Monday, 28 September 2020

The art of picking yourself back up stronger than you were before | Identity Coaching: Week 4/5/6

The last three weeks of my Identity Coaching journey I have celebrated many successes and I've completely crumbled along the way too. 

However, I'm a master now at flipping the table, choosing my outcomes, turning up my self-care and picking myself back up. 

And I'm going to share with you how I personally went from being clinically depressed to rebuilding my life in a bid to see if it's what could help you or inspire you. Please remember, I am nothing more than a writer who found a way to live through her depression - I am certainly no medical expert.

Welcome back to this series! I first want to say a massive thank you to all of the lovely readers who have reached out to compliment this quite honestly, chaotic but exciting journey that I am documenting here on VavaViolet, which is written by the magazine's founder, Sophie Violet Blackman.

If you missed the first and second instalments of this series you can read instalment one 'Seems like I’m making a lot of changes suddenly, aye? You’re wrong' HERE and you can read the second edition 'It's been one hell of a fight - but it's worth it' HERE - if you wish to know the full story (I'd recommend if you want life-changing tips).

But, we're all very busy people so please grab a coffee, a glass of wine, put your cosiest clothes on and get comfy because we have a lot to talk about in terms of how the last three weeks have played out while I'm on this spiritual journey that is, Identity Coaching (details of what this is in the other instalments). 

Now that you're cosy, let me start this off by saying another thank you and show my appreciation to my identity coach, Jadie White. None of this would be possible without her help. And along the way, over the years, also my therapist's, friends, family and myself. But it's been Jadie holding my hand the last few months.

So, anyway, let's get into the shit show which has been the last three weeks of my life.

Once again, the universe decided to test me and slap my humble arse with some chaos and destruction while I'm trying to heal, do better and better myself (typical really. You have to laugh).

I'm laughing despite it being awful as these days I choose not to be mad anymore when this happens because, that's just life, guys. It's not always fair, and I've learnt its better to react with grace than anger if I want to live a peaceful life - no matter what card I've been dealt with.

On the other hand, I, too have been through hell and understand if you just want to be mad at the chaos right now. Just don't hurt anyone else because you're in pain, but also, don't hurt yourself by holding onto negative emotions, thoughts and feelings. Learn how to tackle it like you would learn how to use a new computer, for example. 

Personally, I like to leave shit in the past, learn from the lesson, set boundaries and then continue to brace myself for the next big life lesson I will likely be thrown at some stage. 

For me, that big life lesson - funnily enough - turned out to be three big separate life lessons all at once.

Oh, the joy the last month has been. 

Since the last instalment of this series, some of those life lessons have made me realise, yet again, that I am not perfect and I never will be. And that sometimes, I am the reason behind my problem(s).

Despite this fact, it's okay because I'm quite literally having mini breakdowns as I face all of my pain, fears and everything that has ever held me back in a bid to do better and live a happier life. 

It's hard. I will not lie to you and spit you that bullshit of "finding happiness is easy" it's simply not always the case. 

Sometimes, a person has to sacrifice a lot to get it. And facing those fears, tragically, for many of us is too scary to face so we stay in the comfortable stage or are depressed etc. 

That broke me so to survive now I have no other choice, I have to fight for the life I dream of. 

This is why I hired Jadie White. And I'm so fucking glad I did.

Through Jadie's coaching I am quite literally taking on all of my limiting beliefs at once so I can level up and live my ideal life but it's not an easy journey... to put it lightly.

Two months ago, before Jadie became my coach, I was nearly three stone heavier, I was eating meat, I was slightly less well off, I felt inspired but tired, I had goals and dreams but little drive, I truly thought I was doomed to live a miserable life where I didn't chase my dreams and, well, I wasn't depressed but I was sad and who knows, perhaps would have fallen back into old habits.

Now, over 60 days later, I've lost over two stone and a half, I've been vegan properly now for a month and a half (and I'm loving it), I walk for two hours a day out in nature, I'm making more money (have earned back what I spent on hiring Jadie), I feel no desire to impress anyone, no desire to compare myself to a single soul, I keep my boundaries high and I'm chasing my dreams one step at a time and enjoying the process of it all.

