Today is day 22 of my 30-Day Paleo Challenge. I have been working really hard to keep my carb cravings at bay, and man is it hard sometimes! After about 7 days, my body feels like it’s on the verge of shutting down; I have super low energy, don’t feel like doing anything, and I end up laying in bed, dreaming about the next time I can eat “carbs.”
I have been finding that I need at least one “cheat” day every week or else I don’t think I could survive (yep, I’m being dramatic, but I don’t care! That’s how I feel!) I’ve also been getting my notorious low-carb headaches again and those just aren’t any fun.
On a positive note, whatever I’ve been doing seems to be working, as my body is feeling and looking tighter, which is pretty much the only thing motivating me to keep going right now!
My struggle with food is very real, and the feelings I feel on my “dark” days cause me to ask myself some serious questions, like:
- How do people function feeling like this? I mean, these low-energy bouts are seriously restricting on my constant need to get sh*t DONE!
- Isn’t this supposed to be fun?!
- Why don’t I ever feel 100%, no matter what I eat? I used to be able to eat basically whatever I wanted and feel generally fine; did something change internally in me?
- I used to have bountiful amounts of energy all the time… where did it all go?
- Is the magnitude of stress I’ve been under the cause of this?
- I never had a problem reaching my goals in the past, is there something mentally wrong with me?
- Am I missing something in my life that gives me that drive and motivation to achieve my goals?
- Do I put too much pressure on myself?
- Is there not enough life-work balance in my life?
- Have I developed new allergies to certain foods that I didn’t even know about?
- What is it that other people are doing who seem to get results “without even really trying?” Why is it so “easy” for them?
I constantly feel the need to shout, “THE STRUGGLE IS REAL!!!”
I mean, c’mon. I’m a health coach. I know how to eat. I know what to eat. I know the system I’ve been using works. The only variable is ME. So what the heck is my deal?! What is wrong with me?! I feel like I try hard by working out hard, tracking everything I eat, avoiding the things I’m not supposed to eat, keeping my carb/protein/fat ratios where they should be, keeping my calories within my goal range… yet, I don’t feel like I get as fast results as I want. It’s exhausting.
I know you can always try harder but trying harder is discouraging because I already feel like I’m trying SO HARD. I try so hard that I literally feel like I burn myself out. And then I just want to say F it, and go have some well-deserved fun, which usually includes food/alcohol/laying around being lazy. It’s becoming a vicious cycle and something needs to change.
Now, as I reflect on how I’ve been feeling, I have come to this possible conclusion; My struggles generate from working through my own world that has been shook up like a ginormous snow globe, and then kicked against a wall over and over again, until it shattered. Ever since I turned 30, three years ago, I have been under more stress than I have ever been in my life. And most of the stresses I’ve been under have been new stresses that I’ve never experienced up until now, so I’ve never had to deal with them before.
“Stress is an intrusion on your peaceful existence. All of us strive to have orderly and peaceful lives. We tend to develop well when we get into certain routines. Human beings are all animals. If you have ever owned a dog, you may have observed that the dog thrived very well on routine. You had to walk the animal a certain time each day, it had to be fed at a certain time each day and it slept at a certain time each day. The dog depended on a routine.
When the routine was broken, the dog would do things such as have accidents in the house, or behave in another destructive type manner. This is because the dog was actually stressed out. Why was the dog stressed out? The routine had been broken.
Human beings behave the same way.” – Top 5 Stressful Situations, on HealthStatus.com
For starters, one thing I do know about myself is that I work best in a structured environment with schedules, timeframes, and routines. When I don’t have that, I feel like I lose “control.” That being said, I’ve always been a busy person and have been able to be involved with many different things at once, but I also have had that steady paycheck every week and wasn’t having to move multiple times a year. Money has always been one of my biggest stressors. I hate numbers, math and dealing with any kind of financial crap. When I know I’m financially stable, things seem to run more smoothly.
I don’t have that right now.
I quit my 9-5 graphic design job almost 2 years ago to be my own boss and to figure out how to make my own income. I did this because I wanted time freedom and I wanted to be able to work from home. Well, I get to do that now, but in turn, I have to worry about money a lot more often. I have had to force myself to do sales and customer service (two things I majorly dislike) and to top it off, I’ve had to learn accounting (the devil!) I feel like I do more of that kind of stuff than I do what I love (design and marketing.) And on top of all of THAT, I have been learning how to be a health coach; getting outside my comfort zone by being in the spot light, training others, and helping other people get results (I don’t like teaching people and I don’t like being the center of attention.) Plus I drive for Lyft on the side, which is a service, so I have to be super friendly to people. I’m doing a lot of things that are actually kind of draining for my personality. I like to design stuff and work alone. Simple.
