Shout out to Chris Brogan, who has been doing this 3 words thing for a long time.
In an odd move, I deleted my post with my 3 words for 2014. I’m going to guess that this was in a moment of being incredibly disappointed in myself for not having done anything about them and what they were supposed to mean.
I wanted them to make a difference, to make me do the things I should be doing, to remind me of the bigger goals. They didn’t work though. It’s the end of the year and those 3 words were not the starting point for something great.
However, I think 2014 was my best year ever. I think it might be because I didn’t have words to answer to, I didn’t have a plan. I just did some little things and they totally changed my life.
1. In June, I went to the ladydoctor and she reminded me that I’m approaching the age where pregnancy becomes high-risk. I said that I was unsure about kids (I still don’t know if I want any), but that I also didn’t want to find out later if I do want one that I should have been preparing in some way. She told me that losing 30 pounds was probably a good idea, as it would be the expected weight gain during a pregnancy.
I didn’t really want to hear anything about losing weight, because who does? It is TIRED when you are a fat person, but I absorbed the information. Shortly thereafter, I switched to Diet Coke and started using milk in my coffee instead of half & half. I did nothing else, just these 2 changes that took some getting used to, but didn’t hurt. I was not weighing myself, I wasn’t exercising, nothing. It didn’t feel like anything was different, and I quickly became accustomed to the different beverages.
Side note – I would like to move to water only (outside of coffee, you will have to pry the coffee out of my cold, dead hands) in 2015. We’ll see how that goes.
2. Something else in my mental state followed, because I found myself asking the same question in my head over and over – will this thing I’m about to eat make my life better tomorrow? Try this and I swear you will end up eating a lot less crap. Desserts have never really been my thing, but I find that asking this question makes them almost a total nonissue.
3. On September 7th, the weather was nice so I decided to take my phone, turn on Runkeeper, and go for a walk. I’ve gone on about 55 walks since then, which is not a lot in ~4 months for some people, but I haven’t gone to the gym regularly in YEARS, which makes the walking a massive accomplishment. I’ve built up my stamina and now can walk faster and further than in the past. I noticed that my clothing was getting a bit looser as well. I went back to the ladydoctor in early December, and found out that I had lost 15 pounds since June. I was shocked, because I have not done anything but try to make my life better. I have not suffered or deprived myself, I have only done what I wanted to do and what was good for me at that moment, and apparently it is totally working.
Let me be clear though – sometimes I eat things that aren’t great for me, sometimes I do not go walk when I probably could but don’t feel like it. It’s been so important that I never start to feel like I’m making myself miserable to make myself happier. This is why I have failed at a million attempts to change in the past, and I’ve found that the key to stick with something is to not be so strict that when I go off track that my instinct is to totally give up.
Anyway, somewhere in there, other things changed too. I am happier. I tend to skew towards depression (I’ve done medication, therapy, etc), and I have felt lighter in the last few months than I can remember in recent time. It culminated for me a few days ago, when I was so overwhelmed with gratitude for my life and what I have in it, that I could not stop from tearing up and wanting to hug my husband again and again. I don’t think I’ve ever felt that way before, and it was exhilarating.
I have spent a lot of time (literally years) reading about self-love and going through Gala Darling’s offerings (if you don’t know about Gala, go check her out RIGHT NOW), and while all of it made sense, I never felt a moment of “a-ha!” that changed things for me. However, all of the little changes I have made have sort of backed me into the self-love butter zone, and I understand now that it is vital to making every aspect of my life better. I get it now.
I deserve to be the best version of me that I can. I am smart and talented and I deserve the good things that come to me. I am open to receiving all of the happiness and success available to me. Typing this stuff still sounds ridiculous but it isn’t at all ridiculous. Taking proper care of myself and believing in myself and my abilities is key to being able to do everything else that I want to do. I understand that more than I ever have, and it feels real now. It also feels pretty amazing, and I highly recommend it.
That being said, my three words for 2015 are expand, contract, continue. Together, they are a reminder to respond to any and all things by stopping, taking a deep breath, and moving on. In addition:
I want to expand my current efforts to improve myself, my health, my skills. I have learned my lesson about doing things that feel so gargantuan when you jump into them that you can’t maintain the effort, and won’t be doing that again. More little things.
I will not create space for people and things I do not need, that do not serve me and my goals. I will shrink my expectations to focus on smaller goals and improvements. I do not expect anything to happen overnight, and I will continue to make small steps toward improvements.
I have seen a glimpse of what small changes can do when they accumulate, so I will keep going. I haven’t been this motivated or happy in such a long time, how could I not keep going?
2015, let’s not disappoint each other.
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