The Environment: it’s cool to give a shit

It’s been a while, fam 🙂 I’ve been busy doing lots of traveling and living it up! I’m so thankful to have had so many opportunities this far in life to be able to go to some amazing places and see some amazing things. Traveling has opened my eyes up to how truly wonderful this world is and how lucky we are to live on it.

Maybe it’s the traveler and wanderer in me that has gotten to see so many things, but because of that I don’t want to take any of it for granted. We as humans are so blessed that we have such a home that can sustain so much life. But unfortunately, a lot of us do take it for granted.

So, I wanna talk about some things. Climate change seems to be the hot topic these days- literally. If you are a climate change denier (first off, you probably wouldn’t even be here, you’d probably never click a link to a blog post with this kind of title), I would love to sit down and have a conversation with you. Most of us have a pretty good idea of what’s going on in the environment when it comes to climate change. Maybe you don’t know the extent of it. Or maybe you never paid any real attention to it until now. I don’t wanna make this too long, so I’m just going to give a basic rundown of what’s going on.

So our home, planet Earth, regulates our temperature so we can survive. When energy from the sun reaches Earth, some is sent back out and some is let in and absorbed in the land and the oceans to keep the Earth warm. Then, heat radiates back out into space, but some is trapped in the atmosphere in the form of greenhouse gases (water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, etc.). Without this “greenhouse effect”, Earth would not be warm enough to be habitable.

Where the problem lies, is the amount of greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere. Burning of fossil fuels and land are releasing excess greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, thus making the temperature rise, globally.

Why does this matter? Humans have increased greenhouse gases in the atmosphere by 35%. But why is that significant? Here are some effects that we’ve seen from climate change, already, that are only going to get worse.

  • Increased rainfall (in certain areas)
  • Increased droughts (in certain areas)
  • Coral reef damage/destruction
  • Increasing wildfire and longer wildfire seasons
  • More intense and increasing hurricanes
  • Rising sea levels
  • Melting ice
  • Intense heat waves
  • Forest deaths
  • Increased air pollution
  • Extreme weather conditions
  • Food scarcity

These effects, they matter. But how is this happening? The two major greenhouse gases we need to be worried about are carbon dioxide and methane.

Carbon dioxide is responsible for about 80% of greenhouse gas emissions from humans. CO2 naturally circulates between the atmosphere, plants, animals and soil, but human activity is producing too much of it. Burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil, natural gas) through certain processes are the cause of this. Think of things like electricity, cars/planes/transportation, and other industrial processes. Fortunately, plants and forests act as “natural sink” for CO2, because they take the CO2 in, store it and use it.

Methane is only responsible for about 10% of greenhouse gas emissions, but its impact is much greater. Methane from human activity comes from natural gas leaks, livestock, and waste decomposition. Livestock (cows, buffalo, sheep, goat) produce large amounts of methane via their digestion and manure. Livestock farming is the largest contributor to methane production.

SO… Where do we go from here? It’s already been scientifically proven that human activity has caused a huge rise in greenhouse gas emissions. And if we continue on the path that we’re on, it’s not gonna be pretty. Countries all over the globe have already taken huge initiatives to play their part in combating climate change.

But on a global scale, it can seem so overwhelming. As just one person inhabiting this planet, it can be difficult to grasp how you can help change the world. But let me tell you, it all starts with one person. If every single person realized that they matter, their decisions matter, and they did something about it, it would be unbelievably dramatic!

So, what can you do to help change the world? Implementing these daily changes can not only help your peace of mind, but they are helping this unbelievably beautiful and precious place we call home.

