Hi, my name is Katie Morton…
I was a driven executive (CNBC, AOL, Discovery) until I was laid off one month after maternity leave. The experience of losing my job at the same time that I was losing my marbles from new-baby sleep exhaustion shook me to my core.
I had completely over-identified with my role as a cog in a corporate machine, and when I was stripped of it, I pretty much went wack-a-loo (scientific term there.)
Okay, I will define wack-a-loo: it consists of sitting on the couch in front of the TV every afternoon with a box of Cheez-its, accompanied by a nice glass of wine.
Sometimes I even smeared cream cheese on my snack crackers.
The layoff destroyed any desire I had to keep pouring my time on this earth into a faceless corporation. I knew I wanted to start my own business, but you know, wack-a-loo.
A few months later, a former colleague offered me a (very part-time) writing job for a TLC blog. I was grateful for the extremely meager pay and for the opportunity to write. I used that job to figure out why, in a time of great stress, I didn’t dust myself off and get my act together. (Why so wack-a-loo?)
Why Do We Get Wack-a-Loo?
In all seriousness, I wanted to know why I had no willpower. Where was my self-control? I had many days of arguing with myself over getting up off the couch and dusting the cracker crumbs from my lap, but the devil on my shoulder kept winning.
This is me at my most wack-a-loo. If you look closely, you can see The Devil’s hand on my shoulder.
(Just kidding, Husband!)
As I wrote and researched, I got deeper into the fields of psychology and neuroscience. My willpower struggle began to make more sense to me, and I realized through my research that I was far from alone. Very few people are immune to the causes of slipping into unhealthy habit loops.
In short, the brain is wired to form habits in order to conserve energy. In times of great stress (like a layoff), you’re most in danger of using coping mechanisms (like Cheez-its and wine) to numb painful emotions. The problem is your brain tends to latch onto any regular behavior as a habit, which you’re then stuck with long after the stressful event is over.
No More Wack-a-Loo = 27 Pounds Lighter
I needed to get my broken willpower straightened out before I seriously harmed my health. My weight was at an all-time high, and frankly, I felt like garbage.
My whole life, I’d been plagued by weak willpower. I was always struggling with my weight. It felt like my choice was to enjoy myself (and get fat and harm my health) or to reel it in during unsustainable bouts of deprivation.
My research taught me there’s another way. A better way.
As I learned more secrets about the science of willpower and self-control, I created a series of journaling exercises so that I could work through the material and actually apply it to my life. I began to feel stronger, happier and more confident as a result of the work I was doing.
As I continued to practice the exercises I created, I began to lose weight, feel more peaceful and happy, and – bonus – no more wack-a-loo.
I finally understood that the research and the exercises I was using to heal myself could help YOU, if you’re out there struggling with overeating or drinking. You could heal yourself if I packaged the material into a class.
This class dives into the mechanics of habit change. When you’re trapped in a habit that’s hurting your health and keeping you glued to your wack-a-loo spot, then you want out. Or you at least you want to know HOW to get out so that you can hit the eject button when you’re ready.
And that’s what this course is about, it’s about taking the essence of how to change a habit and breaking it down into a four-part process so that you can get free of whatever wack-a-loo behaviors you’ve had enough of. Introducing…
Secrets of Extraordinary Willpower:
Secrets of Extraordinary Willpower: THE ESSENTIALS is a 4-part course designed to help you get unstuck from your most-stubborn unhealthy habits.
First, you will get yourself a journal and a pen, because this course is a reading and writing course. You can only get the benefits of the course if you do the written exercises.
I will send you four emails that contain reading and journaling exercises for each part of the course. Throughout the course, you will email me with any questions you may have so that I can answer them during group phone calls.
The course schedule is below, but please note: if you have travel coming up, don’t worry! You can do the course at your own pace!
Here is what the course covers:
Part One: Secrets of Success
Monday, December 2: Transform your thinking and prime your brain for success.
In module one:
- You’ll start right away on changing your beliefs about what’s possible for you.
- You will learn how to succeed, even when those around you aren’t supportive of the changes you want to make.
- You’ll learn how to make healthy changes enjoyable and pleasurable rather than a source of deprivation, pain or punishment.
Part Two: Meet the Watcher
Monday, December 9: The second module will help you get a handle on negative thoughts and emotions. The Watcher is a great tool for observing, evaluating and detaching from thoughts and disengaging from excuses, an undertaking that’s necessary to create a fulfilling life.
In module two:
- You’ll get in touch with the wise and detached part of you that’s not tied up in the struggle for control, the stream of thoughts, the petty scrambles, or the desperation.
- You’ll get in the headspace of accepting reality and knowing exactly what to do, minus the doubt and confusion to which we’re accustomed.
- You’ll root out unhelpful thinking patterns that are creating obstacles to releasing bad habits.
- You’ll learn how to manage your emotions and recognize unhelpful thought loops.
- You’ll turn negative emotions into positive ones and learn how to use your feelings constructively.
Part Three: The How and Why of Habits
Monday, December 16: The third week is pivotal in forming new behaviors that will make you feel powerful and more effective in your everyday life.
In module three:
- You’ll learn the 10 Reasons Why We Engage in Bad Habits, and how to stop.
- You’ll discover the biological factors that continue to drive us towards habits, even after we’re fully aware that we’re ready to let them go.
- You’ll figure out what feelings you want more of in your life, and you’ll take action to feel more emotionally fulfilled.
- You’ll begin the process of dismantling cravings and excuses.
- You’ll get your real needs met instead of giving in to cravings.
You’ll then enjoy a holiday break to catch up and brush up.
We’ll finish strong in January so you can begin the New Year ready to take control and start living!
Part Four: Make Lasting Change
Wednesday, January 1: When we get clobbered by cravings, there’s always an excuse lurking that encourages us to be weak and give in. Then afterwards, we feel guilty and like we betrayed ourselves. You’re going to learn how to kick those excuses in the you-know-what!
In the final module of the course:
- You’ll learn the secret why most people fail at making changes, over and over again, and how to overcome this challenge.
- You’ll learn 6 methods of reducing decision exhaustion, a critical drain on willpower.
- You’ll learn how to effectively reinforce positive behaviors to fuel successful habit change.
- BONUS CONTENT: You’ll experience a critical exercise that is scientifically proven to significantly boost your chances of success.
Wait a minute…
Frequently asked question: “I heard you’re writing a book. Shouldn’t I just wait for that?”
It looks like the book is going to be productivity related, while this class is geared towards people who want to lose weight or adopt other healthy behaviors. So it depends on what your goals are.
You can also look at this way: Imagine reading a book about art, versus taking an art class. You might get some great information from the book, but there’s only a slight chance you might be inspired to pick up a paint brush. In art class, you will actually make paintings and the teacher can guide you to help you hone your skills. If you want to make real change rather than just reading about it, then I suggest enrolling in the class.