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Halfway there.

My loves – I have decided to call this our halfway point. It could be Sunday too but this is where my writing is taking me so I’m rolling with it.

Anyways, here is today’s prompt:


“What are you proud of yourself for? What parts of yourself have surprised you this month? What have you learned?”


I want to make this clear – this isn’t about being proud of only the parts of us that are perfect. Whatever the last two weeks have looked like for you, I hope you’ll let yourself be proud of what you’ve done.


Small changes are how we heal. Think of our friends, the caterpillars. Who spend days and days and days eating and eating and eating with no end in sight. And then they curl up into a ball and go into total darkness in order to undergo transformation.


I would be so scared of that part. The cocoon part. I’m sure caterpillars are not scared but it reminds me so much of how it feels to grow and change. The part of growth and change that is dark and lonely.


As we make changes we will find ourselves shaming the part of us that aren't perfect all of the time. I ask you to resist the part of yourself that only deems perfect changes as worthy changes. Any effort you have made to take care of yourself today or this month or whenever is valid and worthy. Show up for yourself as often as you can and be kind to yourself on the days that you can't.


I used to try do yoga EVERY single morning. My alarm would go off and sometimes I would do it and it would be amazing and I’d be so proud of myself but then I’d be just so upset with myself if I didn’t get up that morning. I convinced myself that if I had a bad day it was because I was being “lazy.” But what do you know? I still don’t want to wake up early and do yoga. And I love yoga but it doesn’t get me out of bed at 6:30am.


You know what does?


All of you guys. This space, tik tok, Instagram – everyone who is interacting with these posts and showing up for themselves has renewed a fire under my ass and I haven’t missed my alarm once.


These past two weeks have been such a kindness from me to myself. A reminder that I am capable of working hard and getting up early and prioritizing my goals and dreams – a set of skills I thought was forever lost but now I learned that they were just waiting for me to find the thing that brought me life to come back to me.


In the past, I would have said that my new habits were only important if they were executed everyday perfectly but that would be giving myself no grace, no learning curve. We are humans after, change takes time. This past year has taught me that small changes add up. Small kindnesses to yourself do eventually make a difference

.

You cannot hate yourself into loving yourself.


And you cannot do a new habit by forcing yourself to conquer it.


If this month has been a challenge for you – so much so that you feel like you can’t participate at all, make it easier on yourself! Make your goal smaller so it’s attainable. Our brains get just as excited about small goals as they do about big ones so if you can’t journal every day – shoot for once a week or once every 2-3 days. Give yourself some time to get used to your new habits and as you do that, you will just naturally want to do them more often.


If you haven’t done something before, your brain is naturally going to resist it – not because there’s something wrong with you but because our brains are wired to not like change until they have evidence of it’s benefit. And even then, new habits mean new systems and that can take a long time to create.


So for me I would immediately see the benefits of yoga but the brain isn’t a one time exposure kind of gal. Especially when it comes to a task that may or may not be enjoyable in the moment.


This is why it’s important to allow yourself grace when you want to do new things. Don’t force yourself to like something but also give your brain time to see if the new thing is helpful.


Habits and changes and new routines can be so daunting and terrifying. So don’t start with the big picture life. When we do that we think we need to change everything about ourselves in order to heal but that isn’t true. We can make small changes and just by domino – those small changes will affect others and so on and so forth. It’s about letting yourself be ok with doing the smallest thing every day and not burning out or giving up on yourself in the process.


How many times have you gone onto a whole new change everything lifestyle only for you to burn out on in two weeks later? Yeah that's because change is so hard on the brain. It's not because we are lazy or don't have enough willpower. Willpower isn't a renewable resource and so the more changes we make, the more exhausted we're going to be and eventually we'll give up because it's too much all at once.


Big changes are a lot more fun – there’s a lot more to show off when we can have a big dramatic before and after. But that’s not where the work is.


The work is in the everyday, the little tiny things. Maybe it’s saying an affirmation while you’re brushing your teeth. Maybe it’s taking a walk once a week with your kid. Maybe it’s taking that art class you’re always seeing an ad for.


We don’t have to conquer the world to be proud of ourselves. We are allowed to jump for joy at the small things because they feel big to us. Allow yourself the freedom to be proud of yourself. Whatever work you have done this month, it is enough and I am so proud of you.

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