Small Life, Slow Life: Two Thoughts for Your Weekend.

Hey guys!

I’m sipping coffee on this warm Saturday afternoon feeling totally happy and relaxed. Life has been, seriously, pretty freakin’ great lately.

For one, my adrenal fatigue is finally healed after years of suffering and months of work with my doctor. I’m on supplements and I pulled all irritating foods out of my diet AND I upped my calories. For two months, nothing happened. But then, a few weeks ago, I bounded out of bed and thought, “Hmm, that’s weird. I feel like working out.” So I did. And I waited for the brain fog to descend the next morning…and it didn’t.

So I worked out a couple days later, and, guess what? Same thing. I only felt awesome.

It’s been three weeks now that I’ve felt this way. I worked out 4 times last week and 3 times this week. That hasn’t happened in 5+ years. I’m over the moon!

So I’ve been doing a LOT of yoga lately, since my body is soaking it up like I’m a sponge that’s been all dried out for way too long.

Yoga with my team this morning. My shirt is soaked with sweat!

Yoga with my team this morning. My shirt is soaked with sweat!

Getting our sweat on at SoulCycle.

Getting our sweat on at SoulCycle.

Also, I went to Vancouver for the first time a few weeks ago, for a work conference. It was the most inspiring, uplifting, fulfilling experience I’ve had in years and I am just so grateful for my job. I got to hear the legendary Seth Godin talk about what it means to be #fullcheetah (in a few words: be all in, 100%). I got to do Kundalini yoga in a room with a thousand other people (seriously, a thousand) while we danced to Ariana Grande’s “Break Free.” I met our CEO, who is seriously the smartest and most rad and fun person. I made new friends and got to spend time with old ones.

This is not a stock image: I actually took this photo of the Vancouver skyline. It is stunningly beautiful.

This is not a stock image: I actually took this photo of the Vancouver skyline. It is stunningly beautiful.

#joblove

#joblove

I also got to goal coach a brand new lululemon team on Monday night. I love goal coaching; it’s what drew me to lululemon in the first place and it is a huge part of what keeps me invested and inspired. I love giving people the tools to write their visions and goals for the first time because it’s SO inspiring to see what they can create!

My notes for my first time goal coaching such a large group.

My notes for my first time goal coaching such a large group.

Life has me like. :) (Credit: @iamhertribe)

Life has me like. 🙂 (Credit: @iamhertribe)

So anyway, life is good. How are you? I’ve been thinking about you, and talking to many of you who are leaving comments (I’m actually buried in comments right now and have no idea how I will ever answer them all). I’ve been thinking about what I would write next here, and I started to draft a post on how to discover your core values, but first, I found two things in the last twelve hours I thought I’d share.

The first is a quote:

Your life is right now! It’s not later! It’s not in that time of retirement. It’s not when the lover gets here. It’s not when you’ve moved into the new house. It’s not when you get the better job. Your life is right now. It will always be right now. You might as well decide to start enjoying your life right now, because it’s not ever going to get better than right now—until it gets better right now!

—Abraham

#preach

The second is from Oprah in the latest issue of her magazine. I read it and thought, Dang, this girl knows her grief + loss.

You can run away from yourself for a very long time. You can be married to the wrong person for decades and pretend it’s fine. You can fake it doing work you only half care about. You can hide behind accoutrements, square footage, and cars. Big-screen TVs and fancy vacations. But you will never get away with being a phony.

Eventually life reveals itself and shows you a mirror to help you see your own truth.

And if you’ve been faking it, ignoring your thoughts and feelings (what I call your emotional GPS), the wake-up all can be harsh.

The call often comes in the form of what, on the surface, looks like loss: loss of a job, a relationship, your looks, or whatever external thing you use to find value in yourself.

When you excavate deeper, examining more closely every situation that has fallen apart, you will find truth gone awry.

I know for sure that we each contribute to the whole of what it means to be a human on earth. The fullness of our humanity can be expressed only when we are true to ourselves. Your real job on earth is to become more of who you really are. To live to the highest degree what is pure, what is honest, what is natural, what feels like the real you.

