As promised in my last blog, I am going to share with you the next steps in my Young Living journey. These bottles of “smelly” oils had started to transform my life. You are probably rolling your eyes and saying, “Let’s get real!” This is the truth: my sleep was improving, so was my mood and my clients were loving the warm and relaxing environment created by diffusing the oils. My curiosity also grew as to the other products that were offered. I decided to order the Thieves Household Cleaner after watching a video about the risks associated with the ingredients in the products I was using to clean my windows, countertops, toilets, etc. In this video, they said to grab one or two of your cleaning products that you currently use and read the ingredients. Any ingredients that you cannot pronounce or do not know what it is? Next the video said to get on the internet and do a search, type in the search bar “side effects of (the ingredient).” What does your search reveal? Mine came up as possible carcinogenic, can cause breathing problems, dangerous if ingested. I lost my mind! How can we buy products that can be this dangerous? How can companies advertise these products as safe and beneficial?
Let me share some background information with y’all. When I was 8 years old, I had a closed head injury due to a horse-riding accident and as a result I now have a restricted airway caused by partially paralyzed vocal cords. I have difficulty breathing due to strenuous activity, when the air is cold and sharp or thick and humid. Sometimes I get short of breath and do not really know why. I began to wonder if my cleaning products were a possible culprit in my increased breathing issues.
To make matters worse, my “old” cleaning products could have negative effects on my dog. This sent me into another tailspin! I immediately logged into my virtual office for Young Living and read about the products they offered that I could use instead. I began to “ditch and switch” products in my house and do not regret it at all. I began putting items on my monthly order and earning points to use later! Oh, wait, I forgot to mention that I place a monthly auto-ship order and earn reward points back that can be used on orders later. I am sure you have heard of those monthly subscription boxes that you can sign up for and get new products. Essential Rewards (ER) is Young Living’s take on that, but you get to choose the amount of money you spend and the specific products you order each month. How cool is that! Young Living also gives different bonus products each month just for ordering products. I began to fell in love with this company more and more. If you have any questions about Young Living, please reach out to me. I would welcome the opportunity to have a discussion and/or help you begin your journey with essential oils.
This blog is not just about Young Living. It is about my journey to understand what self-care is and simple ways to incorporate self-care into my regular life. Young Living happens to be a major turning point in my journey. I have been a massage therapist since May of 2004. I have realized that part of my mission in life is teaching people to listen to their bodies. Stress is a popular theme in my life, both personally and professionally. Through my professional training I have learned several different techniques to manage and reduce stress. Over the past coupe of weeks, it has been brought to my attention that I need to apply what I have learned to my own life because I have allowed my stress to get out of control.
One of the things I restarted doing on Saturday, was my journaling habit. I had stopped, for no apparent reason, for about two months. (I noticed a shift in myself, I was becoming a negative person and constantly looking for and pointing out the negative. I am so thankful for friends and coworkers who gently brought up the change they were seeing.) I follow the Start Today journaling method. You can check it at starttoday.com and click on the how-to tab. I began by purchase the beautifully designed journal (twice), but now I am just journaling in a notebook. By starting every morning journaling, I am focused on the positive things happening in my life on a daily basis as well as the goals I have created for myself. It reminds me of my purpose in life and to keep moving forward. This has helped to shift my mindset and in turn my outlook on life: life is not happening to me, but for me. When I think in these terms, I automatically begin looking for and see the opportunities instead of the setbacks. This is not a shift that happens overnight, it takes practice and repetition. I believe the famous quote is something like, “21 days to create and habit and 90 days to create a lifestyle.” What habits and lifestyles are you currently creating? Are they moving towards your goals or away from them? I know I am bringing the hard-hitting questions this week, but I am hoping that you realize these are the questions I have asked myself the past couple of weeks and these are the questions that I am still wrestling with today.
This week also brought me a first: Pilates! Last year was rough for me and everybody for that matter. My physical body reflects just how difficult it was (vulnerable moment) as I gained about 20 pounds. I cannot believe I just shared that with the everybody! I have had a love/hate relationship with my body since the 4th grade. I am not and never will be a size 3, as this would be an unrealistic and unhealthy goal for me. I am okay with that as I strive to be healthy, fit, and balanced. Even as I write this, I cannot believe I am bearing my soul to y’all. When I sat down to finish this week’s blog entry, this is not where I thought we would go. I just feel the need to be real and honest. I face struggles every day, just like you, even if our struggles are not the same. Back to Pilates, have you ever tried this? My mom tried it on Monday and was raving about what a good workout it was, how much she liked it and that she thought I would enjoy it. I followed my mom’s advice and signed up for an intro class. I loved it! I actually bought a membership and am looking forward to taking 1 class a week. I was shocked that I was sore and am still sore. The focus is on using your core and intentional, controlled movements using your bodyweight and a little resistance. The history is interesting as well, you should look it up if you have a few extra minutes! If you are in the Overland Park area and would like to try an intro class, get in touch with me as I have a few cards available for a free intro class.
I look forward to your feedback and answering any questions you that you send me. My hope is that you find new ways to incorporate self-care into your life on a regular basis and I am sharing new/different ways to help you in your journey. Remember, self-care is not selfish, but very necessary! I will keep applying this to my life, not just preaching it.