In order to make a lasting change, we must set ourselves up for success. It means setting goals and dreaming big, without the presence of unrealistic expectations self-judgment if we fail. If there is a lot you want to change, any small step forward can seem overwhelming. Instead of holding yourself back, here are a few small changes you can make that will get the ball rolling on your health hourney.
1. VISUALIZE WHAT YOU WANT. Whether you create a fabulous vision board with pictures, notes etc. of everything you want in life or simply write down your goals for the next few months, visualization is key. Thoughts become things. The moment we start thinking about what we want, we take one step closer to where we should be.
2. ESTABLISH A MORNING ROUTINE. If we wake up without a purpose, we are more likely to procrastinate and get to things "when we get to it." How you start your day directly impacts how you carry yourself throughout the rest of the day. So, start strong. Wake up and do something right away for YOU and that makes you feel productive. It could be as simple as making your bed. It could be as complex as going for a workout and making yourself productive. Whatever it is, do it consistently and expect great results.
3. DRINK UP. We need water. Obviously. They say that you should be drinking half your body weight in ounces. For example, if you weight 150 pounds, you should be drinking 75 ounces of water a day. If you are like me and also drinking coffee daily, having an occasional glass of wine, and hitting up the hot yoga room, then you need more! We forget about how much water we need to drink until we start to feel tired, sluggish, or just overall BLAH. When you wake up first thing in the morning, chug a glass of room temp. water. You will be shocked and how it wakes you up AND makes you feel good.
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What goes around comes around. All is fair in love and war. Good things come to those who wait. Everything happens for a reason. The universe never gives you more than you can handle.
Not so fast. Not today. What if I actually can't handle it? What if I don't freaking deserve any of this? What if I have waited long enough? What if this happened for no reason at all?
So, here's the thing. We all have those not-so-glamourous days where everything that could go wrong, in fact, does. It could be as minute as a regular Monday morning when you miss your yoga class and have to pay a 20$ cancellation fee. (Queue the basic white girl eye roll).
But maybe it isn't just a day, or week, or month, of bad juju. Maybe you lose your job because the company can no longer afford to pay you. Maybe, after 5 years, your boyfriend says he can't do this whole "relationship-thing" anymore. Maybe, you find out someone you love was rushed to the hospital and the doctors aren't so sure he will make it. Not so easy to keep calm and carry on, right?
Bad things happen to both good and bad people, I mean, obviously, but I've always questioned why some of the most caring and kind people I know are hit the worst. By worst, I mean the things that you can't imagine going through on your own. The things that shake up your world and make you want to crawl in bed and never take off the covers
Suffering is inevitable. It's a part of life and we have all experienced it to some degree. But, why do the people so full of love get their hearts broken so easily?
Why do bad things happen to good people? I have a point, I promise! I can tell you what I know about bad things and good people. We were put on this earth to connect. Connect with ourselves, with others, maybe with a higher power, and with the world. It's the connection we form with our attachments that can make suffering difficult, especially during time of loss, but it is also connection that pulls us through. It's connection that makes us stronger, and connection can get us through just about anything.
How does being a good person come into play? Let's put it this way: It's the difficult times in our lives that help us help others. But it also allows others to help us. That's why good people always win in my eyes. When you are a good person, your actions tend to speak louder, if not in line, with your words. Your love comes naturally and it is resilient and contagious, making people hold on to it and reciprocate it. As Maya Angelou said, "people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." When you are a good person, it's not what you say, or what you do, it's the love behind your actions that people will never forget. It's those people that will be there when times get hard, when your days go wrong, when you lose your job, or when your heart is broken. Those people will not run, but instead, they will sprint to be by your side. So while an attachment to something can make a hardship even harder, other attachments will pull you through-- those attachments are your connections to your loved ones.
Instead of looking at every bad situation as, "Why me? What the F did I do to deserve this?," take a step back, and try thinking about it this way ::: This happened. I'm allowed to upset. I had no control over this. But I can handle this. I am strong. I am grounded. As a result of my kindness, love, and thoughtfulness, I have people by my side who are invaluable and will help me get through this. I am not alone. I am not alone. Because of whom I am, I have others to help get me through this.