Anything less is a faked life.

To be authentic is the highest form of praise. You’re fulfilling your mission and purpose on earth when you honor the real you.

Your whole life becomes a prayer of thanksgiving. 

I really relate to the passage above and re-read it several times.

I don’t know about you, but when I’ve been faking it for a certain amount of time, my life gives me a couple of warnings and then, if I don’t listen, my world explodes.

It looks like devastation; it looks like loss; it looks like punishment.

It certainly felt that way when I lost jobs in the past, or when I lost C. But around the corner from that loss came things that were so much better suited for me. Through the loss and the grief and the healing, I became so much happier.

So what if you looked at this difficult time in your life in a different light?

Maybe you built your world on a faulty foundation. Maybe it always had an expiration date; maybe the sun you put at the center of your universe was always on borrowed time. Maybe you built it on the premise that you needed to be someone you actually can’t be. And the explosion, the loss, the destruction, is actually your life giving you a clean slate so that you can live purely, authentically, #fullcheetah, 100% you.

The love you got by acting like someone else was never meant for you anyway.

The job isn’t lighting you up because you’re not the right person for the job.

If there’s nothing you can do to gain back the thing you lost, that thing was probably never actually yours.

Anyway, just thinking about that over my coffee. I wish you all the best weekend!

(And take it from me, go do some yoga. You’ll feel better.)

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18 thoughts on “Small Life, Slow Life: Two Thoughts for Your Weekend.

  1. Great post as always, Jen! If you don’t mind me asking, was adrenal fatigue something you were specifically tested for? Lately, I’ve been feeling physically TERRIBLE, which may be affecting my emotional mood as well. I’m always tired, no matter how much (or how little I sleep), I’m never in the mood to do anything, been having a lot of headaches and have been moody a lot. I work and am in school all week and convinced myself I just needed a mini vacation. After almost 2 full days of not doing any work, not only do I not feel recharged, I feel worse and SUPER restless. Also, I’ve been dreading going to work (which I used to say that I loved) and have been missing a few school assignments (something very unlike me). My family says I’m in a funk, but I’m not so sure. I’ve been slacking on the exercise, but made myself go for a small run today, which usually helps with the tiredness, but did nothing this time. I was blood tested for anything significant, but all of my levels were fine. However, I don’t feel fine. Did you experience any of this before you were diagnosed?

    • I was tested for it; it’s pretty to detect with a blood test. And it takes a long time to get adrenal fatigue. Symptoms are a little different — foggy brained in the morning, exercise will knock you out for days, you won’t feel alert until after 6pm. It takes years of caffeine abuse, high stress and/or calorie deprivation (in my case, all three) to take your adrenals into low function. It sounds like you might just be going through something. Moodiness and headaches aren’t adrenal fatigue symptoms but definitely are symptoms of prolonged stress. And it sounds like you need longer than a two day break.

      Make sure you’re eating enough and melatonin can help you sleep. Maybe don’t run but do something gentler instead, like Pilates, barre or yoga (you can find a lot of routines online for free). Remember that depression is an energy sucker. Your body and mind may just need some recovery time.

  2. Hi Jen,

    Like so many others, I’ve found your blog to be really helpful for me as I’m going through my own break up with my own “C”. Actually, I feel kind of silly saying that, seeing as we actually broke up over a year ago… long story short, he changed his mind about doing long distance after we graduated, (from LA to the Bay) and left me broken hearted. I read up on all the ridiculous little manipulative ways I could get him back, then broke down one day and embarked on a “friendship” with him that lasted about 10 months or so. This “friendship” is everything you’re probably thinking it was – in short, I was his plan B, but I will say we did get very close again, and I know we care about each other a lot (I guess he just didn’t care enough about me to stop using me for his own emotional and physical concerns though). Anyway, about two and a half months ago after an up and down roller coaster of a relationship and one final breakthrough fight, we finally agreed it was best that we both stop talking. So I cut him off old turkey – and I happened to stumble across your website right around that time. I’ve heard from him twice – just a happy birthday and one text about being in town (didn’t try to see me though) and I didn’t really respond to either. I can kind of tell when he looks at my social media, but I’ve removed him from all of that, so no real contact there either.

