A Time of Reflection

It’s been a while since I’ve made a blog post, maybe I’ll get back to them. This is more of just a public journal entry if you will.

This is only the second time in my life I’ve been unemployed, starting work at 15. I’m now entering the year I turn 30, so 14 years of work if you don’t count the one semester I went away to college. It’s all I’ve known.

The first time I was unemployed was when the pandemic hit back in 2020. This was a really uncertain, scary, and not so fun time for most people. For me, it was a time where I truly thrived. I was spending time outdoors, being super consistent in my own workout regimen, and I officially started Wellness with Morgan. I was leading zoom workouts, creating fun youtube videos, and started my Motivation Monday emails. I was living in this what felt like an imaginary universe where time stood still, but was also flying by.

Why does this time being unemployed feel different? Maybe it’s because the whole world isn’t shutting down around me, it’s just me that’s shutting down? Maybe it’s because I’m in a different season of my life than I was 2 years ago. I want to take this time to thrive like I did in 2020, but there is more anxiety and uncertainties now than there was 2 years ago when the world was truly uncertain.

I’m endlessly searching and applying for jobs, trying to build up my health coaching and personal training clients, working on growing Carolina Ladies Wine and Wellness, and even thinking of other creative ways I can grow my own personal business, yet I still don’t feel the way I think I should. But is that even possible? I’m desiring a feeling that I’ve felt before, when I know I just need to focus on a new feeling.

Here’s my other dilemma and something I’m internally battling with: being stuck in the middle. Before my most recent job, I worked in fitness for years. My most recent job was in Health Coaching in a WFH setting. I had an inclination that the health coaching program I worked for would be ending at the end of the year, but I just didn’t want to believe it or hoped that our employer would find something else for us. Having this inclination, I should have started looking for something sooner, or I should have worked on getting my board certification. Lot’s of should haves, which are now just could haves.

So, here I am stuck in the middle of applying for in person fitness jobs when I’ve been out of full time fitness and working in person for two years, and applying for remote health coaching jobs in a super competitive field without a board certification. I’ve gotten feedback from fitness jobs that they feel my skill set wouldn’t be used to the best of it’s ability, which is why I didn’t get the job. I’ve had someone tell me that my mock personal training session interview was “the best” he’s ever seen in his 15 years of doing this, but say they are looking to hire at least one male trainer and would get back to me, but never did.

Part of me thinks it’s because of the way I currently look. I’m a strong advocate for focusing on appreciating your body and not being so focused on weight, but in these moments, I feel extremely self conscious and question my worth. I know that I am a great trainer and have the knowledge, but unfortunately going from working super active jobs to a very inactive one, my own personal fitness has declined and I am in fact the largest I’ve ever been. Although I can still look in a mirror and appreciate what I see, I have these uncertain thoughts and feelings around trying to get an in person fitness/wellness job.

These past two years as a Health Coach has given me great experience, but they haven’t always been the easiest. First, going from always working a fitness job and always having access to a gym, to working from home and shifting to mostly home workouts took a toll on my body. Not only was I now sitting for most of the day, but my workouts weren’t as good as they used to be because I was working out from home. This job was not only taking a physical toll on me, but a mental one at times as well. One client that we worked with came with many participants with severe issues and ailments. In the beginning, I often felt like more of a mental health provider than a Health Coach, which placed a huge mental burden on myself. Things eventually evened out and I got used to working with this population. Another client we worked with, the participants were extremely weight loss focused. Luckily, our program allowed us to help these participants see beyond the scale, it was still mentally exhausting because of what I was struggling with internally and externally.

It can be difficult for people in certain professions to care for themselves all the time in the way they care for others. For example, therapists likely have their own mental health issues, and are listening to and helping others with theirs all day. Nurses are physically caring for others for hours on end, and don’t always have the time to care for themselves at the end of it all. The list could go on and on. Although we of course have the knowledge and know how to put these things into action, it isn’t always that simple, especially when most of our energy is spent helping others.

The end of this job, although sad, is giving me this time of needed reflection, and knowing that whatever comes next, I will not allow myself to get stagnant or too caught up in the routine, that I neglect myself.

Morgan Holben
Author: Morgan Holben

Wellness with Morgan
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