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A Chain of Becauses

A Chain of Becauses

A lot of good arguments are spoiled by some fool who knows what he is talking about. Miguel de Unamuno

Chain of Becauses, because, word, only, easy, forever

There are times in life when it’s a good idea to just stop talking. I found a wonderful article from Leigh Newman on the five times in your life when you should simply close your mouth. There was one particular time she wrote about in her article that stood out to me like crazy.

When you’re talking in a chain of becauses.

Because what?

When every sentence you speak begins with the word because, you need to step back, take a deep breath (as in at least two minutes) and then be kind to yourself.

I am such of fan of Leigh Newman’s writing because (whoops – there’s that word!) she has such insight into the human condition. Not the boring college textbook-type of insight, but smart, witty and always on point. Here is the part of her article that really hit home for me:

Something dark happens when I wake up early in the morning. I begin to talk to myself. That me-to-me discussion goes a little like this: Because I didn’t save x dollars this year, my son won’t have enough money for college. And because of that, he will have to take on huge, crushing loans. And because of that, at age 21, he’ll have to take a job he hates to pay off all that debt. Or, worse, he won’t be able to get a job. And because of that he will have to declare bankruptcy by age 30. Then nobody will ever hire him. He’ll have to move to India to live cheaply off the grid and I’ll never see him because I’ll be retired and broke and won’t be able to afford the airfare. And so the becauses continue until I feel so guilty and horrible, I can hardly get up to make breakfast, which my son needs me to make because…he is 7 years old.

There are all kinds of ways to silence that chain of becauses that leads to panic and self-loathing. You can meditate. You can go for a run. You can read a book. Or you can go in and look at your sleeping child and realize you have more than a decade to figure out this problem, because what comes after a because is not up to fate, but up to you and the future that you build out of your actions and decisions—not your words.

Read more: http://www.oprah.com/spirit/Times-to-Stop-Talking/5#ixzz2r95An7h2

Whew!!! The chain of becauses can go on forever and forever and forever. Why? Because your mind goes down the rabbit hole when you aren’t paying attention or because it’s early in the wee hours of oh-dark-thirty and your sleepy mind has already begun to race or because you just know because of one action, another action will or won’t happen because

Jeez – how many of us have dealt with this issue? How many times have your becauses spiraled out of control because of guilt, shame, frustration and anger – all aimed at yourself? How many times has needless worry over a simple decision sent you on the endless because trail? It only gets worse.

Guilty. Yep. Real. Guilty.

Sometimes I wake up at 2:30 AM for a bladder call and I simply cannot fall back asleep. It is then that my drowsy, half-sleeping/half awake mind goes berserk with all the minutiae stored away for moments just like this. The more I try to fall back asleep, the faster my brain rolls through all the becauses and then goes back for more. I have had nights where I watched the clock tick through every single hour and by 6 AM, I’m exhausted from all the horrible becauses going through my mind.

I’ve tried testing Leigh’s advice on silencing the deadly chain of becauses with varying degrees of success. Reading and meditation (or is that medication?) have their place. Reading a book makes me drowsy. (However, reading a college textbook will make you fall asleep in twenty seconds flat.)

Anyway, I’m working on the meditation part but with a brain full of becauses, meditation is difficult at best and usually an exercise in futility. I believe Louise Hay said that meditation is easy – simply focus on your breath. I can’t begin to count the times I’ve tried – and failed – to simply focus on my breath. I am an absolute pro at focusing on my breath while my mind is racing through all the becauses that could take place at any moment – oh, and along with concentrating on whatever affirmation you’re supposed to think of while meditating and focusing on your breath.

It makes my brain go completely off the rails. :/

Most of the becauses we imagine will never happen, so why do we do this? I believe we’ve been taught if we worry about a because then we can somehow keep it from ever happening. Or even worse, if we go through our endless list of becauses, we are actually doing something instead of doing nothing. And doing nothing makes me crazy.

It is my goal from this day forward to attempt to try to resist the endless becauses residing in my brain. Why? Because the becauses simply make me old before my time. I’m exhausted from trying to avoid all the pitfalls of life. I know in my heart that life will simply happen and take care of itself if I simply stop becausing myself to an early grave.

Because you read my blog, I get to keep writing. Because of a full heart, I live a life of grace and mercy.

And so do you.

I’m so grateful for each one of you who click through my emails each week. I’m so grateful I get to share my hopes, dreams, fears and joys with you – because you are very important to me and I wish each of you grace and ease in your own life.

