I believe there are many “fork in the road” “lines in the sand” or “aha” moments that happen across our lives. You know the ones I am talking about; they stop you in your track, challenge you to make change or choices outside of your safety zone OR they become a defining moment.

I have had a few in my time, I spent many years in the corporate world climbing the so called ladder which truthfully I loved. Through a variety of circumstances and a “calling” I jumped ship to engage in tertiary studies that would take me on my own personal ride of self-development walking closely alongside others on the same path.

It was a bright sunny morning only a few years ago, September 9th 2011 to be precise, I woke up sat on the side of my bed and the feeling of heaviness and heartache was palpable. I remember thinking to myself “I cannot do this anymore, I cannot be in this place another day”. I was close to 7 years of fighting to have a baby. My mind was tormented, my heart quite literally broken and my body was completely shattered. I am grateful I had enough clarity, albeit the size of a grain of sand, to know that to create change, I needed to create change…sounds enlightened huh?!! I got up, got dressed, put on my sneakers and cried all the way to the gym car park where I faced another “fork in the road” – I turned the rear view mirror to see my face looking back at me and began a dialogue that sounded something like this:

“You are going to get your butt out of this car and spend 5 minutes in that gym, and you are going to do it because you know you need to do something, the only thing waiting for you at home is bed so if you want to lose another 24 hours, go for it…” I have often laughed at the potential gym junkies chugging down protein drinks and eating steaks in their car watching this women literally talking to herself in the mirror….#crazyperson

I did go in that day, for five minutes, it is all I had the energy for…and the next day and the next and five months later I ran my first 10 km’s and I wept…I wept because I was exhausted, but mostly because I was so grateful that my body took control, and started speaking to my heart and mind, clearing a few things up along the way in an effort to gain control back. Those 10 km’s represented a lot to me, as an asthmatic it was not your average achievement just physically, but it was the emotional and mental journey that began on that treadmill. Nothing had changed in my circumstances, but I was stronger, healthier, and more confident and was back in the driver’s seat across all areas of my life.

Since that day I am humbled and thrilled to say that I now have a beautiful baby boy who I introduce as my miracle man. He was worth the years and tears. My counselling is still very much at the grass roots of my world, it is such a privilege, but earlier of this year I branched out into what was a 5 year dream hidden amongst all my “stuff”. I wanted to add a women’s health retreat based here in Adelaide to my repertoire; the details are simple, an opportunity for women of all age groups to have that “talking to themselves in the mirror moment”. It couldn’t be further away from a detox, boot camp, weight loss program – I believe it is something far greater than that. It is time set aside for individuals to draw a line in the sand in any or all of the areas of their mind, heart or body that need attention. Holistic health and wellbeing starts from the inside, mostly from a place of self-care, nurture and dare I say some tough love.

Life happens to all of us, different stages, times, and experiences that can rock us to our core. We all have a toolbox that we carry through life, but when was the last time you added, replaced or upgraded them?

So here are a few helpful tools that should be non negotiables:

  • Exercise, doesn’t have to be strenuous – just move your body like I did for 5 minutes, walk around your clothes line, take the stairs, grab a take away coffee and pave the footpath. It matters!
  • Eat well, don’t diet, or follow fads – it is not rocket science, use the 80/20 rule, size does not matter, health does.
  • Engage with friends, family or a counsellor – relationships are vital for health.
  • Educate yourself on options – there are ALWAYS choices, being stuck shouldn’t be one.
  • Enjoy life – plain and simple, have fun, laugh, increase the JOY factor!

Whatever it is you are facing in your world currently, just know that the trifecta of your MIND, HEART & BODY hold the key;

If your heart is trying to heal, your mind and body can help by being strong.

If your mind is battling, your body and heart can support if they are well.

If your body is struggling, your heart and mind are your greatest weapon.

And from me to you; change creates change – however big or small!

Author

Lisa Bondarenko is located in Adelaide, South Australia and is Principal Counsellor at Eshé Counselling and Director of Mind Heart Body retreat www.mindheartbody.com.au

1 Comment

  1. Mandy Sched-Carter Reply

    Great article and advice.
    One step at a time is how I plan to make my changes too:)

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