Living My Best Life: #KristinsRise

image of motivational quoteIt could have been just feeling so fed up with myself. It might have been that I was concerned with the reflection staring back at me in the mirror that I didn’t seem to recognize. Maybe it was just what was supposed to happen this whole time. Like maybe everything that I’ve been reading and listening to was now coming into fruition. I guess how it happened doesn’t matter as much as the fact that it did happen.

This is my time, y’all.

I’ve struggled a lot the past couple of years. There’s been so many changes in my life and so many intense emotions that I feel like I gave up and lost myself completely. I became a floater in every aspect of my life and I kept going through the motions even though it didn’t amount to the person I wanted to be. I drank more. I ate more. I lost my patience easily. I worked and then I didn’t. I was sad a lot. I felt like I was living someone else’s life.

Have you ever felt so lost that you adopt and act on behaviors that aren’t the real you, alwhile feeling so hopeless and powerless to stop? Yep, that’s where I’ve been for a little while now. I decided to give up giving up on myself for Lent, so let me introduce Kristin’s Rise (aka Kristin 2.0).

It’s so funny because even typing that makes me wonder why not everyone has to go through these life changes and growth seasons. It makes me wonder why there are people out there that are content to go to a 9-5 job, but I’m not. Why there are people that think life is awesome as-is, but I know that I can strive to learn more and make mine better? Nonetheless, I’m learning to stay in my own lane and to not worry about the rest. I need to grow and improve because there’s a fire in my soul and I need to be true to that feeling. 

Before I share my journey with you, I want to get real vulnerable and tell you why this change needed to happen. Like I said above, I want to recognize (shoot, more than just recognize), recognize and know and love the person staring back at me in the mirror. I heard the most brilliant thing from one of my friends the other day. I hope that it impacts you and your daily decisions like it has done to me:

I believe that when we die and go to Heaven that God stands us in front of the
person that he created us to be. That person with incredible potential. That
that was made in the likeness of Him. When you stand there looking
at that
person, will you see a stranger that you don’t know? Or will you
stand there
looking at the person as if you are looking in a mirror? 

Mic drop.

After my friend spoke those words, I realized that in my current reality I would be looking at a stranger. A STRANGER. Deep in my bones I feel like I’m supposed to be great and do my part to help change the world, or even just a person, but do I feel like I’m living my potential right now? Nope. Not even close.

Why is that?

Really, I think it’s just because I have completely given up on myself way too many times. I’ve let past mistakes (like from 20 years ago) still be a thing when, y’all, it shouldn’t be a thing anymore. I’ve let people talk to me in ways I don’t like and not respect my boundaries. I’ve had people take advantage of my kindness. I’ve drank a glass of wine (usually more than just a glass) nightly for months. I’ve overindulged in food just because I don’t feel like being disciplined anymore. I’ve lacked patience and understanding. I have let people down by making commitments and not sticking to them. I’ve let myself down.

When I look in that mirror I don’t even recognize my reflection. I’ve gained so much weight because I just haven’t cared to do anything about it because it’s too hard. Here’s a tough pill to swallow: I weigh more right now at 38 years old than I ever have and, embarrassingly enough, this includes pregnancy. I’ve literally looked at myself in the mirror and bawled like a baby while saying “Who are you?” over and over. And that’s really sad… yet, not sad enough for me to make a change.

And I’m not sure why.

But that doesn’t matter anymore. I’ve gotten to a place where I care now. I want more. I want better. I am worthy and deserving. If, by sharing my story, I can help or inspire even just one person, I will be so elated. For so long I’ve hid behind my flaws and faults because I’ve never been one to want to get that vulnerable. It’s my desire to be authentic with you, and, more importantly, with myself.

With the help of the personal growth books I’ve read and the podcasts I’ve listened to, I have a solid plan and couldn’t be more ready to say goodbye to this “wine-drinking, bad food-eating, exercise-hating, too lazy to brush my teeth before bed most of the time, and all the other bad things” girl. Peace.

Kristin’s Rise

In my efforts to be Internet-famous (totally kidding, of course), I have come up with a hashtag for myself. I want to be able to look back at my progress, so those kinds of posts (on Facebook and Insta) will have the #KristinsRise. Total side-note, but I really do dislike that I can’t use an apostrophe in a hashtag. All you grammar police, I know. I know that there is supposed to be an apostrophe, but I couldn’t think of anything else that I just loved… and that fits in so perfectly with my ink. Insert laughter here.

Remember, I have that cute little, not completely done right tattoo that says, “still i rise”. That’s right. I will rise up through all the hard times, hello there, and come out better & stronger than before. So yeah, no apostrophe. It’ll be okay. Promise.

I’m not really an organized person, nor do I like routine. In fact, I kind of pride myself on the fact that I don’t have a schedule and don’t follow a routine. Just leave it to the Universe to smack me in my place though. I kid you not, the past 7 or 8 books and podcasts that I’ve listened to have stressed the importance of having a routine. Why did it take me hearing and reading about routine so many times before I even gave it a thought? Hi, have we met before? I’m Kristin & really, really, really stubborn. So stubborn, in fact, that I rebel against myself. True story. How’s that for self-sabotage? That’s another story for another day though.

In an effort to be the best version of myself, to be standing in front of how God created me with all my potential, I have to make some big changes. After all, I want that Heaven experience to be like I am staring right back at myself, nothing else. So, it’s time to get to work.

I present to you… Drumroll please a la Griswold style

Kristin’s “Living My Best Life Now” Daily Routine:

  1. Wake up at 5am to have coffee in silence and to grow my mind with personal development, either reading a book or listening to a podcast.
  2. Write down the top 3 items I need to get done that day & what actions will get me there the fastest.
  3. Work with intention & without any distractions. Facebook notifications, thing of the past from now on.
  4. School drop off time.
  5. 30 minute walk/jog while listening to a podcast.
  6. Shower and get ready for the day.
  7. Work
  8. Dinner/Homework
  9. Read before bed with a cup of tea

I am so excited about my new routine that starts tomorrow… because isn’t the infamous Monday always the best time to start something?! I’m grateful for Rachel Hollis‘s Five to Thrive for helping me implement the dreaded exercise for a beginner and I’m just so hopeful and, for the first time in a long time, quite the believer in myself and what I can do. That’s a powerful feeling, friends.



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