The warrior within
From “victim” to “warrior” – there’s no stopping now!
One of the most frequently asked questions I get asked when I speak to an audience about my personal transformation for the first time is: “If you had to choose between sustaining the internal changes you’ve experienced and the external changes — losing & keeping off -200 lbs — which would you choose?”
The answer is easy. Without hesitation, I would choose to keep the internal changes, including: Gaining self-love and acceptance; learning radical self-compassion and self-care; learning to restart without beating myself up; unstoppable grit and determination; perseverance and patience when things are tough and the confidence that I will be okay; a quiet confidence that I can do absolutely anything I set my mind to; and the gift of a healthy mindset and a WHOLE life!
Often people are surprised by my answer. But, for me, it’s simple: The personal growth I’ve experienced is dramatic and life changing. So much so, that if I did put all of the weight back on (God forbid), I know I could get it off again because of the changes I’ve made on the inside. In essence, it’s my internal transformation that makes ALL the difference.
This has never been more prevalent than it is for me today.
A warrior vs. victim mindset & why it matters
I’m living proof that how you think about yourself, take care of yourself, and hold yourself in the context of your life — makes ALL the difference in the outcome. In addition to being living proof, I aim to be a beacon of light and hope for those that struggle with self-worth and self-care.
If you actively (or subconsciously) think you are not good enough — smart enough, strong enough, persistent enough, beautiful enough, sexy enough — then odds are those thoughts will become a self-fulfilling prophecy. They did for me! And not only will this limiting belief hold you back and stop you from “going for it,” it will likely project in all areas of your life and become how others experience you.
In other words, if you live as a “victim” of your circumstances vs. a warrior who champions your own life, you absolutely will be a victim of your circumstances. Remember, I do NOT say this maliciously or lightly, I know the heaviness of this statement! This is coming from the girl who lived life stuck and small for so many years, hiding behind all that weight — and behind the belief that I wasn’t enough. Food was my “go to” numbing drug to bury the pain, fear, self-doubt, and insecurity. I blamed others, myself, and my life circumstances. I made excuses for why I couldn’t change, all the while drowning out my pain with food.
And then I DID change — my thinking and my life!
Once I decided that I deserved better, that I could do it, and I was the only one who could, it changed my life. Of course, this was a process and did not happen over night. I had to do the work. But the point is, it’s possible. If I can do it, so can you. So if you’re reading this and thinking that I have something extra special that you don’t have — that’s bull_ _ _ _ ! Rather, I made the decision that I wanted and deserved something better, and then I did the work. And YOU can too!
You can change your life. In fact, you’re the only one who can. I personally believe you’re more resilient than you think and I hope this blog inspires just one of you to take a step.
So, are you a warrior or a victim? You get to decide.
What is a victim mentality vs. warrior spirit?
Let me preface this answer by saying that I’m not an expert on anyone other than myself and my experience. I am not a psychologist! But I am living proof. And, I’m now a trained health and wellness coach who’s seen countless people — women especially — struggling in the depths of their soul to like/love themselves and to go for their dreams. Trust me, if you are in this camp, you are NOT alone.
Living with a victim mentality means focusing primarily on the struggle and the negative in life, while feeling a victim of your circumstances. It’s often seeing yourself and your life as not good enough, not measuring up, or put another way, the glass “half empty.” It usually means blaming yourself, others, and/or life circumstances for where you are. This kind of thinking most often stems from a difficult childhood in which you were either treated, told or learned to believe you were not good enough. These incorrect or limiting beliefs too hold and became ingrained in how you see yourself and the world. It is understandable. But it also can be changed. So please if you find yourself in this camp — don’t give up!
A warrior, on the other hand, is someone who exhibits grit stemming from a belief in yourself and in your ability to weather the storm, to succeed, to persevere, to learn, to grow. I think of a warrior or a warrior spirit as someone who faces adversity head on instead of throwing in the towel — someone who becomes a powerful force for change in their own lives and often helps others. Someone who has had to learn to push past fear, self-doubt, and struggle in pursuit of the goal. Most importantly, a warrior knows she cannot control certain circumstances but can control how she views those circumstances. She doesn’t give up when the going gets really, really hard. And she focuses on controlling that which she can — herself, her mindset, her actions, her next step.