Don’t get me wrong, I like to be social as well, but I need to feel that stability behind me or else my stress shows through (I’m really not that great at hiding it… I’m working on that, but that requires even MORE effort and well, sometimes I just don’t think I can give any more.)
On top of all of this, I’ve had to deal with some mentally unstable people in my life path (ex-boyfriend and then a roommate.) They tried to take me down for no reason other than the fact that they were both insecure with themselves and hated the fact that I was the opposite; secure with myself and doing things that helped me grow, made me happy and put me on the path to a successful future. What I didn’t understand for the longest time, is why they would play these mental games with someone who actually respected themselves and didn’t put up with nonsense. They purposely tried to hurt me, both financially and emotionally, and although they did, I am trying not let them keep me down. They have “hardened” my easy-going personality, which is a good thing in a certain light, but I have found it very difficult to trust or to open myself up completely to anyone, even friends! What they put me through makes me feel like my soul was drained from my body and then ripped into a million pieces. The healing process of putting those pieces back together is something that, I’ve found, many other people just don’t understand. It can be a long, grueling process, however, I won’t let that hold me back from finding myself again.
Because of these, for lack of a better word, ASSHOLES, I’ve also had to move multiple times. They say moving is #3 on the top 5 stressful situations, and I most definitely agree. I moved into my own place a little over a month ago, and feel confident that I won’t have to move again for another year at least (I better not have to!) I have a year lease, however, that doesn’t always mean you’re going to be there for a whole year. I definitely learned that lesson in the past. At least I only have myself to depend on now!) Rent is pretty high (for my current situation,) and utilities are separate, so that will probably be stressful paying those bills every month.
Oh well. At least I got away from those jerks. 🙂
Additionally, I’ve also had 2 deaths in my family in the past 2 years. Of course, those were very emotional experiences, not to mention, I had to travel pretty far for each one.
Anyways, I’m not writing to whine about my situation, but rather continue to figure out the root of my problems so I can figure out how to change them for the better. I fight an inner daily battle with myself on the decisions I make and how to deal with situations the best way that I can. I understand working through all of these things will take time, so I’m trying to be okay with that. Slow progress is still progress, right? At least I’m pretty resilient and stubborn. I am willing to fight my way to success… I just wish I could catch a freakin’ break!
I’ve decided to make some changes to my daily personal life and have begun putting those things into action over the past week (and I’ve actually been feeling better!) I’m hoping these things will help take some stress off of me for a bit so that I can refocus and feel refreshed.
One major thing I definitely need to do is develop a schedule/routine for myself and stick to it, just like a 9-5 job would have me doing.
I also need to focus more on my graphic design business because that has sort of been put on the back burner. I need to do more of that because that’s what I truly love and that’s also what makes me the most money. I don’t know why I always try to resist what I’m supposed to do, when I know just doing it will get me the results I want. I guess I’m just a rebel without a cause. Silly, I know.
Additionally, I have been setting time aside to have more “me time;” doing things that I enjoy and that aren’t draining on me. Although I love going to the Herbalife Fit Clubs, I’ve had to cut back on those because right now, I want to spend more time weight lifting at the gym (I want to work on building more muscle, and not so much just shredding fat.) I spent money on a gym membership and I have barely been using it! I don’t want to be that kind of person. I also realized most of the hours in my day were spent working out, and I just don’t have the time to spend working out that much a day. I need to work (as in do things that make me money) more. Plus, the more I work out, the more I have to eat, and the more money I have to spend. Hopefully some day I’ll be able to work out all I want, but the reality is, I’m not there yet.
I have also decided to get back to the dating scene… I don’t feel like I need to be in a relationship, but I’ve been completely single for 2 1/2 years (and the last 6 months I haven’t even gone on a date or even been talking to anyone!) I’m thinking that I might be ready to have someone to look forward to seeing on a regular basis. Someone who likes to do the same kind of stuff as me, who’s a good balance and is just that person I can lean on. I don’t know how much luck I’ll have but I’ve started putting myself back out there, so it’s a start. So far, I’ve had a lot of fun just going out on spontaneous dates. 🙂 I love adventures and definitely have missed that aspect of fun in my life. Just letting things go with the flow! Who knows, maybe I’ll meet some cool new people and make some new friends and new experiences at the very least!
Anyways, those are my weekly thoughts and ramblings! Stay tuned for more stories of my entrepreneurial journey! I love all of you who continue to show your support in any way you can! xo