What becauses are you dealing with? It’s because of those becauses that I am a practicing aromatherapist and holistic life coach.

Please take time to fill out this short contact form and let’s talk today.

Blessings,

Melissa

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Staying Healthy – Advice From A Healthcare Renegade

Staying Healthy – Advice From A Healthcare Renegade

nature medicine, healthy eating for beginners, food as medicine, clean eating, How To Stay Healthy, Advice From a Healthcare RenegadeToday, I’m honored to introduce M. Leigh Johnson, also known as the Healthcare Maquis who talks about staying – or getting- healthy in a system that is stacked against you. I’ve been looking for everyday people who see the Western healthcare system for what it is – a system of creating customers, not cures – to educate us on alternative and complementary therapies.

Leigh and I met through a private Facebook group that helps its’ members become better writers and bloggers to make our personal message relevant and interesting. Leigh has had her share of ups and downs with the medical community and – like me – wants you to know that there is a better way to help yourself get and stay healthy.

The healthcare debacle is not over yet – not by a long shot. The latest is yet another round of politicians convincing Americans that massive cuts to healthcare are good for us and it’s on life-support, but not dead. I am frustrated and angry that we have to fight this hard for a basic human right. Until access to healthcare becomes a basic human right, I choose to turn my anger into something positive so that we can all benefit.

You may (or may not) know that I’m a certified aromatherapist and holistic life coach. There are many concerns that I can help you address through the use of essential oils and coaching. If you would like to read the original Uninsured series, HERE is Part One.

Let’s dive in with Leigh today:

What is the meaning behind Healthcare Maquis?

Briefly, I wanted a name that alluded to a revolution and being a renegade. The Maquis were part of the French resistance against the Nazis during World War II. It’s an interesting story and it really is worth your time to learn more about them.

Here is something that I want you to think about. The Maquis were a small group of fighters that resisted the Nazis while so many other people all across Europe just allowed what happened without a fight. Think where the world would be if a small group of fierce people did not fight the system – what if they didn’t fight against the status quo?

I have a full explanation of where I got the name Healthcare Maquis on my blog in this article, and in this video on YouTube.

What prompted you to create the Healthcare Maquis?

I have several reasons why I started my business. Health and wellness is my life. Even outside of my educational and professional experience, it is my passion. To give you a comparison, in other cultures I would be considered a medicine woman. I am the person that people in my life look to for medical advice. I want to share my knowledge with the world, and also to have a repository of information for anyone to access.

My authority comes not from the alphabet soup behind my name, but the years of real trial and error. Experience is a better teacher than any professor.

What I talk about on my site and in my videos comes from my real life experiences. I don’t tell you to use Apple Cider Vinegar if I don’t do it myself. I would never suggest Lavender for sleep if I had never used it before.

How has this experience impacted your own health?

I have been on my health journey for a quite awhile. So, often I speak in retrospect on my blog about past experiences. However, health is a journey, not a destination. I am still working toward my goals and sharing what I am doing online helps me be accountable.

Also, I hope in the process, I inspire people to get healthy – if I AM doing it, they can too. For example, I was inspired to do a 28 day challenge where my family and I did not eat out for the month. The challenge was born out of two issues:

  • First, even with my commitment to clean eating and wholesome living, we do eat out. The irony is that the better the choices you make with your food at restaurants the more it’s going to cost you. So avoiding fake burgers and phony potato products was costing me a pretty penny.
  • Second, there were two people in my life who had a terrible eat-out habits. They were going to restaurants daily…drive thru, carryout, gas stations…you name it, they were eating it. You cannot be in control of your health when you are not in control of what you eat.

I created the challenge to inspire them and others that it is possible to eat delicious food at home each and every day with no excuses. I have a family of seven with five of us in the house on a full-time basis. We have different food restrictions, preferences, etc…so there are two different schedules running in my house.

I work from home and homeschool my kids. All while my husband attends college and works 50-60 hours a week. I am absolutely the definition of “busy”. Our life is full, but I manage to keep it together to ensure we live a healthy lifestyle.

If you would like to see what I ate during the month, you can go to my Facebook page where I posted my pictures daily.

I also have compiled an eBook chronicling what I did on the challenge and how you can reduce the amount of restaurant food in your life. The book – entitled 28 Day No Eat Out Challenge –  will be released in October, 2017. I am offering it for free for those who sign up for my email list. You can get on the waiting list for the book here.

