As my 3-year approached I was feeling a lot of anxiety. Scared about screwing it up at the last minute and anxious about all the emotions it brings up for me and for who I was at this time 3 years ago.

At that time my self-worth and confidence were shot to pieces. I was often telling myself I wasn’t good enough or that I was failing in all aspects of my life, and actually… I’m feeling those similar pangs again now while trying to survive through this pandemic with my business. I realize that these thoughts are and were irrational, but as a driven person, keen to push on in my career as a hairstylist in film, they were all the more intense due to a debilitating hand injury. I had convinced myself that alcohol was what made me happy, that those couple glasses of wine to take the edge off wasn’t a problem and that it made my life feel a little less meaningless. Little did I know that it would lead me down a path of dustruction and ultimately my suicide.

It has been said that we cannot know the light without experiencing the darkness, but at the same time, both dark and light experiences may be considered great teachers. Growth and transformation, in fact, are born out of darkness.

In the early weeks of sobriety I no longer felt like my bottom had fallen out, but I still felt quite close to, if not on, the bottom. I thought sobriety would be gleeful, I thought that I would now be ‘happy’ and more easily fulfilled. I hadn’t realized that I’d have to put in actual effort to get there.
Another hard truth I had to accept was that I didn’t like where my life was at that point and that it was because of decisions that I had made. In recovery they brought to my attention a glaringly obvious point that I hadn’t even considered in my denial state of mind. “in every situation you’ve experienced, good or bad, what was the constant?”… Aww man it was me! I’m the one variable in every circumstance in my life and I had to look deep within to sort all that out with the help of therapy. I had to get out of my own way, something I have to continue to work on daily because those bad habits and patterns are ingrained deeply and can be quite easy to fall prey to.

Recovery is a lifelong path, it’s effort and you have to have the willingness to pull yourself out from that hole you’ve dug for yourself. I’m doing my best to stay strong no matter what the universe continues to send my way, one day at a time.

The number one key to success for any goal is HUNGER, but we’ve got to convert that hunger into DOING, and that means doing the shit you don’t wanna do!

What do you really want? And what are you willing to do to get there? What are you willing to push through? If you’re honest with yourself you already know what you DON’T WANT to do, but what are you WILLING to do?

Take that willingness and turn it into COMMITMENT to push through the struggle, the effort, and the work – because magical things live on the other side of WILL (at least in my experience). It could be a small realistic goal to start – but those small things can make a big difference in your quality of life. From idea to doing and in the process don’t pre-judge yourself! You’re just beginning your journey and I’m here to tell you whatever you’re dreaming about you can make real, but you have to have that hunger and that drive and you’ve got to do what’s uncomfortable to get there!

Most importantly of all, you need to train yourself to do all those uncomfortable things, like any good barre class, with repetition you’ll build that muscle and all the sudden you’ll be doing not only the easy things, but the hard things together before you know it.

Here’s to 3 years of growth, may I be fortunate enough to have three more.

~Jenine Lehfeldt @sweeserenityyoga