language of what you're going to have for failure or correction and things like that. But now we're curious too, though: What did you do?

Lanée Blaise [00:05:39]:

Because if you're not dieting and you're not just running on a treadmill all day long, what are you doing to make such a drastic, beautiful transformation?

Erin Tennant [00:05:52]:

I spent a lot of time thinking, and I spent a lot of time practicing thinking, building my awareness of how I felt about my relationship with food and my body and myself. So, for example, I knew when I was ready to lose the weight once and for all, I was not going to diet. I did not want to rely on anything outside of myself. So that means if I'm at a gas station and I have to eat, I'm not going to be like, oh my gosh, I got to track the calories. What if the Internet's down? I don't have my fitness pal or Weight Watchers and this and that? No, I know exactly. I'm at a gas station, I'm hungry, I'm going to give myself permission to eat, and what am I going to eat and be done with it? Because that's what I noticed was happening for people in my life that were of an ideal weight, that had a health relationship with themselves, their body and food, that they weren't stressing. I was stressing about everything. What I was eating, when I was eating, how I was eating it, tracking this, tracking that. I will say I think tracking is a great tool if you don't know what you're doing and you want to get started, but you can become dependent on it very quickly. So I knew that I wanted to disengage from any tracking mentality in terms of calories or points or anything like that. And I just wanted to trust myself to walk into that gas station or if I was at an airport and there was a chickfila or whatever it may be, that I could go in there, I could eat, I could enjoy what I was eating, because I'm a foodie. And I think that was one of my fears about losing a weight, that I would lose my love of food. Food is such a big part of my life and my culture and my upbringing that I didn't want to lose that. But I could still enjoy the food. I can still do that without worrying about what to eat, when to eat and how to eat it. So it took a lot of time for me to think about what that meant for me. So I knew dieting was very restrictive and focused on what you couldn't eat versus what you could eat. I said, Listen, you can eat whatever you want, whenever you want, but you got to feel good about it. If you're worrying about it, that is a clue that there is more thought work to do.

Sandy Kovach  [00:08:03]:

So what would be your gas station choice? I'm just curious.

Erin Tennant [00:08:06]:

It depends. For me, let's say we're driving all night and we stop in the morning and I haven't eaten a thing. And one of my pillars of the way I eat is and I'll go through kind of what I've called and I've coined in the past, like a conscious living method, a wellness blueprint of how you want to live your life. And for some of us, that entails of what we eat, how we eat, when we eat. One of the things I knew with dieting, some diets restrict on when you can eat again. I wanted to go far away from restriction. So I knew I was going to eat and I was going to eat consistently. So for me that meant breakfast, lunch and dinner and snacks. And I tried to aim for two to three snacks based on my hunger. That is what I like. That's worked for me. So if I'm going in and it's breakfast, my mind is going straight for the munchies bag. You know, where it has the doritos, the pretzels cheeses, then it may be going for a Snickers. I'm like salty and sweet. That's always where my mind goes to this day. But then I've trained myself to say, is that going to make me feel good? Is that going to provide nutrition for me? And especially if I'm eating a meal, my meals are food uniform. They are based off of macros, they are based off of nutritional buckets. So when I go to eat, I always make sure there's a source of protein and I always make sure there's a fiber. So for me, I know I'm going to look for if there's fresh fruit or maybe there's like a packet of carrots if that's available. Sometimes you can go into like a sheet and there's great options for fresh fruit and veggies that would be like best case scenario. I'm like, great, love it. If there's a Subway and they have a breakfast sandwich with an egg, I may get that as well with a piece of fresh fruit. If it's like, oh my God, we're in the middle of nowhere and we are working with bottom of the barrel. Maybe they have one of those protein drinks and I'm drinking a protein drink with coffee in it and I mix it like a premier protein. But I'm not going to go for the munchies and the Snickers for breakfast because there's no nutritional value in it. However, I give myself permission to indulge in those for snacks. 150%. But I focus on eating breakfast, lunch and dinner. A protein and a fiber. I don't even worry about carbohydrates. I don't count anything and I eat carbs. I love carbs. I eat bagels, I eat bread. Now a trick I do that was really useful and helpful for me with weight loss is I focus on carbohydrates. Either pairing them, like I said, with the protein or finding carbs that have protein infused with them. So like if you've ever seen Dave's Killer Bread, I love their products. So if I'm eating at home, put some avocado on it and put some eggs and have some avocado toast. Use that for a sandwich for lunch. It just makes it easy for me. But if I'm out and I don't have that, I just make sure to add protein and fiber with that. And I really just focused on that. That was a big thing for me to start eating consistently because I was the person who was like, well, I don't eat breakfast or I'm not hungry at breakfast. But what happened would be is then I would get really hungry at lunch. And then from there on, it was like a free for all. And I am a habitual, like nighttime snacker. Like, to this day, I still am working on snacking when I'm not hungry and still maintain my weight, and I'm able to do so. So again, it's not being a perfectionist. It's about being consistent. And when I consistently ate and I consistently focused on eating fibrous foods and high protein foods, I started to lose weight. That was the first thing I did. Focus on the protein, focus on the fiber, focus on eating consistently and not skipping meals.

