A topic came up in a gathering that I went to the other day which ignited me;
The Courage to Change.
While I was growing up it seemed as though other people kept telling me how courageous I was. “Wow! I can’t believe you travelled to Thailand by yourself”, “You went skydiving and bungee jumping, you are so brave!” “You must have had to be so strong to have to deal with your Dad’s cancer at such a young age” etcetera, etcetera… I always found it fascinating because I never once felt an ounce of courage in any of the actions that I took. I would feel the adrenaline, the high in the moment, though I was always left feeling down. If anything, I was searching to find myself, trying to feel something inside and with every attempt I took, my world was growing more and more out of control. In the past year I can now say that I know what courage feels like:
By taking actions to face my fears and being willing to lay the past down, I have had to open up the fireproof titanium-fused box inside and allow myself to be vulnerable. Just over a year ago I hit an ultimate low in my life and finally surrendered to the fact that I have an eating disorder. Food has been there ever since I can remember and I never knew the extent of how my addiction controlled my life. Since my journey has started in facing my compulsive behaviours I had no idea how out of control my life was and how reliant I was on sugar and flour to disassociate and numb out. My whole world turned upside down as the shame and guilt surfaced after I put down the food. I was storing so much inside that at times I wanted so badly to slip back into past behaviours. The one thing about consciousness though is that you can never unconsciously go back to where you came from. I have been so blessed to have an incredible support team in my life that I could fall back on when things felt a little too tough. I used to want to hide from the world and fix things on my own (as to not be a burden), though when I allowed these incredible people in, I realised that their love, support and wisdom could get me through anything! When I became willing to go outside of my comfort zone and show up to my life, there was a Goddess like fierceness that followed. I realised that courage doesn’t have to be a grandiose act. It’s in the small things that we do every day. It always amazes me how my inner voice can still tell me that things would be ‘easier’ if I could eat and drink whatever I wanted. One thing I know for sure is that food was never the source of my happiness and just because something is uncomfortable, doesn’t mean I can’t get through it. My clients have been a huge part of my decision to take this leap and continue on this path. If I couldn’t show up to my own life, how could I expect them to stand for theirs? As for my definition of Courage;
Courage is reaching out to friends when you want more than anything to isolate and be alone, to reveal (what I thought were) unforgivable actions and owning your path no matter how rocky at times it may have been. Courage is setting boundaries, making some tough decisions and smiling at strangers. Courage is standing for yourself and not allowing anyone else to sway your self-worth. Courage is taking a little step forward into the unknown and being okay with whatever comes your way. Courage is the willingness to forgive. Forgive the hurtful actions of others and forgive yourself for all the times you showed up in unkind ways. Courage is opening your heart and allowing yourself to love unconditionally….no matter what the circumstance.
So what are you waiting for? Step out into the world shining as brightly as you can! Let the stories of the past go. There’s a new one to be written and it will hold a sense beauty and enchantment beyond anything you could ever imagine.
Lots of Love and Light,
(PS If you have toxic people in your life, you can still love them, though you may have to take an act of courage to let them go)