Finding Contentment

Contentment is a mental or emotional state of satisfaction maybe drawn from being at ease in one’s situation, body and mind.
— Wikipedia

I started the journey to find “myself” or happiness or whatever the hell it might be 5 years ago. Let me just start by saying that it is not easy. Nothing in life really is easy but with me, more so. I’ve come to understand that my life will always be somewhat harder and I don’t fight it. Mostly. I still wonder and complain about how hard things seem with me but generally I have accepted it.

I’m not talking about true hard stuff. Like, death of a loved one or loss of all my worldly possessions. I fully understand that my life could REALLY be hard and that I am blessed.

Things in my life just don’t ever seem easy. I am excited, commenting on the beautiful weather while staring at a flower and I’ll get stung by bee. That’s okay. That bee needed to sting something.

So, how can I help you find contentment? I’m not really sure but I’ll try to make some valid points. Or, I’ll just talk about myself and you’ll feel better instantly or laugh. My best friend told me once that I just have to choose to be happy. That I just have to be happy no matter what. I thought he was being an ass truthfully but years later, he was right.

Find something happy in everything.

My work environment is crazy for me. Like stupid crazy. My staff just cruise along happy and mainly free from worry. I’m proud that I built that for them. But for me, it’s crazy. I actually go and sit in my car to get work done. I go home to complete reports. I spend 4+ hours a day in the weight room training clients, so that takes up most of my time. I speak at an event every Monday. I’m just freaking busy. But I get to do a job that helps people. I can make my own schedule and have fun while I’m doing it. I’m also really good at what I do, so I am fortunate to own a company that allows that. See what I did there? I found some happy things in my life. Oh, I almost forgot - I make money. That helps right?

Here are some HAPPY points in my life:

  • I have a long time client that has went from running constantly to years of not being able to run because of severe injury. She was desperate when she came to me. Three months later and she started back running. Six months after that and I literally can’t get her to stop running. She just floats on the treadmill and occasionally looks over at me.

  • Another client has come back from a severe knee surgery 3 years ago. The injury caused several other issues and we have corrected them all. She works a very stressful job but has stayed consistent. She will stop her meetings, come workout with me and go back to work. She also broke a rib several months back and that caused serious pain. She only missed one or two sessions. It was a brutal recovery but we adjusted and worked through it. She believes in me and I believe in her.

  • I also have the best assistant I could have ever found. I can leave and I know the facility is being cared for. My staff is currently all wonderful as well.

I could go on and on here but I’ll move on.

Finding contentment in fitness.

Now my fitness journey is a whole new ballgame. Fitness has been a part of my life forever. My family was very active and I never laid around at home. Ever. My brother and I would walk 2 miles to a community pool every day during the summer. We would steal several quarters from my dads change bucket and buy a generic soda and that’s all we cared about. We would swim for 6+ hours a day. My mom would swing by after work and honk the horn until we came out to go home. Then we would have soccer or gymnastics practice. We actually had a soccer field in our front yard. A real field, with nets and everything. At one point, we all four played on a different soccer team. Even my mom.

So, being able to move and live life fully is vital to me. When I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease 13 years ago, I was teaching aerobic classes and never really stopped. I cut back at one point but continued on. It’s just important to me to never stop. Now over the years the pain has increased steadily to the point that pain controls my life somewhat. That’s not going to stop me though.

My friends laugh at me constantly because I do stay injured. CONSTANTLY. That part sucks! Once I devise an awesome plan for myself, I get injured. I’ve learned to laugh and just not make plans. I’ll make a plan in my head and try to trick myself into not knowing I have a real plan. Ha. It works.

So, how do I stay in shape despite all that? I do something everyday. Something. Anything. Sometimes big. Sometimes little. I also constantly readjust my fitness. I’m currently starting (yesterday!) a new strength routine so the previous month I did mainly cardio to prepare. Now, keep in mind that I only count exercise that is above and beyond my usual routine. My body is use to throwing weights around for my clients and doing certain types of classes each week. My body is use to standing up and sitting down 5 million times a day. I will add 5 minutes everyday for a week then back off. If I watch T.V., I will add core exercises. I know - you can think I’m weird. I am weird. But I also live this life and I want others to understand that. I’m actually 6 pounds heavier than normal and I am uncomfortable at times, but I’m okay with that. I can’t be perfect. No one can be.

How to find contentment when things are off.

I’m not going to lie and tell you that I am good with having an extra 6 pounds right now. However, I am fine with it. I know… I truly am. I’m happy with things right now. I am still strong and able to do things that I want. NOW.. I would not be happy if I had a photo shoot this afternoon. Or if I had to work in a bikini all day. I would do it and own it, don’t get me wrong, but I might be a tad uncomfortable. Yes, I am aware that I just said two different things, so which is it? I am confident and I own my body and all that comes with that. All 6 pounds of it. How did I get to that place? I am doing the best that I can and I know that. That’s where you need to be.

You are an awesome person that is busting their ass to improve. You work. You have wild kids. You do laundry. You grocery shop. You work out at some point. You keep relationships going. You keep things alive like pets and those wild kids. You need to give yourself some credit. Your mindset is preparing to improve. I mean, you are here reading this aren’t you? It’s time that you own what’s going on. Now, make that plan. Whatever the plan is - do it. Prove to yourself that you can. Because you can.

Be happy with yourself even if it is holding 50 extra pounds or can’t lift 10 pounds because that body is what is going to move you forward. 200 pound Molly is the same 150 pound Molly. 200 pound Molly is the one that decided to make those changes and lose those 50 pounds. So, be happy that you are moving in the correct direction.

Look forward, not back.

Yep, the past is back there, not up here. The old you might not be able to run a marathon, but the new one might can. I’ve seen it first hand! The old you might pass out climbing several flights of stairs, but the new you won’t. The old you might consume tons of sugar, but the new one doesn’t. (My current life this week BTW)

Be happy and take that first step and I promise you won’t regret it.

Take a few minutes to decide what changes you want to make. Then tell me what they are. Now, someone else knows and I will relentlessly stalk you until you reach your goal.

Love, Molly

P.S.- Here’s a picture to help you!