Namaste Well Wishers,
Today’s theme, inspired by the Butterfly and its Animal Medicine wisdom Transformation, is further demonstrated beautifully in the success story from the life of my longtime friend Carol Moore.
Animal Medicine is a Native American way of using lessons from the animal kingdom and improving our connection to the universe. So, whenever we are taking steps to heal our body, mind or spirit we are also improving our connection to Mother Earth, all our friends, loved ones, co-workers, acquaintances and animal brothers and sisters. We are living a life more in tune with who we are meant to be and who we are becoming.
Looking at our own lives we all have hopes, dreams, aspirations, intentions that we wish to see fulfilled in our lives. The butterfly goes through many stages before it is transformed into it’s magnificent form through the egg then larva stage to a cocoon and finally its birth to butterfly form.
All our aspirations start as a thought or idea, decisions get made, steps are taken to develop and realize our goals and finally after all the steps are taken our goal is achieved and we are in a position to share with others from a place of deeper understanding.
As I wrote BUTTERFLY on paper, thinking about this beautiful creature and the lessons it imparts to us the words filled as follows:
The beautiful butterfly is featured on these greeting cards from fellow artists on Greeting Card Universe in order from left to right, Judith Cheng, Lynn Vidler and Sandra Rose, followed by an inspiring success story of Transformation.
Here is a beautiful example of the lesson of Transformation learned from the Butterfly from the life of Carol Moore.
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams!
Live the life you’ve imagined.
Henry David Thoreau
Proudly, I can say that my longtime friend Carol Moore is doing just that, confidently going in the direction of her dreams and living the life she imagined. Carol is a people person, one of the most resourceful, creative, fun loving, industrious people I have ever known. To see her shine with inner confidence, vitality and gratitude is a real privilege.
Carol has a success story to share and I had the pleasure of seeing the results in person this past Thursday. Over the years Carol’s weight had steeped to 205 pounds. She had worked with some personal trainers in the past but the results were meager.
A turning point for Carol was in February 2009 on a Boat Cruise where she had the opportunity to have her photo taken with Alan Doyle the lead singer of Great Big Sea – she was mortified at the thought of having her photo taken with her idol the way she looked, so she declined AND was resolved to do something about it!
Enter Brandon Crowe, the personal trainer that unleashed a trust and commitment from Carol that previously had not been there with any other trainer. He knew he had his hands full with Carol but found the right approach with her.
Instead of telling Carol right away what foods to eliminate and replace, Brandon had her record what she actually ate then offered her a modified program, perhaps not eliminating the item altogether, just limiting the portions she could have. From there her carbohydrate intake was reduced and a fitness program that pushed Carol to her limits without her giving up began to show results in a steady, healthy way losing four pounds a month and gaining muscle.
Such a bond of trust developed that Carol now did not want to let Brandon down and Brandon was beginning to see someone more determined than he had ever known.
Starting her goal in May 2010, Carol lost weight at the rate of four pounds a month and in November 2010 she lost eleven pounds, gaining muscle strength and range of motion as she went. She now had biceps, as she says, for the first time in her life, and she’s in better shape now than she has ever been.
Carol’s Doctor had set a realistic goal of losing 30 pounds by February 2011. However, there was an extra factor to consider… when Carol found out that Great Big Sea would be performing on the cruise the next year she upped the personal training to twice a week and found herself 55 pounds lighter 9 months after training with Brandon… that’s going from a size 18 to a size 10! What a pleasant shock Carol gave the Doctor at her next appointment! Of course the photo with Alan Doyle was taken this time round on the Boat Cruise!
February 2011, on the Boat Cruise during a stop over in Miami, Carol and her husband were at a neat workout place affiliated with their hotel that had a boxing ring style to it. A knowing came over both of them that they would invest and partner with Brandon to open their own fitness studio. It was a unanimous decision that just felt right by all and so over the next four months they made all the necessary arrangements to find the right location, get all the equipment, renovations, decorations and coats of paint on the walls for open doors end of June 2011. The curious walkers-by kept knocking on the doors to find out when they were open so this sped things along.
It’s called Fitness Unleashed Training Inc. at a great location in Forest Hill Toronto. You can check out their website http://fitnessunleashedtraining.com for further details. Last Thursday, I attended the 6 pm drop-in class with Carol and four others. Brandon has a friendly, motivating way about him that makes you want to try your best and push yourself. After looking at the time, 6:10 pm I wondered how I’d be able to keep up the pace but the workout out was nicely varied with activities using kettlebells, battle ropes, skipping ropes, punching bags, push-ups and lots of stretches. Their slogan for Fitness Unleashed is Get in the Best Shape of Your Life! and I can see why.
At dinner together, I asked Carol what advice she has for anyone else who struggles with weight issues and she had two answers for me. The first one she said is “to love yourself and know that you are worth it”, she then said, “unfortunately, that’s the last thing you believe when you are overweight so it probably isn’t very helpful for someone to hear”. Next she said: “Know that you can do anything you set your mind to… you really can!” Just do something every day towards your goal. Systematically work away at it and you’ll get there.
While she regrets not getting to this realization sooner, the heart of it was always doing things for others, not thinking that she was worth it. Now she sees that by doing things for herself, she is a much happier person and that spreads to others in many ways. She finds she is much slower to anger, instead of walking away from an argument she works through it. She has a lot of gratitude.
Wherever Carol goes now, she inspires people because whether it’s co-workers, bank tellers, friends who haven’t seen her in a while, they are bowled over by the results. Any time someone overweight comes to Fitness Unleashed Training Inc. and has doubts Carol is able to say with confidence and knowing “if I can do it, you can too!”.
Though Carol does not seek the limelight, her inspiration will continue to shine and light the way for others. She knows that this will be part of the payback and gratitude she has for the work accomplished with Brandon. If this can help inspire just one more person, then it is worth it. And remember, as Carol says, you are worth it!
Thank you so much Carol for sharing your story with the Well Wishers Group and encouraging us all to live a life that is true to ourselves.
Do you have a success story of your own to share of Transformation in your life?
Would you be willing to share it and be featured on the Well Wishers Group blog?
Are you taking the first steps towards fulfilling a dream and would like some Well Wishers spirit to help you along? Let us witness together as your ideas take flight!
Please feel free to send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with your story and you could be featured to help inspire others too.
Here is a greeting card of mine from Heart to Art that encourages others in reaching their goal. The photo is from my father Tom Betty’s collection taken at Hector Mountain in the Rockies.
Be well, keep well, living the life we were meant to live.