100% Happy?

Who started the idea that the goal of life is to be happy 100% of the time? Whoever it was, needs a loving smack on the head. Yes, this thought, or concept is perpetuated through all forms of media, but it’s not realistic. Anyone who has ever chased after the goal of 100% happy always ends up disappointed.

Why is this the case? Well, it comes down to us not really wanting to be happy all the time. An example I like to use is when a loved one passes away–is this something you want to be happy about? Some will say yes “because they’re in a better place” or “they’re out of pain.” Both of those things may be true and may provide some comfort, but it doesn’t really bring you happiness about the passing. When someone we love passes, it can feel terrible! Grief, sadness, longing, fear, etc.

I bring up this example because I really want to reiterate that the goal of life is not to be 100% happy; but rather embrace the human experience of 50/50. 50% of the time, you will feel positive emotions–joy, elation, love, contentment, etc. 50% of the time, you’ll feel negative–fear, doubt, loneliness, etc.

When we accept the 50/50 concept, it’s a life changer! The more we remind ourselves that life truly is 50/50 and that feeling all emotions is the human experience, it starts to shift how we think about negative emotions. We don’t beat ourselves up because we “shouldn’t feel this way”. Negative emotions are part of life’s balance and we keep going. We become the non-judgmental observer of our own thoughts and emotions. This allows us to be kinder to ourselves while simultaneously still getting things done that we want or need to.

Emotions are like a painting, if you paint the entire canvas with one color, it’s not very interesting, is it? However, when we use multiple colors, we are attracted to it’s uniqueness and beauty. Does it make the painting look messy sometimes? Sure. But there can be beauty in chaos–just like a big thunderstorm. Or on a more fun note, like finding Waldo in the Where’s Waldo books (I loved these as a kid)!


Why is this the topic I chose for this week’s blog? Honestly, it’s because this last week has been rough. Full of confusion, doubt, rejection, and fear. These concepts I teach aren’t just “woo woo–let’s make life happier”; it’s about resilience and emotional fortitude. Did I show-up exactly how I wanted to show up this week? No. But I’m also not going to beat myself up over things I didn’t do or “should have done.” This week has been my reminder that it’s okay to not feel good–in fact, it’s okay to feel terrible. It doesn’t mean I’m a terrible person. It doesn’t mean my business is a failure. It doesn’t mean that I don’t care. You know why? Because I consciously and deliberately choose not to make negative emotions mean anything personal about me. This doesn’t mean my mind doesn’t offer up those thoughts–it absolutely does. But then I remember that I’m the one in control still.

This is what life coaching is about, my friends. It’s not about a magic fix or finding the missing formula or answer that flips the switch to make your life happy all the time. It’s about resilience, grit, and fortitude. Coaching is about me helping you broaden your perspective, providing more tools for your toolbox, and using those tools to help you create new habits so it’s easier to go through life. I can absolutely state from personal experience, that this work has helped me enjoy my life more. I can navigate through life on a different level and am so grateful for the opportunity to help others do the same.

We are stronger together. If I can help support you, don’t hesitate to reach out. Let’s change how we show up in the world, and then go out and change the world!

Welcome!

Hello, my friend!

Welcome to my first blog as CoachWithCam. If you are seeing this, you are part of my exclusive club who has subscribed for my weekly newsletter. Thank you for your support on this journey and I hope to return that support to you through my content. If there is anything specific you would like me to cover, don’t hesitate to DM me on my social media, send me an email (Cam@CoachWIthCam.com) or shoot over a text (+1 702-763-3635).

My goal of this blog is to provide support, perspective, tips and tricks, etc. to help you become a better leader. Whether you have the title of a leader is irrelevant. We are all the CEO of our own lives and this means we don’t have to go on this journey alone; sometimes we have to make hard decisions; do things we don’t necessarily want to do; enjoy the fruits of our labor; and always continue to develop and challenge ourselves to the next stage of our personal evolution.

As I continue to gain clarity in my business and whom I can best serve to the highest of my ability, I’m surprised by what I find. It wasn’t until recently that I discovered the leaders I want to serve fall into the millennial and gen z generations. Prior to this discovery, age was never a factor. And although I will coach anybody on anything, I find my passion and excitement growing when I think of the amazing things these generations have accomplished already at such young age. I truly believe millennials and gen z are going to revolutionize the workplace and leadership in general.

We’ve grown up in a society of mass technological, political, and socioeconomic changes. I don’t say this to discredit what previous generations went through before, so please don’t misinterpret my intentions. But we need to acknowledge how these changes have impacted the way we as humans’ function in the world and how we think about the world.

I want to shift gears a little bit and discuss more about what I do. When people think of life coaching, they usually think of three things: (1) what a bunch of BS—you don’t need someone to tell you how to live your life; (2) life coaching is such a valuable resource and I always want a coach in my corner to help me see what I’m not seeing; and (3) what the hell is life coaching? Where do you fall within those categories?