Never overlook the power of being a good person. Never overlook the power of connection. It's connection that puts you in your place. It's connection that propels your life forward and allows you to live in the present moment. It's connection that helps you to understand and be understood. It's connection that puts you at ease and assures you that you can get through anything.
resolution (n.) a firm decision to do or not to do something.
Decisions have never been easy for me to make. Whether it be choosing cookies and cream or mint chocolate chip, or if I want my hair to be curly or straight, I never seem to be sure of anything, Although those problems may seem diminutive, my lack of decision-making has also translated into which college is right for me, what I should study, where I should move when I graduate, who I should love, and the everyday "What do you really want, Bee?"
However, I am sure of one thing: this life changes quickly and even if you choose one thing, life can choose another thing for you. That's why, this new year, I have decided not to make a vow to do or not to do something, but instead embrace change and let life happen.
2015 brought a lot of changes for me: strengthening friendships with people my senior year of college I barely knew freshman year, then graduating college, leaving all the people that I held so close, moving back to Maryland, then moving to New York, starting my career as an editor, finding out that I still like clubbing (mainly for the dancing), celebrating a 2-year anniversary with my boyfriend, vacationing in Costa Rica, developing friendships while keeping the old ones, and learning a little more about what is changing and what I cannot change about myself.
2016 has already begun and I am about to start a NEW job, spend my first winter in NYC, and student loans have kicked in, yet I just made a huge investment toward my 200-hour yoga certification that will start in February. It's hard to believe this is just the beginning.
However, looking forward, it would be silly for me to make a resolution. Yes, I have goals (always!) and things that I would like to change but making a firm decision to stop doing something or turn in the opposite direction and never look back just doesn't make sense for me at this point in time. I guess my past "lack-of success" with resolutions has proven that there is no need to make a decision to change everything, but instead work with what I have and focus inward. I plan to embrace the changes that this year has to offer and make the most of the struggles, excitement, accomplishments, and challenges I will face.
Until my next thought,
"When we speak ill of ourselves or when we step down from a challenge because we let our insecurities get the best of us, basically what we're doing is we are giving others permission to do the exact same thing."
I think it's safe to say that we live in a mentally corrupted world where body shaming is acceptable and if someone does not live up to a specific standard, they are worthless. Kathryn Budig hit the nail on the head when she spoke at the #Revitalize2015 event. She acknowledged that it is expected and normal not to love yourself.
This is where we discover the misconception. How can we treat others with respect if we do not love ourselves first? We use humor and jokes to showcase our insecurities and openly display how uncomfortable we are in our own skin.
We have a certain image, perception and idea of what "healthy" looks like but in reality, there are no set measurements, body weight or size that represents healthy.
But, how do we measure health? Let's start with the definition.
Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
Why do we determine health as the way someone physically looks when that is only 1/3 of what healthy is? Not to mention that just because someone appears to be"skinny," it does not necessarily mean they are healthy. The same goes for someone who appears overweight, it does not mean they are unhealthy.
Budig brings up a fabulous point. We all know how it is. We see the woman with the "perfect" body who appears to have it all. But maybe that woman with the flawless body doesn't have a social life. Maybe she is suffering mentally and no one can physically see that.
Although I am an advocate for exercising your body, I am an even bigger advocate for exercising your mind. If your mind isn't healthy, you lack substance. You lack personality. You lack presence. You lack life. That's why health should start with your mind. Clearing your mind of labels, perceptions and most importantly, the idea that you need to change your body. And better yet, let us be the support for one another to clear our minds and love who we really are inside.
If you are unhappy with your body, you need to redirect your focus. Because your body is not who you are. You are so much more than that.
You are your mind.
Your spirt. Your soul. Your vision. Your imagination. Your passion. Your drive. Your enthusiasm. Your understanding deeper meanings. Your courage. Your thoughtfulness. Your humor. Your kindness. Your sincerity. Your sympathy. Your consideration. Your emotion. Your grace. Your eagerness. Your brilliance. Your perseverance. Your skill. Your sparkle. Your complexity. Your genuineness. Your love for life.
You are your heart.
So when you think that your body is all you have, take a deep breath & realize you are so much more than that. So. Much. More.
Until my next thought,