March Writers Prompt Selection: Learning To Walk: A Self-Care Journey

Health & Wellness


If you ask for your life to change, it will change. Locked in an empty conference room in 2016 with my eyes full of tears, that is what I asked for. You see, the first step in the self-care and soul-searching journey is realizing that you are f*cked up. Not in the sense that you are a total disaster but more so like, there are clear areas of your life which could be handled differently. It is acknowledging that maybe, just maybe, there is an alternate way to approach your life.

For example, I could probably stop sleeping around with random men. I could probably go to work without counting down the minutes until I could leave. I could probably process grief a lot more productively than a bottle of tequila every Friday night. Step one: Realize thou art f*cked up, or the G rated version: Define your opportunities for improvement.

The next step was taking note of the severity of the issues I had and what I honestly believed would fix them. Sometimes it’s as simple as a workout class or mani-pedi with girlfriends; but for me, that would have just been a Band-Aid. I was at such a low point that I immediately took to Google and my insurance provider’s website to find a therapist. I knew that I needed to talk to someone who wasn’t a friend, who wouldn’t interrupt my stories or discount what I was feeling with their own personal experiences. I didn’t want to place that burden on my friends. I needed to pay someone to listen and give me the professional tools to fix my life.

Once I was in the chair, the hardest part was taking responsibility for my own actions. The thing about self-care is that there no route on this journey where someone else is to blame. This is both difficult to swallow and miraculous in its own right. Our parents, family, friends, and environment can be direct contributors to our poor state, but you are in control of how you navigate those situations and your circumstances. You cannot fix other people. You cannot make them love you or treat you better. You can most certainly ask but most people operate with their own interest in mind which makes it incredibly difficult to consider the feelings of others.   

If no one else is to blame then you have the power to fix everything. That is the most wonderful part of this journey. You can change how you react to people. You can change the story of your life or circumstances that have been ingrained into your subconscious. You can decide what comes next.  

Eventually, it’s all about implementing those tools. I suffer from anxiety, and I had to go from recognizing what it is and how it expresses itself, to me preventing anxiety attacks and identifying the triggers in my life. This involved a few difficult conversations in all areas of my life. I had to advocate for myself in the workplace, in relationships, and with family.

Last but not least, you have to make the pledge for less f*ckery. Once you’re aware of your issues and have set clear goals for what you want to improve in your life, you have to put an end to the madness. It’s not that you won’t fall back into your old habits. I have at least a dozen times but I don’t stay there as long as I used to.


Here is my pledge (in its most raw, unedited form):

I have seen some f*cked up things. I have made mistakes and lived to tell the tale. A lot of things have happened in my past but none of them truly define who I am or who I will become.

With that said, I will be damned if I’m not a well-adjusted adult human being who contributes to society in a meaningful way by allowing myself to reach my full potential. I will be someone who knows that they deserve love and belonging and someone who can freely give it because I know that I am whole and complete.

I will not mess anyone else up to the best of my ability. I will live a life led by love and joy while acknowledging the entire spectrum of human emotion and the human experience. I will live fully in this life and commit to being in the arena.

With Love,

Kristian


I initially embarked upon my self-care journey because I wanted to live a life that was better than the one I was living. I knew that I was carrying a heavy weight that I needed to let go of in order to move forward with my life.

True self-care is like learning how to walk. When a child learns how to walk, it is inevitable that they will fall. You cannot learn to walk and be jealous of those that crawl. You have to commit. You have to get up and try again. You have to hold the hands of those around you who understand what you are attempting to do. And you have to keep going to unfold into the person you were meant to be all along. When you do learn to walk, and you will, be sure to hold the hand of the next kid in line.

Top image via


Kristian Gist is a writer and asker of all deep, thought-provoking questions over cocktails and cups of tea. She is heavily focused on learning how to best love herself and helping others do the same. She lives in Chicago and serves as the personal assistant for her two cats, Zippy and Louis.  You can find her on Instagram @kristianologist.

 

BY Kristian Gist - March 15, 2018

Did you know W&D now has a resource library of  Printable Art, Templates, Freebies, and more?

take me there 

Arrow Alone

Get Our Best W&D Resources

for designing a life well-lived

17 Comments  +

add a comment

  1. Lilly

    March 15th, 2018 at 10:13 am

    This was lovely, and struck a real chord. Thank you.

  2. Kristian Gist

    March 16th, 2018 at 11:44 am

    I’m so happy that this resonated with you. All the best on your journey!