Beside diet and exercise, what is your advice to someone who is looking to stay – or get – healthy?

I ran across this quote from a 100 year old woman that made me laugh, but sums up my sentiment. “Stay away from doctors.”

What that means for me is a mindset switch. Doctors and the Western “healthcare” system are not about making or keeping people well. You are a slave to the little pills they give you. You are a slave to the high cost of their ineffective procedures.

Be the boss of your own life.

When you adopt what is called an internal locus of control…meaning you believe that you are in control of what happens to you…you will experience a radical shift in your life.

I have not been to the doctor in over a year. I would tell you how long it has been for other members of my family, but I literally fear the consequences of my truthfulness.

At this point, I have no plans on going back. I do see a dentist because he performs an actual function. I see the optometrist because he helps me perform a life function called vision. Outside of that, I have no intention of ever engaging the system again…(p.s. I do pay for that mandatory health insurance EVERY month…I never use it.)

So my advice is start learning about your own body and its needs. Take charge of your own health. Seek out real help when you need it. People like myself and Melissa want to help empower and educate you!

What direction are you taking the Healthcare Maquis in the future?

I will continue to offer the highest quality information on health and wellness that I possibly can. As I develop relationships with other health warriors like Melissa, I would like to partner with people who can offer their expertise/experience to my audience.

The Maquis was not a person, it was a movement. The Nazi philosophy was larger than Hitler. The Nazi ideologies still exist to this day. Imagine if we could create the same kind of positive, lasting legacy for health, wellness and freedom?

To learn how I can help you own your wellness journey, visit me at The Healthcare Maquis website or find me on social media on Twitter @maquishealth and Facebook @TheHealthcareMaquis.

Thank you so much for taking time to learn about me and what I do.

Be free and be well.

Wow! Thank you Leigh for sharing your wisdom and for being so fierce about healthcare! Being healthy doesn’t have to mean continuous doctor visits and taking yet another little pill. Simply starting with good clean food from your local farmer’s market will go a long way toward feeling your best. The way I see it, medicine is sickcare – good food is healthcare!

I’m so grateful you stopped by today. What can I help you with? What questions do you have? Please fill out this short contact form and let’s talk today!

Blessings,

Melissa

 

 

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On Letting Go of Dreams

On Letting Go of Dreams

Letting Go, let go, grief, forgiving myself, emotions of grief, moving forward after loss, My heart is hurting – and shattered – over letting go of a long-held dream. It’s a brutal, soul-sucking time and there are days when I feel so incredibly overwhelmed that all I can do is breathe.

It’s the times when life just relentlessly pounds you into the ground that you learn your own strength. After nearly a decade of pursuing a very personal dream, I received a flash of insight that I was simply beating a dead horse. Nothing will make that dream happen no matter how hard I work; no matter how many positive affirmations I say; no matter how much gratitude I offer for the tiniest shred of life.

The deafening silence is that of doors and windows slamming shut so hard that my brain is rattling.

As a child, whenever I felt the sting of loss, my mother would tell me to quit whining and say that “someone always has it worse”. True. Very. True.

What this shiny pearl of wisdom ignores is that we all have big, deep feelings and hopes and dreams and wants and needs and when they crash to the ground, you’re allowed to mourn.

Despite what you hear, life is not a competition. I’m not going to feel bad about feeling bad simply because your heartbreak is bigger or more life-altering than mine.

Letting Go of the Emotions

It’s okay – even good – to sit with your broken heart and all the swirling emotions. I DIDN’T SAY WALLOW, I SAID SIT. There’s a whole lot of people walking around with bad backs, lung and liver problems, impaired kidneys, chronic pain – any number of physical issues – because they didn’t deal with various emotions when they happened. They just stuffed them away because it was too painful to deal with at the moment.

Stuffing your emotions down the rabbit hole because you’re intent on proving just how tough you are isn’t being strong. It’s setting yourself up for major physical and emotional issues down the road. Again, I’m not talking about wallowing, I’m simply talking about facing the emotions that you’re dealing with before life gets out of hand.

In sitting with your emotions, what I’m asking you to do is to recognize them for what they are. Sometimes, simply writing down on paper all the emotions that are swirling around inside of you can take away some of their power. Then write down WHY you feel these raw emotions so deeply. Again, seeing what you’re dealing with in black and white (or whatever color of pen you use) gives you a different perspective about what’s happening. In this manner, you can let go of some of the rawness.

