Last week the nuggets book club reviewed “The Kindness Method” by Shahroo Izadi. As I prepared for the event on the Friday I undertook the exercises myself so that I felt the content had landed and that I understood how to implement the theory.
The author Shahroo Izadi studied psychological sciences and then psychology becoming an assistant psychologist at an NHS substance misuse centre. However the most relevant fact about Shahroo is her battle over her weight which lasted for two decades. It was not until she implemented the Kindness Method on herself that she lost 8 stone and most importantly she has kept it off ever since.
My own journey last week started with the “Snapshot Letter” this is the first exercise where you asked to right a letter to yourself explaining what is going on now. My own personal perspective was around the discipline of work, being healthy and not being overwhelmed by worries around my family.
The main tool that the book draws on is mapping thoughts. You put the central theme in the middle and populate the map with everything that comes to mind.
- Ways I’m Happy to be – the first map which you fill with characteristics of yourself, the book provides suggestions, and the advice is go for quantity. Here are a few of mine:-
- What I’m Proud of – things that you have achieved from any size, some of mine were the nuggets brand to staying positive through lockdown.
- When I’m in the zone – this map should be filled with all the times you have been truly “on it” where were you, what were you doing, why did everything feel so right? On the back of this map answer these 2 questions:-
- Do these situations you have put on your map have anything in common? If so what are they?
- Based on what you have written down to create your perfect conditions what would you have to alter about your normal routine now?
These 3 maps put you in a great positive mindset and they are your starting point of change.
4. What hasn’t worked – This map is beginning to identify your resistance, my two big AHA moments were brave and thinking BIG
5. Conversations about me – This is a hard one to write. What have you heard said about you, what have you said about yourself, what do you think about yourself? We are really cruel and this is where you can write it down and hopefully leaves your head landing on the paper. Here are two of mine:-
- I am not bold or brave enough to change the business
- I am not focused enough
6. Some-one I love – What would you say to some-one you love? Of course it will look nothing like the cruel dialogue we say to ourselves. I chose my daughter who has just turned 18 years old and I filled the map with all the things I wish for her now and dream of for her. It was the easiest map to complete!
7. This is not a map but key questions to try and get you to focus in a nutshell what it is you need to work on or change:-
I want to do more of…
I want to less of …
I want to be more…
I want to be less…
I want to start…
I want to stop….
In a nutshell – in one sentence say what all the answers are saying:-
I will think big about the business, learning and developing new material all the time by delivering more workshops and coaching.
8. What’s the Harm? – if you don’t change what will happen. The business will look the same next year and the year after.
9. Why haven’t I changed already? – most of my answers had the word “small” in them which again kept leading me to this overall change in thinking. Think Big and talk Big.
10. Developing new strategies – studying the map of “Why I haven’t changed already?” makes you realise that it is you and only you that can make the change. My realisation that my lifestyle and childcare made it very easy to think small. I am aware that everything is comfortable and entering a world of discomfort has been putting me off.
11. Journalling – Take responsibility for what is happening in your life by recording the days events. What are you grateful for? What tested you? How would you respond in the future? This has been my morning ritual for over a month and it pays dividends in a sense of calm and well being, an observer of you and all that you are grateful for.
12. Worry snapshots – capture those tiny little niggles even say them into your phone, once you say them out loud they have gone…
13 What will test me – back to the maps, what will really test your resolve
14 How it’s most important for me to be? – This is a summary of how important this is from a strangers perspective or your family, or even an imaginary film star playing you… I chose to hear what my family would say in 6 months. This was the turning point of the week, I got really excited about what I wanted them to see and hear from me. It really mattered and I really wanted it to start now!
15. Life if I don’t make the changes – dated (6 months time)
16. Life if I do make the changes – (6 months time) – don’t just write the opposite think about what you want it to look like. My big is not about the size on monetary aspect of the business my big is about the depth – meaningful work, making a difference and understanding that is a huge selling point and enormously rewarding (BIG language)!!!
17. Affirmations – that support your change, and saying them out loud everyday
- My business is thriving
- I am kind to myself and others
- I will challenge myself to think BIG all the time
18. The Plan – What are you committing to, capture and log a review date of 3 weeks time.
19. No more excuses – another map to recognise some of your inner dialogue that has been trying to stop you
- The business is OK – why change
20. Testing myself on purpose – we all have those habits that we know are going to derail so be ready for them and put yourself in the frame to test yourself.
In summary my week of living with The Kindness Method made me feel good about myself and my business. At times it felt very indulgent however the mindset and outcomes are superb. The Plan started on Thursday and nuggets and I are thriving.
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Please do watch the video of the book review: – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2PGtK9Kijs&t=19s