Self-help doesn’t always come from a book

I work with so many women who have gotten tired of dealing with their bodies in frustration, shame, and confusion.

They’re tired of attacking diets and approaching fitness with an all-or-nothing tenacity … and then getting bored, hurt or feeling like they “screwed up”  — and then return to the same old cycle.

What if you approached how you take care of your body with tenacious love instead?

Not clinging or desperate tenacity, but more determined and persistent. Committed, consistent and loving tenacity.

Last month, I got sidelined from my usual fitness routines by a  nasty arthritis flare-up. I have knee osteoarthritis.

Arthritis is nothing new or special to me — over 21 million Americans deal with the pain that comes with the breakdown of their protective cartilage. There’s no cure yet — that layer of cushion for your bones doesn’t know how to regenerate itself, so it’s progressive.

When my body commanded that I stop what I was doing and rest, I went through all of my painful, limiting beliefs. Example: 

* “This is hopeless.”

* “If this is happening when I’m this young, I’m screwed.”

* “I’ll never get to move the way I want to fitness-wise again”.

* “What if I have to have my knees replaced before I’m 60? F*%k.”

After a few days of that drama, I decided to tap into my resilience — and resilience is probably one of the most important coaching tools I teach every single client I work with.

Your life will never be perfect — that’s not the point —  but your ability to regroup and rebound will be a key facet of your overall happiness.

After my crestfallen-ness, I rebounded.

Instead of “why me?”, I asked myself a different question: “HOW can I live with this condition and learn a new way to thrive?”

And I learned something new about myself that I really like: I am really tenacious. Kind of relentless, but in a good way.

I became committed to finding a way to be happy with my life and consistently researched and considered new ideas.

It’s working.

– I got my body in the water and did high-intensity training in aqua classes.

– I took more days off to rest because I wasn’t doing that enough.

– I slowly returned to the things I did before, but with more care and consciousness.

– Instead of ignoring this medical issue until it reared its head with another painful flare-up, I did my research to make a long term treatment plan that I will pay attention to and carry out for the rest of my long life.

– I got some knee injections yesterday that kicked. my. ass., but are going to be really helpful to me for quite a while.

It’s been hard — I’ve gotten lonely, missed my friends and the usual rhythms of my days and weeks, but I’ve been tenacious with myself because I love myself.

Our bodies can be our best friends. 

We have to learn to trust and love them. If you want to uplevel your life in every way possible, start with the vessel that carries you every day.

Self-help doesn’t always come from a book.

– New career? Boring career? Stressful career? Take care of your body.

 

 

 

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