  • BE LESS WASTEFUL — this comes down to food, trash, electricity, water. USE LESS. Take shorter showers. Adjust settings on your appliances. Research energy-efficient appliances (Energy Star). Unplug unused electronics. Use less hot water. RECYCLE! For the love of god, stop using plastic water bottles!! Stop using paper plates and cups and coffee mugs.  And no, you don’t need a straw!!! Wash your dishes by hand instead of using the dishwasher.
  • CLIMATE-FRIENDLY DIET — the most climate-friendly diet would be vegan/plant-based. But for some people, that’s not going to work. Cutting out red meat ONLY is still going to be huge. If you can’t do that, spend the extra $$ on grass-fed, organic, minimally-processed, high-quality food. It is worth it, not only for the planet, but for you. Food companies that make highly-processed foods do nothing but cause more carbon emissions via their factory processing.
  • TRANSPORTATION — drive less! Save gas whenever possible by driving efficiently- aka don’t drive 80mph every time you’re on the highway. Share rides whenever possible. Get a damn bike if that’s possible for you. Look into an energy-efficient vehicle if that’s possible for you. Fly as little as possible.
  • BECOME ONE WITH NATURE — Plant a tree 🙂 like I said, plants act as carbon sinks, they take in CO2 and store it. But with factory farming becoming so huge, we now have the issue of deforestation– forests are literally being burnt to the ground so there is more room for farming. Less forests = less plants/trees = less CO2 being taken in by the trees = more CO2 being released in the atmosphere. Make sense?

A good rule of thumb is REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE. You’d be surprised at how much you can help just by being mindful of your choices.

There are ENDLESS resources about climate change!!! Check out NASA’s website, the Climate Reality Project, What’s Your Impact, The EPA

If you have any questions, please ask. And remember– YOU MATTER!!

 

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Abundance mindset vs. Scarcity mindset

In today’s day and age, being gripped by depression and anxiety is a somewhat normal thing. Society seems to be built on what is called a “scarcity mentality.”

This is the idea that in any way, your life is lacking. Why do you think the advertising and marketing companies thrive? Why there is always a newer, better, more improved product coming out? We have literally been raised to believe that our life is missing something: “I need this.” “I need that.” Companies can get you to buy virtually anything, because you think you need it; because you think your life is lacking without it.

The scarcity mentality is constantly reinforced and carries over into all aspects of our lives. Suddenly, everything is about YOU and what you are MISSING. There’s this notion that if someone else has something, that there’s nothing left for you. Your best friend gets engaged. It turns into, “when am I gonna find a good guy???” Your brother buys a brand new car. You say, “Am I ever gonna have enough money to get a car like that?”

I’m here to break the news to you… even though it may be hard to swallow….

THERE. IS. ENOUGH. SUCCESS. TO. GO. AROUND.

Success is INFINITE! Meaning, there is plenty of it for everyone! SOMEONE ELSE’S SUCCESS IS NO WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM, TAKES AWAY FROM YOUR SUCCESS/FUTURE SUCCESS.

If this is true, then why do we become so envious of others’ success? It’s because we are living in a scarcity mindset.

Don’t worry, this is a natural way of thinking. But it can be reversed. But first, you have to realize that you are in complete control of your perception of things around you. I’m not saying you are in complete control of your emotions, because we all know that isn’t true. But, you can drastically change the way you react to things, and the way view the world around you- it all begins in your mind.

This is where, viola, I present to you… the abundance mindset. It just sounds better, right?

When you cultivate an abundance mindset, the way you see things begins to take a turn for the better. So, what does an abundance mindset look like?

Failure and the way you view failure, changes. Failure is no longer the end of the world. It is an opportunity to learn and grow. You realize that failures are a necessary part of your path to success. EVERYONE fails. But you know you have to pick yourself back up, and ask yourself “What can I learn from this?” “What can I do better next time?”

Gratitude pours out into your daily life. Instead of focusing on things you’re lacking, you take the time to be grateful for everything you do have. Everyday you make a list of things you’re grateful for– your friends, family, food in your fridge, a roof over your head, hot water, a running car. This list goes on and on of things that can be taken for granted every single day.