Life coaching has gotten a bad wrap because it’s an unregulated industry which means anyone can say they are a life coach—no coaching experience, no training, etc. But I purposely want to tell people I’m a life coach because I want to change that stigma. Besides my professional experience in leadership, training, and customer service, I also got my bachelor’s degree in industrial/organizational psychology from Purdue University Global at the end of 2019 (which if you’ve looked into schooling lately, it’s not cheap). Then I took it step further and got my professional life coaching certification through The Life Coach School (one of the top training institutions in the industry). And in addition to those, I have four coaches that I consistently coach with on different topics.

When I tell you I’m a fan of life coaching and believe everyone should have a coach, I’m not just trying to sell you—I’m walking the walk. My coaching journey started almost six years ago. But since being laid off in Sept. 2020 I’ve fast tracked the sh*t out of my own personal development. I’ve quit a 30 year habit of biting and picking at my nails. I’ve learned how to handle my previously crippling imposter syndrome. I’ve learned how to manage my social anxiety on an entirely new level. I’m more aligned with my core self and showing up more authentically than ever before. I have the most self-confidence I have had in my entire life!

Coaching has literally helped me change my own life and become so much happier, more content, and way more emotionally resilient than ever before (and this has been a strength of mine that other people have pointed out). My life isn’t perfect nor am I happy all of the time. 100% happy is never the goal. Understanding emotions, and how our thoughts create our reality is the growth that matters. Because once you learn how to do this consistently, you do end up spending more of your life somewhere on the positive side of the spectrum.

This week was just an intro so stay tuned each week as I bring you more value. And don’t forget to let me know what YOU want me to discuss—all you have to do is ask. 😊

You want me to feel comfortable with what?!

The last two weeks have been absolutely ridiculous! Hilariously miserable AND extremely insightful and interesting.

Blake (my husband) and I do a version of “dry January” where we eliminate our usual vices. In addition to that this year, we also started using a meal service to help us eat healthier (because “ew, vegetables”).

Without any vices (including my comfort foods), I have been moody AF. And Blake has been more irritable as well.

We’re not ones to fight or argue, but when we have snipped at each other, it’s been so interesting to then step back and observe what just happened–some of the things we say, we don’t even really mean. Then we point out our awareness and end up having a laugh.

It’s funny to me because the thought that keeps tumbling through my head is “I DON’T HAVE ANY WAY TO GET PLEASURE!”

Clearly, this is not true.

But going vice-free has really challenged me to evaluate where I am going to get my dopamine fix.
[For those that don’t know, dopamine is known as the “pleasure chemical.”]

I unconsciously started to shop and justify it because it’s all stuff to redecorate my office or make our home more comfortable.

I wish you could have seen my face when I realized that I’ve been online shopping so much the last two weeks because I was unconsciously looking for my next dopamine hit.

But this is what we do. This is what makes goals so difficult to achieve.

The desire to avoid change by changing how we avoid.

Imagining your future self after you’ve accomplished the goal is easy–life will just magically be better!

But that’s not how it works.

In order to make a change, we have to confront our discomfort and trudge through all the sh*tty emotions that come along with being uncomfortable.

This is the reason people quit–they don’t like being uncomfortable.

A leader in my corporate career used to say “get comfortable with being uncomfortable” and damn was she right!

get comfortable with being uncomfortable

Exercise

If you’re working on a goal and you’re losing motivation, bring some awareness around where you are getting your dopamine hits from.

Start to notice when you are uncomfortable and want to get rid of the feeling, but instead drop into your body.

What part of your body are you drawn to? How does the vibration of discomfort feel in your body?

Truly just allow it to exist without trying to fix it or make it go away. You’ll be surprised at how the intensity starts to lesson when you start to focus on how it feels in your body.

“CHANGE HOW YOU SHOW UP IN THE WORLD, THEN GO OUT AND CHANGE THE WORLD!”

— Cameron Nichols

The Ultimate Paradox: The need for good and bad?

Something I have struggled with, and that I see my clients struggling with, is this fantasy that our personalities are all-or-nothing. What I mean by this is that we don’t want to allow ourselves to be complex multidimensional beings. Ex. We’re either always committed or we’re lazy and terrible. Who put this bullsh*t rule into play?

Especially this month as people focus on resolutions and goals for 2022, it can be easy to compare ourselves to others and believe they have it all figured out. The truth is, no one has it ‘all figured out.’ Even the people you compare yourself to or look up to are not in a constant mindset of successful or motivated thinking.

What I want to offer you is that sometimes you will feel motivated and like you’re going to crush your goals; other times you may feel tired or overwhelmed. One day you may feel excited; while the next you feel apathetic. I’m here to tell you THAT’S NORMAL!

Even if you feel lazy, apathetic, or [insert whatever negative emotion you want here], IT DOESN’T MEAN THAT IS WHO YOU ARE AS A PERSON.