I’m not going to lie. It takes courage to face something that has altered your life – it does. And that’s where holistic life coaching comes in. I needed some help dealing with all the shit that went down. Yes – life coaches help each other and have each other’s back and I’m so very grateful to be a part of this beautiful and amazing profession.

Along with coaching, I began using a blend that I created to help women deal with emotional aspects of menopause called – oddly enough – MenoPause Aromatherapy Roller Ball. If it helps to balance your emotions when your hormones are on a roller coaster, why not use this during times of extreme emotional distress? I’m grateful to tell you that it has helped me tremendously to deal with the emotional roller coaster I’m riding at the moment.

The Emotions of Grief

For me, tough times require that I go “underground” and by that I mean isolating myself. I need time to process, work out what I did wrong, what I could have done differently – anything to find some semblance of closure.

Isolation may not work for you. You may have a hectic schedule, children that need you at 100% or you may simply dislike being alone. (If that’s the case, we definitely need to talk.) It’s all good. Even a thirty-minute soak in a tub full of Epsom Salts and Lavender will help you process.

What I don’t think is good is rushing headlong into situations that you may find emotionally challenging and threaten your already compromised sense of peace. Create your own sanctuary of peace – whatever that may be. Can you walk around the block? Can you pull weeds in the back yard? Can you paint something? Can you write it all down and then burn it? Listening to your favorite music is a wonderful way to soothe you – just don’t listen to songs that will rip your heart to shreds.

Put a name on your shattered dream. Understanding the why of it all – the vision of your dream and what it meant for you – it takes some serious self-compassion, but will help to provide closure.

What’s really important is to find the perspective in the whole mess and this may simply take a bit of time. Don’t discount or disrespect yourself or anyone else because they mourn a dream. That dream is real and it’s wired into your brain. That’s where a trusted friend or holistic life coach can help you. 

Try to find the courage to form a new dream. I found a wonderful article by Rokelle Lerner about the loss of your dreams. In it, she talks about moving forward after sustaining this kind of loss.

For those who have experienced the death of a dream, it takes courage to dream again. Anyone who has experienced this kind of loss understands the expression, “dare to dream”. It’s definitely daring to get our hearts and minds wrapped around another vision for us. But if we’re willing to take the chance, it provides a powerful affirmation of life that feeds our spirit.

Your Spirituality in the Face of Dashed Dreams

I just gotta tell you – I’m not much of a spiritual person and religion just isn’t my cup of tea. I can only imagine how much I’m going to upset and offend a whole lot of people with that statement.

The whole point of that little tidbit of sharing is to let you know that it’s perfectly fine to step away temporarily (or forever, for that matter) from what ever supreme-being-of-your-choice you know. I’ve had to completely step away from all of it, especially the bullshit of “everything happens for a reason” or THE absolute worst: “it just wasn’t meant to be”. That makes me absolutely crazy when people say that to someone who has experienced loss of any kind be it person, pet, job or dream.

It’s okay to step away. It’s okay to be really mad at the supreme-being-of-your-choice. You know what? In the long run, YOU have your own back. You know what’s best for you. You know how hard you worked to make your dream a reality. Only YOU know how much it hurts. Period.

I will say again, this is not the time to wallow. I’m not wallowing; I simply had to take a hard look at my dependence upon some invisible dictator (the actual term for “it” will remain private) that holds my dreams hostage. All I’m saying is don’t add insult to injury by feeling guilty about grieving or stepping away from some dogma that already creates stress in your life.

On the flip side of that burger, if you depend upon the supreme-being-of-your-choice for your cup of daily strength and well being, by all means, please do. Don’t apologize for feeling the way you do. Your feelings are REAL.

Moving Forward

What now? Well, right now, I’m putting on my happy face when I’m out in public. In private, that’s totally my business and when you’re grieving, it’s your own personal business, too. If you don’t want to share your private grief with anyone, please don’t.

But, if you don’t have anyone in your life that you feel you can share your grief without judgment (I don’t), by all means, get yourself a life coach. We’re trained to help you move through the stuck places and truthfully, I can pull it all together and help you a lot easier than I can help myself. That’s why life coaches have life coaches. 