The negative, “scarcity” energy is cut out. Stay away from people who are always complaining, who never have anything positive to say. Cut out advertising, commercials, gimmicks, ways of companies trying to convince you you’re missing something. Do this by watching less TV. Read more books. Geek out on personal development writings and blogs. Realize that you can create your own environment of abundance; it’s your choice.

Others’ success = happiness, not resentment. You realize that everyone is on their own path, has their own purpose, and has their own timeline. Your purpose and timeline can be very different from someone else’s. It does NOT mean that they are successful, and you are not. You do not have to be fearful or jealous of your peers or competitors. You CAN be genuinely happy from them, and learn from them.

The focus turns to all the endless possibilities. We all know that things can change in the blink of an eye. Your world can be turned upside down at any minute. But, change is not the end of the world! What can sometimes be seen as a step back can be seen to others as a new beginning. Life is literally limitless and once you realize that, it’s life changing.

 

I hope this finds you and really speaks to you. And you decide for yourself you want to make a change. We are all capable. ❤

 

That Thing You’ve Always Wanted To Do.

If you’re reading this, it’s for one of two reasons. #1: you’re my friend, you enjoy my writing, and you care what I have to say. Or #2: you’re intrigued by the title.

We all have that “thing.” That thing we’ve always wanted to do. It could be one thing, it could be a few things. It could be something small and minimal, or something on a much bigger scale.

Move to Europe.

Organize your house.

Learn to play guitar.

Start doing yoga.

Go back to school.

Try Crossfit.

Volunteer.

Whatever it may be, chances are you’ve been pushing it off, for whatever reason, for far too long. There always seems to be something standing in the way…

When I have more money…

When I have more time…

When I’m in better shape…

When I retire…

SOMEDAY seems to be the magic word. SOMEDAY you will have the time, money, and freedom to do all the things you’ve been wanting to do. SOMEDAY you’re going to wake up and everything you’ve ever wanted is just going to magically fall into your lap. SOMEDAY things will be exactly how you pictured them to be. But you know what? SOMEDAY is the single most dangerous word in our vocabulary. SOMEDAY creates this illusion that you don’t have control over your future. In order to take control of this quest for SOMEDAY, you need to get rid of the word altogether. The life you want SOMEDAY, begins TODAY.

At this moment, you are the youngest you will ever be. You will NEVER get this moment back. While you have control over a lot of things in life, there are an infinite amount of things you don’t have control over. You could get hit by a bus tomorrow. You could find out you have cancer. Your house could burn down and you could lose everything. You, and everyone else on this planet, are going to die someday. And you’re sitting there planning for some mystical “someday”, that’s not even really guaranteed???

If I’m scaring you, it’s working. Yes, we need some sort of day-to-day responsibility. I’m not saying spend every dollar you make each day, just in case you’re going to die tomorrow. But what I’m saying is you need a kick in the ass to take action about your life, TODAY.

What you need to do first, is make a list. Make a list of some things you plan to do, someday.

Then, make a list of things you do every day.

Compare the lists.

Chances are, not many things you are doing every day are helping you get where you want to be, someday.

Things need to change. If you truly want to be who you say you want to be, changes need to happen, today. Make something you today bring you a step closer to where you want to be someday.

What you need to do next, is start small. In every aspect of your life, you need to stop putting things off.

Stop hitting the snooze button.

Don’t ever leave dishes in the sink. Eat, then clean.

Make your bed in the morning **my mom will laugh at this- if you’re like me, just sleep on top of the covers!!! 😉

Change the toilet paper roll.

It sounds silly, but procrastination can peak its sneaky little head through in almost anything in your day-to-day life. Stop that shit!

