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Intentionally Bare Blog

Motivational Monday: Reflections on the last year

💗 Motivational Monday

March 16, 2021

Today is my 54th birthday 😊  Every year I like to reflect on the last year... what I experienced, how I felt and most of all... what I learned.

What I experienced

Like most people, I’ve never been in a pandemic before.  I had nothing to prepare me for what was to become our way of life for a year+ (other than my love for being ‘well stocked’ in my pantry). I already worked from home so there was no change there.... yet things were so strange and I missed my friends and family so much.  I was still keto but found myself eating more and more... not tracking.  I justified it because I was eating keto foods.  Eating higher carbs and feeling stressed/anxious raised my blood sugar and I could feel it.  I did very minimal fasting in 2020.  The result was a 15 pound weight gain.

How I felt

In many ways there were so many great times (watching my Dad swearing at the ipad when we would have family zoom calls was priceless... yup, recorded for future entertainment).  Had an awesome New Year’s party for 2 but had 8 of us on a zoom party dancing away... so fun!  In between the fun times I found myself thinking a lot about not feeling like I was moving forward with my weight loss in the way I had in 2019.  I understood the ‘reason’ but still felt regret and disappointment in myself.

What I learned

My biggest take away over the last year is the realization that there are always going to be times in our lives we are just not in control of everything... how are we going to navigate these times?  I decided to make a list of 10 things that I ‘could’ control.  Things that would make my life better, happier and would help me to feel like I am in control.  I typed these out and posted them up where I could see them every day as a reminder:

  1. Stop complaining and appreciate how lucky you are
  2. Embrace loneliness and reinvent yourself in the process
  3. Say goodbye to people that don’t bring positive energy into your life
  4. Take control of your thoughts
  5. Pick one skill you want to cultivate and put your effort into developing it (I chose to learn a lot more about gardening. I do not have large yard but we are putting in more raised garden beds this year and I have been learning about the best way to grow all of the keto friendly veggies I love)
  6. Commit to every single goal you set and don’t doubt yourself – the ‘win’ isn’t everything turning out... it’s the experience
  7. Get outside every day (yup, even in the Canadian winter)
  8. Exercise a little bit every day – it doesn’t need to be a marathon... anything counts
  9. Eat like your life depends on it
  10. Fail forward – learn from every experience

Even during my worst eating time in 2020, #9 was always at the forefront for me.  Gaining some weight is one thing, but I have a family history of a lot of pretty bad health issues.  I also have overcome many health problems and do not want to go backwards.  So that is something I can say I’m very proud of... eating nutrient dense, non-grain foods was still my lifestyle and all of my lab work was still glowing!

So here I am in 2021 with my 54th birthday around the corner... how am I feeling now?

HAPPY

GRATEFUL

LIGHTER (I’ve shed 8 of the 15 lbs)

Not just because the world is changing back into the one I used to recognize... but because during my darkest time I took action (mentally and physically) to change how I was feeling.  When I hear people say they are in a downhill spiral, I GET it... we have all been there, and it can be really hard to turn it around.  Starting with the mental work is what will help us to take action on the physical work.

So grateful for our amazing community – when someone is down, we have so many here to lift us up.   A safe and supportive place we can always count on.

I love and appreciate you all

Leta

~ Intentionally Bare