Hi, friends! As I mentioned in my maternity leave update, I’ll be teaching again this fall for the first half of the semester. Today is my first day back so wish me luck! I’m excited to meet all the new students and get things rolling. Today I’m gonna fill your brain with some Monday motivation, because who doesn’t need that in their life right? Be bake tomorrow with a new recipe and some AWESOME info for Arizona locals! Get pumped!
Mr. Hungry sent me this video last week:
It was kind of crazy he sent it to me on a day that I was spending a significant amount of time reflecting on the work I’ve done to be at the point I’m at in my life. Things like building this blog, my private practice, and prioritizing teaching as something I love. Things like recovering from injury and 5 years of post-pill amenorrhea also took so so so much work.
I was thinking how grateful I was for the choices I’ve made in my life. God knows my choices weren’t always easy. They took blood, sweat, tears, and sacrifice to make it through to the other side when sometimes I didn’t see a light at the end of the tunnel.
Would I ever make a consistent income? Would my back ever heal? Would I get my period back? Would I be able to have children? These major events took not months, but years to work past. They took persistence and work, harder than I could have ever imagined. I had to consistently do the things over and over again in hopes that it would eventually bring results. In other words, I worked hard every day and never gave up.
But, none of that even compares to the hardest thing I’ve ever done, which was work to change who I am and how I see the world around me.
The most work I ever had to do was to become a happy person. It was harder than building a business, harder than recovering from illness/injury, harder than grad school, becoming an RD, or anything else I had ever accomplished in my life. Taking responsibility for my own happiness was and still is the most challenging thing I’ve ever done.
It’s also the best thing I’ve ever done. Two and a half years ago, I read a book that changed my world. I remember going to pick it out and looking for it in the business section at Barnes and Noble. When I couldn’t find it, the Barnes and Noble employee told me it was in the self-help section. I was SO embarrassed like BEYOND embarrassed, I almost left but I’m glad I didn’t.
I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again. I am not a naturally happy or positive person, not at all.
Just like I work at becoming a better blogger, dietitian, professor, business owner, business partner, wife and soon a mother. Just like I work at taking care of my health by making the right nutrition, exercise, and sleep choices. I work on my happiness, day in and day out. It’s just one of many things I fight for daily, but it’s the one I fight the hardest for.
Why is it so hard? I think it’s because the battle is against me. I can blame others all I want, but I’m in charge and now I know it. Even when things happen to me that are 100% out of my control, I know that at the end of the day I’m still the only one responsible for my happiness. Even when I make mistakes and I cause things to go wrong, I can play the pity card but I know I’m still the only one responsible for my happiness. It’s a bitter pill to swallow and it takes just as much work as keeping your career going and your body healthy.
They say no one can do your push-ups for you, and it’s true. You know what else? No one can laugh, love, or be grateful for you either. You are the only one that can make you truly happy.
So, that’s my Monday message for you guys today. If you are like me, you are not a happy confident person by nature, plan to do one thing every day this week that will change that. Some things I like to do are:
- Gratitude journaling (MY FAVORITE)
- Prayer or sending positive energy/love/intentions out
- My 45-minute bedtime routine – the mirror exercise
- Connecting with others – maybe it’s a skype date with one of my out of state besties, a long phone call with a family member, a coffee date with a friend, or spending time with my husband. (Although, I don’t get as much out of my connections with others if I’m not in a good place myself. See the first three bullet points.)
- Enjoying hobbies – ones totally unrelated to work. For me, exercise is not a hobby or something I do for me. It’s just part of life like eating, breathing, or sleeping. For my hobbies I try to find something to do that isn’t productive in any way, it’s literally just for the fun of it. Most recently it’s been decorating/redecorating aka retail therapy.
I’ll be honest, despite my work to become a kind, caring, more grateful person that radiates positive energy I’ll probably never get there 100%. Instead, in reality, I’m heavy on the sarcasm and humor. I love to laugh, I’m more accepting and compassionate of others, and I feel strongly connected to the people in my life who really matter to me.
Oh, and I’m happy. Truly happy, even when I fail, even when life sucks, even when everything seems terrible, I’m still a happy person deep down and that is worth the work.
Are you a naturally positive/happy person by nature?
Are there ways you work at being more positive?