    So, I’ve been trying to move forward. I have a new job, I’ve been trying to do things like paint more often, and teach myself how to design phone apps. But sometimes, I feel really stuck, and still get a little lost and sad. I’m incredibly blessed, and I try to remember that every day and practice self love along with that. I’m going on dates, and I actually met a really wonderful guy and we’ve been chatting here and there. But C is still in my thoughts every day (yes, his name really does start with a C too!) One of the last things he started saying to me was that he knew we were really great together and could see us maybe getting back together in the future – don’t worry, at this point I’m well aware that could just be a load of BS. I guess I’m just asking for words of wisdom/encouragement as I’m really trying to let go and move forward with my life. It’s so hard not want to wish and believe he’s going to realize his mistake, but I know I have to push through this if I ever want my life to really change. I’m only 24 as of last month, and I’ve only been out of school for a little over a year, so I know that I could be confusing my feelings of missing him with maybe just missing college life, or feeling all the growing pains of my transition into a real world adult.

    Anyway, just also wanted you to know I visit your site every day, you and your blog posts give me a lot of hope and strength, and it’s just nice to read about someone as cool and real as you are especially living out here in Lalaland. Please keep the blogs coming – no matter what they’re about, I really enjoy them and they give me something to really look forward to reading!

    PS – I’m sorry for the novel I just left you.

    • I don’t think he was BSing you; he probably really meant that. But what needs to happen now is exactly what IS happening — painting more, going on dates, learning to design phone apps. Breakups give you a true gift: time to work on yourself. Once you’re with your next partner, whether that’s with your ex or someone else, you’ll never get this time again. You’ll feel lost and sad sometimes; that’s normal. But day by day, the happy moments will begin to outnumber the sad ones. This is part of the process. Because you were “friends” for 10 months, you didn’t heal as quickly as you could have. It’s okay — you drew boundaries and you’re in no contact. That’s good. That needed to happen. You needed to take your power back. It only gets better from here, I promise. No need to apologize on the novel ❤ I tend to write long-winded myself. 🙂 SO glad this space helps you. One day, you won't need it anymore, and that will be okay too. 🙂

  3. Hi Jen

    As you can tell I am also an avid reader of your blog. I read it and re-read old posts almost everyday, to get inspiring and to remind myself that there’s still a little bit more of work to finally set myself free from the dark time in the last 6 months. You’re right, there are still days I still have that sadness in my chest but overall I’ve been doing sooooooooo much better! 😀

    Please keep up with the writing, you are a beautiful person inside out! I’m still beyond grateful that I found your blog during coping time with being left by someone whom I thought he was the one.

    If you and C ever travel to Lucerne, Switzerland, i would definitely show you guys around the beautiful city that I live in!

    Much love from Switzerland❤❤
    Annie

  4. I saw a beautiful quote today Jen, and it reminded me of your blog:

    “The cure for pain is in the pain.”
    -Rumi

    Though I was hesitant, you and your blog taught me that truly feeling the pain of heart break and loss was an act of self-love and not something to run from.

      • Yes! I love Rumi. I also love this one by Anita Krizzan:

        “When it hurts – observe.
        Life is trying to teach you something.”

        Things are going really well. I actually ended up saying no to both guys.

        One night after a really great date with the new guy, I was scrolling through the photos on my phone of all the moments that happened during the breakup (the trips I took, the girls nights I had, the time I spent with my sisters, my family and my dog, and all the quotes I saved) and I realized that I’m not ready to give all of that up.

        Those moments are some of the most beautiful moments in my life.

