Letting go of fear to embrace 2016

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As 2017 approaches in a few short hours, I can’t help but get caught up in the idea of starting fresh, making resolutions and embracing changes that may come. The New Year is a time to let go of the regrets, make statements about what we want to do better in our lives and wake up tomorrow with a positive outlook and hopefully not a hangover. New Years is like our own personal reset button.

In order to reset and start new, we often look back on the past year to admit what wasn’t successful, what we can improve upon and what we want to change for the better. This year I don’t want to focus on failures but instead look back on my achievements. It was a pivotal year for me as I went outside my comfort zone and did a lot of things that scared me. I came out the other end having grown and knowing that having done those scary things made me realize how exciting life is and how much I may have missed all these years. Instead of allowing fear to cripple me I used it to motivate me. If it was something I looked at from the outside in awe knowing I was to afraid to try it, I knew it was something I had to do. What was the worst thing that could happen? I feel embarrassed, shake my head and tell myself that maybe I was right?

2016 was the year I quit being in fear of meeting new people and enjoying new experiences just because I didn’t have a friend beside me. I took me quite a few months to put my courage into action but once I took the leap I couldn’t stop.

In 2016:

  • I decided to let go of some of my Lululemon gear, posted it for sale on line and ended up with an amazing friend. Letting go of that duffle I loved but never used rewarded me with someone I wish I had in my life years ago.
  • I joined a Facebook chat group and actually posted comments
  • I met the most fabulous ladies from Canada and the United States as a result of the Facebook chat group, met them all in Vancouver and now have some great friendships as a result.
  • I let go of my self-judgements and started going to yoga on a regular basis and found a community of people who I don’t know personally but feel spiritually connected.
  • Rather than having the fear of being laid off cripple me, I worked like I would be safe, made financial preparations in case, and made the decision that if it was so, I could have some fun and work somewhere because I wanted to, not because I didn’t have a choice. (I did not lose my job, but if I had, I was secretly looking forward to the possibilities knowing my lifestyle would change.)
  • My husband I and I went for lunch with his college roommate who he hasn’t seen in far too long (remember me meeting new people is scary) and ended up having an incredible afternoon full of laughs and good wine.
  • I joined a running club and smashed my preconceived notions that runners can be an odd group as I no longer care when I have a crappy run as I always leave smiling knowing I got out there and had a lot of laughs surrounded but the most amazingly supportive people.
  • I bought a 10 pass card to a boxing studio feeling awkward, shy, uncoordinated and afraid only to leave energized and exhausted at the same time once again surrounded by amazing people full of encouragement and motivation.
  • I have reconnected with friends and family I haven’t seen in far too long and am always amazed at how time passes yet we pick up right where we left off.

What will 2017 bring? I am ready to set my intentions but you will have to wait until then to find out. 😉

t.g.2016

 

 

 

Courage

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Set aside your preconceived notions of what may happen.

Be open to anything that will happen.

Put away your insecurities and self-judgments.

Feel strong, secure and confident.

Forget other people may judge for they may also be there for support.

Leave the excuses not to go for a time when they are actually valid.

Dig deep for the excuses that encourage you to do it.

Never be afraid to fail.

Remember the feeling of accomplishment and hold on.

Forget fear.

Embrace excitement.

Life would be boring if we never stepped out of our comfort zone.

 

t.g.2016

Decisions

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I have taken a bit of a break from writing but I am ready to get back at it. I am deciding the best platform to resume my writing. Do I continue with the confusing blogging site I’m used to fighting through to publish, or do I take the leap and create my own web site? Do I just write with pen and paper or do I share my thoughts? Do I start fresh or continue where I left off being distracted while I procrastinate? I have been admiring a few blog sites and keep thinking I should take the leap and go on my own, create myself a space on line, write somewhere my thoughts can flow freely but where I am now is comfortable and familiar.

It is intimidating to know where to look for a domain if I take that leap. I don’t have the first idea how to begin to build a web site but I know people who do and I can learn. Just like I learned to blog, to learn to share my writing, to accept not everything I write is good, most important to learn I love to just write. Then there is the decision of branding. What do I want my site to represent? I have one shot to make a first impression and that comes with not only the site itself, but what should my domain name be? Should it reflect me, my writing, my personality, my dreams, the pressure I’m putting on myself to make such a simple decision?

Should I just stay the course I’m on now? I’m happy with it. No, I’m content. I enjoy where I am with my blogging but I think it could be better, more focused. Isn’t that the point of this blog? Unfocused, distracted, writing whatever I’m feeling. I’ve changed my theme many times to suit the mood I’m in or where I think I want my blog to head only to change it again when something new is released or I stumble on a beautiful blog that I try to replicate. No, I need my own, not copy someone else. I know what I like, I know what I don’t like. Simplicity is best for the theme to not distract from the words. It is the words that are important.

