How To Integrate Change from a Health Coaching Perspective

The key is to take it slow.


Your brain is hard-wired to seek homeostasis, balance, baseline. Homeostasis means safety, comfort, and routine. When you work to change a habit, you are disrupting this very sense of safety and calm your mind strives to maintain. Your mind does all it can to return to the status quo.

And yet, life is dynamic and homeostasis is too simple of an explanation. Scientific research also tells us that we are capable of growing new brain cells our entire lives! So both things are true: our brains love continuity and they love to grow and adapt.


I may work with a client on one goal for 6 months, but the ripple effect of our time together echoes in their life for several years, affecting other areas we did not touch upon in positive ways. This is called integration. Positive, sustainable change begets more positive, sustainable change.


The need to change comes when you realize your habits are actually doing you long-term damage despite short-term comfort. You have arrived at a moment that demands courage. You are ready to say: “I am willing to be uncomfortable for a while, as I work on something that is very important to my future health and wellbeing”.


A part of the change process involves feeling lost before you feel grounded once again. That is where a health coach comes in as a critical support: I walk alongside you during this process. When you have a supportive partner, holding you accountable, the change process can unfold more quickly.


As a health coach, I begin from a place of positivity and strength and the assumption that you are already whole and fully capable of doing this. Sustainable change cannot occur from a place of fear or negativity. We need sustenance for the journey ahead!


By it’s very nature, change requires you to dig deep and find a new way of being. Patience with yourself, self-compassion, and curiosity about what’s around the next bend in the river will serve you on this journey.


And then the moments of joy occur. You face down a fear. You discover a new skill. You make real progress towards your goal. Change that happens too fast is not sustainable — true habits happen slowly and become integrated into you daily life in a welcome manner, not by white-knuckling the journey.

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© 2020 by Stephanie McMahon Health Coaching