You are separate from your thoughts.

I invite you to start looking at the beautiful paradox that you are. You as a human, encompass opposing characteristics and personality traits. Embrace ALL of them.

Exercise

List out all the characteristics, descriptors, and common emotions that make up your personality–for even more fun, write or overlay on a photo of yourself 😊. Below is my own personal example:

Saucy, Kind, Sarcastic, Caring, Selfish, Sassy, Calm, Compassionate, Empathetic, Recluse, Introvert, Docile, Excited, Curious, Riveted, Entertaining, Funny, Boring, Lazy, Driven, Ambitious, Moody, Careful, Sexual, Spiritual, Worldly, Creative, Gifted, Talented, Communicative, Introspective, Loving, Content, Unsatisfied, High Achiever, Integrity, Character, Genuine, Authentic, Supportive, Passionate, Confident, Good Listener, Overthinker, Homebody, Adventurous, Shy, Reserved, Flirtatious, Playful, Sacred, Empowered, Imaginative, Sentimental, Dramatic, Non-Chalant, Shameful, Tired, Invested, Meditative, TV Lover, Limited, Unlimited, Believer, Witchy, Optimist, Magical, Doubter, Guide, Super, Musical

Rebooting After the Holidays

Hello, my beautiful friends! I hope you all survived and thrived throughout the holiday season and are ready to step into 2022. Just a heads up this week’s message maybe a little longer than normal, but I promise it’s worth the read.

My feelings about December

Similar to some of you, I have separated myself from my religious upbringing. I don’t believe in the same concepts that were taught to me. And because I love all things witchy, I’ve done a lot of research on paganism and holiday traditions. So when I think of Christmas (and a few other holidays), I upset myself thinking of the persecution some of our ancestors went through that changed the meaning of these sacred holidays into what they are known for today. Let’s just say I know I have some work to do in this area around puritans and the crusades.

*Also, a part of the irony in this is that I am also a descendent of the original Santa Clause/St. Nicholas (according to an old family history book)–this is how I like to justify my physical stature (belly and beard )😂.

Additionally, as you saw a few weeks ago, I have a December birthday. Most December babies I’ve talked to dislike December–myself included. To give some additional context, 4/5 members of my immediate family growing up have birthdays in December. If I calculate birthdays for them and for grandparents, cousins, friends, holiday parties, etc. there could LITERALLY be some type of celebratory event every day of the month. As an introvert and homebody, this is what we call a NIGHTMARE!

As soon as I saw December approaching on the calendar, I started thinking of the nightmare that it would be. Even though COVID changed how people get together and celebrate, and there wouldn’t be as many events as there were in the past, the idea of it all was still terrible. Especially when I thought about figuring out how to take time off to unplug and relax.

Lead Into the Holidays

So I decided to really hone in on my calendar and work extra hard so I could take the 16th (my birthday) and the 31st (NYE) off, but still get everything done. What I really wanted to do was to take the last two weeks of the year off completely, but didn’t feel like it was realistic (yup, I turned that thought into reality). So I worked 11+ hour days M-F, and 4+ hours on Saturday, and slept most of Sunday. All of this so I could have two days off. WTF, right?!

It was about mid/end-week after I had been coaching on my schedule and calendar for a couple weeks that I decided to take back some more control. I made the choice to cancel my personal clients for the last two weeks of the year so I could focus on business planning for 2022–and my best ideas come when I’m giving myself space to just sit and think.

Christmas Week

Even though I had canceled my personal clients, I was still coaching clients a few hours a day for my contract gig and doing some other work in my business. No problems. However, as Christmas day approached, my thoughts grew more negative (yep, those damn puritans get me every time). I’m still lucky enough to have family members and loved ones around to celebrate with, which you think would make me look forward to the day. But even though I love seeing my family, I’m still an introvert and homebody at heart.

New Year’s Week

The Sunday after Christmas I woke up with a sore throat and was tired. No biggie; thought I slept with my mouth open or something. Took it easy and went to bed early. Monday morning, I wake up and my throat felt raw like it was peeled with a potato peeler. And my uvula was so swollen that it made swallowing and talking painful–like to the point where I couldn’t talk without making awkward painful cringy faces several times a minute.

As a homebody, I hadn’t been anywhere for potential exposure except for Christmas celebrations with my family. When I woke up sick, I immediately wanted to find someone to blame. I then found out that no one from my family had been sick, and someone pointed out to me that I may have just run myself out. Now, because it was my fault that I was sick, my mentality and mind management started to pick up speed…in the downhill direction!

On top of feeling terrible both physically and mentally, I had coaching clients booked through my contract gig that I needed to find coverage for or cancel. This was a first for me so my brain went NUTS:

“You’re just being dramatic. You should be able to push through. Your colleagues are going to judge you because it’s right after Christmas and the week of New Year’s. You’re letting everyone down. You can’t handle your own shit. They’ll think so much less of you now. All the time I spent stressing and crafting my schedule was a complete waste! Merry f*cking Christmas to me. If this lasts for more than a couple days, I’m f*cked.”

