***I previously published this first blog entry in August of 2017. I had worthy intentions of writing each week, but with a full-time job in public education, being the primary home-maker for a family of four, serving a few clients with wellness coaching and trying to perform my best in a couple of time consuming hobbies, this "writing" was put on the back-burner. It was not something I could sustain consistently. I very fortunately now have committed my professional life to serving in the capacity of a health, wellness, life, hope and joy coach. This blog will serve as a gateway for me to get some thoughts out of my head, perhaps organize them a bit and at the very least, be used as a tool of personal growth for me, while just maybe...a resource in some capacity for others.
Like we need another blog huh? Well, maybe we do? I currently do not follow any blogs on a consistent basis, but perhaps some of you do? To call this a “blog” makes me feel like an impostor. I am not a blogger and certainly not a writer, though if I could transpose the thoughts I encounter on long runs, perhaps I could be. Some pretty interesting things “run” through my mind while running.(sorry, thinking out loud) The onset of this certainly feels like a stretch to me. However, I do hope and trust that with each keystroke I will grow my comfort zone with this “blog” thing. Honestly, I really do not have a clear vision of where this writing/blogging is taking me. I am reacting on “gut instinct” and signs that I am choosing to be open to explore a bit. Besides...stretching oneself, continual growth and pursuing what you want with some fear and uncertainty is what the Hope and Joy Wellness journey is all about.
I have wanted to do this for quite sometime, but just never felt “ready” for it. But you know what…, I don’t think I will ever “feel ready” so it’s better to take action and just jump in and do it. It’s a blog and not the “Great American Novel” right? I can try my best each time. Reflect and gather feedback. Learn how to get better, practice more, and get better. I cannot help but think that my beloved high school English teacher, Ginny Wallace will get her eyes on this and metaphorically pull me out into the hallway by my ear. I think that may have literally happened and I totally had it coming, multiple times.
Anyway...I believe that I am competent enough to articulate what it is that I want to say in each post and in at least a somewhat coherent way. We all have “Hope” (goals, dreams, desires, intentions, wants, etc.) and we all want to experience “Joy.” (love, happiness, fulfillment, comfort, satisfaction, etc.) There is no one way to transform our hopes into joy. It certainly doesn’t happen overnight or by chance. It happens with small, sustainable actions that occur at and with the readiness level of each of us.
In this inaugural blog post I felt it important to set the stage and clearly define what this “blog” (that still sounds strange but will refrain to mention again) is all about. So to do that I am going to address/answer 7 questions that I hope will explain the “who, what, where, when and why” I am creating and publishing this blog.
So here it goes...yikes...
1. Why am I blogging?
I am blogging to improve the health and wellness of others and myself. My ongoing journey to intentionally improve my own health and wellness is a very gratifying and rewarding one. I might also add that it is a journey that I know is without destination, but we will table that thought for now.
I encounter great resources and content that serves me well! But...I then reflect and think about how many others who have the want and desire to improve their health and wellness, but are not privy to this information, do not know how to find it or are not actively engaged in the right things and/or places to discover them for themselves. Additionally, I have come to learn over the past few years that what I believed to be common knowledge about health and wellness, just wasn’t to many others who genuinely want to enhance their health or reach their goals. “Hey, I can help others!” I can help by leading them to resources, delivering content, creating conversations and providing a space to support their health and wellness efforts. “Yes, I can help others!”
Now, I am not pretending to have the map to lead you directly to your health and wellness “joy” on your hope and joy journey. In fact, there is no map and there are no shortcuts. However, that is exactly what makes your journey so exciting and rewarding! I look forward to unpacking this idea in future posts.
2. Who am I?
I'm a certified holistic health coach, a public school teacher, husband of a strong and successful woman, father of two talented daughters, marathon runner (23 and counting with a PR of 3:10:12), ultra-marathoner, running coach, drummer for the band A Girl’s Journey, former college basketball athlete and coach and an individual who is passionate about pursuing the continual enhancement of health and happiness! I am excited to engage in the hope of others, walk with them on their transformational journey and celebrate in their joy of realizing their desires, visions and goals!
I am not someone who can profess to have a jaw-dropping “rock bottom” story to share or grab your attention with. I am pretty grateful to have lived a semi-charmed kinda life.
What I can say is that, I am a man who “binged” his way to becoming 50 pounds overweight and lacked the motivation to do anything about it for some time. I have been clinically diagnosed or “self-diagnosed” and struggled with; obsessive-compulsive tendencies, anxiety, negative self-talk, lack of self-confidence, body image (body dysmorphia disorder), "rubber-banding" eating issues, depression, binging on alcohol and food, and generally being very disconnected with myself, while making those around me unhappy as well. Psychologists, medications and diets did not help my situations and I felt very "stuck" and alone in dealing with these things. I am so grateful and fortunate to have found a path to a better life. It may at times still be an unclear path, under repair with its obstacles and challenges, but I have the support, knowledge, positive behaviors and the fortitude to get back on that path when I get "disconnected," which does still happen on occasions.
