Kicking off 2016: Dry January

My last post was Christmas Eve, so hello again friends. I hate to sound like a broken record because every time I realize how overdue I am for a blog post I start writing and apologize for my inconsistent nature. I have a personal goal to write SOMETHING every single day but that doesn’t always translate to blog material. Sometimes it is simply thoughts & musings in my planner, rants in the notepad on my iPhone or scribbles on my lesson plans. As I’ve said before I am someone who is very self-aware, both of my strengths and of my weaknesses. Suffering from ADHD gives me an incredible energy and ability to take on loads of projects but it also leads me to bite off more than I can chew. I want to do it all which makes it very hard to do it all well, consistently. This is something I cut myself slack for but when it comes down to it, I know that my behavior and my habits are in my control. My creative mind seeks space to grow, breathe, wonder and wander but my Type A side needs routine, control, and stability. I am an open book when it comes to my shortcomings and I refuse to “accept” things that are within my control as the “way it is”.

This is where the fitness aspect of my life is crucial. After a month of my 60 day exercise challenge and 5am wake up calls for workouts I am feeling motivated, determined, focused, dedicated, empowered, committed, and excited (clearly we have been working on forming adjectives in my ESL classroom this week). Having physical fitness goals and a program to follow gives me the discipline I need in my life. I am very skilled at doing whatever the hell I please. But, I am wise enough to want more. I know I can push myself to be more than average, ordinary, or satisfactory. Fitness reminds me you have to work HARD for what you want. You have to put in the effort on days you feel like it and especially on days you don’t. You have to commit and stay consistent in that commitment to see results. When you are wishy washy in your commitment your results are wishy washy and ordinary. With the start of 2016 I naturally reflected upon my journey through 2015 and how many ups and downs I had. When I bite off more than I can chew I manage to swallow anyway but it is a personal goal of mine to channel my energy into fewer projects this year with MORE mindful focus and intentionality placed on the chosen ones. 2015 has been a year of monumental growth from the inside out. The funny thing about figuring yourself out is you continue to change while doing so and hence, have more to figure out! You must believe you CAN do anything but accept you can’t successfully do everything(I know, I know…but you still wanna try). I know that my anything begins with using my words & sharing my constant journey to a balanced, healthy lifestyle full of adventure & genuine happiness.

I had two incredibly different teaching jobs in 2015, one that was so stressful, emotionally draining and exhausting and one that is currently uplifting, flexible, and my classroom once again feels like a place where I feel my creativity is celebrated. I feel like I am positively influencing my student’s lives every day.  I am happy to go to work every morning. I have also slowly but surely dove into building my own business as a health and fitness coach. This is something I never in a million years imagined I would do but as I progress as an individual I realize that most people don’t turn out to be or do what thought they were going to be. That’s the fun part about life. We don’t know what the future holds but we are surely in control of building ourselves up into the best possible versions of ourselves. Jim Rohn said, “Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.” As I mature, I realize that when I make myself better I in-turn become better at whatever job or life obstacle is in front of me. The more I encourage others to take risks, take action and live the life of their dreams the more I continue to do it myself.

Accepting that my path is incredibly different than an average American 20-something has given me the power to listen closely my heart and actually TRY different things to find what makes me genuinely happy. The hard part is this process is never ending and at times can feel daunting but I have some truly hysterical people in my life who remind me not to take anything too seriously. It is amazing to me what different people teach you and as a traveler, teacher and coach I am constantly influenced by so many interesting and dynamic individuals.  It is a fascinating world and my favorite way to experience it is through the stories of strangers and new memories with friends.

Between all these goals, plans and dreams for the future I refuse to forget the invaluable moments that are happening right now.

January has been a month full of mostly sober adventures because my mates and I swore off drinking after a bit too much celebrating around the holidays. When you don’t drink for a whole month you realize how productive you can be and how TRULY incredible your body is meant to feel. I don’t think I will ever be able to swear off alcohol completely, especially not wine, but learning to be an occasional drinker is on my 2016 to-do list. Moving abroad on your own has the ability to make drinking and going out to bars seem like the only way to socialize and meet people. January has taught me otherwise. Living in Sydney allows me to easily visit a new beach and go for a new adventure every single weekend due to the variety of events, nearby beaches and solid day trips. I never thought Sydney had this much to offer, but I fall in love with it a little more every day.

Some of the highlights have been hiking in the Blue Mountains, New Year’s Eve in Watson’s Bay, an epic music festival on New Year’s Day (Field Day 2016), Shelly Beach in Manly, a giant slip&slide event  called “Slide the City”, Milk Beach in Vacluse, a very touristy day at the Sydney Sea Life Aquarium & Luna Park Amusement Park, celebrating Australia Day on a party boat cruise around Sydney Harbor (okay, this was an exception to the Dry January rule… PUBLIC HOLIDAY MATES). By far my favorite adventure was a surprise weekend getaway to Australia’s ultra peaceful and relaxing wine country Hunter Valley (Okay, okay we ended dry January one weekend early…it’s the thought that counts right) & a pit stop on the way home at a Central coast beach (Avoca Beach & Rocks)  with some of the most stunning natural scenery I’ve seen in Australia.  

January Aussie

Needless to say it has been an amazing start to the year. Not only do I feel proud of my physical accomplishments with my sincere dedication to my fitness and nutrition program, but I also feel as if I am absolutely bursting at the seams with adventure and fun. The day to day is pretty normal; I teach long hours, grade papers, make lessons and in any spare time I work on my coaching business or binge watch Netflix. The weekends (or any random weekday I don’t have class) I travel and soak up adventure in every way possible. Being healthy, active, busy, soaked in sunshine and helping other people as much as I can fills me up. When you focus on changing yourself for the better, everything around you gets better too. My goal is to continue to fight HARD to be the best me I can be. I am so happy with my life right now but that is a continual process not a finish line. Things can easily change, bad things can happen, my scatterbrained self can take over, and I know there are bound to be hard times in the future but…that’s life. We can’t control it but we can control ourselves and that is the best way to create the reality you desire. My desire is to learn, laugh, adventure, and inspire others to do the same. I can’t wait to see what February has to offer.

“Let others lead small lives, but not you.. Let others argue over small things, but not you.. Let others cry over small hurts, but not you.. Let others leave their future in someone else’s hands, but not you.”-Jim Rohn


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