Thoughts like this continued and escalated throughout the week. And as you can assume, none of them were helpful. I totally fell into the pit of victimhood–“Pity Party for one, please” 🙋🏼‍♂️ I got the coverage for several appointments and had to cancel several others. The feelings of guilt, shame, and disappointment were so heavy and intense–on top of everything else I had been feeling about the holiday season!

I hadn’t felt like that in such a long time. And even though I slept the majority of the week (12+ hours a night and several 1-5 hour naps during the day), it was probably the second or third worst week of 2021 for me.

What Changed

The first several days of the week, I was completely unaware of what my brain was doing. I believed every thought it presented to me. About mid-week, I started to catch on but still didn’t feel like I had it in me to challenge my narrative or try to think differently. I discovered I didn’t want to–I just wanted to be consumed and isolated by it. It was at this point I realized I had been resisting feeling these negative emotions by thinking “I don’t like this and I shouldn’t feel this way.” Then I asked myself two powerful questions:

Why not?

Of course I felt sh*tty! I was physically ill and had things I needed to figure out. My carefully planned schedule was completely blown to smithereens! And what if that was okay?

What now?

Now that I allowed myself to feel sh*tty about my perceived reality, guess what happened? Those negative feelings didn’t feel as heavy. I was now in a mental place where I could talk to myself in a much less intensely negative way AND in a way that wasn’t black & white or all-or-nothing. And this is what I practiced for a few hours (previously, this would have been DAYS)–meaning, a negative thought would naturally come up (like they do), and instead of immediately believing it, I started talking to it like I would if it were one of my sons or nieces or nephews.

Lessons Learned

1. Our brains will offer up old thoughts we’ve had before – WE DON’T HAVE TO BELIEVE THEM.

2. Physical illness sucks, but it’s best used as information–what is your body trying to tell you?

3. Remember, when things don’t go your way or go as planned, it wasn’t meant to happen that way–AND THAT’S OKAY.

4. Confidence is having your own back. However, sometimes having your own back means disappointing others. Sometimes it means asking for help. Sometimes it sounds like “no.” Most often it’s not loud or showy, it’s quiet and intentional.

Final Thoughts

At first, I was nervous to share this intense behind-the-scenes view of my mind. But then when I started to see my lessons learned, I knew there would be others that could benefit. AND I absolutely am not and don’t want to be the kind of coach or person that only posts positive life highlights. The truth is, self-development isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s stormy, wind-torn, muddy, etc. But when you learn how to navigate the storm, you also learn how to embrace the intensity of a single sunray and build upon it until the rainbow appears.

Thank you for being on this journey with me. Thank you for sharing your journey with me. Thank you for not being perfect. Thank you for not hiding your pain. Thank you for reaching out for help. Thank you for every minute of trying–whether it’s easy or hard. Thank you for being you. 🧡

Happy New Year and let’s make 2022 our b*tch! 😈


Exciting Things Coming in 2022

Make sure to join my free Facebook group, CONJURING CONFIDENCE before next week…

In 2022, you can expect:

  • MORE free challenges (let’s take some small steps together that will make a BIG impact),
  • MORE free live group coaching calls,
  • MORE free virtual face-to-face chats,
  • and MORE.

“CHANGE HOW YOU SHOW UP IN THE WORLD, THEN GO OUT AND CHANGE THE WORLD!”

— Cameron Nichols

Your Inner Critic

“You’re not good enough.”

“There is no way you could do that.”

“You can’t do as well as someone else, so it’s not even worth doing.”

Does any of the above sound familiar?

If you’re like me and my clients, that little critical voice in your head is ever-present…just poking at you.

Negative self-talk is the destroyer of confidence, authenticity, and is probably one of the biggest contributors holding you back from taking action.

Now, I want to take a moment and blow your mind…..you ready?

You don’t have to believe the negative self-talk of your inner critic.

You are an evolved human with an incredible prefrontal cortex and conscious mind that allows you to make deliberate decisions–which can include not believing every thought your brain offers up to you.

How to Stop Negative Self-Talk in Three Easy Steps

  1. Create awareness around the sentences that run through your head. If you don’t have awareness of what’s happening, how can you deliberately make a choice to change?
  2. Acknowledge that you’re brain is just doing what it is designed to do and what you’ve programmed it to do.
    • There is a part of our brain that is unevolved and still primal. It has three main functions: (1) avoid pain, (2) seek pleasure, and (3) be efficient (do what’s easiest). Negative self-talk is one way your brain is trying to protect you from pain by doing what’s easy (aka running the belief program you taught it).
    • Most likely it’s a subconscious belief that you progarmmed into your brain at a super young age because you interpreted a situation with a naive childlike knowledge base.
      • Ex. You’re 3 and you reach for the glowing red stove. Your guardian yells at you (because they are trying to protect you from pain). You think you’re in trouble and feel worthless. Now anytime you get yelled at, you run the program “I’m worthless.”
  3. Challenge the narrative that your inner critic tells you. Just because you have a thought, doesn’t mean it’s factual or that you have to believe it.
    • Ex. Inner Critic: Look at your life, it’s pathetic. You’re no where near where you should be.
    • Ex. Challenge: Sure, I may not be exactly where I want to be but that doesn’t mean I’m not where I should be. I’ve learned some hard lessons and had a ton of growth that is helping me become the person I am and who I want to be.