Lanée Blaise [00:11:56]:

You told us a few minutes ago, you said that you had to start by thinking and practicing thinking. And I was thinking, I don't get it. But now I think I get it because you're thinking about not just if it's going to make your body feel good and your emotions feel good or not, but also you're thinking about combinations that are helpful for you individually. You're thinking about making a choice before you just make a grab. You're thinking about eating before you get to starvation, hunger, crazy free for all mode.

Erin Tennant [00:12:33]:

That's what I mean. And building the self awareness of, like, what's important to me? What do I want to prioritize? How do I start losing weight? By my own rules, because other people's rules don't work for me. And diets work for plenty of people, and that's wonderful. It just didn't work for me. And I was no longer going to make it about me. Like, there's a problem with me. There's something wrong with me. And that's where I started. Then I started to notice, okay, well, I'm losing weight. This is awesome. This is my relationship with food. But what else is causing that number on the scale to be that way? What's causing me to carry around this extra weight? That's for me. And I'm only talking about my specific experience because I'm a big advocate for body positivity. And I am not here to shame anyone's body or weight. That is always a personal decision. I know plenty of people that live in bigger bodies that would be medically deemed obese or overweight, and they have a quality of life. They are happy. So I'm not here to convince anyone to lose weight or tell them. That is a personal choice. So if you are in a body, whatever it may be, and you feel uncomfortable in it, you're unhappy with it, that is work for you to do. That is a personal, really intimate place for you to look at and go. If you want to go there.

Sandy Kovach  [00:13:54]:

not for society to tell you

Erin Tennant [00:13:57]:

Exactly. Because as coaches and studies have shown, when you go to do something, you will have more success. When your motivation is intrinsic, meaning it comes from within. If I'm losing weight because my husband is like, well, I'm really concerned about your health and I don't want to be a single parent, that's not going to motivate me to lose weight. But if I go in deep in myself and I say, yeah, I want to be around a long time. I don't want to have to be on medications early on. I don't want to have to give myself insulin. I want to be able to run with my kids and travel or in the past when I've had to book a second seat or get a seatbelt extender, I don't want to feel that way. I don't like the way I feel. And that is for me, and I accept that and I own that and I'm going to do something about it. So finding that motivator for yourself is so important versus listening to external sources. Because if you don't have that intrinsic motivation to lose weight, then don't just be happy, enjoy yourself.

Sandy Kovach  [00:14:52]:

So you talked about the protein and the fiber as one of your pillars. I almost said something else.

Erin Tennant [00:15:01]:

That's okay.

Sandy Kovach  [00:15:02]:

But then the other pillars with the self motivation is that one of them.

Erin Tennant [00:15:07]:

So that ties into the coaching. But if you're talking about weight loss, looking at what are you doing now? How often are you eating and start taking stock about people around you. Like my husband, he's never struggled with food. He's always had a really healthy relationship with food. He eats all things. He eats everything. He doesn't restrict himself, but he eats abundantly. And he eats a lot of things that would promote weight loss. But he also indulges in cookies and cakes and things that add up quickly and don't have a lot are not nutrient dense foods. So I started taking stock around people that I admired and I started to replicate that. So I started eating consistently. I started focusing on the two main nutrients that I felt would promote weight loss. And studies and research have shown they are successful things to focus on. I also decided that I need to work on my relationship with food because I use food as a source of pleasure. So I am a master compartmentalizer. And I learned this as a child, that when I feel any negative emotions, sadness, hurt, pain, disappointment, frustration, overwhelm, I struggle with anxiety, I immediately want to go to pleasure. And that's everybody. Our brains are set up and operate under the motivational triad where we seek pleasure, we avoid pain, and our brains want to be efficient. So whenever I'm avoiding pain or discomfort, I go to food. That's my go to. And I still do that. And I'm okay with that. And I give myself permission to do that under the constraints of, do you want to eat this? Knowing that you're not physically hungry, but you're emotionally hungry, knowing that it's going to give you short term gratification. And if you're going to get it, how do you not let this affect your other important motivators, which is being healthy, being happy, being at an ideal weight for your body that you feel good in, being strong, being fit, having energy, not feeling bloated or fatigued or sick to your stomach. How do you manage both of those? So one of those pillars is giving yourself permission to eat for emotional and physical hunger, if that's something you've struggled with. And learning how to do that, to lose weight, if you don't want to do that, you can disengage from that behavior. But for me, it's something that I've done and I really enjoy doing, and I'll probably continue doing the rest of my life, but I'm no longer going to have it work against me. I'm no longer going to gain weight from it. So when I go to emotionally eat, it's usually at nighttime, it's usually after dinner, so I'm not physically hungry. It's within an hour. We sit on the couch, we watch TV. It always is usually in time versus summertime because it's cold, it's dark earlier on. I'm in Columbus, Ohio, there's not much to do, and I get tired at night. So I want to emotionally eat. So we do this and I allow myself to indulge in those sweet treats. And I always aim for one serving. I practice counting out servings. I have practiced measuring things because I was so unaware of how much I was eating. So I just practice that. That's what I do for me. And if I want more than I check in. What's going on? How are you feeling? What are you thinking about? What is happening for you that you think an extra bowl of popcorn and eminem are going to help you with long term? And I have to answer that I do not eat until I answer that.

Sandy Kovach  [00:18:34]:

Wow. So you're sitting there and reasoning with yourself in the midst of emotions, That's pretty good,

Erin Tennant [00:18:38]:

all of it. Because listen, if not, I'm going to react and just get the M&M's and the popcorn. And a lot of the work I do with my clients, it's really not about the decision. It's about feeling good in your decision. Because we all know what to do to lose weight. We all know what to do to feel better. But then we find ourselves not doing it because we are on autopilot, because we are reacting to the motion, because we have not turned on that prefrontal cortex, which you can actually do by practicing self awareness, by checking in, by really building that relationship, that connection with your brain, your body and yourself. And when you do that work, it will compound and add up and you will see results. I promise you that because I've seen them. And if it's possible for me, it's possible for anyone else. Another one that I have created for myself is this was a big one, and I cannot take credit for this, and I'm going to give credit to a person. You both know, Elizabeth Sherman.

Sandy Kovach  [00:19:35]:

Oh, yes.

Lanée Blaise [00:19:37]:

We've had her on Imagine Yourself podcast before.

Erin Tennant [00:19:40]:

Yeah, she's fantastic. She's amazing. She was my very first one on one coach, and this is her concept that she shared with me. I no longer look at physical activity as a way to lose weight, meaning that I really thought about how I move my body and what I want to do and how does that look when I'm at my ideal weight. I did this work when I was overweight and trying to lose weight, and I realized there were two things happening. There was this idea of movement, and then there was exercise. There were two buckets for me, and I wanted to exercise and follow the protocol of what the guidelines are. They say, like, I think 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. I wanted to work up to that, but also I wanted to move my body every day, but as a form of self care, as a way to honor my body and take care of my body. And one of the ways I love to move my body is walking. I love to put on my headphones, listen to my favorite podcast like yours. I love to listen to music. I sometimes like to just sit with my thoughts and just walk and just be mindful. I like to go with a girlfriend or my husband or my family, but I love to walk. It's really good. It's beneficial, and it's something I can do as I age. And I grow into different seasons of my life. So every day I go for a walk, no matter the weather, no matter the time of season, the day, as long if I can get out of bed, I'm walking.

Sandy Kovach  [00:21:15]:

Wow.

Erin Tennant [00:21:15]:

And I either walk outside or I've invested. By invested, I mean pick up from the side of the curb and walk it to my in laws and then drive it back to my house. A treadmill someone threw out for trash. And I'm like, I hope this works because this looks really nice. And I don't use it every day, but I use it when it rains or it's really cold outside because I've set constraints for myself. I don't walk when it's pouring rain, and I don't walk when it's below 20 degrees and icy out and slippery.