        I’m more myself now than I ever was – my intuition is stronger, I see my sensitive side as a strength, I juice a couple times a week, I go for walks instead of kill myself at the gym, I buy myself flowers, I say I love you so much more to my friends and family, I go for Reiki and Theta healing and I have a crystal collection– I am just much more connected to who I am and what my mind, body and spirit needs.

        I know some people won’t like to hear this… but while the breakup gutted me at first, it also gave me the opportunity to date myself (because I let it) — and I am amazed at what I found out. I always thought I needed a guy to feel beautiful and important and complete.. but I love looking in the mirror and realizing I am all of those things and I don’t have a guy 😉

        I wouldn’t change the past 4 months for anything.

        Though I don’t need this blog like I use to, I’m going to keep checking back because I love your writing and my heart always lights up when I see a new post! xo

      • Sarah,
        Can I just say, “Wow!” I am already excited for the day when I can truly feel what you have written down. Your words are so inspirational beyond belief!

        The idea of dating myself is one I was never comfortable with. Even now, I sometimes say, “I wish I had a boyfriend who I could be doing this with right now…” and I think that’s where the root of my unhappiness lies. I have always NEEDED someone to be complete, whether it be a boyfriend or friends and while I would never show it, I would get so depressed if they couldn’t hang out one night. I hate being alone and it’s something that I am trying to work on. I’m not attracting people (whether it be friends or dates) and it’s because people can smell my insecurity from a mile away.

        I am so happy that you turned down 2 nice guys because you aren’t done dating yourself yet. That’s one of the truest forms of self- confidence and love.

        Since visiting the blog regularly, I have not only grown attached to Jen, but to all of the other commenters as well. It’s so great to see other people in my shoes who have grown to see the light. Please keep us updated!

    • and Rumi also said;
      you yourself are the center of love. be aware of it and get back to your center (selflove)

      he was just not a poet also a psychiatrist I would say 🙂

  5. Hi Isabella,

    I just want to let you know that who I am today is very different than who I was a few months ago, and very very different than who I was a few years ago.

    I was in a relationship with my first love from when I was 15 until I was 22 and I too use to get very depressed when he couldn’t hang out with me and I had to spend an evening alone. So, I understand that feeling completely. Though I have had relationships since, hearing you say those things brings me right back to the old Sarah and those nights I felt so low.

    I don’t feel that way anymore, and in fact I can barely remember that last time I did. But learning to love myself has been a process (one that I am still working on!). It took my most recent ex (one of the guys I recently turned down) leaving abruptly and me finding this blog to really dive into self love and spend time with the abandoned part inside of me.

    Today, I can say whole heartedly that I truly love who I am. It wasn’t an easy road though and there were some really scary, empty times along the way… and I know there will be some really scary, empty times ahead. Life is about the ebb and flow. But what I’ve learned is that once you learn to love yourself, truly truly love yourself, the times of ebb (when tragedies strike and times are tough) become bearable, because you’ll know what you need to feel supported and you’ll know how to nurture yourself until things flow again.

    If you are anything like I was a few years ago, you have a bit of a road ahead of you. But Isabella, I promise you that someday you’ll look back at your journey and see it as beautiful. You’ll also see how every part of it was meant to happen to create the future you and you’ll be grateful for how everything played out.

    One of my favourite things to do at the end of the night is to light a candle and write down 3 things I am grateful for – I take an inventory of my entire day and I write about the 3 things that lit my heart up. Tonight I’ll write about you.

    I’m so excited for you. You have a beautiful journey ahead. xo

    “I love the person I have become, because I fought to become her.”

    PS. I have also grown to attached to this blog. Jen is an angel for creating this space!

    • Well, you both have totally melted my heart. Sarah, you’ve said some things here more beautifully than I ever could have. I may just post one of your comments as a blog so other people can see your journey. ❤️

      If it helps at all, I’m super attached to you guys, especially you two and Annie. ❤️ You add to my life in ways you can’t even imagine. I think about you and feel proud of you. Anyway, thank you for sharing your lives here.