My Birthday and My Ask of You

This past week, I celebrated my 33rd birthday. Three is my favorite number so I have no doubt this year will be absolutely incredible.

However, I never thought I would make it to this age. I actually spent a large chunk of my life wishing I wouldn’t make it to my next birthday. There were a lot of factors involved, of course; but, one of my saving graces as it were, was changing how I talk to and about myself. I used make fun of myself and my “flaws” so they couldn’t be used against me. As you can imagine, it still felt awful because I was reinforcing the negative self-talk to my subconscious. Since learning to challenge my narrative and continuing to practice, my life has significantly improved and birthdays have become a celebration of growth and progress.

I have two challenges to propose to you–one is serious, and the other would just help me out:

1. Follow my easy three step process above to help overcome negative self-talk. I guarantee that if you start doing this, even for just a few days, you will notice a shift.

2. Please share this blog with someone you care about that may be struggling in some way or sign-up for my weekly newsletter. As a small business owner with a big dream that includes helping people overcome their negative self-talk, I want to reach as many people as possible to provide the free resources I have available. The fact that YOU are even reading this right now blows my mind! Like you, as another human, are actually taking time out of your day/night to read this–THANK YOU!

If you or someone you know is suffering, please seek out help. Below are some resources provided by the QPR Institute that may be helpful:

How to Process an Intense Emotion
in Just 5 Minutes

As introverts, we feel deeply and intensely–sadness, grief, loneliness, frustration, insecurity, overwhelm, anxiety, worthless, unloveable, fear, etc.

No matter the emotion, you don’t have to suffocate under its heaviness. Click below to get get a FREE guided meditation to help lift you out of those tough moments.

You’ll also get the best of Coach With Cam delivered to your inbox weekly. 
You can unsubscribe at any time if it’s not your jam.

“CHANGE HOW YOU SHOW UP IN THE WORLD, THEN GO OUT AND CHANGE THE WORLD!”

— Cameron Nichols

Poking Holes in Perfectionism

Did you know that some people don’t recognize they suffer from perfectionism?

I was coaching a client who is a very Type-A personality. They were telling me about how “out-of-control” they were feeling–that feeling that all the plates are spinning and are about to crash at any moment.

As they were telling me about some feedback they received from their boss and how terrible an employee and leader they were, I interrupted them to point out that they were stuck in black & white thinking. I asked if they resonated with the label ‘perfectionist’ and the response was HELL NO.

We continued our conversation and the black & white thinking came up again. This time I asked, “why do you not think of yourself as a perfectionist?” She responded something like, “Because I’m not. I know things aren’t perfect so I don’t expect them to be.” “Then why are you thinking the feedback you received automatically makes you sh*tty at your job and that your boss now hates you?” [Blank stares]

I then went on to explain that the need to control how they were perceived by their boss or others falls under perfectionism because it’s an all-or-nothing mentality. “You’re right! I never would have considered myself a perfectionist but now that you’ve pointed it out, I can see it in so many places in my life.”

How to tell if you’re stuck in perfectionistic thinking

Perfectionism revolves around things either being “perfect” or “imperfect.” When we’re stuck in that mentality, we think and communicate in a way that is black & white, good or bad, right or wrong, all or nothing. Here are a few more ways to identify perfectionism:

  • Need to be in control and be “the best”
  • Try to control how others perceive them
  • Get frustrated or depressed when given feedback
  • Constant need to overachieve and/or be productive
  • Overthinks everything and/or hates making decisions

When we are in perfectionistic thinking, we rob ourselves of growth, compassion, love, and success. We end up blocking ourselves from accessing our own wisdom and not seeing all of the options in front of us. And ultimately create more pain for ourselves.


How to overcome the perfectionist mindset

Separate Facts from Stories

One of the best ways to overcome perfectionism is learning how to separate facts from stories.

Our brains are incredible at inserting opinions or thoughts that feel factual. But in reality, those statements or thoughts are actually truths. But aren’t facts and truths the same thing? Nope! Let me explain:

Truth happens on a personal level, meaning it feels true but not everyone would agree–spirituality or religion, politics, values, etc. When we believe in something so much, it FEELS like it’s the truth.

However…

Facts are more global. They are things that can be proven in a court of law, scientifically duplicated or something that could be observed and agreed upon by everyone on earth.