Sandy Kovach  [00:21:44]:

Yeah, we're in the Detroit area, so same thing.

Erin Tennant [00:21:48]:

Or investing in a really cheap gym membership that you can go to on your off days. Like, if you're not a gym person, but at least you have a backup, you have a plan B. Or you can say, oh, well, I'm going to go shovel snow, but I move my bodies in ways that make me feel good, that makes me happy. And I like to do it on my own time and quiet. I'm a busy mom. I like my own time.

Lanée Blaise [00:22:11]:

And you're not tracking it and making sure that it's this faster rate and you are doing it in a fun way.

Erin Tennant [00:22:19]:

Yes. And I just started saying, what if you walked 30 minutes? What would that look like? And when I went to go do it, it was hard to walk 30 minutes. And I was like, okay, if this was really difficult, what if I give myself a range? What if I say 15 to 30 minutes, cut it in half? And so for the first couple of months, I walked 15 to 30 minutes. Then I got curious. I was like, I wonder how long I'm walking. And then I noticed I was picking up speed and I was walking longer. And now I walk about two and a half, 3 miles in 45 minutes to an hour, and no problem. But it takes time. I'm not going to go from weighing over 300 pounds and doing that in my body for my specific fitness level. I had to grow to do that. I had to give myself space, and I had to honor where I was at. So one of the tips I want to share with you in talking about failure, too, is that we get so obsessed with numbers and we get so obsessed with ideas of like, I have to walk 3 miles in 30 minutes. F that. Stop doing that to yourself, people. It is terrible. You're backing yourself up into a corner. Why don't you just say, hey, I'm going to go for a walk today, and give yourself a range? If you want to give yourself a goal and make it challenging. Because when we talk about goals and you want them to be challenging enough that they're interesting, but you also want them to be achievable. I teach my clients to give themselves ranges. I give myself ranges. When I talk about how much I weigh, and people are like, well, how much do you weigh? I say I weigh anywhere between 175 and 185. They're like ten pounds. I was like, yeah, ten pounds? In the summer, I am at 175 because I'm playing tennis. I'm outside. I'm eating lighter. I'm eating less. I'm moving my body more. And come winter, I'm sitting down watching TV with my kids, enjoying snacks. I'm going to gain some weight, and that's okay. Some days I don't feel like hitting the gym for a full hour or hitting 15 reps. I give myself space to maneuver. If you can walk away with anything from today, honor yourself by giving yourself room to succeed, not to fail. I love that so many of us just back ourselves into a corner, and why do that? It's a waste. You're just going to feel terrible and probably stop engaging in the behavior you want to do to get the result you want, and then you're going to be miserable again. Just show up to the activity. James Clear in Atomic Habits talks about not breaking the link. Do whatever you can to set yourself up to succeed and not break that link. So if you go out for a walk and it's only five minutes, go out for five minutes and just do it and get it done.

Sandy Kovach  [00:25:01]:

It's so interesting you were saying that because I have an Apple Watch, and I do like that it tracks your steps, and I do like that you complete your circles. But for a while, when I first got it, it was like if I couldn't complete my circles, then it was just, well, I'm not going to do anything. And I had to learn to live with the fact that there are going to be times where I'm not going to complete them, but I still got some exercise in. But don't you know, it took a while to get there. because I think tracking is good and I like having the ability to do it and Fitbits and Apple Watches or whatever you're using. But if you stay too strict with it, just like you were saying about anything, it can backfire on you.

Erin Tennant [00:25:41]:

It most likely will. And for high achievers people who maybe have confidence or low self esteem, me, which I've struggled with, and self trust, you're going to use it against yourself. I think it's great to use. First of all, I love my Fitbit because it just gives me an idea of where I'm at. But in the beginning and even now, I still use that idea of ranges and your baseline and finding out what your non negotiable baseline for you is. So for your rings, I don't have an Apple Watch, but I do know complete aren't there three rings?

Sandy Kovach  [00:26:15]:

There are three rings, yep.

Erin Tennant [00:26:16]:

So maybe there are going to be days that you complete two rings. And what are the one ring days that you're okay with? Like, for me, I know if I have a migraine or I'm sick and I'm not getting out of bed or I have a fever or something, I am not going for a walk. And I feel good in my decision, really get clear and find clarity of when you are okay hitting that one ring, that two ring. So you don't beat yourself up because it's unnecessary, because you're right. There are going to be days that are not going to be perfect. Life is going to happen. Cars break down, you get sick, meetings run over, things happen. So how do you want to show up for yourself as best as you can in the moment with what you have?

