New Year, New You. Learn, Live and Let Go.
I read a heartbreaking, yet incredibly powerful “letter to the world” today written by a young woman who recently died of a rare form of bone cancer. The 27-year old, Holly Butcher, basically tells us to get over ourselves but in a far more eloquent and poignant way. She doesn’t write as a victim to her devastating circumstances, she writes as a friend to us all, reminding us of what is important and what simply doesn’t matter https://www.facebook.com/hollybutcher90/posts/10213711745460694?pnref=story
Being the start of a new year, this letter got me thinking about the resolutions we often set for ourselves and the standards we feel we need to live up to. I will often start a new year contemplating what running times I’d like to aim for in certain races and how I’d like to weigh a few less kilograms. Health-related goals are no.1 in January, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing at all. I mean, my business is all about helping people to become healthier and increase their energy and vitality! There’s a difference though, in that for me, these goals that I set are not really about me living life to its fullest as Holly pleads us to do, and they are not about bettering myself holistically. You see, I am already very fit and already weigh a very healthy weight, so when I set these goals it’s about aiming for that 0.01% and not so much about a general goal of being fitter and healthier.
We are all different, but for me these types of goals I prescribe are riddled with fear and anxiety. I instantly consider the “what if”. What if I don’t achieve it? What if I don’t lose any weight? Because the reality is, what I am asking for is very hard to achieve! I am already contemplating failure to achieve them before I have even tried, but I mean who actually cares? Me. But why? What am I trying to prove? That I can look as good as someone half my age, or run as fast as them? Big whoop! My family and friends don’t value that about me, they value who I am and how I treat others.
Holly says to “Appreciate your good health and functioning body - even if it isn’t your ideal size”, so rather than obsess about what times I may run this year or whether I weigh 63kg or 66kg, I am going to run because I can and because I love to. I will train hard because that’s what I like to do and I will be grateful for every race that I get to experience regardless of the result. Of course, I will still chase the dream of a sub 3hour marathon, but it will not be what my 2018 is all about. It will not be my driving force, nor will a number on the scales.
Instead, I give you my 2018 resolutions, which I attribute to Holly:
1) I am going to tell my husband that I love him every day and hold his hand more often. I will be more patient and kind, and look daily at all the wonderful things he does for me, rather than focusing on what I feel he hasn’t done.
2) I am going to buy less materialistic things and put more money into making other people happy, particularly our family.
3) I am going to put less expectations on myself and learn to say “no” so that I don’t run myself constantly into the ground (and in turn take this out on my husband).
4) I am going to have more fun! Try new things and let go of always feeling like I need to keep things in order.
5) I am going to find something I am passionate about and go back to studying again.
6) I am going to STOP worrying so much about my body not looking like a typical “runner’s physique” and having breasts that aren’t as perky as they once were. Instead I will be grateful for my functioning body and treat it with respect both in attitude and physically. I will look at my supposed imperfections and remind myself of how they came to be, from breastfeeding my beautiful daughter to the lines on my face indicative that I am in fact getting older and what a gift it is to age and have these years on earth – they are from times laughing in the sun and crying with my friends and loved ones. My cellulite is from the delicious cakes I ate celebrating the lives of those I love. What privileges these all are. What beautiful memories were created that people like Holly would have done anything to have had.
I know I will forget at times and I know I will be vain and sometimes sweat the small stuff, but man oh man do I want to try as hard as I can not to. If for nothing else, but to live a fuller life that others would, and have, simply dreamt of having.
- - - - -
I never knew Holly, but I think the world should thank her for reminding us on the importance of looking beyond Instagram, your mirror, your clothing, money, what others have that you don’t, and….
…in the words of Holly Butcher,
“Let all that shit go!”