It has been a long week. The past few days for me, in particular, have been positively tornadic. There has been a lot of go-go-go, and zero downtime. In fact, the only thing I want to do is relax (and not move, for once) and watch an episode of Dance Moms. Actually, I was doing just that, until my dad came home and ever so kindly took the remote, changed the channel, and claimed the living room as his own. This is a normal and rather rude occurrence.
So! Instead of dwelling on the lack of respect in this household, let’s get on to happier things. The week’s Friday Five is all about valuable things I have learned or read/heard this week. Nothing is calorie related, and I won’t berate you about working out. We’re talking about a different, non-physical (but super important) type of health today!
1. The September issue of Shape magazine features a brief interview with Elle Macpherson, “model, actress, lingerie designer, global spokeswoman for Revlon, host of the upcoming reality show Fashion Star, and mother of two.” The woman is clearly well-accomplished, in shape, and gorgeous, but there was one thing I loved about her: when Shape asked about her favorite body part, she replied:
“My favorite body part is my heart. Nothing beats loving and being loved.”
How awesome is that? Being healthy isn’t only about your external appearance!
“…I’ve come to understand that you cannot – and should not – do it all. When you exercise, your body perceives it as stress. In many ways, it’s a good form of stress because exercise makes us stronger and healthier. But if there’s a lot of other stress in your life – like, say, writing a book – there’s a point of diminishing exercise returns.
“You only have so much energy to give to life. And to expect that you’ll always be able to do everything, all the time, is silly!…And that, my friends, is what I believe being healthy is all about – true balance, in all areas of life, not just diet and exercise.”
Regardless of what form it takes, stress is stress. Now that the school year is in full swing and I have work, dance rehearsals and ever more teaching opportunities, I’m coming to accept that I shouldn’t try to do everything. If I can’t take as many classes at the gym as I used to, that’s okay. All I can do is treat myself well and do my best in as many areas as I can.
3. On my way to the gym today, I was listening to The Jillian Michaels Show podcast. The first part of the episode was devoted to the subject of how to get through obstacles and setbacks and still end up reaching your idea of ‘success.’ Jillian talks about how many people told her she would fail as well as the numerous detours she made on her way to where she is today – but she knows that every bit of it was necessary to the whole. Here’s a snippet of what she said:
On those times when you realize you’ve lost focus and are running on auto-pilot: “There’s gotta be something inside of you that wants more, that wants something else. And if you look deeply enough and you pause…to really look inside and say what is it that I want what is that dream I had…no matter how many times you fail, it’s all part of the process…”
“You’ve got to do what you love.”
The world today is so fast-paced and demanding. Our daily obligations ask so much of us, and it becomes easy to tune out your passions in life. Suddenly we’re doing things we hate because we need the money, or we’re neglecting our body’s and spirit’s needs to “get things done.” I think there’s something to be said for taking time to reassess what we really want to get out of life.
4. This one speaks for itself!
5. Okay, so there should be 5 things in a Friday Five. I know! And I do have one! As I was writing it, however, I realized that it deserves its own post. It was a big lesson for me today, and I want to share it with you in it’s full glory.
For now, I’ll give you a little Friday assignment: stop what you’re doing. Well, keep reading, and then pause for a moment. Are you too hard on yourself sometimes? Do you let yourself get bogged down by your faults, or do you use your failures as footholds to getting closer to where you’re aiming to be in life?
Also, I’d like to give a shout out to two of my readers (I hope you’re still reading!?) – Allison Parks and Blair Cruz…HAPPY BIRTHDAY!