DO. IT. NOW! ❤

 

Life lessons that Crossfit has taught me

As anyone reading this probably already knows, but I’ve been drinking the Crossfit koolaid pretty heavy. As a coach and an athlete for the last almost 4 years, CF has changed my life in ways I’ll be stuck with forever. I can’t say enough good things about what it’s done for me, mentally and physically. Here’s why. 🙂

1. Support system is everything

What keeps most of us coming back to Crossfit, is the community. There’s nothing like the bond that you build with people at your gym. Whether it’s before work, during a lunch break, or after work, that hour at the gym you get with your buddies is most likely the highlight of your day. We get to let off some steam, chat it up, laugh, get some competition going, and do some fitness. There’s a sacred sort of bond formed between all the athletes doing a workout together. In the middle of it, when your heart rate is jacked, your lungs are burning and you feel like you can’t keep going, it’s all of your buddies around you that motivate you to keep going. To pick up the bar. To not stop. Everyone’s rooting for eachother to keep going, there’s nothing like it!

2. There will always be an excuse

There will always, always, always, be a reason why you can’t. I’m tired- I have homework to do- My favorite show is on tonight- I have such a long day today- My head hurts.

The list can go on and on. Same goes for performance during a Crossfit workout: My legs are sore- My nose is running- I didn’t sleep much last night- I didn’t get a big enough breakfast.

The point is, to hell with the excuses. You either show up and do the work, to the best of your ability…or you don’t. It’s pretty simple. There doesn’t need to be an excuse for everything. The people who excel in the Crossfit world (and in life) are those who realize that excuses mean absolutely nothing and will get you nowhere, fast.

3. Success isn’t linear

There seems to be this misconception that success is a linear process- that someone keeps excelling over and over again until they reach their definition of “success.” This couldn’t be farther from the truth. The road to success is always UNDER CONSTRUCTION- it’s bumpy, frustrating, exhausting, and paved with failures.

It’s how you deal with the obstacles that hit you on your road to success that will determine when/if you get there! CF couldn’t be more of a testament to this. Even the top athletes’s lives have not been lacking of setbacks, obstacles, failures, injuries. Struggles are inevitable. Bad things will happen to you. Sometimes you’ll find a skill or task that seems so daunting, it’s almost impossible. Sometimes life and emotions will get in the way. And that’s OKAY. It’s part of the process. It’s part of the magic. It’s part of your path to success.

4. Ego won’t get you far

Ego… it is the NUMBER ONE reason why Crossfit gets a bad reputation in the fitness community. Crossfit, when prescribed correctly, is an amazing tool to create functional fitness accessible to everyone. And yes, I mean everyone. It is scalable and modifiable. When it is modified correctly based on the person, ALL levels should get the same stimulus from any given workout. Loads and volumes are chosen based on the person, so ALL can get the same intensity from the workout.

The problem arises when people don’t scale correctly. Everyone wants to do the workout Rx (as prescribed), even if they may not be ready to do so. This is how people either 1. get hurt or 2. are not progressing in the way that they should be. While the ultimate goal for most people is to be able to do workouts as prescribed, they often forget how important all the stuff in between is. Learning new skills, doing them the right way, becoming efficient at them, being able to do them under fatigue- these are things for the Crossfitter to be worried about… not doing the workout as prescribed.

If you want to be a successful Crossfitter, your ego needs to be left at the door when you walk into the gym. If you come in eager to learn, to listen to the coaches, to do things correctly, to scale appropriately… that’s when the magic happens. That’s when you begin to grow as an athlete, and as a person. In life, you will get so much farther if you can admit when you don’t know something and are OK with asking for help. Ego is really the biggest enemy here. As Albert Einstein said, “More the knowledge, lesser the ego. Lesser the knowledge, more the ego.”

 

5. Stay in your lane

Going right along with the ego- another big issue in Crossfit gyms is people becoming obsessive with comparison. People get too worried about what others are doing and how they’re performing. To feel better about themselves, they need to beat this person. It’s just more of feeding the ego. Instead, athletes should be focused on themselves, and their weaknesses. Instead of worrying about who to beat, what can they do everyday to get ahead of the pack? What skill needs some extra attention? How can they move faster in a certain kind of workout? These are questions to be asking, not “Oh, well what did he get?”