Exercise of the Week

  1. Think of the most recent time when you noticed your perfectionism came out to play
  2. Write down all the thoughts and sentences that come to your mind regarding that experience
    • Don’t censor yourself. Write down EVERYTHING until you can’t think of anything more to add.
  3. Take a break – whether it’s a few minutes or a few days, step away knowing that you’ll come back
  4. As you read everything that you wrote, underline/circle/highlight just the FACTS

Ep. #2 – Story vs Fact Elevate Your Endgame

Join Cam and Megan this week as they discuss facts and the stories we tell ourselves around said facts, that shape our reality.  Join us on social media! FACEBOOK https://www.facebook.com/CoachWCam https://www.facebook.com/megan.a.wing INSTAGRAM https://www.instagram.com/coachwithCam/ https://www.instagram.com/megan.a.wing/ LINKEDIN https://www.linkedin.com/in/cameron-nichols/ WEBSITE https://coachwithcam.com/

“CHANGE HOW YOU SHOW UP IN THE WORLD, THEN GO OUT AND CHANGE THE WORLD!”

— Cameron Nichols

Confidence and your Subconscious

Do you ever feel insecure when going out to meet a group of people because you’re afraid they’ll judge you?

Or how about feeling like you are not in control of your life and everything is just happening to you?

Our subconscious mind interprets what’s happening around us and then stores that information out of reach of our conscious mind.

For example, you get yelled at as a kid for almost touching a hot stove; you’re scared and feel shame and guilt. You didn’t realize it at the time, but you programmed your brain to avoid people and situations where yelling happens because it caused you pain (aka avoid conflict).

Now you’re an adult. You still hate and avoid conflict so you try to not “rock the boat” and please those around you. You may try to make everything absolutely perfect so nobody can see your flaws. Or perhaps you think you’re just mediocre so you don’t take on challenges, risks, or even dream of anything better.

We, humans, like to think we are evolved, but there is still a piece of our brain that hasn’t caught up to the rest. This part of the brain has three main functions: (1) Avoid Pain, (2) Seek Pleasure, & (3) Be Efficient (aka do what’s easy).

By avoiding conflict, or even potential conflict, your brain is naturally trying to avoid pain and run the easiest program that’s been running for years–AVOID AT ALL COSTS.

But here’s the thing, coaching and mindset work helps you to create new programs that propel you forward rather than hold you back.

You’re invited!

I would like to personally invite you to join me for my upcoming 6-week course, (Sub)conscious Confidence. In this course, we will teach you how to hack your subconscious to learn from your own inner wisdom; create new programs that help you get the results you actually want; and create authentic confidence from the inside out.

For more details and to register, click the button below.

2021-12-07T18:00:00

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“CHANGE HOW YOU SHOW UP IN THE WORLD, THEN GO OUT AND CHANGE THE WORLD!”

— Cameron Nichols

How To Shift When You Don’t Want To Be Thankful

In the USA, we recently celebrated Thanksgiving. To be honest, I have many mixed emotions when it comes to this celebratory traditional holiday. But we’ll save that for a different time and different place.

But you know those moments when you’re sad, depressed, angry, or annoyed and you just don’t want to be thankful? We’ve all been there at some point, right?

For me, it’s when I’m at a big group event and I feel trapped like I can’t go home or find a spot to be in silence with myself. #introvertproblems

First, let me say that there is nothing wrong with being in that headspace. If you want to feel a certain emotion when other people are telling you that you should be thankful, feel whatever you want.

But if you notice the negative emotion, acknowledge it, and have a desire to shift or transform it into gratitude or thankfulness, it’s totally an option. You don’t have to stay where you are currently at.

How to Start Shifting

Don’t Resist Negative Emotion

The trick to making the shift is not rejecting your current negative emotion. Sit with it. Allow it to just be there with you like another passenger on a bus. Get curious. Emotions are just vibrations in the body created because of a sentence in our mind. Emotions = Information.

If you try to thought-swap (swapping a negative thought and emotion with a positive one), the negative one will win. What we resist, persists. If you can’t learn to notice, acknowledge, and allow a negative emotion, you won’t get the results you want. You and your brain are too smart to make the jump from “I hate this” to “I love this”.

You don’t need to make a grand gesture or feel immense gratitude. Start small.

Actionable Items to Help You Make The Shift

  • Find one thing (wherever you are) that you find pretty or appealing
  • Give someone a compliment (but be genuine though)
  • Answer this question about yourself: “What small thing are you proud of?” (it could even be as simple getting out of bed because you didn’t want to, or even asking yourself this question!)
  • Do something you enjoy–listen to music, eat a treat and focus on how much you love the taste, etc.

Making Gratitude a Daily Practice

If you want to have an overall better quality of life, having some kind of daily gratitude practice is a fantastic starting point! The list above and the list below are only a few things you could do, so get creative and find what works for you.

