I’ve been reflecting on this past year, and thinking about the lessons I’ve learned throughout 2012. Some were easier to learn and others were a little more difficult. Here are my life lessons, what did you learn this year??
If You Surround Yourself With Positive, Creative, Hard Working People, You Are Inspired To Be A More Positive, Creative And Hard Working Person Yourself.
It feels like this year Adrian and I had the privilege to meet more and more creative, hard working and positive people. I want to be wildly successful (there, I said it “out loud!” Announcing what you want to the cyber world at large is always interesting!), and from what I can observe, in order to succeed you must surround yourself with like-minded people.
Until You Decide To Get Healthy And Loose Weight, You’re Not Going To Loose Any Weight.
I was always one of those people who was naturally thin. As a child, my paternal grandmother used to try and make me eat fat because she felt I was too skinny! I never had any problems loosing weight if I wanted to and it didn’t seem to matter what I ate, I stayed skinny. And then I turned 23 and went through some weird hormonal imbalance where the side affect was horrible acne and weight gain. Like 40 pounds of weight gain. Not cool at all, I kind of freaked out. According to my family, and I hate to admit it but they were right, I resembled a refrigerator, which is never a good thing. And then I discovered what everyone else had been bitching about all this time. It was hard to loose weight. This September, I made a conscious decision to get back to where I had been before I went through that weird imbalance (140lbs) and made a beginning goal to run 1 mile at a time, 3 days a week. Then I upped it to 2 and now my goal is 3 miles. I’m back to my “cowboy days” weight and I want to loose some more….anyone have any good tips?? I saw the best card the other day, it said summer bodies are made in the winter. I’m inspired to work my butt off this winter to have the healthiest, strongest body I’ve ever had for summer 2013! And this makes me think that this approach and mindset can be transferred to other areas of my life.
Practicing Every Day Will Radically Change You In Many Different Ways.
I started practicing the piano again. My mums signed Adrian and I up for classical piano lessons when we moved to Scotland (I was 8 and Adrian was 4), and I played until I was about 15 years old. For some reason I decided to stop in high school and when I was cowboying I of course did not travel with a baby-grand, so no practicing then either. This summer I decided to start playing again and when we were home, practice an hour a day. I felt so….OFF and rusty at first!! My fingers felt stiff, I was incredibly nervous for even my mums to hear me practice and I was frequently frustrated. But I kept with it and a change happened. I didn’t just get a little bit better, I got a LOT better. And it keeps building. I’ve also seen this with my writing. For the last several months I’ve been posting almost every day. The discipline to sit down, write about something that personally means something to me, edit it, get someone else to edit it for me and then post it has really stretched me as a writer. Adrian and I have a copy of Buckaroo Barbie that I was rereading the other day and I was amazed at how far I’ve come AS a writer, just in the last 6 weeks. Practice makes perfect, and good practice every day makes excellent. I want to be excellent, don’t you?!?!
Standing Up For You Is Liberating. Don’t Allow People Who Are Consistently Mean To You And Enjoy Bringing You Down To Be A Part Of Your Life.
Without going into a lot of sordid detail, I kicked someone out of my life this year that’s been a part of it for a while now. I let that person get away with a lot of flack that I shouldn’t have. I always made excuses for their behavior in the past and probably would have continued to, except that they crossed a line when they moved on to my sister. You might have noticed that I’m rather fond of that girl, and that’s what brought me up short in my tracks. The feeling is amazing. I don’t want to bad mouth or be negative to anyone, but I don’t worry or wonder what’s going to happen between us now. The little jabs and constant undermining aren’t a part of my life anymore, and you know what? It feels pretty darn good!! Don’t allow someone to be a part of your life if they’ve consistently shown they aren’t there because they love you. Don’t make a big deal out of it, just remove yourself from the situation and move on. It feels good.
When You Find Your Groove, Stick To It!
I cut out gluten from my diet this year and most of my Lyme symptoms have “magically” disappeared! Thanks to my diet and exercise I am able to travel with Adrian, handle business details and remain healthy and functioning through a lot of stress!! I tried a piece of my mums apple cake (see picture HERE) on Christmas day, and almost immediately I started feeling bad. My hips and knee joints hurt, I felt “shaky” and I had to take a nap. It wasn’t fun to feel sick again, but it was a good reinforcement to stick with the diet and exercise I had been for my optimum health. No more gluten for me!
Learning To Effectively Communicate With People Is The Best Business Skill You Can Learn.
I’m not talking about communicating your deepest needs and feelings to people, but being able to effectively communicate, calmly and succinctly, in times of stress. If you can remain calm and logical under attack and respond in a manner that’s not going to inflame your opponent further, you have a skill that will help you succeed in life. My dad is the best negotiator I’ve ever met, and I use him as a model for how I want to be able to better communicate with people in my life.
In Order To Be Your Personal Best, Discover Your Baseline Essentials.
Every body has some basic essentials that they need in order to function. Mine are: clean, organic food, exercise, water, coffee and pen and paper. If I have these 5 basic essentials, I can survive and it brings about optimum results in all aspects of my life. For a while I tried to get by without my basic needs because I thought it was silly that I would require such specific things, but I just don’t get along as well without them as I do with them! And I want to be the best I can be in all aspects of my life, so if having good food, exercise, water, coffee and a means to write helps me be that excellent version of me, then I’m gonna make sure they’re in my life!! What are your essentials?
When You Think You’re Going To Break, You Learn That You Can Still Bend.
Our family went through some hard times this year, and I honestly got to a place where I felt like I wasn’t going to be able to handle one more thing. You get to a certain point and you feel like the only possible outcome is for your heart, soul and body to shatter from stress and pain. And the shocking thing is, it doesn’t. I discovered that right when I thought I couldn’t handle any more and the stress was too much, I didn’t break, I could bend. When we are faced with no other options we draw on reserves we didn't know we had. Many times, we are stronger than we ever would have realized unless we went through the bad times. Which led me right into my last lesson…
From Discomfort Comes Change.
When I’m really, really uncomfortable, that’s when I’m changing. If I’m exercising and my body hurts or it feels impossible to breath, that’s when fat is burning and my heart is getting stronger. When I’m uncomfortable in a business or family situation because I don’t have the proper tools or experiences, that discomfort eventually brings about change for the better. You either sink or swim and for me, sinking is just not an option. I’m learning to take my moments of being awkward, frightened, uncomfortable and embarrassed and using them to my advantage. I’m learning to look at them as learning experiences and allow them to show me where I’m lacking and where I can improve in life; be it in my exercise, business or becoming a better communicater with my family. Discomfort brings about change. And change is a good thing. We can’t succeed or grow in life if we’re stagnant…and we want to grow!!!
I’m looking forward to going through my goals from 2012 and seeing how I’ve grown and where I fell short. I’m going to approach 2013 from the viewpoint that this is going to be my best year yet and I’m going to work my butt off to make it that way. I hope you do the same and don’t let the trials and the road bumps (for some of us they may be more like mountains than road bumps), slow you down or discourage you. March or twirl or dance or ride smartly into 2013 with the best attitude you’ve got and experience under your belt from the lessons you learned in 2012…go out there and show ‘em how it’s done! I believe in you!!
xo xo Liz