The biggest thing is to forgive yourself. Forgive yourself for the real (or imagined) failures and the coulda/shoulda/wouldas of life that get in the way of healing after a major loss. If it’s possible, visualize yourself stuffing all the dashed dreams and heartache into a big suitcase, taking it to the bus station or airport, set the suitcase down – and walk away. This gives you a visual way of moving forward after loss.

If you’re not sure how to forgive, this is what works for me. When you’ve been wronged and you need to forgive, try sending love and light to the person who wronged you including yourself. Even when the apology never comes – or you need to forgive yourself – sending love and light is a compassionate way to begin the process.

Here are some other ideas that may be helpful for you:

  • Look for your favorite color every time you go out. This opens your heart and eyes to opportunities.
  • Drink lots of water to keep yourself hydrated. Your body does better when it has enough hydration.
  • Rest just a bit more than you normally would. Listen to your body – it’s telling you important information.

These wonderful words of wisdom from Danielle LaPorte (one of my favorite authors) may also help you in your process:If you let go of a dream, a bigger reality may appear. We’ll just have to see about that.

Understand that grief is different for everyone in different situations. There’s no time limit. There’s also no shame when the grief washes over you in waves at the most unexpected times. Be kind to yourself!

In the meantime, I want you to know that I’ve had my share of bumps, bruises and heartbreaks and when you need someone who has a listening ear, an understanding heart and no judgment, I’m here to be your coach and aromatherapist.

I’m at your service. Capiche?

I’m so blessed and grateful that you stopped by today. Fill out this short contact form and let’s get started moving forward today. 

Blessings,

Melissa

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Better Health With A Certified Health Coach

Better Health With a Certified Health Coach

certified health coach, alternative medicine, what does a health coach do
Image By Freepic.com

During the summer of 2017, health insurance was in the news – a LOT. The insurance landscape is changing and the fight isn’t over yet. Many of us may yet find ourselves without insurance or be unable to afford regular traditional doctor visits.

So what are the alternatives to traditional medicine? I wrote the Uninsured series of posts where I talked about alternative and complementary modalities to help you stay healthy without insurance. (Click HERE for part 1 of the series.)

Of course, I tackled many of the issues that I can help you address as a certified aromatherapist and holistic life coach. But I wanted to educate you about other wellness practitioners who also excel at helping you stay – or get – healthy. Over the next few months, I’m inviting practitioners from all areas to write about what they do and how they can help you get and stay healthy.

Today, meet Stefanie Draper, a Certified Health Coach in the Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina. Stefanie explains how she can help you navigate all the options when it comes to your health.

How Can A Health Coach Help Me?

A healthy lifestyle in this day and time has lots of options in the way of health food stores, holistic helpers and healers, supplements, gyms and yoga studios, organic food options, and on and on. So why is it such a challenge to be healthy?! If we have all these support networks we should have healthy bodies and healthy lives, right?

The majority of us know what we should be doing, yet most of us don’t implement what is necessary to be truly healthy. Pile on top of that the issues our health care system presents, and we can find ourselves in a real pickle! If we are depending on the government, our primary care physician, or our prescriptions to keep us healthy, we really do have another think coming. Melissa has brought to us a wonderful discussion, because clearly it is time for us to begin seeing our health resources differently.

I am a Certified Health Coach. I received a B.A. degree in Exercise & Sport Sciences from UNC Chapel Hill and proceeded to become a Personal Trainer for many years after graduation. My heart always focused on the whole person though, their mind, body, and spirit. I realized that without addressing the entirety of a person’s life and mindset, change was difficult and short-lived. I became a Certified Health Coach (CHC) with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition so I could help people find the long-lasting solutions unique to their lives and personal situation.

My wellness journey began in high school when I was placed on a special diet via a homeopath to remedy systemic candida (yeast) overgrowth which could not be overcome by traditional medical remedies. It opened my eyes to another way of viewing health and wellness. Where traditional medicine could not help me, holistic “medicine” did. It was a little longer of a process, and I had to learn a lot, but my life has never been the same. I am not dependent on our traditional medical system, I don’t need or use pharmaceuticals, and I feel great!

What Does a Health Coach Do?

Certified Health Coaches are a fantastic alternative support system for people seeking a more energetic, vibrant, and stable way of life. Doctors of all kinds are necessary in society for acute issues and basic yearly check-ups. When we are in an auto accident, break an arm, or have a heart attack, we are grateful we have them! Yet I want to suggest that as you take responsibility over your daily routine and integrate healthy lifestyle practices, our bodies can heal, strengthen, renew, and sustain themselves to bring balance and wellness to us! It’s amazing what our bodies can do on their own; they want to be well!

