“So…what do you do?”
A friend and I were laughing one day after one of us remarked on how many times this question gets asked when attending social events or any situation where multiple conversations are occurring.
Some of us don’t have a normal answer. And by normal, I mean an answer expected and understood by others. Neither of us are currently “doing” something that can be summed up in a one or two word answer. It’s not that it’s difficult to explain, it’s just that it takes explaining. And let’s face it- most people aren’t asking the question with a desire to hear you explain. Anything.
My explanation of what I do would sound something like this: I’m a former licensed insurance agent who left the work force to become a stay-at-home parent and homemaker after my son was diagnosed with ASD. I became a certified fitness trainer (additional certifications were obtained later as I became more familiarized with the direction I wanted in this field) allowing me means to work for myself and make my own hours in an area I was passionate about as we raised our 3 kids, during which time I realized that I couldn’t be a normal (there’s that word again) fitness trainer because I couldn’t wrap my head around “training” people in the usual sense of the word. I enjoyed and believed in people, relished the joy that moving our bodies and lifting weights can bring, and knew firsthand the positive effects that good nutrition can have on our bodies.
I knew I wanted to use this knowledge to help others.
But I didn’t believe weighing and measuring people or focusing on the size of their external self empowered them and it was laid on my heart to go beyond that to show them what I saw- in them as an individual, as well as what was gifted to me through education, divine wisdom, and life experience.
Realizing that changing a body we’re dissatisfied with in order to become satisfied with it is not where we begin.
We begin by understanding that our body is not where we begin or end, but the physical vehicle we are within. Respect and appreciate it, but don’t mistake what it is for who we ARE.
This isn’t what many are looking for when they hire a fitness trainer. And that’s understandable.
My role isn’t to be a trainer of anybody- as in: teaching others to do what “is” so that they can learn my way. I see myself as a coach in encouraging the empowered energy within their own selves that will allow them to acknowledge, embrace and utilize what “is” for them.
Regardless of what job position I may hold while doing so, this is what I do. Whether tending people’s insurance needs, taking their fast food and coffee orders, cleaning houses, pumping gas, cleaning restrooms, mothering, homemaking, and yes, guiding others on their fitness journey through nutrition, exercise, and self-awareness, this is what I do. Regardless of what I may be getting paid for monetarily, it’s what I do and will continue to do in as many capacities as I can.
I’m telling this in an effort to reinforce my desire to be a truth teller in my life rather than a more readily understood people pleaser.
So, what do you do?
I ask, not in order to hear your answer, but for you to understand the true depth of what YOU “do” by acknowledging and owning it for yourself. As you’ve helped me do here.
Acknowledge it, own it , and keep doing it.