I have a confession to make, I've been holding back. Holding back for fear of saying or doing something wrong, of what people would say, think or even do if I was myself. I know now this isn't rare.
One thing that is rare however, is how I have been able to meet these challenges and succeed in spite of them. Keep reading to gain insight into how I overcame (and how you can too) an increasing number of health related concerns like heart rhythm abnormalities, rising blood pressure and risk for diabetes, while experiencing recurrent bouts of depression, relationship challenges, job losses, then to go back to school in my 30's, start a business with an innovative business model and lose 50 pounds in the process to become faster, stronger, fitter and more emotionally aware at 46 years of age than I was at 26!!! If you, or anyone you know, can relate to the previously mentioned challenges say "YES!"
Pictured below is one of the lowest points of my life. Almost 220 pounds, risk factors to health stacking up and that look on my face was ever present, trying to figure out what was wrong, how I could fix it and what was next?!? Sometimes you can't, but that doesn't mean you can't move forward and be the best you ever!!
Pictured below, fast forward, December 2017. I did say faster, stronger, fitter and 50 pounds lighter now at 46 years of age didn't I?! Say "WICKED!" I know I do every time I see what I've done. Absolutely nothing wrong with a little self affirmation. Exercise and mindfulness is likely a medicine I'll have to take for the rest of my life but I know now what I didn't then. It has been a difference maker.
Let's face it, how often do we need to be sick and tired of being sick and tired before we take action?!? How often do we need to be pushed around by life?, exhausted because we are putting our needs second?, or desire to be respected by others in our lives for who we are, not for who they want us to be before reaching out for help and choosing a path forward? If you think I know how you feel right about now it's because I've been there and now know what it takes to overcome these challenges. In the words of poet Robert Frost:
"The only way out is through"
If the thought of change scares you or provokes anxiety that's OK, this may mean you think change is possible and that you have the energy to do so, you just need to harness it. You may also know the next step is actually to prepare, learn some new skills and/or exercise other options available to you. Looking back and taking stock of past experiences and victories also helps the process of change.
I wasn't 8 or 9 years old when I started reading comic books that had those anti-bullying adverts for mail order dumbbell kits. These ads really spoke to me. What it said to me was there is a way to overcome the opressive experiences I was having as a child (no, no, not by bullying others) and that is all I needed to spur on the motivation for me to go from one moment to the next. I knew in tomorrow there was always a better day full of all possibilities. Wellbeing, it's a learned skill, I can promise you that!
Fast forward to today, as a Massage Therapist and Personal Trainer, another thing I can promise you is that BOOKING AN APPOINTMENT is an incredibly powerful motivation and commitment tool for your wellbeing! Time and time again clients tell me how important it is to them. It gives them a good reason to leave the office when they promised themselves to do so. Booking an appointment also reserves time for selfcare when in any other situation they can't get an hour to themselves! So whether it's booking a Massage Therapy treatment or Personal Training session BOOKING AN APPOINTMENT is scheduling self care and clarifying your next step forward for your wellbeing (automated email reminders help too:). Booking and knowing a Professional will be there for you and your wellbeing provides a huge source of positive reinforcement that you may not get anywhere else! No phone (it at least should be turned off), no distractions, just time for your wellbeing.
Going forward, this is one of many blogs I'm just going to unleash (spelling errors and all!). As I said at the beginning, I've learned to let go and not hold back anymore. But what I'd like you to do now is to take the next step, book that appointment, prepare a salad for lunch or dinner, go to bed a little earlier this evening, whatever is right for you take action! Another step you can take, if you havn't already, is to add your email address, via my newsletter sign up portal on my website homepage to receive notifications and selfcare reminders. Here you'll also receive friendly updates on appointment availabilities, helpful tips, promotional offers, funny stuff and more!
Lastly, stay tuned as next blog I'll be describing how the "relaxation response" was another massively effective tool that kept me together during the most challenging times! Till then, "go well!"