Sobriety can be hard. Like, really hard. To me, a life of sobriety has meant a lifestyle of being awake. All. The. Time. It’s fucking exhausting. I’m tired. Meditation and yoga help to an extent. Quality time with friends and family can be relaxing. Work outs release endorphins. But those solutions are all temporary. When I’m alone on the train ride home, alone in my bed, or alone with my thoughts, anxious feelings that I chose to momentarily ignore manage to get all of my attention. I’m beginning to think that life may be a series of temporary events to get me through to the next one.
As much as I love New York City, I love getting away from it, too. A few weeks ago, I traded 30 degrees on the East Coast for 80 degrees in Mexico. I even set a sassy auto-reply for my email account: “Soaking up the sun and binge drinking virgin cocktails in Mexico.” And binge drink virgin cocktails, I did. I drank my weight in Mexican Coke and limonadas – no hangovers, no blackouts.
Back in my fitness instructor days, my Instagram account proudly endorsed the #eatclean movement to the point of annoyance. I, like many other fitness professionals, thought that this hashtag would inspire people to make nutritious food choices. While it may have inspired some, I’m finally realizing that using phrases like “eat clean” could be down right insensitive and borderline damaging.
In case you missed my last post, I recently participated in Scare Your Soul, a challenge that encourages you to live outside of your comfort zone for 3 days. On day 1 & 2, I tackled my body image issues. I wanted day 3 to remain on the same body positivity path, but I was stumped as to how to go about it. My roomie / editor, Alisson, suggested that my third and final challenge should be eating processed foods for a day, every meal. I cringed and said “Nope. No way. There’s no way I can do that”. Then I realized that’s exactly what I needed to do. She encouraged me to do this because she thinks I’ve become a pretentious food snob (this is how we talk to each other, we’re very close) who only eats artisanal, organic, hipster foods. She suggested that maybe eating like I used to will remind me where I came from, and get me back in touch with my roots.
Challenge accepted. Let’s eat dirty.
This morning, while chatting with one of my clients, she asked, “How do I cope with the guilt of setting myself up for failure by not following through with a set goal?”. I believe she was actually experiencing shame, not guilt. (My homegirl, Brene Brown has made a career out of identifying the difference between the two feelings). The goal my client was referring to was her participation in an online accountability group I started this month called #soberinjune. A few days into June, my client realized she was not in a place where she can take on this challenge.
I answered her question by asking a few of my own: “What’s your Why? Why did you initially decide to be sober for a month, and why did you change your mind?” This “ask why” advice can actually be applied to most aspects of goal setting.
I have an addictive personality. I don’t just like something…I LOOOOOVE something. And I want everyone to love it, too. I’ve been told that my excitement can come across as pushy, aggressive, and judgmental at times, so I’ve been working on scaling that back a bit. But to be completely honest, I’ve been “working on” a lot. From being more vulnerable to being less judgmental to communicating more clearly to improving my running pace to having a flatter stomach to writing more often to being a better listener to eating less sugar to blah blah blah. You get the idea. It’s f***ing exhausting and I don’t know how to give myself a break. Continue reading “Addiction to Personal Development”
A few years ago – when I was still living in Waco, Texas – I stumbled upon a YouTube video of Gabrielle Bernstein a.k.a. The Spirit Junkie. The more videos she posted, the more I learned about her. Seeing that she went from party girl to spiritual guru gave me hope. I hoped for the courage to talk about my secrets with confidence in a way that Gabby spoke about her addictions and other issues she was working through. I knew that one day I would be sober like Gabby, and could have a blog like Gabby. Maybe I could even inspire people with my story and help others…..just like Gabby.
I’m currently in the process of a spiritual cleansing. I’m removing things from my plate that no longer satisfy my appetite. This unintentional cleanse started on December 1st when my body, tired of waiting on permission from my mind, decided I needed to stop drinking. It showed up again last week when I realized music journalism was a hobby, not a passion. Now it’s encouraging me to be present to the moment instead of maniacally manifesting the next.
If you’ve met me, you know I’m
obsessed with passionate about goal setting. I’ve probably asked you about what goals you’re currently working towards, if you’ve made a vision board, and how I can help. Continue reading “Manifest & Chill: Advice from Gabby Bernstein”