In every day life, your own path is the only one that needs to be focused on. Everyone’s is different, and everyone’s timing is different. Be so honed in on what’s going on in your life that you don’t even have time to worry about another’s. Be so busy working on your own grass that you haven’t even noticed if theirs is greener.

 

6. What’s going on in between your ears is most important

Positive self-talk. Inner coaching. Mental toughness. These are CRUCIAL, day in and day out, in a Crossfit athlete’s life. There are so many things that can go wrong in a workout. How you overcome, adapt, keep moving, and keep talking to yourself, are key to getting through it. Getting mad at yourself for having to drop the bar, getting visibly upset or frustrating for breaking your jump ropes, or silently cursing and freaking out in your brain when you miss a weight, are all ways that a workout can go downhill for you.

Learning how to control your thoughts- changing them from negative to positive, can be a game changer. If you can learn to talk to yourself in a positive manner, you will adapt and overcome almost anything that happens to you. Keep in mind, this doesn’t happen overnight. It can take years to develop a mentality that will give you the edge over other athletes, and other people.

7. There is no substitute for hard work

Basically, you get what you give. If you half-ass anything, it will show. If you’ve been neglecting a skill all year, it will show. If you choose to skip things you suck at, it will eventually show.

Nothing in this world beats hard work, consistency, patience. They are necessary for a successful Crossfit career and for a fulfilling life. If you’re going to do something, whether it be for work, your family, your athletic career- why not do it fully? Why not seek to be the best you can possibly be? Why not take all the steps necessary to ensure success?

There’s never a quick fix, a magic pill, a #1 program that will get you all the results you’re looking for. How you’re going to achieve it (whatever it is), is solely up to you. If you want to work hard, that’s your choice. If you don’t want to work hard, that’s your choice as well.

The Future of the Strong Girl

Today, March 8th, is International Women’s Day. On this day we celebrate the empowerment of women all around the globe. Young and old, all shapes and color and sizes, women come together for the idea of the constant push of women’s rights and equality.

I’m not here to talk about feminism or to get political. But, I do believe that all people, no matter your sex, heritage, skin color, or sexual orientation should be denied any opportunity. Fortunately, I believe we’re well on our way to that.

As a culture we are always growing and evolving and over time the things we wish to change can happen. But what I feel is most important to this issue is how we raise, shape the minds, and educate those younger than us, those looking for guidance, those whose minds are so impressionable.

Building and growing the minds of our children and the next generation of girls is so, so imperative. A young girl should know she can grow up and do whatever she wants, be whatever she wants- and demand nothing less.

We need more bold, courageous, strong, relentless women in this world. The only way to make sure this happens, is to raise them this way.

So this is my open letter to all the young girls, the next generation of STRONG girls.

I want you to know that you are beautiful in your own skin. I’m tired of hearing girls say “I look ugly with no makeup on.” Your face without makeup on, is your face. It’s not ugly, and wearing makeup shouldn’t have to be necessary for you to feel good about yourself. If you CHOOSE to doll yourself up, that’s your choice! Some girls enjoy it, some girls don’t. But it should never be something you need to do in order to feel worthy. There’s this notion that a woman has to make herself super-presentable whenever she leaves the house. Bottom line, you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do. You should feel comfortable in your own skin and self-confident even when you’re not dressed, hair done, and makeup done.

I want you to know that patience will lead you to your passion. Don’t listen to your parents, your friends, your teachers, anyone around you if they try to make you take that job that you don’t actually want. Follow your heart. Find that thing that keeps you up at night, that makes you wake up early. Everyone in this world has something they are passionate about and if you want to live a fulfilling life you had better make those dreams into reality. Forget the naysayers, forget how much time it will take, forget about money, it will all be worth it, I promise.

