Not long ago I watched the latest Tour de France. It’s definitely slightly harder than the ride to my Hypnotherapy practice in Richmond.
It’s a fascinating race and there’s a lot I enjoy about it – the scenery, the fans, the riders, the sheer size of it and, of course, the racing.
One thing about the tour is that there is always an individual who wins it. So we say “so and so won the Tour de France”. But if you watch it you very quickly realise that it’s almost impossible to win it on your own. That individual win is made possible by all the other members of the team they belong to. Each person has a specific role and they all play their part to ensure that their leader has the best opportunity to win.
At the end of each stage there are more people who are there to ensure that they have the best recovery in preparation for the following day. It’s a massive effort. It’s not just a cycling race where everybody is out to win as individuals and the fastest wins.
So why am I talking about pro-cycling? Because how different would your life be if you had a team of appropriate people to support you? Somebody to help you with career opportunities? Perhaps somebody to advise you on diet and exercise? Or perhaps somebody else to sort you out when you’re injured? The possibilities are endless. You may have access to some of these people already – some of them are called friends, and others may be professionals in their fields (or both of course). We call them doctors, dentists, builders, plumbers, etc. We recognise we have a problem and utilise their skills to fix our problem.
Often however when we consider our needs in how we are mentally prepared we don’t necessarily feel we know what to do or who to ask to have our needs met. Sometimes we just believe that that’s how we are and we just have to put up with it, or that it’s a part of life and has to be endured. You might have a strategy for getting through those feelings – a glass of wine is often seen as a lovely solution– or some other way of coping. Perhaps those choices create even more problems and they don’t deal with the underlying issue.
Recognising that you need to deal with unhelpful thoughts, feelings and attitudes is no different from recognising that you need help with any other part of your life and yet we so often choose to not invest in our mental health by working with an appropriate professional.

It’s not about ‘winning’ per se (although why shouldn’t you be a winner?) – it’s about giving yourself the best opportunity to lead the life you want, and you may just be overlooking the most important member in your team. And if you don’t have that person yet then contact somebody whose role it is to help you.