I officially started dieting when I was eight years old. Before that I had dabbled in skipping some meals here and there, and doing leg lifts in my room, but I hadn’t really committed to a plan. Weight Watcher meetings were every Monday night. There was a weigh-in in front of the group, then a check-in and meeting. My best friend and I were the only kids there. I remember being told I should drink a lot of iced water throughout the day, because it burned calories. All it did for me was always make me shiver.
By the time I was in high school I was 180lbs and had tried the hot dog and waffle diet, the hamburger meat and water diet, the cabbage soup diet, the banana diet, the grapefruit diet, the vinegar and egg diet, and the list goes on and on. Remember Deal-a-meal? Yeah, that one too. There was no end for the hatred I felt for my body, and I would do whatever it took to make it do what I wanted.
Enter bulimia and clinical depression into my life.
What seemed like a cool and easy way to eat whatever I wanted, while not gaining weight, quickly turned into an obsession and addiction. My entire world soon revolved around binging and purging, exercising, and taking laxatives and amphetamines. I’d call in sick to work and break off plans with friends just so I could stay home and binge. There was no room for anything else in my life for the next seven years.
I’d like to say that I woke up one day, turned my life around and all was well, but it didn’t happen that way. What followed was a long, winding journey full of stumbles and falls. It would be a while before the part of me that wanted to get well was greater than the part that did not.
Have you ever felt that way? You want to make a change, but you feel so stuck and overwhelmed it’s seems easier to give up? I’ve felt it many times. But as I’ve learned, it’s always only temporary.
As you’ve probably already guessed, I did eventually get well. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have the privilege of sharing my story with you here. But my story is not unique. My story is your story and your story is my story. Our circumstances, struggles, pains, or fears might be different, but you and I both have the power within us to make a different choice. We can choose ourselves. We can choose to be whoever we want to be.
Who do you want to be? What goals do you have? What’s your BIG dream? Seriously, I want to know! Send me an email and share your dream.
I’ve sat with that question many times over the years, and it’s changed a quite a few times as I’ve evolved. However, the one thing that has never changed is the commitment I made to myself many years ago, to devote myself to spreading LOVE and helping people shine their brightest light.
And that is what I want for you.
I want you to blaze like the sun and rock your life!
I’ve spent the last 15 years dedicated to studying the inner and outer workings of the body. I’ve earned my Masters in Nutrition, am completing my PhD in MindBody Medicine, and have a myriad of certifications in fitness, yoga, crossfit, and endurance training. What I know for sure is that, we are all connected and the mind, body, & spirit are one. We are whole beings that need to love and be loved, and we need to be nurtured and well fed. Not just our bellies, but our mind and spirit, too.
Take a moment to think about how you feed yourself. Do you surround yourself with positive people that support you? Do you spend time doing the things you love? Do you move your body every day, fuel it whole foods and treat it with respect? Do you exercise your mind and broaden your horizons?
What do you need more of in your life?
Only you know what you need, and only you are responsible for making sure you get it. You’re not much use to yourself or anyone else, if you’re not at your best. Treating yourself with love, kindness and respect is the foundation upon which everything else is built. So, what’s one thing that’s missing from your self-care that you can begin to give yourself every week?
Whatever it is, give yourself this gift and commit to it right now.
Earlier I asked you about your big dream and about who you want to be. Do you have answers to those questions? Before you can begin anything, you have to get clear on what it is you REALLY want. Do you want to go to school? Lose weight? Change careers? Travel the world? Start a business? If you’re thinking yes to all of the above that’s ok, but start with one goal. I spent many fine years being a jack-of- all-trades and master of none, but when I wanted to take my success to the next level I had to work on one thing at a time to give it the full attention it deserved. Having clarity on what your final destination is will help keep you focused during the journey, and act as a filter to weed out what doesn’t serve you.
After you’ve chosen your goal, write it down and post it everywhere. Put it in your agenda, on the refrigerator, on your calendar, in your office, keep a copy in your purse, etc. The more you see it and are reminded of what you’re working toward, the more it will light your fire and inspire to keep going.
Two years ago for my birthday, I wanted the word patience tattooed on my right wrist, and practice tattooed on my left. These words have deep meaning for me, and having them tattooed would be a constant reminder of, what I feel are, important lessons on my journey. Before getting the tattoos, I searched hi and low for the right tattoo artist to ensure they would come out perfect. I was down to three artists, but it turned out they were all booked for months. MONTHS! But I couldn’t wait for months, I wanted them NOW or else my birthday would be ruined. So, I settled and randomly chose a local place, rationalizing that they were only words, how could anyone screw it up?
Well, guess what? They got screwed up.
Ah yes, the irony of getting the words patience & practice tattooed on myself, while not being patient enough to wait, and not ending up with what I wanted, is definitely not lost on me. A cosmic joke, for sure! However, after the dust settled (and after a lot of tears later) I chose to shift my perspective and see the situation in a different light. The words on my wrist would still continue to be a reminder of my work with patience and practice, but now they would also serve as a reminder of the beauty of imperfection.
How we chose to see things determines our experience. What things “mean” to us, determines our experience.
Tony Robbins said “What you link pain to, and what you link pleasure to shape your destiny.”
On the path to your goal you will undoubtedly encounter obstacles, because nothing worth getting is easy. But that doesn’t mean you’re not supposed to have it, or that you’re not good enough. Or that you don’t have what it takes. All it means is that there’s work to be done. That’s it. And I believe, from the bottom of my heart, that you can do it.
This book is filled with stories of women that have overcome adversity to live their dreams, and you are no different.
YOU are in the driver’s seat, and no matter what, you always have a choice. You have everything you need inside of you and your dream is worth it.
YOU ARE WORTH IT!
The world needs your gifts; don’t keep it waiting any longer. Choose yourself, right now.
Always seek less turbulent skies.
Hurt. Fly above it.
Betrayal. Fly above it.
Anger. Fly above it.
You are the one who is flying the plane.
– Marianne Williamson