How many times have you tried to get healthy?
You’ve tried diets. You’ve tried gym memberships. You’ve started the new year with resolutions.
And every single time, you’ve ended up back where you started … only more discouraged than ever.
Is it you? Is it your genes? Are you doomed to stay this way forever?
Wellness consultant Caren Cooper doesn’t think so.
She thinks that so many of us don’t achieve our health goals because we’re missing a crucial piece of the puzzle:
You can lose weight, but unless you change your habits and old thought patterns, you won’t end up with the healthy life you’d hoped for.
In this week’s YBTV interview, Caren shares the surprising role personal development played in her own health journey. You’ll find out why she thinks you can have your cake and eat it, too. You’ll also learn what putting yourself first has to do with staying healthy.
What You’ll Learn
A lot of times, we don’t want to change. We don’t want to do something, because it’s messy or we’re comfortable where we are…. It’s hard, but the fact of the matter is, if you REALLY want to make that change, you’ll get through that hard.”
Back in 2015, Caren’s life wasn’t great.
She was 20 lbs overweight, and she smoked. “I was that person who really didn’t care,” she says. “I really could care less about what I put into my mind, body, anything.”
She was overwhelmed as the mom of two young kids. “I thought there wasn’t a lot of time in the day.”
If you would have talked to her then about personal development or wellness, she’d have thought it was hokey. It wasn’t her thing.
But she hated the way she looked in pictures. She wanted to lose weight. She wanted to feel better.
She finally quit smoking, only to realize that nothing changed. “I thought I would feel better after I quit smoking, and I really didn’t.”
She’d reached her breaking point. “I finally was like, ‘I’m just done feeling this way. I need something. I just need something.'”
So she went to a friend and asked for help. The friend gave her samples of a nutritional program. Caren was hooked. “I bought a 30-day program, and within three days—THREE days, I’m not even kidding—I was like, ‘Oh my god…'”
“It turned out it wasn’t just about the weight loss,” she adds. “I lost the weight, but I gained so much more. I gained energy. I gained clarity. I gained personal development.”
Personal development was a surprising piece of the health puzzle for Caren.
“Yeah, I wanted to lose weight,” she says, “but if I had kept my old mindset and my old habits, it wasn’t going to work.”
Before, she would wallow in her misery for days and overthink everything. Now, she sets a timer and gives herself just 5 minutes. “There are some day I’m not motivated and some days I do wallow, and I give myself the grace to have those days, knowing that tomorrow it’ll be a better day.”
As she worked on abandoning her victim mindset, she found herself showing up in the world differently.
“It was what I was thinking, and how I view things, and how I decided to learn from things—how things were happening for me rather than against me—and what can I learn even when bad things happen.”
She stays motivated by setting small goals and keeping an eye on the bigger picture. Community and accountability were huge, too. Get an accountability partner. Surround yourself with people who will support you through tough times.
Listen, there are days you’re not going to be positive. Every day, life happens. Things happen—that’s just the way of the world. How do you deal with it? Who can you talk to?”
Another surprising piece of the health puzzle was the importance of putting herself first.
When she was feeling overwhelmed all those years ago, she wasn’t saying no to people. She was doing things for everyone else.
Now, I do for me first. And because I do for me first, I don’t feel the overwhelm. I don’t feel like I have to say yes to something. I feel empowered, so I can go out and empower others.”
What did Caren’s family think of the changes in her?
“There was not a lot of support in the beginning, because it wasn’t understood, and I also didn’t bring them into it,” she says.
But once Caren began communicating better with her family and sharing with them what she was learning, she found that they were open to adopting some of these positive health changes, too.
She even found that her family helped hold her accountable. “I will sometimes revert to an old habit, and they’re like, ‘Wait a minute,’ and they call me out on it.”
Today, Caren is a wellness consultant who shares her health journey and nutritional information with people.
“I love talking to people about it. I love sharing it with others…. When people tell me, ‘I lost weight,’ or people tell me, ‘I view things differently,’ or something transforms in them, it gives me such a high.”
Her motto is that being healthy is a lifestyle, not a life sentence.
It’s not about denying yourself. “You can have your cake and eat it, too,” she says. The occasional treat won’t take you off course when you’re focused on living a healthy lifestyle.
And that’s really what we all want. “We want to be healthy. We all want to feel well. We just don’t know how to go about it,” she says.
Get more information about Caren’s health journey and nutritional program by connecting with her on LinkedIn.
Jump to Topics of Interest
1:50 Caren’s life before her health transformation
2:35 Her breaking point
3:24 The program that changed her life
4:19 How her entire mindset changed
5:53 Pieces of the wellness puzzle
5:65 Change is messy
8:55 Staying motivated
11:27 How her family reacted
12:45 How her wellness journey has changed her relationships with others
13:18 Caren’s wellness coaching
14:52 “Being healthy is a lifestyle, not a life sentence.”
17:38 Put yourself first
After years of feeling stuck and very much a victim, Caren Cooper began her own health journey in 2015 and was amazed to find a system that worked. She dropped 20 pounds and went from being a mom who was sick and tired to an energetic motivated and positive mom who now helps other feel and look their best. She’s a wellness consultant who coaches others to reach their health and fitness goals through an incredible nutritional program. Her motto is: “Being healthy is a lifestyle, not a life sentence.” Connect with Caren on LinkedIn.