Lanée Blaise [00:26:59]:

I think the other part here, too, is all the time that people maybe take trying to count the calories and look at the clock and do all. The tracking. They could be spending that time, like you said, with that really novel idea of having a relationship with your brain, with your body, with food, with yourself, and talk through some of this stuff. And like you said, give yourself some grace, give yourself some ranges, because it's going to take time. And we knew that at the start of this episode. But the way that you're saying it's, like it just takes daily time consistently checking in with yourself because, oh, my gosh, I'm going to just be honest. Sandy and I, we definitely had some questions that we were thinking about, like how you did it, as far know. Was it intermittent fasting, was it counting calories? Was it this, was it that? And I am a bit blown away that it was none of the things on our little cheat sheet here, none of the above.

Erin Tennant [00:27:57]:

None. I did all those things, and I failed miserably at them long term because it required so much energy. And when I did not meet those expectations I set for myself, I would quit. I would fail ahead of time. So I knew that pattern about myself because I spent time asking myself, what did you do in the past that didn't work for you? And I realized it was the tracking, it was the diet and the restriction. And what I had to learn was the complete opposite. Grace, faith, consistency, and not perfection. And what does that look like for Aaron Tennant? What does that look like for me as a mom of two, a wife, entrepreneur? And if it's not the same as my friend or my coworker or my client or the mom at pickup, that's okay. But really feeling good with how I do things, because guess what? I'm alone in my brain. I'm alone in my body, and I've got to feel good in all of this, not somebody else.

Sandy Kovach  [00:28:55]:

Absolutely. So personal for each one of us. We've learned so much here, and I know we have to wrap up soon, but I wanted to ask you about a word you mentioned a lot on your website, and that is resistance. How does that tie into all this?

Erin Tennant [00:29:09]:

Oh, yeah. So we all have human brains. We've all experienced some form of resistance, whether it's mind drama, negative self talk, objections that can lead to feeling negative emotion, which I consider resistance. You're going to have it. Are you guys familiar with Brooke Steo's work from the life coach school at all?

Lanée Blaise [00:29:31]:

No.

Erin Tennant [00:29:31]:

She's fabulous. Everyone should add that to their podcast list. She's phenomenal. She's one of my mentors, not personally, but someone I look up to in the coaching industry. And she talks about life being 50 50, meaning that part of life is going to be really great and part of it is going to not be so great. And if you can learn to anticipate and expect that 50 50, which is not so great, then you won't resist it. You won't put resistance on top of resistance. We are all humans. We are going to feel negative emotion, and we are going to be in disappointment, be in frustration. We're going to feel sadness, pain. We're going to feel grief. We're going to doubt ourselves, fear things. These are all normal parts of the human experience. And if we can anticipate it and allow ourselves to do it, then we drop some of the resistance. So it's not a problem that we have it. It's what we do with it that matters. That's what I like to work with my clients on is, of course you're going to have doubt and fear. It's new. It's scary. The what ifs of if I fail or if I don't do it, or what if it doesn't work, that's normal. But if you're not willing to accept it and take a look at it, then you're just going to stuff it down. You're going to avoid it, you're going to resist it, you're going to try to fix it instead of process it and let it be there. And as a result, you're going to avoid that discomfort and you're going to want to seek pleasure. You're going to go to that, go to and for me, that's food. For some people, it's alcohol. We go to the things that make us feel really good. And sometimes it's harder to unattach ourselves from it than other times for certain people. So if you can just stop expecting life to be great all the time and stop expecting to feel good all the time, you can then start to manage some of that resistance by self awareness, by checking in with yourself, checking in with your brain, checking in with your body. What am I thinking? What's bothering me? What's on my mind? How does that make me feel? Where is that emotion located in my body? Where am I carrying it? I struggle with a lot of anxiety and worry. That's just something that is part of who I am. And I notice that when I am feeling certain sensations in my body and when I realize that I can hold space for those emotions, when I can hold a capacity and I am willing to feel anything, then I'm willing to do anything. I don't have to run or avoid anything. I don't have to run and avoid opportunities of growth because they're scary. I can go after the thing that scares the living life out of me and keep going at it without failing, meaning failing ahead of time. You're going to fail. You're not going to hit your expectations, but not failing by. And what I consider true failure is giving up. I think if you don't get your result, I don't consider that failure again, it's a correction. The only time you truly fail is when you are giving up on something you want because you're scared you don't have what it takes or you don't know how to do it, but even.

