Written by Danielle Clark, guest blogger
If I have learned anything in the last year, it is life is a journey with no destination. Setting mini and major goals, and achieving them, is the best feeling, but I have kept in mind these goals are not the end of my journey and I must continue my growth to achieve the greatest me.
Since September 2017, I have ended a toxic relationship which lasted almost half of my life, was let go from a job I dedicated four and a half years to, learned to take care of myself in many different aspects and embraced being alone.
I have spent the last thirty years assuming what I have accomplished, and continue to accomplish, has not been good enough. Two college degrees, owning a home by the age of twenty seven, living alone and paying my own way, losing sixty pounds, taking care of others has not been enough. However, I am the only person who does not feel it is enough. Self-love is the hardest part of my journey and will have the biggest hurdles and victories.
The biggest victory so far has been my physical health, which in turn has helped my mental health. Since January 2018, I started a weight loss journey. Since then, I have lost sixty pounds. My biggest push for changing my physical health was based on the fact I was now living alone. Winter was in full swing and with spring right around the corner, I needed to be able to do all of the work at my home by myself, which used to be completed by two people. I was scared I would not be able to do it.
My fear was the biggest push to get myself going. The biggest support group I had was a group of coworkers. My goal was 150 pounds, a goal I never thought I would reach. However, in August, I achieved my goal! I have since been maintaining my weight and continuing to take care of myself, both physically and mentally.
The hardest part of this journey is reminding myself I am worth it. There are many days I am still the girl sixty pounds heavier; something I may always struggle with. This is where taking care of myself mentally also comes into play. I need to remind myself when I look in the mirror this new body is me. I need to remind myself the only person who is going to take care of her is me.
I have been helping others who are looking to change themselves, both physically and mentally. I get asked the question of “what is your secret?” There is no secret. If you want change, you need to put in the work. I have the “before and after” pictures to prove this. I have the journal entries from when I was struggling, some of them are very recent. These are the reminders for me of how far I have come. As long as I continue to keep these reminders close, the next part of my journey will be just as mind blowing to me as the last year has been.