What a Night Spent Crying on the Floor of a Doctor’s Office Taught Me About Health and Happiness

Have you ever thrown a pebble into a pond and watched the ripples transform its once stagnant surface? It’s a wonderful sight.

That’s what I do every day. Through my business, Brand New Me, I make little differences in a client’s life, and watch as they create profound change by igniting passion, inspiring dreams, and tapping into potential.

I do it because I care. I do it because it matters.

But it has not always been this way.

Once, I was a stressed, unhealthy, worn down computer shop owner. I’d quit smoking, so my weight had ballooned to an unhealthy 110kg thanks to the kind of diet that has a habit of sneaking up on those who have too much on their mind to think about what’s on their plate. My store was the only one of its kind in Northern New South Wales, and computers were just starting to make their way into homes and businesses at the time, so I was always working hard at the expense of my health, my family, and my happiness.

Before that, I’d spent nine years in the Airforce as an armament fitter. From there, I’d moved to Saudi Arabia, where I lived through both Gulf Wars. So when I tell you that I had never felt more overwhelmed in my life than I did while running the shop, you can understand just how overwhelmed I was.

My refuge was karate. My oldest son had picked it up when he was nine, and like any good father, I sat at the back of the room during every lesson so I could give him tips on how to improve.

One day, as I was critiquing his and his sisters’ style on the drive home, he turned to me and asked¬†“if you think you’re so good, why don’t you give it a try?”

So I did. And I loved it.

Long after my children stopped attending, I kept going. After attaining my brown belt, I started to run sessions for kids. Then, when I received my black belt, I asked to run the adult’s classes.¬†“Go for it”, my instructor told me.

The classes were always intense, but fun. Through them, my students evolved from the kind of people who spent their weekends slouched on the couch drinking six-packs of bourbon into tough, inspiring dynamos, many of whom would go on to earn their black belt.

But while I was going strength to strength at the school, things were only getting worse at work.

I remember a particular incident. It was 2AM, and I was sitting on the floor of a doctor’s practice, struggling to set up their network. I was also crying my eyes out.

I’d seen depression before. It had killed my brother when he was only 18. Yet if you’d asked me if I was depressed, I would have told you no. What I was going through was what any business owner had to go through in order to succeed, right?

Besides, when my wife insisted I see a doctor, they gave me a test which told them I wasn’t depressed. So there was nothing to worry about.

At least that is what I thought.

Meanwhile, my students were growing in leaps and bounds, and having a blast in the process. Supporting them filled me with pride and joy. I wanted – no, I needed to do everything in my power to make sure it stayed that way.

So when a group of students approached me for tips on how to lose weight, I realised the best way to help was to diversify my skills.

I took one day a week off from the store, and spent it buried in books and other research material, studying to become a personal trainer.

During the process, I had a moment of clarity. A moment in which I understood just how much value I could bring to the industry.

You see, the books taught that losing weight was a matter of exercising and maintaining a healthy diet. But I knew that was only part of the solution. Through my own journey, I had discovered that the hard part of tapping into a brand new self wasn’t finding the will to take positive steps towards betterment, but rather challenging the habits that were obscuring the path forward.

My karate classes had always been about that. Sure, they were as physically demanding as any workout, but the goal had been not only to promote physical strength, but mental fortitude as well.

The reason I believe 95% of meal plans don’t work, why 60% of people who use prescribed medication don’t realise there’s an alternative that will make them feel even better, and why so many people are (rightfully) sceptical of the fitness industry is simple: they don’t have the support network they need to succeed.

Because that’s what makes the difference. Weight gain is never the problem, it’s a symptom, and without the support, how can anyone be expected to make a change?

That’s why I quit the gym, sold the computer store to an employee after 16 long and demanding years, and founded Brand New Me.

Clients of Brand New Me are focused on transformation, not price or easy schedules. They have a vision, a dream.

They put in the effort, they value the support, and they concentrate on transforming themselves through the three pillars of success: nutrition, the right exercise, and mindset.

When they do the work, they get the results. That’s why I guarantee it.

There are no better examples than Tiffany Townsend. When she came to me, she had tried every detox, every diet, and every online training program (some several times over) in order to lose weight.

During our time working together, Tiffany has lost 26kgs, and turned her whole family around. She’s now one of our trainers.

Eventually, I did accept that I was suffering from depression, and that all the stress and fear and hopelessness I was feeling wasn’t something I had to put up with.

By doing what I do, I have overcome my depression, and helped many others do the same.

I do it because I care. I do it because it matters. Not just now, but to future generations. It matters to each and every one of us to live a fulfilling life.

If you’re in need of the support in the quest to become a brand new you, reach out. I’m here.

Contact Phil at brandnewme.com.au

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