I want you to know that there is a different path for everyone. You do not have to go to college, get a job, get married, have kids, and retire by a certain age, if at all! Your choices are your own, and nobody else’s. What is right timing for someone else, is not right in comparison to yours. You can be happy for your friend’s accomplishments without being jealous, and with knowing your time to shine will come.

I want you to know that you’re allowed to have emotions. Handle them, and use them. You don’t have to bottle them up. You don’t have to pretend like you’re okay all the time. It’s okay to hurt, it’s okay to cry, it’s okay to be scared, it’s okay to take time to heal. Life will take you through ups and downs, test you, and make you question everything. Your sensitivity is not weakness, it is strength. You can withstand far more pain than you think. Processs and feel everything that comes to you- and come out stronger because of it.

I want you know that it’s okay to say no. One day in the future you may be taking on lots of roles– a sister, a friend, a coworker, a neighbor, a wife, a mother. As women, we like to take others’ problems and make them our own. I want you to know, you don’t have to always say yes. You don’t  have to take on the weight of the world. Sometimes it’s so essential to say no, to use your time as your own, to practice self-care in the most simplest of ways. It’s okay to put yourself first.

I want you to know that you don’t have to live by anyone’s else’s standards. There’s this idea of what women are supposed to look like, do, and act, and honestly, it’s all crap. You can have muscles, or you can be skinny. You can have long hair, or a buzz-cut. You can ask someone out on a date, and you call/text them first. You don’t have to order a salad on this first date. You can curse, and you sure as hell don’t have to keep a smile on your face all the time. Just be YOU, and do it unapologetically.

Lastly, I want you to know that you will never be ready. “Ready” is not really a thing. Ready for that new job, that new relationship, that trip of a lifetime, that big move across the country… being “ready” never actually happens. What you need to do, is be brave. Be courageous. Know that everything happens as it should- if you work hard you’ll find that luck and good opportunities will fall into place for you. Be relentless in the pursuit of challenges, tedious tasks, and endeavors that will bring about personal growth. This will make you feel almost “ready” for anything life tries to throw at you.

The power of kind words and encouragement to the younger generation is more important than we will ever know. You never know what kind of thought will resonate with a kid for the rest of their lives. If we instill these notions on young girls, it can only bring them confidence and bravery in the future. I hope anyone reading this will pass it along to someone they think about while reading it.

Happy International Women’s day to all the badass women out there, keep fighting and inspiring, and never settle. ❤

 

Having a restless heart- a blessing and a curse.

Hey all! Haven’t done this in a long time! Sorry for the hiatus, I just got back from backpacking in Central America for 3 weeks, which has led me to this blog post.

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My mind has been buzzing since I’ve been home. I had the BEST time. Met some insane, hilarious, amazing people. Saw some of the most beautiful views. Checked some things off the bucket list. Partied hard. Laughed my ass off. And soaked up all the sun.

But it’s all bittersweet.

Eventually it’s time to come back to reality, to leave the beautiful scenery behind.

While traveling, especially staying in hostels, you meet a ton of young people, from all over the world. No matter how many hours, days, or weeks you spend with them, eventually it’s time to say goodbye. Most of the time you know you’re never gonna see them again. That’s the hardest part.

Every time I talk to travelers and hear their stories, or take in a magnificent view, or do something crazy I’ve never done before, it makes me realize how big and vast this world is. I think about how much of it I haven’t seen. I think about how many people out there, all over the world, just like me, thinking the same thing. I itch to meet these people and do all these things I’ve never done.

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I’m pretty sure every person on this planet has heard the term “wanderlust.” It basically means a strong desire to travel. While I definitely think I have a big-time case of wanderlust, I think for me it goes a little beyond that.

Some may not have heard of this term, but I believe I have what is called “restless heart syndrome.” Basically, in my heart and soul, I am always restless. There is always more out there… I always want more. 

Don’t get me wrong, my life’s not bad! I have never thought that. While I am always thankful and appreciative for what I have and the opportunities I’ve been given, I am always curious about what’s out there. Picture this: I’m in my car. A song that I love comes on. What do I do? I check all the other radio stations to see what else is on, before coming back to the song I love. WHY?

