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Survival Mode

My daughter did a lot of flower collecting when the Tylenol kicked in!

There’s nothing like getting sick to remind you what it feels like to be in survival mode. There is something especially instinctive about getting through a day of being sick yourself AND taking care of your sick child. My 4-year-old daughter and I were both sick with strep throat a couple weeks ago. Fevers, cough, congestion… hell basically. Not really. Of course there are much, much worse things than strep throat- but that’s what survival mode feels like doesn’t it? There’s no room in your brain to think, “this is not that bad, it could be much worse”. Unless of course you force yourself to think that way, as I try my best to. 

When in survival mode, it’s hard to think of the world outside your life, of other people’s suffering, and most of all about your life out of survival mode. I came to this realization about a year or so ago, when I wasn’t in full survival mode myself, but witnessing many other people around me in the trenches. Becoming a mother threw me into survival mode, and I’ve been in and out of it for the last 4 years. I decided I didn’t want to constantly feel like I was just getting by. Taking care of myself just enough, being satisfied enough, and taking part in those common motherhood conversations about how crappy the day has been, how sleep deprived we are, how it’s all just so hard. But what if I changed the way I thought about motherhood and my health?

I decided I didn’t want to just get by, I wanted to FEEL GOOD about myself, the way I ate, my fitness, and the way I spent my time. I wanted to try to do something good for myself, and as a result, be better for my family. I realized that if I felt like I was just getting by, I was certainly not being the best wife and mother I could be. 

So I started paying closer attention to what I was eating, how much water and coffee I was drinking, and more intentional exercise. I earn a living by teaching yoga and Pilates, so most days I am exercising as part of my job, but I wasn’t doing workouts separately just for my own health. It helped that during this time I took a training course to become a Certified Personal Trainer, and another course to become a Certified Nutrition Coach. I have a bachelors degree in Health and Nutrition Science, so I had a background in this stuff already, but sometimes you need a refresher and a motivator! I’m a different person than I was 10+ years ago when I was in college!

I’ve made eating healthier, moving more, and taking care of my physical and mental health a much bigger part of my routine. Prioritizing myself, and as a result, prioritizing healthy time with my family. Because I’ve done my workout today, I also want to encourage my husband and give him time to get his workout in as well. I’m not impatiently waiting for him to get home from work so we can eat already! Not that I’d have dinner ready on time anyway…

Because I’ve given myself time today to take care of myself, I don’t feel as taxed when my 4-year-old is constantly asking me questions and asking me to do things for her. Instead, I have some juice left in the tank for patience, and time left in the day for play. I do feel it’s true that you can’t pour from an empty cup. So how do you want to fill yours?

I’m starting a new online health coaching program, and I’m looking for beta testers! You’d be a great fit for this program if you are just getting started on improving your health. This program costs $30 per week for 12 weeks, and will cover the very most basic aspects of nutrition and exercise, healthy daily habits, and lifestyle changes. Beta testers will receive 50% off the program price! I need 5 beta testers, and one spot is filled, so there are still 4 open spots. More details to come! Email me if you would like to join!

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