OWNING MY HEALTH
I never thought that I would have a tab that was health and wellness related on my website. As I've gone through the different experiences that come with getting older, especially the post-college years, I slowly realized the importance of health.
When I talk about health, I am referring to so many different areas. Spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical health ALL have importance as we try to navigate through life. As a professional athlete, I have experienced competing when these things have been in order, and when they haven't. As a woman, I know how sweet life is when I put priority on these areas, and how hard everything seems to get when I am not taking care of myself. There is always a noticeable difference. In the words of Coach Gasso, head coach at the University of Oklahoma, "is your house clean?" Do I have everything in order in my life? Or am I limiting myself from flourishing because the most important areas of my life are messy? I really dug deep and decided to make myself my priority. My mind, heart, body and soul. I separated the topics to better understand them myself, and to begin studying what it really meant to be sound as a human being.
"i BELIEVE uniqueness in faith is such a beautiful thing."
I have battled a lot of questions I've had with different practices and religions, and the feelings sometimes got overwhelming. I know that the hardest part for me is realizing that its OK to question and wonder. The conclusion that I've come to is clear to My personal mission is to be a good person and contribute to society in the best way that I can. To live out the calling that God has placed on my life. I honor my body, my family, my heart, my friends. I serve others and participate in the community. I try my very best to put good into the world so that others may do the same thing. I value my energy and my ideas, and those of others. I believe in karma. But.... this is all just me! The cool part is that everybody has their own thing going on. Having a guideline of how you see yourself living your life. Simply being alive is amazing, but having our own spiritual checklist and filling in the blanks is so rewarding and adds so much value into our lives.
"For me, having something to believe in, whatever it may be, is the important part."
I have learned a lot about mental toughness and the ability to navigate your own thoughts through playing softball. It is such a hard sport, and with the failure rate that happens, you HAVE to have a strong mind to last. Like softball, life tends to hand us all the same thing- failures and bumps that can make or break our success, and hinder or kick start us toward greatness. I quickly had to learn the importance of having a strong mental game off the field, because the sh** that happens in life gets real, fast. I found myself emotionally breaking down and letting the things that happened to me or the "waves of life" completely drown me. I made a decision to never let an experience, person, thought, etc. disrupt my peace of mind and alter my heart. I had and do put so much work into myself and my life, and to let anything have so much power over what I've sacrificed to create was not going to happen anymore. I took control over my life. This was first introduced to me by Tony Rico, my travel ball coach. At the time, I didn't realize the gravity and importance of what he was telling us. It was only when I got older that I truly got the message. The real goal was to become my own best friend. I had to learn to fully trust my thoughts, instinct, gut, and choices. Meditation, yoga, and other exercises became part of my daily routine. Calming my mind and preparing my body for the day ahead is crucial and a direct influence on my success. I have finally learned that I can ultimately shape the way I want my life to be just by the way I chose to think about things. The power of your mind is INCREDIBLE. Get a hold of that thing and watch your world change!
Another Coach Gasso gem moment was when she told us players to "be women amongst girls." This stuck with me and to this day I have to check myself and really look at everything I do, especially off the field. Is it separating me from the rest of the pack? Am I addressing what happens in my life in the right way? EVERYTHING must reflect being a WOMAN. It ties everything in. Spiritually, mentally, physically, financially; everything. Am I handling this area of my life as a woman, or are my decisions and lifestyle reflecting that of a young girl? I look up to Coach in so many ways, but a reason that is at the forefront is how she carries herself, and the manner in which she handles anything thrown at her. With grace, strength, and grit. As a woman should.
We are all different ages, have different roles, goals and dreams. That is what makes all of this so cool. These topics can be tackled in many ways that are uniquely tailored to your life. I just encourage you to really look at these three areas and ask yourself if you are putting enough emphasis and importance on them. Bottom line: take the time to take care of yourself. Nourish the soul. Love yourself. Spend time on YOU. Life gets busy and things get hectic, but you should NEVER put your health further down on your list to take care of everything else. No way. I made a promise to myself and hope you choose to join me.
I am by no means perfect, I am as regular and flawed as anyone. I know I can't do this alone. We need to check in with each other and support each other's efforts. When something good happens in our lives, we need to talk about it. When we discover a new, healthy habit that others could benefit from, we need to share. When we have a really awesome day, or a really bad day, and feel like we've taken 5 steps back, we need to talk about it. The comment box below is just for that, so please feel free to express your thoughts and provide feedback if you want. As much as our life is an individual journey, I believe that we were designed to work together, take care of each other, and participate in community whenever possible.