To me, it always feels like something is missing. It’s a constant search for bigger and better.

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Honestly, this scares me a bit. I’m afraid I will never grow out of it. I’m afraid of the uncertainty. I’m afraid I will never be in a healthy relationship. I’m afraid I will never stop being curious. I’m afraid I will never settle in one place.

I could be wrong. Maybe one day I’ll meet a man so great and I’ll realize there’s a reason why I never settled for anyone else. Maybe one day I’ll travel to place and think to myself that this is the place where I want to live the rest of my life.

But, the whole point is, I don’t know. I don’t know anything, really. But I plan to find out. Most people go their whole lives and never truly find out who they are, what they love, what their true passion is. I don’t want to be one of those people.

I may be restless, but at least at the end of my days I’ll be able to look back on my life and say that I did the things I wanted to do. I want to look back and know that I never settled for anything that wasn’t meant for me. Even if I spent my whole life searching for it, whatever “it” may be, I want to be able to say I TRIED.

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Sometimes I think to myself, “What’s wrong with me?” Why can’t I be happy with what’s around me? Why can’t I do what’s expected of me? Why can’t I be like my friends and my family?

Sometimes I wish more than anything that I would be OK with staying in my hometown forever. I could move out, meet a guy, get married, buy a house, have kids. I could get up and go to work every day, come home, make dinner, spend time with my kids, then go to bed, and do it all again. That’s the goal, right? That’s what most of us strive for? Sometimes I wish that’s what I wanted. But all of that to me, sounds unbearable.

The restless heart in me knows better. How could I possibly think this is where I want to stay, when I’ve only seen a fraction of this world? This big, vast, beautiful world.

Sometimes when I’ve been traveling, and I see something beautiful… like a sunset/sunrise, or a volcano, or a waterfall, or a beautiful beach, or some other strange sight I’ve never seen before, I get this overwhelming feeling. It’s a happy, and sad, bittersweet type of feeling. I always feel grateful for being able to see what I’m seeing. But then, I get sad, because it doesn’t matter if I take a picture, or if I post it on Instagram, I feel as though not many people will get to see it. Like, really see it, and experience it. Obviously, the people I’m with are seeing it. And there are a ton of people traveling and seeing the same sight as me, but I’m talking about the majority of the world. The majority of people that will never leave their hometown. The majority of people that will never get to this place. The majority of people that will never get to experience the magical feelings that come with traveling and seeing new places.

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In these moments, I am grateful for how restless I am, and what I have been able to see. My constant curiosity has taken me to all these beautiful and amazing places, and there will only be more!

So, while I am scared for what’s in store in the future for me, I am always hopeful. I am confident that my ways (even though they scare the shit out of me) will never lead me wrong. Even though my heart is restless, I believe you should always follow your heart, wherever it may take you.

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Intention, Implementation, Effort: Holding Yourself Accountable.

Before I begin, I just wanna say, I truly believe that most people want the best for themselves. Most of us have some sort of plan or idea of building a successful life, whatever that entails for each of us specifically.  We want to do well in all aspects of life… our career, the gym, our love lives, etc. But, the same time, lots of people are OK with just coasting by and doing the bare minimum. My writing today is for both of these kinds of people.

You might be saying to yourself, “I’m not one of those people.” And you could be right. You say things, you set goals, you talk about plans. But unfortunately, what we plan for does not always happen. What we say does not always mean what we do. We sometimes fall short, and we don’t always follow up.

To find and keep success in life, you need to be able to hold yourself accountable. Basically, you need to be able to call yourself on your own shit. This is way easier said, than done. Most people are completely and utterly incapable of admitting they’re wrong, admitting they’re not doing enough, or admitting they’re just straight up lazy.

Being accountable is literally as simple as this: say what you’re going to do, and then do it.

