It was my birthday recently and I thought I'd reflect on the last 42years and maybe it might help if you're in your 20s/30s/40s and you're having a bit of a tough time....
I was married and divorced by 24
I bought and lost a house and consequently became bankrupt at 28
I've have 2 boys both born by emergency c-sec
I'm a single mum by choice
I have written off 2 cars
I have had my heart broken and broken people's hearts (the two aren't mutually exclusive)
But amongst the chaos there have been experiences and moments I'll never forget.
Learning new skills / life lessons from past and present friendships and relationships
Completing a triathlon to doing the marathon moonwalk, skydived to swinging through trees, studied yoga in the Himalayas to travelling the world, learnt to ride a motorbike to flying in a hot air balloon. But often the simplest things, like walking along the beach and watching the waves or getting up early and watching the sun rise are more than enough.
Setting up my own business and now running a thriving wellbeing studio has been a passion for me and something a younger version of myself would never have believed she could achieve.
My life may look more like an ECG than a perfect upward trajectory. Are there things I'd have changed? Definitely. But I believe experiencing the many highs and lows of life, we learn to be humble and appreciate what we have and in turn grow, in the hope of becoming a better human being.
Which for me, includes no longer acquiescing to others, prioritising what is most important to my happiness, setting boundaries for my sanity, however hard that may seem and believing in my potential.
Training in the gym since I was 18 has been my constant. However hard or great life was going, the gym was always there. Having your own little something is important. Never give up that one thing that is a constant in your life.
When I was young I had no self belief, I lacked confidence, definitely felt like the ugly duckling (I had a terrible "page boy" haircut and those classy plastic NHS glasses with the thickest lenses and was often referred to as "thunder thighs") and accepted my lot. Much has changed since then and I think we are always evolving in one way or another.
One thing that I have always believed no matter how cliche it sounds, is;
To live in and for the moment
I have made 100s of bad decisions, said and done the wrong thing, but I have also experienced some amazing moments with wonderful people and nature itself.
Happiness is not something you can ever buy. It is afforded by how we choose to live our life
and it is often the simplest of things from gestures of kindness, to the people we surround ourselves with and the work we choose to do.
We are so incredibly lucky to have this time on this Earth, even if not every day feels like it and it can be hard, really hard... but keep going.
I still believe in the good of people and that we all have great potential to be and have what we truly want. Not live a life of half measures. I try to be grateful for difficult events in my life, that I may or may not have handled well because, they have shaped who I am today.
We are only human and sometimes, rather than dissecting our lives and every choice we make, we need to learn to accept that we are not infallible and that sometimes, like a book, you have to close a chapter in order to open a new one.
What would I say to my younger self?
Don't aquiesce to others
Believe in yourself, you are more capable than you know
Listen to your intuition
You will face challenges but you will overcome them
Slow down, think more,
learn, learn, learn.
I hope you have a wonderful day