As a CHC, my aim is to listen to your goals and desires and help you form a plan perfectly tailored to your lifestyle and needs. The key is fun, simple, and sustainable goal setting on bi-monthly basis to move at a pace which allows change to truly take root. This way you find yourself suddenly doing healthy practices naturally, without stress or frustration! Implementing a new lifestyle takes time and a little discipline, but the results are nothing short of inspiring and you have someone to help you every step of the way.

Alternative Medicine

So if you find yourself uninsured (I have been so myself more often than not these last few years) don’t feel stranded! Properly trained massage therapists, chiropractors, health coaches, personal trainers, Chinese herbalists, aromatherapists, and many other holistic wellness providers offer a wealth of information and knowledge to help you take care of the necessary components of your mind, body, and spirit. It may take some time, but once that wheel of wellness is set in motion, you can’t help but feel better and better until the thought of being uninsured is in the background.

So, barring catastrophic insurance, I see a world where preventative care providers are our ‘insurance’ and traditional medical practitioners become secondary. Sound like a crazy statement? Think of the issues that would be remedied if this were the case!

To learn even more about what I do, please visit my website (www.stefaniedraper.com). My blog has some wonderful tips and information you may find helpful as well as my Pinterest page (www.pinterest.com/stefaniepdraper ) which has recipes, exercises, and other wellness links to whet your mental appetite.

Also, I offer free consultations for anyone interested in taking the first step towards increasing wellness in their life. You may email me (stef@stefaniedraper.com) or send me a note through my website.

I look forward to meeting you and supporting your wellness journey. I never get tired of seeing a life transformed and am honored at the opportunity to do that with you!

Thank you Stefanie for your amazing approach to staying healthy. I hope Stefanie has opened your eyes to alternative approaches if you find yourself uninsured!

Blessings,

Melissa

 

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5 Good Reasons For Self-Acceptance

5 Good Reasons For Self-Acceptance

finding the right tribe, self acceptance, love yourself, what does self esteem mean, setting healthy boundaries,It’s just been the last few years that I understood the concept of self-acceptance. Last week, I touched on the body shaming that I’m exposed to at the markets where I sell my products. Which got me to thinking…if you’re ashamed of your body, isn’t that a huge part of not accepting yourself?

It is indeed part of accepting yourself.

But disliking your own body is just the tip of the iceberg. The subject of self-acceptance (and its’ opposite, self-loathing) causes many an eye-roll especially from those who think the entire concept is ridiculous.

As a holistic life coach, I’ve learned just how amazing life is when you practice self-acceptance.

#1. Self-Acceptance Leads to More Peace

You are a human being and all human beings have faults and pasts and things we’re not proud of and mistakes and heartbreaks and grief – you get the picture. Showing compassion and not judging yourself so harshly allows you to release some of the stress in your life.

Okay – so you did something stupid. How does obsessing over it help? Would you REALLY tell your best friend how stupid she is if she did the same thing? So why do you beat the living snot out of yourself for being human?

If there’s anyone who’s a pro at beating the snot out of themselves, it’s me. My theory was that if I beat myself up first, then you couldn’t hurt me any worse than what I’ve already done.

Accept that you’re less than perfect and not every single day will be stellar – allow yourself this much and you’ll find your stress level greatly reduced which invites more peace.

#2 Self-Acceptance Leads to Less Judgement

Sometimes, we’re so busy judging if what we have right now is good or bad that we don’t stop to enjoy life in this moment. We compare ourselves to the wonderful (albeit false) social media life that we believe everyone has except us. It may be tough, but sometimes simply accepting where you’re at in life helps you see the beauty that is around you at this moment. And when you can see the beauty from moment to moment, you’re far less likely to judge yourself – or anyone else – with a hardened heart.

Harsh and negative judgement about yourself (or others) is like trying to control a two year old having a temper tantrum in the middle of a crowded store. Your every thought is completely driven by emotion and hatred of what’s going on at this moment.

Sound familiar?

  • I shouldn’t have done ________. I’m so stupid!
  • That was a lousy decision and now look at my miserable life!
  • Of course he won’t call back – can I be any more boring?
  • I could just kick myself for saying _________. How could I have lost control like that?