      • Dear Sarah and Jen ☺

        I found Jen’s blog 6 months ago while I was at the lowest point of my breakup ( being dumped, to be exact). When I saw the title ” how I got my ex back ( seriously ) I was jumping on thrill that this might be one of the good advice out there I desperately needed at that moment to get him back. After reading the post, I found it wasn’t what I expected . How could I get him back when what I need to do is letting go??
        Six months went by with countless tears, horrible emotional pains, with the thought I would never ever get over this pain, lost 10 kgs ( which is actually a good thing haha 😆 ) you guys guess who did I get back? ME!

        Yes, not the man who heartlessly left me when my feelings towards him was getting strong, whom I kept apologising on the phone the night he decided to dump me for coming up too strong, for showing my feelings ( I couldn’t believe I apologised to someone for loving him…😟). At this point, Sarah,I think my story is similar to yours.

        Yes, I got myself back. I found the smiling Annie who used to smile a lot back after crying almost everyday the first 4 months. I found myself being able to stop constantly thinking about him, wondering what he does. The thought of him would be with someone else does not make me feel nauseous or my heart would skip beats anymore. The SNAP as Jen likes to call it happened to me on the day I thought I would lay down and die because of emotional pain. Whoever reads my comment right now, please listen, I 1000% guarantee you that one day you will find the closure for yourself, and the sadness, the pain you’re bearing right now will pass. I swear! And that whether your ex return to you or not, it willno longer be your concern.Because you know what? You get yourself back, not him/ not her. And that matters most!

        I don’t think I would go details what I did to get myself back, because JEN has been doing an incredible job and what I did was just following what she sincerely tells us what we shall do to heal and to mend the broken heart.😊

        Much love from Switzerland💖💖

      • Thanks for the sweet words Jen 🙂 – you can definitely share my story if you decide to.
        I’m really really (really!) grateful for where I am right now.
        Thanks for supporting us. It’s so nice to know there is someone on the other side of the world cheering for us.
        Much love!

  6. Hey Jen, asking you a completely unrelated question. I work in healthcare as a junior resident doctor and I love my job. However I have a tough time with my senior resident doctor at work. I know most people don’t have any trouble with her as she is supposedly one of the most knowledgeable people in the hospital. However I have asked her for feedback, and she said she’s hard on me because she knows I can do better. However I know that being hard and being mean are not the same thing. I don’t see her being mean with the others, specially she’s not mean with the guys. I almost thought I could be wrong here cuz I’m being judgmental but that feeling of something wrong is constantly there with her. I don’t believe she’s being hard on me to improve me, I feel that she is downright rude in the name of being hard. How do I make peace with this situation and continue to be diligent at work ?

    • 1. How old is she?

      2. I would just share it with her. Like, “Hey [Sandra] (example name), I know you’ve said you’re hard on me because you want me to do well, but sometimes, the way it comes across is a little hurtful/condescending, and when my feelings get hurt, I DON’T do well. I was wondering if, when you give me feedback, you could try just explaining what I did wrong and what I need to do to fix it?” That’s a very polite way of telling someone “You’re kind of being a jerk,” so if she’s still not open at that point, I’d be concerned.

      Feedback is a huge part of where I work, and we tell each other all the time if a person’s feedback style works for us or not. I’ve actually had this exact conversation at least a dozen times. Now I can get through it really quickly. Like, “Hey, when you said [example thing], I actually felt myself get really defensive. I was wondering if next time, you could just tell me what behavior to correct and explain why, and I’ll correct it immediately.” Learning how to ask people to best communicate with you is a skill you’ll need your whole life.

      If she’s still harsh with you after this, it may be time to discuss it with someone higher up.

      • I did. I continued to feel she was trying to dampen my spirit. I love feedback, and I am pretty forgiving too whenever in doubt that someone is trying to be meant So when someone hurts me persistently with their words I know something IS wrong. I followed your suggestion 🙂 Truth is no one can stop the clock and eventually I started working with someone else who is better. And no one can change anyone. Having said that, I’m sure she will learn with time.

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