As a personal trainer and someone who has built an effective course to give others a choice in their life experience I see Jeff every where.
In YUMMY Jeff has been met with others of similar ilk but the name is different Sid, Dave, Bob, Bruce. and to every human being they bring very different human experiences.
To me Jeff is comfort, safety, indulgence, excitement, food, emotion. And as much as he keeps me safe he causes me heartbreak and frustration in the long term. Yet NOONE loves me like Jeff. NOONE wants me to be happy more than Jeff..........ODD!!
Even stranger I am Jeff or Jeff is me but at the same time he's not..... kinda.
Erm yeah ok I know so whats the point. Give me 5 I will explain it .....
WHAT I DO KNOW IS THIS, meeting Jeff has immeasurably helped me in taking control of my life. Ive learnt accountability, the different between blaming myself and taking responsibility and having much more control of my life, being proactive instead of reactive.
I have an appreciation for myself and I trust my judgement much more and I have a clearer of why I'm at where I'm at. I'm also preeetttyyy sure that this ability to separate self and gain perspective of this moment is mindfulness. YAY ME !!
Who is Jeff?
Finally! you say, the point. well Jeff has been referred to as many things. I was first introduced to him myself in the fantastic Chimp Paradox.
Jeff is my chimp. Why Jeff ? Well I don't know a Jeff very well and whenever and I mean whenever I forget a word or a name I've always replaced it with the name Jeff.
In Yoga and meditation we would refer to Jeff as the Chattering Mind.
Their are so many d1fferentways to explain Jeff but really what we aim to do through mindfulness and self empowerment is summed up by Erkhart Tolle in The Power of Now.
Observe the thoughts of the mind and smile as if observing the antics of a child. ERKHART TOLLE
Why Jeff ?
If I'm honest I don't know, I do know that every time I forgot a name, word, anything I would just basically use the word Jeff.
Someone would say 'do you remember' and Id instantly say Jeff. So when It came to naming my 'ego' Jeff seemed the obvious choice. Everyone has their own Jeff, its the part of you that insists that if you eat all the biscuits you definitely wont have any left to eat (love that logic) Jeff is the nuture part of us built from environment, experience and the people around me. My ego. My inner voice. And sometimes hes just down right funny and brings me laughter and fun sometimes he brings me long term pain through snap short term emotional decisions.
An example of a conversation we may have is this
JEFF: theres no one in...... what a treat..... you should relish this and go get some biscuits to add to the peace.
KELLI: Maybe not Ibe run this morning that would be me undoing........
JEFF: Exactly you have already run. you don't really need to worry.
KELLI: We have a holiday. I want to look nice in my bikini.
JEFF: The holiday is weeks away!!! babe !!! Besides you don't have to eat all the biscuits, just throw them all out and put washing up liquid on it.
KELLI: That's abit of a waste of money and I will feel so tired afterwards.
JEFF: BISCUITS, BISCUITS, BISCUITS, BISCUITS.
A SHORT WHILE LATER......A REALLY SHORT WHILE LATER
KELLI &JEFF: BUGGER!!!
KELLI: why did I do that I feel rough.
JEFF: yeah why did you do that? your holidays in a few weeks time babe........BIKINI?
Now this is how most of us converse with ourselves many many times a day. Since starting my journey of self improvement, the most important thing I've learnt is to be kinder to myself.
The theme of Being My Own Best Friend is one I hold very dear and is so important that my very first guided meditation tackles that subject.
However I also now see how this conversation shows a massively important point, I did have a choice. I was offered 2 choices biscuit no biscuits. this idea of choice is fantastic. I has given me a sense of responsibility because I choose this over blame EVERYTIME, responsibility offers choice learning and when we choose to take responsibility we actually take our power.
Being at the mercy of the chattering mind is living in reaction and I know for me I had to find a way to take charge, because as much as I love Jeff sometimes what he sees as best in that moment is destructive in the long term.
The quickest way I find to tap into other peoples 'Jeff' is meditation. I take meditation session as part of my yoga class and as soon as the participants lie down that will be when the voice starts.
I often ask what came up after the meditation and Ive had all sorts.
'did I record Eastenders'
'When does this END'
'oh shit, I have and itchy nose, ooh no can I itch it? am I doing it wrong if I scratch it? oh nooo now its spreading...... what do I do what do I do'
Itch it and move on with life is the answer to the last one.
HOW DID I START TO DEAL WITH JEFF
To start with I needed to convince myself that there is no such thing as self sabotage. SORRY. If you have been using the old 'I sabotage my own success that's why I don't succeed' exscuse. No part of you wants you to hurt even if hurt is the result. I know my entire being wants me happy safe and secure. Different parts of me just see how that will come about differently. I didn't arrive at the conclusion alone. Its a bigger topic than I can cover here but if we can accept that then we can learn to love every part of ourselves and then the good stuff happens. And then I put a distance between us by naming him. again giving me a choice.
Jeff works in mysterious ways, mostly completely paradoxically. He makes those snap decisions judgements to either keep me safe (as he sees it) or attain a perceived win, an example of this is having to have the last word regardless of the hurt it may cause of the truth of the statement. when I feel that emotional response in my solar plexus I stop close my eyes and breath, through my nose and out through my mouth. I create in my minds eye a blank piece of paper with kelli on one side Jeff on the other and I see I have a CHOICE, if time allows I have questions I ask myself, questions I will go into another time. But that realisation of CHOICE shows me my power, in situations I may have felt inevitable.
9 times out of 10 I'm able to step away. When I cant well basically I'm just kinder to myself in those choices. I ask what Id say to someone I love in the same situation and that's what I say to myself.
If I'm procrastinating I found a very helpful tool and that's the 5 second rule.
Brilliant and simple. 54321 ....go. I recommend this book to all my clients and use the rule in my classes and my own life. its been especillay helpful in my conversations with Jeff at times hes doesn't even get a chance to argue.
Jeff can be a blessing and a curse. by naming him I've made it very clear to myself that I have a choice in everything and I can take responsibility, thus take the power back becoming proactive.
Some of the conversaitions I have with Jeff are hilarious and I want to help others to understand that we all have these conversations.
Sooooooooooo whats my point?
Over the next few months I will b e starting the 30 days with Jeff and...... series. A series of Vlogs and blogs documenting my conversations and progression with Jeff when I focus on one self help book, theory or system for 30 days. The aim is to highlight how helpful some of these ideas are but also make aware that to limit yourself to one system can be limiting your ability to become the person you l know you can be, and to be open minded and flexible is the key to complete growth.