The black marks on the white page. The words can distract. The words should distract and focus at the same time. Now I will procrastinate.

Sigh.

t.g.2016

My soul sister city – I heart you.

imageThis isn’t something new; It is something I’ve known for a very long time. It is something I’ve known for so long I had the chance twice and ran away scared. I ran but always found a way to return year after year after year. I had family here. I found a friend who lived here, I found a reason to come back every September long weekend for 13 years. I found a different reason  to come back when the previous reason ran out of lives. I found a best friend who grew up here. I found a (not so) distant relative who spent a better part of his life here. I started running to make an excuse to return for a few years although it was a half marathon and I’d be in pain for days. I found a reason.

At what point are the reasons and excuses going to run out? I’m a “Western Canadian” girl and always will be but my heart feels best when I’m on the West Coast. I’m not going to sleep tonight*. Not because I can’t, but because I don’t want to. I want to take in the city as much as I can because I refuse to take it for granted. I refuse to not appreciate why I am here and what is outside my window. I am trying so hard to not have regrets but every time I’m here I hate to leave. It isn’t that feeling of never wanting to end a vacation. It is a feeling of not wanting to be a tourist but a resident with a career, a life, a home… I want people who do live here to understand what they have and what they aren’t missing.

It don’t want to cry, to waste energy wondering why not. I want to spend every moment breathing in the salty air, the West Coast vibe, to appreciate salty hair and a feeling of comfort and to understand the hustle and bustle of a city that is vibrant and full of energy. I won’t regret what could have been but enjoy what is and know it will be here when I need it.

Perhaps if I lived here I wouldn’t appreciate what I do now. It isn’t that far away and possibly only being here once a year makes me understand how amazing it is. There is a reason it is my home county and not some exotic location. I have to remember how close it is peeking at me just over the mountains and the feeling I get when I’m here. I need to put those feelings in a jar to open when I’m forgetting how amazing the feelings can be. It might be just a city and many people have told me it isn’t where you are, but who you are, however there are times when location is everything. I need to cherish what this moment is and close my eyes to take a mental snapshot so when I’m feeling blue I will remember what it feels like to be in Vancouver.

My heart is and always will be yours. XO

t.g.2015

*written about a month ago while in Vancouver after I completed my 3rd half marathon.

The 30 Day Yoga Challenge

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I opened my email this morning to see the monthly newsletter from the yoga studio I frequent. The feature this month is a 30 day challenge. As per usual, I read through the email and thought to myself how I really should at least consider it, then promptly opened my Facebook page. The most recent story on my feed is the yoga studio post regarding the upcoming 30 day challenge. It is easy enough to just keep scrolling through my feed and see what my friends are up to so again, it was a very brief thought of how I should consider the challenge. Over to Twitter I clicked and sure enough, there it was again. Should I take this as the universe screaming at me to do more than just consider a 30 day yoga challenge? Or is it just me realizing I have been looking for something to help guide me back to listening to what my body needs.

I have been home sick for the better part of 2 weeks and what I need to remember is that I don’t get sick often, but when I do, I go down hard. I never seem to make it simple. This time around after a visit to the emergency room and several follow-up appointments with my doctor it was determined I have a virus. A stubborn, “let it run its course” virus. ((sigh.)) This was the wake up call I think I needed to tell me to smarten up and listen.

I joined a gym almost 2 years ago and train regularly, I have run two half marathons, two 10K races as well as practice yoga on a not-so-regular basis. I don’t eat as well as I should (although being sick has made me shift my eating habits as I’m sure this virus loves my choice in salty snacks 😉 ) but I do hydrate well. I follow too many fitness blogs, Instagram accounts and Twitter feeds and have enough Lululemon gear to start my own store. So why do I sit at my computer rather than run to the yoga studio to sign up for the 30 day challenge? Good question…

I think what I am searching for is a fitness routine for my soul. I don’t mean just brain games as I think I’m ok there as I have a demanding career and amazing family and friends. What I mean is I think it is time I looked after what I can’t see; nurture what I can feel. A healthy body is great, but until the mind and soul are healthy too, it seems all for nothing. Enter the 30 day Yoga challenge. If I can commit to 30 days (which is only 30 out of 720 hours)  then I can commit to me. Maybe this is just a result of being a bit sleep-deprived and still not feeling 100%, but either way, I have a few weeks to convince myself that this challenge is what I need to do.