The warrior within — needed now more than ever!
Sometimes we need to dig awfully deep to summon the warrior within us. I’m writing this blog today because my warrior spirit is being tested and is needed now more than ever! As I venture deeper into my 2019 goal to STRETCH outside the box of life as I’ve known it, I am being internally challenged and it’s bringing up old crap.
The uncertainty of the path I’ve deliberately chosen has brought with it old habits and destructive behaviors that want to fight their way back into my life with vengeance. This includes emotional or binge eating over anxiety, stress, and loneliness. As I’ve pushed myself farther and farther outside of my comfort zone, this old pattern/habit has come ravaging back to test my resolve, my resilience, and my newer healthy habits that truthfully have a shorter life span!
Surprisingly, I did I not see this coming. After six years of living healthy, happy and WHOLE, sans -200 lbs, I did not expect it to be so easy to revert back to emotional eating. Now, the warrior in me is needed, as is the self-loving, self-compassionate, forgiving girl who knows this journey and also knows it won’t be easy.
I could choose to be the victim because I’m struggling and have put about 40 lbs back on. But I’m choosing to tell the world and be straight up about it, all while embracing my beautiful warrior spirit. I am absolutely refusing to be a victim. I refuse to make excuses. I refuse to throw in the towel. Hell, I refuse to let those limiting beliefs or Gremlin voices drive – they are staying in the back seat where they belong!
This wellness warrior, heart warrior, and kick-ass adventurer is on a life mission and there is no turning back now! So, that internal transformation I referred to earlier — well it is everything right now! I am in it. I am deep in it with those of you currently struggling to find your way.
YOU have a warrior within…
…We all do! So, if you’re reading this and you need a boost today — here’s my message to you: Find your warrior within, dust her off and let her soar! And don’t be afraid to ask for help! Yep, you heard me. If you need help from a psychologist or coach – ask for it. I did! If you need advice or support from friends and family — ask for it! If you want to know what daily practices I implement to make sure my warrior is alive and well, PM me and I will share. I am here for you.
But, since we’re talking truth, know this: You have to be willing to do the work. Only you can change your life. Only you can walk your path. That’s the good news and the tough news. It requires action.
A warrior goes ALL-IN and does not shy away from the challenge of the journey. She embraces it! A warrior does not beat herself up for the struggle, but rather acknowledges it’s hard and moves forward. A warrior is not afraid to ask for help. Right? Right!
So, join me in being a warrior. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and do one thing to take a step forward in the life you want. And know that you can do this. We can do this. We’ve totally got this!
Happy #MotivationMonday & cheers to all the warriors in my midst!
Read these related blogs on internal transformation, the warrior spirit, resilience, and plowing through when the going gets tough:
- 2019: The Year of STRETCH (Feb. 2019)
- Healthy, happy & whole sans -200 lbs: More than a weight-loss story, it’s an inside job (May 2017)
- Changing from the inside out (Aug. 2016)
- Resilience. The key to healthy, happy & whole (May 2016)
- Self-compassion is not selfish. It’s necessary! (Oct. 2015)
- A beautiful resilience (Sept. 2015)
- From fear & dread to anticipation & love – my mountain! (Dec. 2014)
- From lost hope to beyond grateful (Aug. 2014)
There is one easy answer to why changing your mindset from a victim mentality to one of a warrior, really, really matters — it is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you walk around feeling down and feeling bad about yourself and your life, it absolutely will manifest in what shows up for you and how your life unfolds. I know this, because I have lived it. And I know it’s hard and it really sucks. Really sucks. My heart aches for you if you are reading this and feeling like you are what’s getting in your own way, because I know that pain. So let me just stop here and say – I know your pain.
I also know that YOU are the only one who can change your life. YOU have the power to change it, and when you do, you will feel the opposite. You will feel happy, and healthy and WHOLE. And that is the reason to do the hard work of turning inwardly and being honest with yourself about what’s really going on.