Starting Over & Self Love

             There is always this life changing moment where you find yourself at rock bottom and you never even knew you were falling. Maybe you were at lunch with some friends and all of a sudden, before the food even arrived, you look around and realize this isn’t you. So who are you? Our society is so fascinated with fresh starts. If you google how to change your life or how to start over, you will likely find way more results than what was needed. Sometimes you will hit rock bottom and something has to change, and usually that something is you. But that doesn’t make it better, or easier. A bubble bath and reading a book isn’t going to solve all of your problems. Yet, so many articles I read about starting over always listed bubble bath somewhere on that list. We associate self care and starting fresh only with caring for ourselves for an hour as we soak in our own dirty water masked by a layer of soapy bubbles. Self care and starting over isn’t always all sugar and strawberries. Sometimes it is hard, grueling, work that needs to be done.
             So, you’re probably asking, well then how does one start over? The first step is simple. Don’t try to change everything overnight. So many of us (past self included) wanted overnight change. But, becoming a completely different person overnight isn’t going to work, nor is it the answer. Say you are someone who wakes up at 11 am, who’s exercise is walking to get the mail, and your diet mostly consists of sandwiches and hot cheetos (not judging, just hungry) you’re not all of a sudden going to become someone who wakes up at 6 am, does an hour of morning yoga and strength training, and eats healthy. And, even if you forced yourself to do this for the first few days, you’re going to burn yourself out and be back monday night, sitting on the couch watching the bachelor and drinking wine while setting the next day’s alarm clock for 10 am. Another possible negative outcome is what if you do force yourself, and you do change into that person, but that person isn’t who you pictured and now you don’t actually want to be them?

             Change isn’t supposed to be an instant thing. Just like everything else, it  is supposed to be a journey. Baby steps. Incorporate waking up at 6 am for a week. Then throw yoga into that mix once or twice a week for a little bit. Then, try to change up your diet after a month or so. Do whatever you want, but in moderation. There is this great quote that says, “you can do anything, just not everything.” And that is true when you are deciding to change. Actively work on each thing you could possibly want to change, but work on one thing at a time and work on whatever it is in a healthy manner.

             In order to change anything, it is important that you must first change your mindset. You cannot look at everything in a negative manner or else that negativity will halt your growth. You may have made a million mistakes, but your mistakes really cannot hurt you unless you choose to be mad at yourself for them instead of learning from them. And, while a bubble bath may not always be the answer, it is important to take care of yourself and take a personal day every once in a while. You can never grow and become a better version of you if you are not taking care of your mental health as well.

I  thought this would be a good article to write since it is the first blog post I have written since early February. And lately I, too, feel the need to start over. But, starting over isn’t about running away and creating a new life from scratch. It is about taking in where you are now and using the rubble to help build you back up. It is about trying new things and figuring out what you enjoy now. You’re not the same person you were a year ago. You need to find out who you are now and who you want to be in the future.