Happy Monday! We’ve got a special post today: Life-loving goddess, Katie Den Ouden asked me to join her The Skinny Dip Society: a fabulous blog tour where 20 women join for 20 days, each sharing about her journey to feed the mind, body and soul.
Today I will share a rather revealing story of my journey from existing in stress-filled days to living a fulling life on my own terms. I am honored to be part of this posse of powerful women–be sure to check out this incredible line-up. Read on…
Beep! Beep! Beep!
It was 6:30am on Thursday and my alarm was nudging me to get going. Pressing snooze wasn’t going to help. Yesterday I worked 13 hours and today I had a lonnng 14-hour day. Before pulling the sheets off my lifeless limbs, a question popped into my mind, “Why?”
Why was I putting myself through 13-14 hour days, 6-7 days a week? Dinner typically consisted of popcorn (with sea salt, wasn’t that healthy?) I can’t even remember the last time I hung out with friends. Sleep was something I gave up since college.
But, why? What the heck was the purpose of all this work, work, work? What was my prize? What did I really want instead of this?
If I was honest with myself, this was not working. I was exhausted—beyond exhausted. I forgot how to socialize, how to actually taste my food, and my sex life was Gone With the Wind. It felt like my poor husband and I were ships passing in the night.
Even as I recall this weird moment in time, it still hurts.
Funny thing is, it feels like I’m telling the story of someone else. Because, my life does not look like this anymore.
Now I fill my days with sun, sand, surf, and jamming with some of the most powerful and transformational women in the world whom I am honored to call my clients. I make time to map out my next adventure—Bali anyone? Damn, it feels good.
So, how the hell did I go from not wanting to leave the bed to living my dream life? A life filled with fun, work that lights me up, and connecting with people who feed my soul.
It was about pushing through the pain. Pushing through the anxiety we all experience when we look around and wonder, “How the hell did this become my life?”
I decided that morning before my feet hit the floor that I wasn’t going to live like this anymore—I wanted out. The life I desired wasn’t a complete mystery, but I’d be damned if I spent another meal falling asleep at the table and I wasn’t going to let another day fly by without a delicious make out session with my husband.
The benefit to pushing through the pain is that we push ourselves to expand. [Tweet it] That is to expand beyond our current line of sight and ask ourselves, “How can I make this better?”
How to Push Past the Pain
1. It starts with Clarity: Easier said than done, but a girl needs to start somewhere in order to give herself the gift of time and space. Sit down with a cup of tea (or tequila if you must), and an hour all to yourself. Make a list of 10 things that you want to bring into your life in the next 12 months. Whether it’s new shoes, a 5K, trying a yoga class, or simply refining your morning routine. This will be your intention list.
2. Next, let’s make it Actionable: Part of pushing through the pain is feeling the benefit of flow and progress. Create three action steps for each item on your intention list. Progress and flow come from a place when you are able to do something small every day to move that dial toward your intention. For example, if “quit my job” is on your list, identify three action steps that will help you get there. Such as define how much money you need in your rainy day fund to make it happen (and not freak out), create a timeline to exit, and develop a plan B. If you want to take this step a bit further, find someone to be accountable to. Studies show that we are 33% more likely to accomplish a goal once we’ve said it out loud and will be checking in with someone else.
3.We’ve got intentions set and action steps to guide the way: The final step in pushing past the pain is to look at your list and decide how you want to feel. When I was still stuck in the days of pressing snooze, I just felt hopeless. When you look at your intention list now, choose 3 to 5 feelings that will help to illuminate your path ahead. Make choices and decisions that will continue to support and cultivate these desired feelings.
Transforming my life has been a journey for me, but it definitely starts with pushing past the pain to imagine what it could really be.
Back to present-day: I start most mornings with a berry and beet smoothie that makes me smile when I stick out my bright red tongue. I’m on the beach for yoga every morning as the sun rises and have romantic dates with the hubs. We get to go bike riding, dog walking, and find an eatery with the BEST fish tacos ever.
This happened because I made the choice to push past the pain of living the life I though I had to live. I made the choice to have a business and life I love. I made the choice that living with regrets wasn’t ever going to work for me. Ultimately, I made a choice to live my life aligned with the message I share with my clients every day: designing a life you love on your own terms. It takes courage to make choices and decisions that take me in the direction of my life vision each and every day. You can too!
Adventure awaits you. All you have to do is decide.
Download my free action guide to help you feel more free in your everyday life and put yourself first in 5 easy steps.
Want more advice to design a better life? Continue the party on the Skinny Dip Society Blog Tour.
Check out Lynan Saperstein from The Big Factor, she has a fantastic post from last week on Feeling Alive in the Present Moment:
Up next: Laura Madden, mentoring women to be the spokesmodel of their brand.
Are you ready to figure out what’s holding you back? I would love to see how I can help. Click here to speak with my team and find out how you can make a shift in your life.