By Kristen Sachs
That was me about 12 years ago. I was around 200lbs, 5’2”, a heavy smoker, drug user and I told myself and everyone else that being conscious of what you’re eating was a sign of vanity. I hardly exercised and actually would sit on the bus for 20min longer to skip the 5min walk from the further bus stop. I think the most important characterizing trait of that time was that I was angry, angry at everything, teachers, my family, myself. I had no skills to understand my emotions and didn’t even realize that doing so would help my situation. At that time, my typical diet consisted of sandwiches covered in mayo and cheese, pasta and ice cream. I would snack on pizza and chocolate and of course, at that point, I had already been taking oral contraceptives for almost 3 years. My body was a mess, my skin was oily and covered in breakouts, my hormones were unstable and I didn’t even know I was slowly killing myself. Thankfully my contract with this life wasn’t meant to continue down the path to self-destruction. There wasn’t really one thing that brought me to where I am today; it has been a path, a sequence of decisions. I am still healing my hormonal system, correcting deeper and deeper imbalances through my diet and lifestyle but the more I dig into my body, and its wonders, the more I understand the weight I carry. I have found myself looking back at all the romantic relationships I have had in my past to help me understand that, in each of them, I was recreating my parent’s drama. I am getting better at basing the majority of my food choices on how each one will make my body feel. I try every day to listen to my body’s wisdom from a deeper perspective and to allow space for my emotions and how I express them. Through my journey to health and healing, I have realized these truths. Whether they are universal isn’t why I write, I write in hopes that you can relate and find a piece to your own healing.
Truth 1: Relationships are the lifeblood to your happiness
If you find yourself in good ones or bad ones, they will have a profound effect on how you see the gifts and the shortcomings in your experience. Be very picky with the people you allow close yet be compassionate to everyone you meet.
Truth 2: Your body is an amazing compilation of complex chemical reactions
These reactions are influenced by your environment, the food and drink you ingest and your emotional landscape. Becoming aware of everything you’re putting into your body and that is flowing through your body is key to your health and wellness.
Truth 3: Only you know how to heal yourself
No one else can do it for you. People will be able to give you great advice and support but ultimately, what you put on your fork is your choice. The counter to that is there will be people trying to tell you that they know best. If there are people in your life saying that, especially if you’re paying them, run. No one knows everything and your health professional’s job is to show you how to listen to your own guidance and to motivate you along the way.
Truth 4: Stress management is a skill that we all must learn
Most of us have the tendency to reach for a drink, a smoke or the remote to deal with our stress. While these ways have short term success, we all must learn ways for long-term stress management. Things like yoga, meditation, and exercise, in general, are all wonderful ways but don’t negate the simple solutions like speaking with a friend, going outside for a walk and simple breathing techniques. We are all unique and the way we deal with stressors will be as well.
Truth 5: Self-talk is the single most important influence in your life
It will direct how you feel at your deepest level. It will determine how you perceive life and will create the framework to which things will manifest for you. Be kind in your thoughts towards yourself. It’s not an easy thing at first, but as you start to interact with yourself from a gentle place you will realize how truly beautiful and amazing you are.
Over the past 15 years, I have made headway in creating vibrant health for myself, but the path doesn’t have a destination. We owe it to ourselves to become healthy, but most of all we owe it to each other to model a healthy human being.
Originally posted 2016-03-23 03:30:47.