Breath of Fresh Air

A Breath oh Fresh Air

Looking Forward

on February 9, 2017

today When you look at your life in the right light, you can see a string of starts instead of shadows of successes and failures.

Finding this light is easier said than done (progress not perfection), but if we can manage to land in this light as or even after our lessons are learned, we open ourselves to embracing and engaging in all experiences (good/bad/in-between) without overly attaching to the outcomes. In this light, we grow to view experiences, and ourselves, from a perspective of potential instead of with pause and from past. This requires owning who we are; committing to taking charge of making our most versus letting life happen.

This is us shifting our stance from “why me” to “why NOT me?”.

When we adopt the “why not me?” mindset, it fuels our forward, leading us to a life of letting our WHYs be BIGGER than our BUTs.

[phrase is from Emiliya Zhivotovskaya, check her out at].

So how do we shift? Where do we start?

For me, I didn’t find my shift forward until forty.

My story goes like this: I graduated undergrad (with no flying colors there…) and my plan was to someday own my own restaurant. I loved the restaurant business from the second my sixteen-year-old self served a someone a sandwich. The industry’s nonstop party pace fit my space at the time. My (nothin’ but a good) time lasted until 7 years ago. I hit a wall with the hours, the holidays, the hustle and (what had become) the hassle. My happy turned to heartache, as restaurants weren’t just a job for me, they were my life and my lifestyle.

My next years were spent at “just jobs”. I was in a mindset of miserable (yet a face on of happy) most of the time, and attributed this all to what I did for a living. It wasn’t until my wake up in late 2013 when I realized it wasn’t work that was my miserable – it was me, and my “why me” world. I wasn’t believing in myself – so why / how would anyone else?

A “why me” mindset kept me from finding (or even looking for) my fulfillment. This mindset made me think I wasn’t accountable for finding my own happiness; I didn’t really realize that I was responsible for creating my own engagement, joy, meaning, and connection in / to life. But once I freed myself from my “why me”, and accepted that I was the author of my own story– it became a watch out world situation and a whole lotta WHY NOT ME?!!

My “why not me” road trip (that I am still on!) started with getting my Master’s degree – (BUT) my undergrad grades weren’t going to be good enough, and (BUT) my test taking skills (and abandonment of anything algebra still to this day) were not going to get me past the GRE. This time, (my time!), these BUTS didn’t stop me – my WHY was way too big; I was ready to g[r]o[w]. So I met with the advisor at Roosevelt in the Training / Organization Development Department; I advocated that my passion should trump any testing, and she suggested I write a letter (yay, my strong suit!) to the Program Chair of the Department. So I wrote it. He read it. We met. And I was granted into the program. I graduated last May with a 4.0.

Once I broke through to the “why not me” side, there were no BUT-s about it! I rolled right into my next. I started this blog (because, “why not me?”!) I got my ACE Personal Training Certification and a job at Elements Performance as a Personal Trainer (because, “why not me?”!). And finally, I started a new (not just a) job as a Student Success Coach (because, you get it!). All these accomplishments fueled my forward and freed me to align my external world with my intentions, embracing the person I was always meant to be. All I had to do was (get my head clear) and take responsibility for my role(s); from there I could start to expect (and explore) more of myself and deliver. And since this (it is all) progress not perfection, when I do find myself paused, I look to the people who light up my life with love for support and a (loving) shove from my stuck.

And from all that, my personal mission, to be “better than my day before”, was born.

Today, my mission continues to grow; I keep practicing to keep any “BUT-s’ off of my path to potential and work hard to wonder only about the right kinds of why-s.

Watching Emiliya’s video earlier this week reminded me of how far I have come, and got me excited about how far I can still go. Sharing this is my way of sending that same message to you all, reminding you how a little hope and hard work can make your heart smile.

So, be ready and take a look at your world – what WHYs can you free to fuel your forward?

LISTEN and Love. #livelifelovemoment



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