It’s a new life, and I’m feeling good

Let’s just start by discussing how fabulous Michael Bublé’s version of “Feeling Good” is. I’m not a regular Michael Bublé fan, but this song makes me wants to dance and leap and frolick. Here you go. You’re welcome.

I figured that now would be an appropriate time to express my gratitude to the people who have changed my life. That’s one of those throwaway phrases that doesn’t have a lot of impact, but I REALLY mean it. Really. Let me explain why.

For those who don’t already know, here is a quick recap. There are plenty of people who can treat their work as a means to an end, and still feel happy and fulfilled in life. I am not one of those people. I have always wanted to feel passionate and personally connected to my work. For 9 years, I lacked that connection, and I was miserable. My self-esteem steadily declined, and I struggled with some pretty serious bouts of depression. My husband is probably the only person who ever saw how bad it was. When it came to taking action to find direction and make changes, I was so anxious about the steps that were required that I felt paralyzed, and my mental health just got worse. I wrote more in depth about it a few months ago.

I quit my job a few months ago to become a personal trainer and a part-time nutrition student. I had no experience with personal training aside from my own workouts and reading various books and blog posts about fitness. It was terrifying. It still is. For my entire adult life, I have told myself every self-hating message that there is to tell. I’m not smart enough. I’m too shy. People will judge me. People won’t like me. I’m not thin enough. I’m not creative enough. I can’t figure things out.  I can’t adapt. People will be disappointed in me. I will be the cause of someone else’s unhappiness.

In less than 3 months, I have confronted and conquered a lifetime of fears. I am doing new things, and I might fail, but I am gradually learning that I will still be ok. I’m not so fragile that a mistake here and there will shatter me. All of those terrible things that I told myself are probably only as true as the degree to which I believe them.

It has been a long and arduous journey over the years, which is where the gratitude part comes in. So many people in my life believed in me when I thought that I had nothing to offer. They listened, challenged, and encouraged me when I couldn’t do it for myself. My husband told me numerous times that my happiness was worth any sacrifices that we would have to make. He has supported me in more ways than I can put into words. My closest friends have helped me problem-solve time and time again, whether it was during a workout, standing on the sidewalk corner after the gym, dinner parties, road trips, or vacations together. My family members let me vent about my crappy job, helped me with my resume, and let me know that I just had to pick up the phone if I needed them. My former coworkers commiserated with me, and helped me talk through my options. My new co-workers are the ones who made the change happen when I was finally ready. They gave me the initial push to start thinking about it. They listened patiently when I explained how afraid I was. They answered my many questions the best that they could. They worked awfully hard to convince someone they barely knew that she had something to offer. I think that I’m finally starting to believe them. It’s still a work in progress, but I am so much happier than I was just a few months ago. Thank you to all of the people who have been part of my journey. You have changed my life.

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