Me First…

I’ve found that my most successful moments in life–whatever it is that I’m working towards–have been when I put my needs first.  This can sound like the easiest and most common sense task in the world or the hardest.  Most mothers (or maternal figures) will role their eyes at this and say, “ya right–when?”  My mom was a perfectly good example of this.  She constantly put her family’s (or whoever she felt was like family) needs before her own.  Unfortunately, her life was cut short from cancer–even at that point she kept putting other’s before herself.  I’ve found that even her passing was an act that put our needs before her’s.  So much has happened since her passing that wouldn’t have…it’s truly backed my belief that everything in life (good or “bad”) happens for a reason.

Don’t get me wrong…I was far from happy when my mom passed.  She was my best friend, my confidant, my mom…the thought of not being able to hug her, feel her touch, hear her voice, have her physically present at momentous life occassions ever again crushed me–but didn’t kill me.  I’ve written about this before…I don’t want to relive and I’m sure you don’t want to be bored with it 🙂

My point from all this…I can’t stress enough how important it is to put your needs first.  It’s not selfish, it’s important.  You are unable to the most helpful or best version of yourself to help someone else if you haven’t first taken care of your own needs.  It’s not selfish to express your needs, feeling, opinions, etc in a respectful manner to someone.  It’s not selfish to say “no” to an invite if you already scheduled the day for yourself to do something that you want to do.  It’s not selfish of you to not take a call when you are half way out the door to do your workout (**GUILTY!!** lol).

You don’t need a blog post, a talk show, or a self help book to know this.  We all know this, it’s natural.  But we fight it, think that it’s not right.  But it is.  It’s taken me 20+ years to relearn it though.  I’ve come to terms with (recently) that the reason I’m the size I am is of no one’s fault but my own!  It was me putting other’s needs before my own.  It was me not taking action to improve my health.  It was a choice that I had made because others said I “had to” not b/c I wanted to.  I have no one to blame…instead, I take responsibilty for this and choose now to make my own decisions/choices.  For that reason I’m living a better, healthier, and happier life.  Now I just need to win the lottery and I’m set!  LOL jk

Do yourself a favor for once and put you first.  It can be small like sleeping in on a weekend or taking an hour to read for leisure.  I started off by scheduling my “me time”–no joke!  My Google calendar and I became well acquianted through this process!  Life/God decided to throw me a few curve balls during that time too to make sure I stuck with it.  I shed plenty of tears in the process (more “me time”) and was a hermit in doing so.  However, I’m here 8 weeks later–I survived–and I’m better because of it, my life is better because of it.  I learned a great deal of trust throughout this process as well.  I came  to realize that my lack of trust in others was due to the lack of trust I had in myself.  I made my first real decision during this time.  I felt beautiful for the first time–and believed others when they told me–during this period.  Life isn’t a “peaches and butterflies” (as one of my BFFs says) for me but it is a beautiful gift in it’s entirety, that is something I appreciate. 

Don’t do this because I said so, do it b/c YOU are taking responsibilty for yourself and your life.  Do it b/c YOU want to be happy, healthy, etc.  Maybe you aren’t ready to take this on.  That’s ok too.  Make a decision for yourself…that’s a GREAT first step. 

Here’s to putting YOU first…and me too! 🙂

Get out of MY way!! Ya…ME…MOVE!

I’ve come to learn over time that I can–more often then not–be my biggest cheerleader and yet be my biggest obstacle.  I find myself standing in my own way of my happiness, success, etc.  My afterthought ends up being…”if I had just….”  Ya, GOTTEN OUT OF MY OWN WAY!!!

We are a creature of habit…habits like standing in our own way but blaming others for keeping up from what we are truly meant for and to do.  For slow long I pointed the finger at others for my weight gain and unhealthy habits.  Until recently that is…

In going through my old room, cleaning out my creative touches of an adolescence, and reminiscing from every memento that my mom could get her hands ons and keep.  I shed a lot of tears throughout the last month of doing this.  But unlike before, these weren’t tears of pain and sorrow.  They were in recognizing what a great past I’ve had.  How many amazing memories and gifts my parents have blessed me with.  What a positive person I USED to be.  So here’s what I’ve learned form this experience…

I’ve been standing in my own way from being the amazing woman that I’m meant to be.  My weight was just a side effect from that–not the cause.  My parents gave me the foundtation that I needed to become that woman and my fear kept me from it.  I found numerous cards, pictures, awards, etc that reminded me of that amazing person.

My weight gain wasn’t just unhealthy habits, but the emotional baggage that I carried with me over the years.  I’ve found pictures where I was at a healthy weight–my BMI weight==but at that point I thought I was fat.  Then I found later pictures where I was fat, but didn’t recognize that at that point in my life.  But it was in those times that I let go of mself in more ways then one.

Anyone on a journey to a healthier and happier life will come to this point where they will realize that it’s not just about better habits, smarter food choices, moving more….anyone with this amount of weight to lose or more will come to realize that it’s emotional too.  You have to face those issues and the happiness that you’ve been looking for wil be there.  You can become that “skinny” person and not achieve the happiness you are looking for.  Eventually, you’ll end up right back where you were and more frustrated then you were the first time!

I’m not here to tell you this so you speed up that process.  The time to cross that bridge will come when it’s meant to come for you.  I’m here to encourage you to cross that bridge when that opportunity arises for you.  Don’t turn around.  It’s not going to kill you to move forward, but it will kill you to turn your back on it.

I’m a firm believer in two philosophies on life: “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” and “everything in life happens for a reason.”  You have to trust yourself in order to fully understand those two.  Take it from a woman who spent the majority of her life not trusting anyone, including myself.  I’ve stopped pointing the finger at others for my shortcomings and taken a better look at myeslf–and I’m a happy and healthier person for it!