The Summer of Self-love

If you read my last blog, I Hear the Secrets that you Keep, you might be wondering how I got my mojo back and started living life again. If you haven’t read it and you struggle in silence with anything, go check it out first.

I had really hit rock bottom back in January last year. My health issues were raging. I was struggling with work because of it, but, I was also just uninspired to keep growing the business that I had been building for so long. I was feeling like a fraud. I was preaching healthy living and the benefits that would follow, I was living it myself, yet I was suffering every day. I worked when I could and would push myself to get through as much as I could so that I wouldn’t have to cancel on any clients… until I couldn’t. My body would physically not allow it. I would repeat this cycle over and over. You know the definition of insanity? Repeating the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. I may have been temporarily insane. I finally had enough and decided to try some things differently. I decided to have a very different kind of summer this year. Instead of taking advantage of the extra light and being able to take clients workouts outdoors (meaning fitting in MORE sessions), I decided to chill. It was time for some true self-love and the only way that could happen is with some big changes. Here’s a little snapshot into the big stuff that changed:

  1. I started telling people directly that I was struggling with this condition instead of pushing through sessions when my body is demanding rest.
  2. I lightened my client load and decided not to take anything new on for the whole summer. It was the first time in my life I didn’t have guilt when turning away clients.
  3. I have a team of practitioners that I have enlisted to help me heal. I found a naturopathic doctor that specializes in women’s issues. I committed myself to trusting and following whatever she recommended 100% (without my own usual little tweaks) for 6 months. I have been working with her now for almost seven months. I also researched and found other practitioners to help with other aspects of my health challenges. This was tough for me because it all takes a fair amount of time. The appointments, the treatments etc, not to mention the money…spending time and money on myself are two things I hadn’t been too good at doing.
  4. I knew I had to decrease my stress level and the one thing that had been a huge source of stress for a number of years was my very expensive feature rich website that never worked right from the beginning. This was years of stress completely gone after I pulled the plug. I had my awesome assistant throw up a wordpress site for the interim and I am temporarily free of website people. This was huge for me because it was hard to let go and throw away the money that I had put toward not one, but, two very expensive websites. It was an expensive lesson to learn.
  5. I added EFT (also know as tapping) to my other practices such as meditation, journaling and prayer.
  6. I lowered my expectations of myself. Well, this one I am still working on. I am working on losing the rigid to-do list and focusing on the things that I HAVE accomplished at the end of the day.
  7. This one was a biggie for me. I stopped following all of my favorite people. I was on a ton of great email lists offering tons of great advice from business to spiritual to nutrition to continuing education. I removed myself from every one of them. Why? Information overload can make you feel like you are not enough. #1 You feel guilty or bad that you cannot get to all the emails you have waiting for you to read. You save them. They are always there. Waiting to be read. Lingering. #2 Because as much as I was telling myself I was enough, I was doing enough etc… I would open those emails and feel like I had work to do on myself or my business. Sometimes you just need a break from all the great information out there, you know?
  8. No books on improving anything this summer. I cheated and listened to The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene’ Brown on a road trip. It was excellent.
  9. I started taking naps when I need them and since it is part of my plan to lay down and take a nap when I am feeling drained, I don’t feel guilty.
  10. I decided to blog when I felt I had something to say, and not to blog when I felt I had to force something out.
  11. I stopped using MapMyRun when I run. I don’t know distance or time on my runs any more. I decided to start running for the reason I used to run for….the pure joy of it. I run when I feel like my body wants to run. I don’t have a schedule. I don’t compare my times to my previous times. I just run and I love it.
  12. I do not have a set workout plan. I listen closer to my body and I know how I feel and what my body needs then I do that. Sometimes my body needs a tough strength workout. Sometimes my body needs a leisurely walk. Sometimes I need to run. Without all the noise in my brain this summer, I have been able to tap into that and I have zero guilt for not doing a workout that was planned because maybe I am not up for it that day.
  13. I am learning how to be my own best friend. I am paying attention and learning what I need and giving that to myself.
  14. I am getting comfortable with not working on the weekends. I have done a little here and there on the weekends, but, for the most part, my weekends have not been about work this summer.

This list isn’t all that I have been doing and what I am doing isn’t necessarily the perfect formula for you. Take some time to think about things that make you feel a sense of urgency or a sense of not enough and do less of that. Then think about the things that make you feel happy and more creative and do more of that. There is no perfect formula, but, I can say, just having a sense of awareness of how these external things make you feel internally will improve your life and your sense of well-being.

Hey, I’d like to hear about practices you have put into play that help you take care of you. Please comment below. As always, if you have a question for me, let me know below. Let’s get a conversation started.

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Posted in Endometriosis, General, Lifestyle.

3 Comments

  1. Rachel, I’m very proud of you. It takes guts and a LOT of perspective to do what you did this summer. I think your future is going to play out very nicely for you. Life is for living, and you need to be able to live it in a way that makes you feel proud, happy and respectful of yourself! You go girl! Be that role model for the rest of us out there!

  2. Pingback: 30 Things About my Invisible Illness | RachelFit

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