Sandy Kovach  [00:32:43]:

Then you can pick it back up.

Erin Tennant [00:32:45]:

And that's a beautiful thing because fresh Starts, I'm doing a call tonight and I'm having this whole conversation about fresh starts, that fresh starts are available at any time. The invitation is always available to you, and you just have to be willing to accept it.

Sandy Kovach  [00:33:01]:

So if somebody's given up on the resolution already, no problem. Just pick it back up.

Erin Tennant [00:33:06]:

Pick it back up. I've literally been in mid moment of when I was losing weight, and I was like, I have an urge to eat and I ate something that I didn't plan for or I ate too much of something, and as soon as I was in mid bite or took my last bite, fresh start. Okay, what was that about? Why did you take it too far? What can you do better next time? How does this make you feel? Really checking in and seeing what was coming up for me so I could take value from that and go at it again next time. Maybe I had to change what I ate. Maybe I had to change how much I ate. Maybe I have to eat more early on in the day or different things. Could be a million different things. But there are solutions always available.

Lanée Blaise [00:33:50]:

And that self talk you had was really, actually good question. Not judgmental, not me not beating yourself up, not chastising yourself in this terrible way, but also not just totally letting everything off the hook either, but a really beautiful balance of asking why and how to change it and correct for next time. I love it.

Erin Tennant [00:34:12]:

I could talk for hours. This is my life work. This is my passion. And to any of your listeners, if you are struggling with something like weight or any other problem, just know the more you strengthen your relationship with yourself, you will get the clarity you need to move forward. Don't put all of the responsibility on that diet or on that program or on that coach or on that program or certification or degree, whatever you're going after. Don't put all the value into that. Put it into yourself.

Sandy Kovach  [00:34:44]:

And for those of us who have a faith relationship, take it to the Lord in prayer and have him strengthen you through this as well. Because as you were saying this stuff about starting mid bite, you're starting again. That was so cool. And I was thinking too of the God's mercies are new every morning, so also they're new every mid bite.

Erin Tennant [00:35:05]:

And I want to say this too, because I have a lot of clients who are living a life, no matter what their religion is, they use their faith every day to keep them moving, going. And your spirituality or your religious wellness will obviously increase.

Lanée Blaise [00:35:21]:

And that becomes your go to. Instead of really just food being the go to, you become your own go to. And that conversation, that relationship, that talk. What about this? What about people who are just in love with you, as I now am?

Erin Tennant [00:35:38]:

Oh, my God, I love you. Yeah.

Lanée Blaise [00:35:40]:

Who wants to be your new BFF? How would they reach out to you? Through social media? Through your website? Do you mind sharing? That awesome.

Erin Tennant [00:35:48]:

Yeah, of course. So you can visit my website@thegrowwellcoach.com. You can book a free consultation. They're usually 30 minutes to an hour. If you're chatty, they last up to an hour. If you're like. I don't got time. I just want the info. We can do it in 30 minutes, real quick and easy, and we can chat about what's going on for you and what you're looking for and your thoughts and ideas. And then I can explain what I offer and you can decide if it's a good fit and we can move forward in working together, or I can help find you someone who's a good fit to work with, because I really want to help people, whether it's working with me or not. I'm very passionate about that. And I think coaching, there's so many aspects and people and concepts and systems and practices in coaching that are just so useful and beneficial and variety. So if I'm not for you, that's okay. Don't write it off. Coaching is a beautiful thing for so many people. Or you can find me. I'm very present on instagram at Grow. Well, coaching. I'm also on Facebook at Growl coaching. Also on LinkedIn at Aaron Tennant. So either way, come say hi. I'm always looking for new besties. Come say hi, come hang out. I learned so much from meeting new people and connecting. So I would love for anyone who resonates with this work just to say hello, drop a line, say you heard the podcast and let's start a conversation. And I want to leave this disclaimer, too. I started working with Elizabeth after I lost the weight. I did not have a coach to help or guide me or collaborate with me during that time. So, again, don't rely on other people or other things outside yourself. You can do the work you want, or you can do the hard work the way you want to get the results you want with no help from anybody. You don't need a gym membership. You don't need fancy equipment. You don't need the newest, greatest diet or the hottest coach out there. You just need your brain and your body. And start working on that relationship, that connection with your being and all the humanness you have in your brain and your body and your being, your soul, and connecting those three so you can grow well and live better.

