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Lessons from Vienna

Lessons from Vienna

 My all time favorite song is Vienna by Billy Joel. Every time it begins playing, I feel the need to sink into my chair, close my eyes, and soak in all of its goodness and wisdom. Over the years I have learned a few lessons from the lyrics that I would like to share with you. Feel free to pause here and listen to Vienna if it’s been a minute for you, then come back. 

  1. “Slow downnnn, you’re doing fine”. These words can be applied to every single one of us, and in many areas of our lives. Here’s a gentle reminder: Healing takes TIME; Oftentimes, a very frustrating amount of it. But you are going to get there, and there is so much to be learned along the way that you are meant to experience. I know too well how easy it can be to get caught up in anxieties, what-if’s, and should-haves. But what really happens is we miss out on the present by stressing out over the future. Slow down, you are literally doing fine! 
  2. “Take the phone off the hook and disappear for a while. It’s all right, you can afford to lose a day or two”. Consistency is great, but so is flexibility. We truly need a balance of both in life. It’s okay to take time off, switch up your routine, or not be working towards a goal 24/7. When it comes to recovery, it’s impossible to be perfect. In fact, the healthiest thing we can do may be to take a step back from perfectionism. It’s okay to take a day off of school, work, or any other stressor in your life. Trust me, you can afford it. It may actually pay you back. 
  3. “You’re so ahead of yourself that you forgot what you need”. I think our minds like to distract us from the raw and real sides of us. So much so,  we create tasks and situations that distract from truth. In my own journey to healing, my anxiety propelled me into every future possibility. When I hear these words, I think back on what I really needed at that time, which was emotional and physical safety, and basic self-care. Ask yourself, am I using distraction to cope with something? What do I actually need right now? 

This song reminds me that the nature and beauty in life comes from growing, learning and experiencing. Life would have no purpose if we already had it all figured out. The truth is, no one has figured it out yet, and neither should you! If you are feeling stressed or discouraged in your healing journey, take a second to zoom out for a bigger perspective (maybe give Vienna a listen to help you do so). Create some space between yourself and the heavy parts in your life and recognize that you don’t have to carry it all at once. We are all simply doing the best we can on the bumpy path we are on. The nature of life is to figure it out as we go, and we are exactly where we need to be right now. 

 

Be Your Own Advocate

Be Your Own Advocate

The concept of self compassion has always felt a little foreign to me. The idea of it is lovely, but I have learned that practicing self-compassion is much easier said than done. Why do we naturally extend extra grace to others, but we struggle in applying the same love and attention to ourselves? (more…)

Hope Amongst Chaos

Hope Amongst Chaos

When I first started dating my husband, we spent every minute together and I loved it. In those moments, I noticed his cute gestures and funny mannerisms. I remember the first time I heard his genuine belly laugh and I thought it was the best sound I’d ever heard. 

As I continued to learn more about him, I noticed something that left me confused. I observed how his mindset and relationship with food was positive and healthy. I couldn’t understand because, up until that point, I didn’t know what a healthy relationship with food was like. I had been searching and working for it for years, yet it was the first time I was able to see a healthy relationship with food in action! I found it so fascinating that he didn’t exhaust his mind with thoughts of calories, comparison, exercise, weight, etc. 

My thoughts scrambled for clarity: He doesn’t carry mental baggage as a placemat to every meal? He doesn’t tie his gym shoes with shame from last night’s dessert? His every reflection doesn’t speak negatively to him? 

I needed to understand… I needed to know what his secret was! 

Now, after many conversations, I think to myself: He fully enjoys food and the experiences around it. He shows care for his body and mind through exercise. He finds his worth in his faith, values, and actions

As I have slowly started to understand and apply similar thinking in my own experiences, I have started to believe it. 

So I have a challenge for you. I challenge you to switch the word ‘He’ with ‘I’ and say it out loud. 

“I fully enjoy food and the experiences around it.” 

“I show care for my body and mind through exercise.”

“I find my worth in my faith, values, and actions.”

Now repeat that again! If this feels like wishful thinking, you are correct. That’s why it is a passage for hope. 

When recovery seems out of reach or far too slow, I promise that there is hope and light ahead for you. An incredible life, beyond the constant mental exhaustion surrounding food and body image, exists and is attainable. I promise you that there are celebrations, vacations, and moments in your future that don’t include that chaos. The light and peace that comes from healing is reachable, and it is more than worth it.