My Own Live Well Journey ~
Does this sound familiar?
It’s Sunday night, you have a list of things you need to get done in preparation for the week ahead. You wonder, where did the weekend go?
The very same weekend that you waited for all week long. The very same weekend that you couldn’t wait for, so that you would finally have some time to relax. Yet, you didn’t relax. You’re still feeling just as tired and overwhelmed as you felt the week before.
I know many of you can relate to this Sunday night feeling. I've felt it more times in my own life than I care to admit. I used to live a life that's very different from the one I live today. In fact, when I think back on who I used to be, I don't even recognize that old version of myself.
The old me was so busy doing, and being, and people-pleasing, and never giving to myself.
Although I've always been really good at being able to look after my basic survival needs, I haven't always known how to really care for myself. And these are 2 completely different things. Looking after your basic survival needs and caring for yourself, are not the same things.
You see, I’ve always been responsible, I've always been able to hold a job and pay my bills on time. Looking after these kinds of basic survival needs isn't something I've ever struggled with. Caring for myself, on the other hand, was something I struggled with. This wasn't something I was taught the same way I was taught to be responsible and make sure I could put a roof over my head.
Self-care was something I didn't know how to do. I didn’t know how to give to myself and to nurture myself. I didn't know how to listen to the needs of my body and respond to those needs accordingly. These were things I didn't have a clue about. And realizing this was how I became obsessed about learning how to self-care.
Now I say that I'm a recovering adrenaline addict. I used to be addicted to the adrenaline rush I felt in my body.
My ego was so addicted to all the things that I could boast about accomplishing in a day. Even though my body wanted to relax and unwind, I didn't allow that. The truth is, that I didn’t know how to. The ability to relax and unwind requires that one be still and being still scared me. Being in quiet, with nothing but my thoughts, terrified me.
Not only did I have no idea what to do with myself when I wasn’t over-committing, over-working, or multi-tasking, I didn't know who I was without living that way. My identity was attached to how much I could accomplish.
So, the weekend that I waited for all week long would end up being just as busy as any other day. I didn’t have down time because I didn’t know how to give myself down time. And even if I did know how to give myself that time, I had no idea what to do with it. It was the same for vacations. I would count the days waiting for a vacation, get to the destination, and then not relax. I'd live in the same pattern of being busy; I was just doing it in a different location for a week.
My life used to be lived in a pattern that looked like this..….I never stopped, I kept myself busy all day long.
I worked long hours which I fueled with coffee, sugar-filled drinks, alcohol, and convenience foods. It felt nearly impossible for me to say, no to anyone. This left me full of resentment inside for having to do things I didn’t really want to be doing. I would go until my body would run out and I'd end up sick. This would force me to stay in bed for a couple of days so that my body could catch up on much needed rest and sleep. Then the minute I started to feel my energy coming back, I'd get out of bed and begin the cycle all over again. This was the pattern I lived in for many, many years.
I used to love the rush of adrenaline my body received from busying myself. I was a workaholic who shopped and partied to numb myself from my reality. And when I think back on those days, I remember feeling like I was living in a fog. In fact, it’s probably fair to say that I was living in a fog. I wasn’t really living, I was simply going through the motions of day-to-day. Again, 2 completely different things.
Thankfully, there came a point in my life where I knew something needed to change.
Truthfully, I was desperate for that change. I was bored, unhappy, unfulfilled, overwhelmed, exhausted, unhealthy….let me just say this, I was everything but happy and healthy. I was living the life I thought I was supposed to be living. Doing what was expected of me. Living in an endless cycle of trying to please and do and be for everyone else. I had no idea who Amanda was.
Slowly I began to realize that I was making myself sick all the time. I lived at full speed with a well that was half-full at best, usually nearly empty. I was unable to care for my own needs first, I simply didn’t know how to do that. My body was neglected. I ate to fill it up, rather than nourish it with healthy foods. I greatly underestimated the value of sleep and I lacked knowledge in how to effectively manage day-to-day stress. My lack of self-love left me incapable of caring for myself to my best ability. I didn’t honor my feelings, my time, or my energy.
Fast forward to today, over 15 years later, I now know better and do better.
I now know that I'm not selfish for caring for my own needs first ~ Putting myself on the top of my to-do list not only benefits me, it benefits everyone around me.
One of the most powerful lessons I've learned is that I'm only as good to others as I am to myself. This is a truth that I that lives within my cells. It’s my responsibility to give myself all that's required to fill my own well first. I can only live and give from that which I have within me to do so.
Now I know how to care for myself in ways I'd never experienced before ~ Knowing that nobody can care for me the way that I can, and what a gift it is for me to do so.
My own journey to living well is what inspired me to create Your Live Well Journey. It doesn't matter where you are in your life, or how many years you've been neglecting your needs. You can begin caring for yourself today. Start with going Back to Basics. Build a self-care foundation with the basics and then add more practices from there.
My mission and purpose are to help women create lasting self-care habits in their life. Everyone deserves to be at the top of their to-do list.
Where are you on your to-do list? Let me know in the comments, I'd love to hear from you!
If you've enjoyed this blog, I'd greatly appreciate you sharing it so that others can benefit from reading it as well. Thank you.
Looking for more tips to help you live well? Check out Your Live Well Journey - The Podcast, every episode offers ways to help you improve your self-care.
Ready to begin your own Live Well Journey? Click here to learn more about my Mentoring Program and book your FREE consultation today!