From lost hope to #beyondgrateful
Filled with gratitude for the ability to go from small life to WHOLE life!
I woke up Saturday morning, after a week and half of struggle to get back into my MN routine, beyond grateful.
As I entered my day, I was overwhelmed with thoughts about where I am today compared to where I was just four or five years ago. This contrast was just what I needed. The ability to see the big picture from 35,000 feet of all I’ve accomplished and to feel my wildest dreams now coming true.
For those of you that don’t know my story, this November will mark the four-year anniversary of the major turning point in my life. My decision to put myself in the equation of my own life, get healthy and follow my dreams. This is when my transformation journey began.
In the process, I lost -211 lbs and nearly 50% body fat, achieving my weight goal in May 2012. But, as I’ve often said, it is the internal transformation that has blown me away and that has allowed me to live a WHOLE life and successfully maintain my weight loss for more than two years.
Lost hope = lonely, small life
When I was a fat girl, a workaholic and living as if I were not even in the picture (equation) of my own life, I had lost hope for most of the things that I have achieved today. I gave up my big, hairy audacious goals and tried to be content with what I had — a small but fairly good life.
I gave up my biggest dreams because deep inside I didn’t think I would ever achieve them; I wasn’t sure I deserved them; and I was afraid — afraid to fail and prove myself right, and afraid I might succeed and then what?! Remember, I didn’t think I deserved a better life. I was lonely deep inside, even though I had tons of friends and a growing business.
What I didn’t fully appreciate at the time is that the life I had resigned myself to was slowly killing me — figuratively and literally. Stroke, heart disease, diabetes and depression all run in my family, and at 381 pounds I was on a fast track to an early death via obesity. But the weight, personal limitations and lost hope had also killed my inner spirit/spark and my ability to go after my dreams. I was living small, existing, going through the motions of my day focused on everyone and everything but me and my happiness. And, somehow, I had convinced myself that this was it. This was my life.
#beyondgrateful for hope, dreams and a WHOLE life
So to wake up this weekend and be overwhelmed with gratitude for those very things that I had given up but now have — well, this was the coolest experience. I saw myself and my life as it is today — with some emotional struggle and stress — from 35,000 feet. And I smiled and smiled and smiled. What a gift!
My #beyondgrateful list is so powerful that I have to share it here. This is the big stuff, the very stuff I had given up on five or more years ago, and actually HAVE in my life today. (I’m not even listing the 30+ little things I am grateful for every day!)
Lori’s #beyondgrateful list:
- A healthy and fit body. No more medications, acid reflux, fear of sleep apnea, back pain, chest pains, tingling in my feet. Instead, the ability to move and scale mountains. To wear normal size clothes, designer clothes, and dresses! To walk everywhere. And to smile almost every time I look in the mirror.
- A healthy, active and happy life with me in the center. I now live from the center of my equation and love and accept myself as I am. This is HUGE. I dreamt of more time for myself, more of my dreams come true — including love, travel, and career success…making a difference in the world.
- Love, romance — a partner. I had thrown in the towel on romantic love and shut myself off as a protection mechanism. In fact, I remember consciously giving up the idea that I would/could be loved for who I was, exactly as I was. I gave up the notion that someone would find me sexy, desirable and worthy of the greatest and deepest kind of love. Well, these past 10 months, I’ve been smiling a lot more and in different ways. Enough said. 🙂
- Living and working by the sea. For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to live by the sea. It might be the Aquarian in me, but when I was a little girl I dreamt of a cottage by the sea and creating a simple but wonderful life. After I lost the weight and was searching for love (online dating and …), I thought this one goal might allude me. Well, I don’t what the future will bring, but right now I’m blessed to live and work part-time in a beautiful community in Maine that I’ve loved for 10 years as a vacationer. And, that lovely little community is embracing me — I’m meeting amazing new people and making new friends. In my 50’s!
- Meaningful work that makes a difference. For most of my career I’ve had this goal and I’m very proud of my career path and success to date. This year marked the 7th year of my Marketing that Matters business — a huge success in and of itself. But I am now also making a difference through my “In the Equation” work and truly feel this is my God-given path to impacting the world. I believe I was given this path for that reason — to touch people and inspire and coach them to better lives, whole lives. So, even though these past few months have been stressful and tough to balance operating from two states, I consider myself lucky because I simply LOVE what I do, it DOES make a difference, and I KNOW this is just the beginning of what’s to come!
- Living a whole life, not just a small life. This is a hard one sometimes. Living big and whole, and putting yourself out there to potentially get smooshed is tough stuff. Big stuff. Fun stuff. That said, I can’t imagine living any other way, now. My modus operandi is go for it. But this past week as the testament, this one takes real focus, courage and constant attention. I’m a work in progress on the WHOLE LIFE, but I can’t stop smiling about it.
The message in all of this is simple. If I can achieve this and go from lost hope to making my wildest dreams come true — SO CAN YOU!
I don’t know what tomorrow brings or if things on this list will evolve, change, etc. I’m sure they will. But I do know I am #beyondgrateful today for the list, for my accomplishments, for those who have loved and supported me along the way, and for the desire, courage and determination to go for my big, hairy, audacious goals — no matter what. That’s what really matters.
My greatest wish is that today’s blog gives you hope. Inspires you to make your own @beyondgrateful list. And most importantly, if you are stuck on the path to your BIG, HAIRY, AUDACIOUS GOALS — provides inspiration in the example of how totally awesome your life CAN be when you go for it, and live whole instead of small.
I’d love to hear your story. Your #beyondgrateful lists. PM me or share here.
Cheers! Remember, we’ve got this!