  • Start a gratitude journal–it doesn’t matter if you write a page or a few bullet points
  • Get outside everyday and appreciate the nature that is around you
  • Practice mindfulness–I love to do this in the shower, brushing my teeth, and even cooking
  • Create the habit of waving to people and cars you passby in the neighborhood
  • Give a genuine compliment a day
  • Send a thank you card or text message to someone who’s made an impact in your life (whether recent or not)

The Hard Truth

Some days, practicing gratitude can be difficult. Some days are easier than others. Some feel like the world has gone to hell. This is how life is supposed to be. You can’t control everything and everyone around you, but you can control yourself.

Be okay with flowing between the good and the bad. Practice gratitude, and make it easy on yourself instead of a chore you have to do. If you miss a day, a week, a month…not a big deal! Just pick it up again. You didn’t fail. You didn’t do it wrong. You just went with the flow of life.

If it starts to get overwhelming, scale back. What would make practicing gratitude easier for you? What would make it a fun or enjoyable experience?

Take It To The Next Level

If you want to take this to the next level, come join me as I co-facilitate a new 6-week course called (Sub)conscious Confidence. We teach you how your subconscious and conscious mind interact and how you can hack it so they work for you instead of again you–like you’ve unconsciously programmed them to do!

We’ll give you the knowledge, tools, AND practical application so you walk away with transformation. We value this course at $3,000; but because it’s our second round and we want to teach as many people as possible, we’re giving it out for only $300!

Check out CoachWithCam.com/upcomingevents to get more details, watch some video testimonials, and register. We begin on December 7th, so don’t wait too long!

When to Adopt, Adapt, or Abandon

You’re doing a  project and you’re in a rut. Doing work feels like you’re banging your head against a wall. Congrats, the primitive part of your human brain is working perfectly! 

The primitive part of your brain functions from the motivational triad (conserve energy, avoid pain, seek pleasure). When you’re functioning from that part of your brain, it’s time for a CHANGE. 

Use TOOLS to make something easier or more fun. The ways you can change the tools you use are to adopt, adapt, or abandon. If you think about the model (check out my podcast if you’re like “what hell is he talking about?”) you either change your circumstance or thought (aka Environment or Mindset). We don’t need to change our circumstances to feel better (this is 100% true); however, sometimes it can still be beneficial. I’ll address this more a little later.

I call this forcing a brain reset:

  • Change of environment or task → Essentially anything that changes your focus and engages one of your learning centers (visual, auditory, and/or kinesthetic/movement)
  • Change your mindset → Thinking things that serve you and ditching those that don’t.
  • An example of combining the above → Write RESET on a piece of paper – this literally tricks your brain into shifting focus and engages both the visual and kinesthetic learning centers in your brain (say it out loud and you can round it out with the auditory learning center!).
Adopt

When I say adopt, I mean to recreate the same environment or mindset that has already shown success. Take something that worked for someone else OR something you have done before that just works. Why fix what isn’t broken, right?

  • Environment Example:  If you do really good work listening to podcasts, put a podcast on
  • Mindset Examplet: Focus in on a mantra that’s served you in the past, “I can figure anything I want out.”
Adapt

Sometimes you need to adapt, which means doing something slightly different. Let’s say you’re listening to a podcast while working and you make a mistake because you were enthralled but you don’t want to make more mistakes.

  • Environment Example: Instead of listening to a podcast, listen to music instead
  • Mindset Examplet: Shift to  I’m learning how to figure things out 
Abandon

Other times you need to abandon the tool or task. This is when you get to a point where you’re making no progress but you keep doing the task to fill your day or because “you’re supposed to”. Now, I don’t mean quit forever; just pause and come back to it later. I block out my calendar for how much time I want or think a task is going to take. If It seems like I’m stuck after a while and can’t reset my brain then I look at my calendar, see what the next task is, and switch. Moving calendar items until you get back in the swing of things can be just what your brain needs to get back into the flow.

  • Environment Example: Turning off the music 
  • Mindset Examplet: Use a completely different mantra → I can absolutely do this

What are some things you do to get back in flow?

I need to make a public confession…

I’m not who you think I am.

I’m not Mr. Positive all the time.

I’m not always as excited or engaged as I show in my videos.

I’m quiet and contemplative.

I live in my head most of the time.

I prioritize myself over others.

I spend a lot of my “free time” watching tv and playing on my phone.

I am a recovering perfectionist, people-pleaser, and negative thinker.

If I were to write this a few years ago, I would feel overwhelmingly shameful…

…and I would indulge in my depression and anxiety and binge tv and food to avoid feeling the shame, and guilt, and “not good enough-ness.”

After the thought work I’ve been doing for years, some people would expect my life to look completely diffrent–always happy, lose weight, being social and talkative, taking on massive challenges like running a marathon or something.

I don’t pay those people any mind. You know why?

Because I’m the one living my life, not them.

When I say coaching has transformed my life, I’m not kidding or lying.

I have changed and transformed.