Sandy Kovach  [00:37:57]:

Love it. And we'll put your links on our website, imagineourselfpodcast.com, and in the show notes.

Erin Tennant [00:38:04]:

Yeah. Thank you, guys.

Lanée Blaise [00:38:06]:

Also the grow. Well, Coach, we really appreciate we usually have a takeaway time, but I just have a short one I want anyone who is listening to also realize I know we've talked about weight loss and fitness and health and things like that. But this entire concept conscious living, your conscious living method and having a relationship with yourself and talking through things with yourself can help us in any facet of our lives. Our fitness, of course, our health, but also our career, our relationships with other people. Everything, our faith, everything.

Erin Tennant [00:38:41]:

I've taken everything I've learned from my weight loss and I'm now using it to grow my business. I have a huge fear of public speaking. I'm using it to I know, I know your face, okay? I really do. I'm comfortable on podcast, but I spent a year on a podcast. I thought I was going to throw up before every episode when I was on it. Now I'm on calls with hundreds of people. I'm speaking in front of groups of hundreds of people. And the only way I can face my fears and show up to do the hard thing is by understanding what is happening for me in my brain and my body and then deciding what to do with it from a place that feels good with my core values and my ethics backing it up. And when you can align all three of those, then you realize truly, you can do all the hard things that you're scared to do. And it's not just me. This is a skill set that's available to anybody and anybody can use. And you actually don't have to pay money. You can just start doing this work on your own. And what I suggest is when you're in the shower, when you're in the Starbucks line, whether you're going for a walk or you're at the gym, whatever may be before bed, just take a minute and start watching what your brain is offering you. Like, imagine tuning into a radio or taking the TV channel and tuning into a show and just what it's offering you. You don't have to judge it. You don't have to say, oh, I shouldn't be thinking this, or I should be thinking this. Or if you are, just leave it. But just start watching it. And if that's a hard practice for you to do, then start asking it questions. It wants to answer. It wants to connect with you. It wants to tell you what you're thinking about. And that's how you turn on that prefrontal cortex. That's how you understand what's happening up here, how that's creating what's happening in your body. And then you understand, oh, I can manage my thoughts, I can manage my feelings, even if they're hard and messy, I can still show up and do the thing that scares the living life out of me. Even with the anxiety, the overwhelm, the frustration, the fear, the doubt, all of it. All the resistance.

Lanée Blaise [00:40:50]:

Boom.

Lanée Blaise [00:40:51]:

Dropped the mic!

Sandy Kovach  [00:40:52]:

That was a good takeaway.

Erin Tennant [00:40:54]:

Awesome.

Lanée Blaise [00:40:55]:

So thank you for listening. Thank you for coming on, Erin.

Erin Tennant [00:40:58]:

Thank you for having me.

Lanée Blaise [00:41:00]:

Sandy we can't wait to try these things out.

Sandy Kovach  [00:41:02]:

Yeah, we're going to be doing that. And we'll be doing a bonus episode probably about a month from now. We'll pick one of the things you said and we'll each try it. I don't know. There's so many good things. I don't know what we're going to do.

Erin Tennant [00:41:12]:

But I can't wait. I cannot wait to listen. I want to know what they're going to pick and try and marinate on and reflect on. So I'm excited to hear that bonus episode.

Lanée Blaise [00:41:21]:

It's going to probably be some off the wall part that nobody else caught, but that really just blew our minds.

Sandy Kovach  [00:41:27]:

Like, we go to the gas station and pick food. I don't know.

Erin Tennant [00:41:29]:

Yeah, I love it. You can do a whole episode of going to the gas station, like protein and fiber. What would I pick?

Lanée Blaise [00:41:38]:

We thank you. I just want to really let you know that we appreciate everything that you've shared. We're going to incorporate it. And for everyone listening, imagine yourself with a new mindset, new results coming when it comes to fitness, nutrition, health, mental health, all the things, especially new things in this new year.

Sandy Kovach  [00:42:02]:

Thanks for listening. We love your feedback. Leave us a rating, a review. Check in with us on one of our social media platforms or@imagineyourselfpodcast.com all the links in the show notes. And of course, we will link up to more information on Erin as well. And until next time when we have something new to imagine. Here's to your health and happiness.