If there's one thing you need to know about me, it's that I'm stubborn.
Most people think that's a bad thing, but honestly, it's one of my favorite traits. Stubbornness doesn't always mean resisting change- in my case, it's what's driven me to better myself. I want something so bad that I won't give up until I get it.
I want to tell you about a young woman I knew a few years ago. She treated her body like it was disposable- she ate foods that made her feel sluggish and sick, and "a good night's sleep" was a concept with which she was unfamiliar. "Fitness" wasn't something she ever believed she'd achieve; she didn't know where to start, and she didn't care enough to find out. She wasn't happy, because she didn't think she deserved happiness. She was embarrassed about the way she looked and felt, yet she kept letting her anxiety and self-doubt grow and grow. A small voice inside her cried out "you're worth it, please love yourself," but she didn't listen.
Until one day, she did.
She signed up for personal training, she stopped eating the "comfort foods" that were draining her health and energy, and she started to listen to what was going on inside. She said goodbye to the people and negative self-talk that were weighing her down, and she felt lighter. For the first time in a long time...she felt happy.
You may have figured out by now that I'm talking about myself. When I think of my life not even two years ago, it's like I'm looking at a different person. Since that time, I've lost weight, and my eating habits have drastically changed. I even started meditating and developing a spiritual practice. The "me" from two years ago never saw herself trying any of those things, let alone succeeding. But that pesky personality trait- my stubbornness- finally started working in my favor. I let go of the fear and doubt I was holding on to so desperately, and grabbed onto self-love instead.
Today, I feel full of light. I have begun a journey to heal myself from the inside out, and it's been a pretty wild ride so far! I'm learning to listen to my body and mind, and care for myself in a way that's never been possible for me. I am my own biggest cheerleader and fiercest protector. I am a priority in my own life, because it's the only life I have and I want it to be a happy one.
Looking at photos of myself from "before" is still difficult. The woman in the photos looks and feels like a different person- I have almost nothing in common with her.
But she was me. She just didn't know it yet.