One of the goals mentioned by several participants was to avoid the seasonal blahs/depression that comes with it getting dark earlier, and the gray skies of winter. What kept coming up was food prep and consistent exercise, which are at the heart of staying on track.
So, if we KNOW that food prep and consistent exercise are at the heart of maintaining our fitness and feeling better about ourselves, WHY don't we do it?
Many of the obstacles that were talked about had to do with people pleasing, finding our voice and taking care of others. It is a tough balance, to fulfill our roles as partner, mother, daughter, caregiver, etc. But as most of us will learn at some point, if we don't take care of ourselves, too, we won't be our best selves to our people. We may even wind up unhealthy, angry and resentful. The irony is that we were the ones choosing to put others before ourselves all along. It's how we get our approval and worth.
As a recovering approval junkie, the question I always ask myself is, "What would my choice be right now if I remember I am already approved of and deeply valued?"
Sometimes it's not the default choice! Sometimes it's taking that hour so I can exercise first, then showing up for my people. Sometimes it's cooking what is best for me, and letting everyone else know if they don't like it, they can make themselves a sandwich. Sometimes it is saying, I love you honey for buying me Oreo's but what would really help me right now is an hour to myself.
It takes finding your voice and holding onto healthy boundaries, which is a very difficult practice. I understand completely.
That's where compassionate accountability comes in. One of our Rise UP! participants used that term as a strategy to stay on track, and I just love it. It is the opposite of shaming someone.
Shame says get on a scale to see if you did "good or bad". Compassionate accountability says showing up for yourself is the victory.
Shame says you have to be fast enough, thin enough, whatever enough. Compassionate accountability says with gentleness, find the right level FOR YOU.
Shame says you missed one, you blew it. Compassionate accountability says keep going, keep moving forward.
Shame says you'll never succeed, you are a failure, worthless. Compassionate accountability says you may have setbacks and failures, but your identity remains VALUED, WORTHY.
The way to empowerment and self-worth is through compassionate accountability. Love doesn't say do whatever the heck you want! Love says take care of yourself. You are needed! You have purpose. Love says I will help you. I will listen. I will be there. I will not judge, nor will I let you quit.
That moment is yours. You have the power to choose. Rise UP and choose YOU, and show your people what the brightest, highest, best version of you looks like. Shine your light and let the whole world see. Even in the dark of winter.
Now get moving!