I like to think that because of who I am, and who you are, that we share common challenges, struggles and ambitions more than those with the epic rise and/or fall stories, though some of you may have tremendous stories on either end of the spectrum that I myself do not have. No doubt we admire or are inspired by them but they may leave us with thoughts of, “who am I to complain,” “well I am just an average person, what am I capable of” or “who am I to set out to achieve such lofty goals?” If you feel this way, and I know I certainly have, we all deserve to be so much more than mediocre.
For a more extended version of “me,” feel free to explore my website and this link to “My story.”
3. What will I blog about?
I will blog and provide content within all themes of health, wellness and self care.
Specific topics will include;
Morning and night routines
Spirituality (includes, meditation, journaling, nature, time in thought, etc.)
Profession, job, vocations
Having fun (which might contradict other areas or content I dive into, however I am a huge believer in “bio-individuality” which basically means, know yourself and what serves you best and makes you happy. For instance, I know that having a couple drinks and staying up late with friends for a “just gotta see” favorite artists’ concert, that occurs near a race you have been training for, is not the best choice. However, I would argue that the lasting memories, laughter and joy of the evening makes you a happier and more fulfilled person going forward. It’s your choice and what best serves you. Can you tell the specifics of this example is one I have personally encountered on a few occasions?)
4. Who are you writing for?
I am publishing this blog for individuals who have prioritized their health and that of those they love, serve and care about.
Those who want more than a “mediocre” life but continue to find themselves in a vicious circle of choices that does not serve them or provide the foundation needed to create their best, most authentic version of themselves.
For people who believe, or want to believe that they have a power in deciding how their life unfolds for them in the present and future, and that they are the author of their next chapter in life.
Individuals who will commit to sharing the health and wellness information that they have empowered themselves with on whatever small or large platform that they have, and we all have platforms to share and help others.
5. How can you (viewers) get involved?
Of course this blog will be published by me and hopefully read by you. However, I embrace you getting involved and maximizing your time investment in this blog. You can do that in a number of ways.
Commenting and sharing your thoughts, ideas, stories and what’s working well for you applicably with the topics we cover is a way for us to build community and squeeze all that we can out of important topics.
Try things, apply things, crowd in and crowd out things. You should be open and flexible to try some things, crazy as they sound perhaps. But knowing YOU and deciding for yourself if “things” serve you is critically important.
Share the blog with others you feel it might resonate with or who could contribute as well. We are always looking for helpful information and different perspectives.
Contact me directly. If you want to advance the topic or personalize it, please contact me via email email@example.com or direct message me on Facebook. I will always leave my email and you can find me on Facebook under Nathan Higgins, Wellness Coach at Hope and Joy Wellness. I WOULD EMBRACE ONE ON ONE CONVERSATIONS AROUND BLOG TOPICS :-)
6. My blogging goals?
My main goal for this blog is to do what I can to enhance the ripple effect being created in the concepts of health and wellness, while encouraging people to commit to self care that best serves them.
I want to shine a light on challenges and resistance we face everyday and discuss possible solutions, alternative ideas or paradigm shifts that will lead us from hope to joy.
Keep it short Nate. I have a short attention span while reading on a computer and I am hoping that my future posts will be much shorter.
7. When and where can you expect a Hope and Joy Wellness blog post?
I will publish, (to the best of my time and energy) on Monday morning each week. This is a strategic day and time for me. I always MAKE my weeks better when I start the week with actions that serve me well and this will be just that for me. My hope is that it will include some useful things or thoughts for you as well as you embark on your new week.
You will be able to find new and archived blog posts at:
There is also an RSS Feed built in so that you may be notified when new posts are added, that is only if you choose to opt in for that.
I will post on Facebook and there you will be able to click on the link to access the blog post.
Eventually I will send out an email newsletter that contains the blog if you choose to subscribe to my email list.
So...there we have it! A pretty extensive blog description that evolved from my initial want of, “hey, I wanna write some things down that are going through my head. And you know, I am pretty sure similar things go through the minds of many others who have hopes, dreams, desires and goals.” Remaining alone with these thoughts allows resistance to persist, keeping us all from performing the actions necessary to realize those hopes, dreams, desires and goals. I’m willing to battle my resistance and envision a community of others who are willing to battle theirs as well.
I thank you in advance for your time and consideration of this blog concept of mine.
Hope, Joy and Wellness,
Next post: "Hope" is Not a Strategy