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My first month as a Personal Trainer

Updated: May 31, 2023

Hello again!

I know it's been a while since I posted, so this one will be more of an update than a deep dive into anything specific... I've had a tough couple of months and wanted to share with you some of the ups and downs I've experienced during my transition to Personal Trainer, and my mental health journey thus far.

Being self-employed

Becoming self-employed has been interesting for me...

I love direction and, if you give me a task, I'll be sure to do my best and get results. I also love routine, consistency and predictability, and am a big believer in dedication and habit over motivation when it comes to long-term goals. So moving from a 40 hour a week sales job to full-time PT with an open schedule was definitely daunting. Thankfully I'm somewhat decent at being organised, so I set myself up for a strong start and am delighted to say it's been worth the wait...

My first month as a Personal Trainer at Anytime Fitness Twickenham has been such a pleasure. I've already worked with so many different personalities, bodies and backgrounds, which has taught me more than any book ever could. The more I learn, the more excited I become about my future and how much positive change I can bring to peoples' lives. All it takes is a little bit of knowledge and understanding, but most of all compassion. It's not often we have someone giving us 100% of their attention for a whole hour at a time, and I'm honoured to be that person for so many gorgeous people. So thank you to everyone who has committed to their journey with me so far!

Despite all the passion I have for my new

role, I've already noticed that infamous 'imposter syndrome' start to creep in. I guess it's not completely unfamiliar territory for me, but the new spotlight as the newbie PT in the gym has brought it back to the surface. It's hard not to doubt the understanding I already have when there's so much information out there that I've barely even scratched the surface of. It's hard not to imagine the judging eyes of fellow professionals when I know in reality they're more concerned with their own clients. It's hard to trust that everything will be ok, when everything depends on me.

And all that has felt like an enormous load to take on at the same time as getting back into some informal therapy...

My Limiting Core Beliefs

... A couple of months ago, I met the inspiring Glen Ross. Glen is a psychotherapist, and one of the most compassionate and wise people I've ever met. We collaborated for Eating Disorder Awareness Week and since then Glen has been supporting me through the painstaking process of re-identifying my core beliefs. We had initially planned on creating a podcast focused on sharing our conversations about all things body image in health, fitness and therapy spaces. However, it quickly became apparent that I still hold a core belief system that continues to sap me of energy and removes the self-esteem needed to embrace who I really am.

It's hard to admit that after all the work I've done to recover from my ED, there's still so much internal work I need to do. Don't get me wrong, I'm in a much better place - my body is happy and healthy, my career is taking off faster than I could ever have hoped, and even my social life is slowly starting to get some long awaited care and attention. However, where I notice the residues of my low self-esteem the most is within my current relationship. Since getting settled in the most intensely loving relationship of my life, I fear going to bed on my own as a 23 year old independent adult. Need I say any more?

The fear I have of going to bed alone, and my inability to relax my mind and find deep comfort in my own company is rooted in my core belief system. It's one manifestation of the belief I've held for who-knows-how-long that prevents me from accepting so many parts of myself. In short, my core belief system tells me that 'I'm not good enough'. I have lived with this belief for so long, that it now feels comfortable and easy to default to this belief and reaffirm it in any way possible. I'm sure I'm not alone in resonating with some of the following ideas we have about ourselves:

These beliefs mean I deeply fear rejection. I waste so much energy trying to predict rejection so that I can try and prevent or protect myself from it, only to find that I become too emotionally entangled in the fear that my prediction will come true to actually take valuable action. It has been exhausting trying to manage all the emotional overload that comes along with acknowledging this issue, while learning to cope with the unfamiliar territory of being self-employed.

Sharing this is to say that the more I challenge yourself and push my boundaries, the more I learn about myself. While this can be painful and exhausting, and make me feel like I just want to throw in the towel, there's always 'light at the end of the tunnel'. Cheesy as it may be, it's true. Recognising my thought patterns, and how my behaviours are influenced by them, can only be a good thing. Once I learn to rewire my belief system to align with my true values, I'll be so much stronger as a PT, friend, and partner. These are the beliefs I will be working to cultivate:

So, on a more positive note, here's to a month full of successes. I've smashed my income target, and made more people smile than I could have ever hoped for, all while learning invaluable lessons about myself and those around me.

Let me know in the comments or by private message if you've experienced similar things transitioning into a new role, or while embarking on a mental health journey...

Have you struggled with energy levels transitioning into a new role, and with setting boundaries around your time and availability?

Have you experienced imposter syndrome at work?

Have you found yourself doubting your capabilities and strengths?

Which of the ideas did you resonate with most from the graphics above, and which ones do you WANT to resonate with?

What support do you think you need to help you find more confidence in yourself?

As always, your experiences and thoughts mean the world to me.

Love and hugs,

Rachel xxx

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