Keep in mind, I said simple, not easy. 

You should be holding yourself to the highest standard of all.

You should realize that a long-term change or goal requires small, meticulous details that are required every day!!!

Successful people, in my eyes, are those that choose excellence, work hard, and pay attention to detail, in every aspect of life. They want to excel in all areas, not just one. They don’t take the easy way out. They do the work when it needs to be done, they don’t make excuses, and they call themselves on their own shit.

At the end of the day, you are accountable for your own success. You are in control of your actions and decisions, therefore you need to be responsible for them.

First, you need to be clear with yourself of your intentions. Your intentions for yourself should be reasonable, but high! Do you want that promotion at your job? Do you want to buy a house by the end of the year? Do you want to lose 20 pounds?

Then, how are you going to implement it?

At your job, are you going to keep learning new skills? Continue your education? Make your intentions known to your superiors?

For your upcoming home ownership, how much money are you going to save? Are you going to come up with a budget? How are you going to strengthen your credit score? Do you have ideas of areas you would like to live in?

To lose weight, do you have a deadline? Are you going to do weekly weigh-ins? Measurements? Food logs? Workout plans?

Now comes the hardest part, effort. Effort, is in fact, a choice. You make a decision every work day, every meal, every workout, every dollar spent, if you’re working towards that goal, or taking a step back from it. And realizing that can be very difficult.

It’s hard to take a step back and realize how many conscious decisions we make. There are a ton of things in life we cannot control, but it’s in fact quite scary to fully realize how much we do have control over. It’s all about taking ownership of your choices and their  consequences.

Your alarm goes off, and you hit that snooze button twice, rush to get out of bed, get stuck in five extra minutes of traffic, and end up being fifteen minutes late to work. When the alarm went off, you had two choices: get out of bed, or hit the snooze. You consciously chose to hit the snooze. But of course, if this is the situation, most would blame it on the traffic. Right?

Every time you buy something you don’t need, you are making a conscious choice to do so. Dinners out with friends and family, unnecessary snacks at the grocery store, another pair of sweatpants or a sweatshirt… every time you purchase something outside of your intended budget, you are taking money away from what you really need it for. Point blank period.

If there is food in front of you, good or bad, you make a decision whether to put it in your mouth or not. Every bite (or no bite) is either getting you closer to your weight loss goals, or farther away. The choice is YOURS. If you take that bite of cake, you’re basically saying to yourself, “This temporary satisfaction is more important than my long-term goals.”

Just let all that sink in for a sec.

I don’t try to be a hard-ass, I just want everyone reading this to realize how truly simple it is. It’s so easy to put the blame on others. It’s really hard to come to terms with the fact that the only person responsible, is yourself.

That’s what accountability is. And this is where your effort matters.

Once you make your intentions clear, and execute a plan, it needs to be followed through. This is the part where you actually do what you say you’re going to do. This is where it comes down to the daily, small changes in your habits.

I’ll just go ahead and keep using the examples I’ve been using: a job promotion, home ownership, and weight loss.

At work, know that you are going to have to bring a positive attitude. Every day. Get there early. Stay late. Willingly look for more responsibilities. Ask for what you want. Every day do something that makes you stand out from the rest of the pack.

When it comes to your money, stick to your budget, don’t stray far off from it. Notice things you use are unnecessary , that can be reused or recycled, or that you can temporarily do without. Limit expenses like heat, electric, cell use… anything that can reduce the size of your bills.

To shed those extra pounds, get help from a professional, that you can check in with pretty often. Track your calories and macros. Don’t skip a workout. Don’t have unnecessary snack foods and treats around. Stick to the plan. Opt for the stairs and stay active as much as you can.

Get the jist here? Every thing I just listed, for each situation, are things that need to be done daily. That’s the key. Small changes, every day, over time, leading to huge results. That’s how we get what we want out of life. This can be applied to any situation.

Intention, Implementation, Effort. YOU GOT THIS!