I did a thing last week and quietly spent a day migrating all of my fitness business website content over to this website. Seems like something small and trivial, but 1) it was not small and literally took me a full day to do (#entrepreneurlife), and 2) it was not trivial, but one of the most momentous moves I’ve made in two years.
Interestingly, this feels totally different than the break I took from fitness all together a while back – which seems like it should’ve been momentous.
When I did that, though, I was drawing lines. I was convinced it was one thing or another. I was a personal trainer, or I was something else. I had to continue being something I had been, whether it felt good or not, or I had to choose something else. In my mind, there was absolutely no way to integrate those things.
Black and white thinking, I know. Which, yes, I understand I literally just talked about a few weeks ago. Remember, this is a flashback to 2018 we’re talking about.
People change, OK?
Basically, what happened then was I set the fitness professional Kourtney aside. I kept everything active, but sort of just hid it, while at the same time creating new spaces. Like clothing of a different size and body shape, I packed that stuff up and put it in the closet for later, along with that person. I dove into this new identity. Bought a new wardrobe.
Fast forward a couple years, and we end up here. Short story: fitness was always a part of it and integration was absolutely possible, and parts of identities new and old blended together to make me who I am today. No hiding.
Always think in the gray.
Now, you might think this would be a positive of keeping all my fitness websites and content and branding active. Kinda like, woohoo! I lost the weight, and I kept all those smaller clothes! Except, no. It’s not really a positive, because that shit went out of style years ago.
People change, remember?
In thinking about this move over the last week or so, in feeling my feelings about it, I’ve come to acknowledge that I’m grieving a little. Maybe mourning the loss of some part of my identity or business. Something I understood at the time to be successful, to be right and good. And even though my understanding of those things is different now, it can still be awfully difficult to live in the new space. Because I don’t have quite as much evidence that it’s successful, right, and good.
Funny though, literally the second I type that out and re-read it, I know it’s not true at all.
I see the exact same thing happen with clients all the time, both in mindset and career coaching, and in fitness and body confidence coaching. It’s one thing to know that you’re where and who you’re meant to be in the present moment, but it’s another to feel comfortable letting go of what that used to look like.
It’s why we maintain old professional certifications, just in case.
It’s why we keep paying for club memberships, just in case.
It’s why we keep our old clothing in storage, just in case.
It’s why we keep that old domain active, just in case.
The just in case keeps us safe, and it keeps us connected to what we know of as being successful, right, and good.
But, at a certain point, just in case becomes a detriment. Really, it’s a way to protect ourselves from what we fear – change, uncertainty, self-reflection, next steps, growth – and that’s not a particularly great way to go through life. It keeps us from moving into what’s successful, right, and good, right now.
You can’t just in case yourself to your vision or purpose or true confidence.
Ultimately, this is the realization I came to – that I was keeping that old fitness website, just in case. It was out of fear that integrating it into who I am now, and who I want to be, wouldn’t be the same – or the same level of successful, right, and good. And honestly, it won’t. But also, I don’t want it to be. I don’t want to pull those old clothes out of the closet. I bought new ones for a reason. I don’t want to sort of hide anything, especially myself. I want a new level of successful, right, and good that matches where I’m at today, not three years ago.
Again, I didn’t say it wasn’t hard to let go. I recognize that it is. I’m nostalgic AF for my original graphic design (how lame is that?!?), and I’m sad as hell to see Big Arms, Big Life® retired. But if I allow myself the two seconds it takes to listen to my gut and my heart, I know that it’s holding onto a just in case, and letting go is the right move.
Same goes for the clients I’ve worked with who want desperately to change or shrink their bodies to a former state. They’re nostalgic for pre-baby bodies, or sad to admit they’ll never be the athlete they once were. But as soon as we work through what those things actually mean for them in the here and now, they see that that person, that thing, that version successful, right, and good, is not actually all that in line with what they really want, today or in the future. It might be integrated to a degree, but it’s not the whole picture.
They learn to listen to themselves and their bodies better, and figure out that letting go of their just in cases is the right move that allows them to embrace what they understand to be successful, right, and good, right now. (And this is exactly what Fitness Unraveled is all about, because it’s often really hard to figure that out on your own and have the confidence to make the move.)
But if you don’t create the space, if you’re too afraid to even entertain this new idea, you’ll never know.
If you don’t let go of the idea of whatever just in case you keep in your pocket, you’ll never know about how good right now can be, let alone how right what’s next will feel.
If you hold on to the old professional you, you’ll have a tough time becoming a leader where you are now.
If you hold onto that whatever club membership, you’ll have a tough time giving yourself permission to explore other hobbies or activities or organizations.
If you hold onto those old clothes, you’ll have the toughest time ever learning to listen to your body and how to accept and be confident in your skin.
And for me, specifically? If I hold onto that old website, I’ll have a real tough time moving beyond what I think I should be in this industry and into the role I see as most important and impactful.
Recall again: people change. The just in cases keep us from doing that in the positive ways we’re after, and almost always hurt more than they help.
You can probably think of one or two just in case scenarios you’re holding onto in your world right now. And today, I’d invite you to write them down, and then re-read what you wrote. What truths do you see? What’s hidden? What space can you open up? What might you think about letting go? What new ideas of successful, right, and good can you entertain – even if they’re unproven or uncertain at the moment?
I have a sneaking suspicion that at least one or two of those answers are going to feel like relief and open doors, and maybe not all that uncertain after all.
Email me anytime if you have questions about Fitness Unraveled, or go here to join the waitlist. Also, my friend Dacy is doing a really awesome job lately of compassionately talking about what exactly to do with those clothes you’re hanging on to. I highly recommend you check her out.