As I wrote those first several sentences, I didn’t feel shame or guilt, or any negative emotion at all.

Here’s what I’ve learned through my several years of coaching and working on myself:

  • Watching tv and eating food can be used to buffer from feeling negative emotion; BUT it can also be used for pleasure because I do actually enjoy it.
  • I’m not lazy, I just have different priorities than some.
  • Even though I’m quiet and in my head, my voice and story have power.
  • 100% happiness isn’t the goal nor is it a realistic expectation (aka negative thoughts won’t ever go away completely).
  • Learning to feel, experience, and process a negative emotion vs resisting it, actually makes life easier and more enjoyable. If you are putting a cap on feeling negative emotion, it’s affecting your ability to feel positive emotions deeply as well.
  • There are no rules. Seriously, who made up the expectation checklist of how a person should think/feel/act/etc.? We get to make our own rules. We also can give ourselves permission to break rules that others try to place upon us. We always have the ability to choose, so therefore we always have options.
  • The only thing perfectionism really does is keep you perfectly stuck where you are.
  • Authentic self-confidence doesn’t mean you’re confident all the time. It means you accept yourself and are more curious about self-judgmental thoughts vs flogging yourself.

I feel as if I could go on and on and on with this list.

I publicly confess that I’m imperfect.

I also publicly confess that no matter what happens in my life, I can feel any emotion and have my own back.

What does that mean exactly?

It means that I believe in myself and my ability to work through anything and come out on the other side.

Being confident doesn’t have to look a certain way. It’s just being who you are.

If you’ve been waiting for permission to believe in yourself, take this as a sign to give yourself that permission.

Give yourself permission to enjoy life.

Give yourself permission to feel painful emotions.

Give yourself permission to be kind and offer yourself grace.

If this message ressonnated with you, I urge you to leave a comment with a public confession and share all of this with someone you love and respect.

“CHANGE HOW YOU SHOW UP IN THE WORLD, THEN GO OUT AND CHANGE THE WORLD!”

— Cameron Nichols

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Halloween and the Masks We Wear

Happy Halloween, my beautiful friends!

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays of the year.

I LOVE all things spooky and have been binging horror tv, movies, and podcasts this season.

My husband shared a podcast recently called Throughline produced by NPR that did an episode on the origins of Halloween.

As we listened, I knew a lot of the information provided (because like I said, it’s my fav). However, there was one tidbit of info I wasn’t aware of…

The LGBTQ+ community helped Halloween become mainstream.

Why did the LGBTQ+ community adopt Halloween as their non-official holiday? (Halloween = “Gay Christmas”)

Because it was the one night a year you could be anything you wanted without judgment.

(Fun Fact: you can thank Elvira Mistress of Darkness for introducing “slutty (I don’t mean this derogatorily) costumes“)

Halloween became the one night a year where everyone wore masks.

If you’ve ever felt like an outsider or that you have to mask parts of yourself to fit in in society, you can imagine how liberating it must have felt!

We all wear masks to hide parts of ourselves.

This is something we do just because we are human.

There is a part of the brain, called the amygdalae, that houses our survival instincts (fight/flight/freeze).

It is also responsible for survival motivation–we in the biz like to call this, the motivational triad.

Essentially this means, this part of the brain has three main functions:

  • Avoid Pain
  • Seek Pleasure
  • Be Efficient/Conserve Energy

We naturally fear the judgment of others (aka avoid pain) because back in our primal days, if we were cast out of the tribe, it meant death.

Alone, you couldn’t survive. You needed the tribe’s knowledge and help with hunting and gathering, and defending against predators.

Talk about peer pressure!!

Even though we no longer have the same concerns that our primal ancestors had, this part of the brain hasn’t evolved past that.

Because of this, we put on masks to try and protect ourselves and fit in.

How would your life be different if you didn’t wear a mask around others?

If you could accept yourself for who you are, flaws and all, set appropriate boundaries, and just live freely, how would you think differently about yourself and the world? How would you feel? How would you act?

Seriously, close your eyes and take a few minutes to visualize this.

What adventures would you go on? What would you try if you weren’t afraid of how you would be perceived if you failed?

This time of year is traditionally known as the time to harvest, prep for winter, and death/rest.

But I like to look at this time of year as a time to reflect on growth from the past year AND dream of the possibility of my future.

One of the best gifts you can give yourself is the ability to learn how to be comfortable in your own skin and mind and dream of possibilities.

What mask(s) are you ready to shed and who are you ready to become?

I thank our LGBTQ+ predecessors for their willingness to live authentically and turn wearing masks to hide on its head.


If this is an area of your life that you want to work on, I would be honored to work with you on it. This is the main area of my coaching practice because I’ve been through this journey and come out on the other side. Book your free consultation here.

“CHANGE HOW YOU SHOW UP IN THE WORLD, THEN GO OUT AND CHANGE THE WORLD!”

— Cameron Nichols