Identity Coaching has made me realise the simple fact of this - I was the one holding myself back all along - and it is a very hard pill to swallow, let's be honest. Because it means the scary fact of this, you are the only person on this planet who can make your dreams come true.

So blow the fuck up and chase them while you can. Even if no one else cheers you on, hit me up and I will cheer you on.

The other major lesson I've learnt over the last few weeks is that, while growth is fabulous, it's important to stay humble as it's only the humble who don't stumble.

I've always been very aware of the fact that I'm not perfect, no one is. I'm very aware of my 'bad traits' these days and how sometimes, I am the reason for my problems too. But what I've learnt in the last 20 days is that, yes I will fuck up, but I can get back up every single damn time and do better, so I will and so can you.

Thankfully to help me with this, I do now have Jadie coaching me who is excellent at delivering constructive criticism but doing so in a way which really gets your arse moving instead of making you feel bad about yourself. She basically motivates you to use that failure or hurdle to get stronger. 

How does she help me do this? She simply listens to me, what I'm struggling with, why I feel like I can't do something and then Jadie tells me to listen to my intuition and reminds me of the importance of tapping into it - something I'm doing more and more as the days go by. 

Your intuition, if you don't know, is your inner self who always knows what's up but people (still me sometimes) avoid listening to their intuition because it doesn't always give you the answer you want in the moment.

What I've predominately learnt in the last few weeks, and it's what I want this instalment to really focus on, is the importance of listening and then acting on what your intuition is telling you to do. As it will get you out of all kinds of situations, fuck ups, and so on if you just pay attention.

Learning this skill will allow you to be able to shift your mindset to a positive one when you are having a 'bad day'.

These are days when you wake up and your mood is instantly off, then every little thing goes wrong and usually, something mediocre will happen and it will set you off on an even more negative mindset (often ends with me getting frustrated, being plain rude and my ego shows me up). 

Let me give you some examples, without going too in-depth because I do wish to keep a lot of my life private... believe it or not, ha.

Now, if I wake up in a bad mood for whatever odd reason, I get my arse out of bed and walk my pooch immediately, and then I come back and meditate (sometimes just for as little as five minutes), have a coffee, or read the paper, do yoga, or go to the gym.

I also put my phone on aeroplane mode and I always find that after taking time to just be by myself first thing in the morning and start my day right I find that an hour later my mood is shifted to a positive state and I'm thinking clearly and cracking on.

My intuition is the one telling me to do all of those things, so I listen, and I do it.

Sometimes, my intuition tells me that, actually, my body and mind are tired and after I've walked my dog, if I have no plans, it tells me that it is okay to lay in bed answering emails or, just chilling for a bit.

It tells me this because resting and relaxing are just as important as getting your shit done. I only do shit when I'm well-rested. So, I rest as hard as I work. But when I work, oh, I make every single minute count. 

But it's not easy. You have to set boundaries for yourself and if it was an easy thing to do, we'd all do it. I didn't live this way until this year as I believe, you will know yourself when it is time to get up and live. Your friends and loved ones and even me can preach to you, but it's you who has to get inspired. It's your decision.

The other thing I've learnt how to deal with is how to keep it calm and with grace when something or someone comes in to ruin my day or good mood. 

If something happens during my day which makes it bad, if I can avoid it, I will. If I can't, I will face it head-on calmly and get it over with so I can then continue my day in peace. 

Jadie always kindly reminds me that one hurdle in my day does not need to ruin or control it, so now I see my days with this mindset - I will do an article on how I got my mind to follow this mindset. 

Another example of how coaching has honestly changed my life is how I now react to heartbreak and dealing with a mountain of chaos which the universe has decided to hit me with all at once.

Sometimes, cruelly, life likes to come in and turn all of your tables upside down at once. You can either let it break you or you can sit back, sigh and think, 'what lesson am I going to learn this time?'. I no longer fear storms of any kind because if I can't do anything about it, all I've gotta do is chill, calm down and be strong so I can deal with it.