In writing for PsychologyToday.com, Leon F. Seltzer, PhD, says:

To become more self-accepting, we must start by telling ourselves (repeatedly and–hopefully–with ever-increasing conviction) that given all of our negatively biased self-referencing beliefs, we’ve done the best we possibly could. In this light, we need to re-examine residual feelings of guilt, as well as our many self-criticisms and put-downs. We must ask ourselves specifically what it is we don’t accept about ourselves and, as agents of our own healing, bring compassion and understanding to each aspect of self-rejection or denial. By doing so, we can begin to dissolve exaggerated feelings of guilt and shame based on standards that simply didn’t mirror what could realistically be expected of us at the time.

There’s a pattern here that’s sometimes hard to break because you simply aren’t aware of what you’re doing – it’s become a habit. Simply stop what you’re doing and take a deep breath. To help change this habit, see what’s around you in this moment that you can accept with some measure of grace. Remember, nobody has the perfect life – nobody at all!

#3 Self-Acceptance Leads to Finding The Right People for YOU

Not only am I a middle child but I spent a lifetime being a people pleaser. Therefore, I became the person everyone else wanted me to be. I wanted to be liked and I wanted desperately to fit in. My opinions were not accepted so I became critical, exhausted, defensive, fearful – and the worst – feeling like a fraud. I completely lost my real self because I wanted to please everyone on my path. When you live in your own integrity – live the right life for you – the right people always come into your life.

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. They fill a need you have, to teach you a lesson or to teach you to grow as a human being. Look around at the people in your life. What does their collective presence tell you? Are you in mostly satisfying relationships? Do you have more than your share of toxic relationships? 

At one point in my life, every single relationship in my daily life was in a complete shambles. I had reached the point of total burn out and there was no relief in sight. Over the course of about three months, I looked at who I was – who I REALLY was. And I didn’t know Melissa at all. The face staring back at me in the mirror was in pain because I just wanted to fit in with people that weren’t really right for me. I blew in whatever direction the wind blew because I wanted to be accepted. I never was accepted for the real me because I didn’t accept the real me. When I stepped out of the box people had put me in, those relationships completely fell apart.

My tribe – those beautiful souls who are right for me – consists of less than 10 people. In that group, there’s kindness, honesty, compassion – and the best part of all? When my light was so dim, it was this very small circle of friends who saw my light for me.

I have learned to accept and love my quirks. I’m brave, wise, feisty, sassy, compassionate, opinionated, and warm. I refuse to dim my light to make someone else feel comfortable. 

When you accept yourself, you will find the right friends – the right people will show up in your life.

#4 Self-Acceptance Leads to More Energy

When you don’t accept who you really are, you tend to focus on everyone else around you. You spend so much time worrying about what everyone thinks, how to make them happy, how to fit in and how to be accepted that you don’t have time for anything else. And that includes taking care of yourself.

You can’t give someone a drink from an empty cup. When you’re tired, frustrated and maybe even lost your way, your energy is sapped. There’s no joy in life and there’s nothing left over for you. When you accept exactly who you are – warts and all – then you don’t have to hide or spend time denying the real you.

Condemning the parts of yourself that you cannot accept eats away at your self-esteem and in turn, your energy. This isn’t to say that you ignore or make excuses for poor behavior. It simply means you don’t apologize for taking up space on the planet. You are a beautiful soul and there’s no need to hide your light or apologize for being who you are!

#5 Self-Acceptance Leads to Setting Healthy Boundaries

How many times have you said yes to something that you really didn’t want to do? You really want to say no, but somebody’s feelings are hurt, and now you feel bad and unacceptable.

You have a right to personal boundaries and truthfully, it’s your responsibility to teach people how to treat you. Your needs and desires are every bit as important as the next guy. If something doesn’t fit with your life, your time or your ethics, simply – and respectfully – say “No, thank you.” It’s a complete sentence and you don’t owe anyone an explanation. Period.

Setting healthy boundaries allows you to put yourself first and make decisions that are right for you. If there are some who get angry and choose not to be in your life, see point number 3 above.

Where Does Holistic Life Coaching Fit In?

I’ve learned some hard lessons along the way by not accepting the real person I am. Through the wisdom of holistic life coaching, I learned just how valuable a human being I am. My paradigms have changed, and I’ve learned to accept who I am without becoming a punching bag for the self-help industry.

Let’s talk today. Take a moment to fill out a short contact form and let’s get started.

Blessings,

Melissa