  3. Mailinh

    March 15th, 2018 at 10:20 am

    Thank you for sharing this. Self-care is so important. It’s interesting how we don’t take notice of it until something (or a multitude of things) knocks us down to make us see it.

  4. Kristian Gist

    March 16th, 2018 at 11:44 am

    Yes! My hope for the future is that we’re proactive about checking in with ourselves to realize what is going on before it knocks us down. Happy that you enjoyed it.

  5. Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    March 15th, 2018 at 10:46 am

    Such a great post, Kristian! Heart was beating while reading, I can really relate to this. ❤️

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

  6. Kristian Gist

    March 16th, 2018 at 11:43 am

    I love that you can relate, Charmaine! All the best!

  7. LB

    March 15th, 2018 at 4:19 pm

    Amazing how we read the things we need to hear the moment we need to hear them. Love the writer’s insight.

  8. Kristian Gist

    March 16th, 2018 at 11:42 am

    I’m so happy that this found its way to you.

  9. Alina

    March 15th, 2018 at 6:21 pm

    What a beautiful article! I think every single person goes through a certain point in life when he/she has to stop and reevaluate her/his life. I love the approach of taking full responsibility for everything that is happenning in your life, sometimes it hurts, but this pain is definitely healing. Thank you for sharing your story!

  10. Kristian Gist

    March 16th, 2018 at 11:42 am

    I am so happy that it resonated with you. Life is such a beautiful journey and it’s always a gift to keep learning about yourself and healing from whatever comes your way.

  11. Kelly

    March 16th, 2018 at 11:39 am

    So enjoying these topics of health & wellness. Thank you for your honesty!

  12. Kristian Gist

    March 16th, 2018 at 11:41 am

    So happy that you enjoyed it!

  13. Briana

    March 19th, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    Sometimes the Universe delivers you to a window, and you look through and see the answers. This post is like that window and I could look into it and see that we all struggle emotionally from time to time, and sometimes you need a little help to get your shit together. Thanks for sharing, I really enjoyed reading this. I can totally relate.

  14. Kristian Gist

    March 21st, 2018 at 8:43 pm

    Cheers to the Universe for sending this your way! I love how it works.

  15. Jen Lynn

    March 21st, 2018 at 6:08 pm

    I love the way you wrote this and expressed what I’m working on now too. I feel like it’s too easy to not see this as a process, instead, that it’s just the first page of the successful, turned life around and now everything is awesome story (which I find inspiring, but right now I needed this kind of story–the in it story).

  16. Kristian Gist

    March 21st, 2018 at 8:41 pm

    Yes, and the steps continues over and over again. I realized that I may never get to that mountaintop but I can get really good at climbing and looking out over each crest to see how far I’ve come. I love that you found this inspiring! Good luck on your journey! I’m rooting for you.

  17. Link Love (04/18/18) – out of the black

    April 18th, 2018 at 7:51 am

    […] One writer’s personal journey to self love and pledge to self care. […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

MORE LIKE THIS:

Why Decorating Your Home Is Good for Your Mental Health

What 10 Years of Blogging Taught Me

The Hidden Benefits of Being Incredibly Uncomfortable

6 Easy-to-Grow, Can’t Kill Houseplants for Beginners

The Golden Rule: A Dream Career Built From Love, Loss and Resilience

Introvert Dating An Extrovert? Here’s How To Make It Work

Tornadoes to Tablescapes: Life Inside the Lifestyle Blog

Black, White and Love All Over

Marriage – A Requirement of Commitment?

Women vs. Women, and a Little Thing Called “Self-Respect”

Homemade Green Tea and Honey Mask

An Apartment of Firsts: A Personal Story

Learning to Find Joy in Movement

Furniture & Accessories to Spruce up Your Outdoor Patio Space

My Summer Manifesto: A Little Less Doing

Baby Products That Got Me Through the First 18 Months of Motherhood

9 Podcasts That Will Make You Smarter

10 Easy Vegetarian Recipes to Whip up This Summer

MORE STORIES

Arrow Alone

the latest

Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.

Hi, I'm Kate. Welcome to my happy place.

Easily navigate all our recommended products across beauty, fashion, decor, and wellness. 

SHOP W&D Loves ›

follow  @WITANDDELIGHT

ELSEWHERE

PINTEREST

FACEBOOK

333k

3m

12.5k

INSTAGRAM