This means, chaos and bad times no longer shift my mental health back into a bad state. As Jadie says, I am in control of my life and my emotions, as are you.

For example, recently I received some very heartbreaking health news about someone I love tremendously and at first, I admittedly didn't know how to cope and couldn't tap into my intuition but it is now my intuition pulling me through this dark time. 

When I and my family first received the news, my intuition told me to feel the pain, to recognise the overwhelming emotions and to let them out in the form of crying it all out in private so that I can then get back up and be what I need to be right now, which is bloody strong. Not for myself, but for the one I love. 

I ignored my inner self at first, I entered 'panic mode' as a number of things in all areas of my life had once again built up all at once and it led to my depressive thoughts returning and taking over my damn mind throughout a weekend a month ago.

This was until Jadie (and some amazing friends and family) reminded me to listen to my intuition and to not give up just because things turned dark and instead, to find the light myself. 

So, I got the fuck back up, humbled myself and reminded myself of the kind of woman I want to be for myself and for my loved ones.

That kind of woman isn't sitting in front of the TV sobbing, avoiding her problems and feeling sorry for herself. That woman is facing them head-on with grace.

Following Jadie's reminder, I took myself to a very special place locally to me which is my lil secret spot I go to when I am feeling sad, distressed, miserable, returning to a depressive episode etc. 

What I did there was sit down and place a notebook and pen in front of me. I then propped myself into a meditation pose (back straight, hands placed gently on my knees with my legs comfortably crossed, eyes closed) and I meditated like I've never meditated before with the sound of nature and running water around me.

Almost four weeks ago I began meditating for five minutes a day and it's truly changed my life. I now sometimes do it for 15/20 minutes if I need to - I will eventually do a post on meditating but I am still a newbie right now.

Saying this, I can still vouch that it works. If you have a busy stressful life, a stressful job, family, any stress, meditating and yoga are worth a shot. Lockdown made me realise I was stressed to absolute fuck prior. If I had meditated and done yoga back then, I think my mindset would have been very different. Let's put it that way.

I went to my secret little spot to meditate alone because I started listening to Jadie and my intuition and it was screaming at me to go and deal with my problems all by myself. 

Despite me being an empath for others, when it comes to myself entering a dark space I simply cope best completely and utterly alone. Not a soul in the world can help me when I am close or at rock bottom. Except me. 

As I'm sure many people who have experienced depression, PTSD, any mental health diagnosis etc will understand, some parts of your trauma will take years, perhaps decades, to overcome. 

For me, it's that to survive as a child I learnt to never show weakness, ever. And every time in my life, like many of us, that I have shown weakness, it's bitten me very hard back. 

Therefore, I know now that to survive in this rather vile society full of people who - quite honestly - don't give a fuck, is that I have to look after myself extremely well because no one else will help you or love you like you can help and love yourself. 

Everyone else can leave me if they wish. I won't stop people leaving my life anymore. Hell, I'll even hold the door for them. I know I'll be okay and survive even the loneliest of times because I've built that wall with all my strength.

Funnily enough, this actually isn't a bad thing.

It hurt a hell of a lot to learn this lesson however, I'm grateful for what it has taught me. 

Because, while my wall of boundaries, standards and self-worth is HIGH, I'm not an ice queen. I've got a lot of love to give and I'll never let anything turn me sour or bitter. 

If it must, life can deal me its shittest cards and we will laugh at the irony and fight through it, or, life will throw me some good cards and I'll truly deserve those good fortunes. 

And that's where I'd like to wrap up this instalment. As I truly could talk about training your brain all damn day long. 

The main thing I want you to take from this, from what I've learnt in the last few weeks, is this...

Getting your shit together truly isn't as easy as most people preach. All the time I hear, "just be happy", "get over it", honestly, stop it. If we are to help people's mental health we must be kind, we must be understanding. 

Because healing is the hardest thing to do. You realise you were the one holding yourself back all along and that's a hard fight ahead of you - I won't lie here - but fuck me, it's worth the wounds. 

Written by VavaViolet Magazine's Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Sophie Blackman. 


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