Anna Maria Locke

a season of peace

December 2015Anna LockeComment

It's the Friday before Christmas, and I’m sitting in on the couch in our sunny living room next to our little Christmas tree, listening to the Folk Christmas station on Spotify, drinking gingerbread tea and trying to focus so I can get some work done before Ben comes home and we officially kick off our break!

I feel lazy and super unmotivated on the outside, and buzzing with excitement for the holidays on the inside.

On Sunday Ben and I are hitting the road for our annual Christmas road trip (central IL to Tennessee to Indiana this year). I’m looking forward to lots of downtime hanging out with family, eating cookies, drinking wine, and dreaming and planning for 2016.

I can hardly believe 2015 is almost over, but at the same time I’m almost giddy with relief and happiness because it’s been a long, (good but) exhausting year! I feel like I’ve been living inside a whirlwind and I’ve just escaped into quiet stillness.

My mom and sister came up to Chicago to visit on Monday and we spent the afternoon at the Christkindlmarket in Daley Plaza window shopping, eating cinnamon sugar almonds, and drinking gluhwein. 

I also took myself on a fancy coffee date to Julius Meinl, an adorable European-style cafe, just because. And got my nails done! I'm so happy I finally introduced myself to the wonders of the no-chip mani. I used to think manicures were a waste of money. Just one of the little self-worth mindset shifts I've made!

Last night I threw a virtual hangout party with the coaches on my team to celebrate our wins and share our hopes and dreams for 2016. These women feel like family to me, they support me and lift me up, and I realized that this time last year I only knew two of them. The community I'm building through Beachbody is so incredible and empowering!

This has been possibly THE most relaxing week I've had all year.

Partly because I've been doing fun things, but mainly because my brain and nervous system has finally received the SLOW THE F*** DOWN memo I've been trying to send for the past several months.

I've been having an inner battle with my perfectionism all year and the inner mean girl voice who tells me "you're not enough" and I'm finally learning how to raise my umbrella to protect myself from the "should"-storms and be ok with simply BE-ing instead of constantly doing, striving, and achieving.

When you're trying to change your entire mindset and the way you view yourself, you're going to face a TON of resistance from your ego, which wants to hold you back and sabotage you so you never leave your "comfort zone," even if your comfort zone isn't even comfortable anymore.

So the closer you get to a personal breakthrough, whether it's weight loss, a career move, a new relationship, or internal growth, the more intense the resistance is going to feel. Apparently it even attacks your immune system and will make you physically sick, which I learned the hard way last month.

If you've been following my blog this year, you know I've been dealing with a huge internal growth spurt.

Let me catch you up....

May : I decided to take ownership of my perfectionism, and refused to let it define me any longer.

October : I decided to break up with my inner mean girl, AKA ego, and not take her shit anymore.

November : I started to stop rushing through life and practiced living in the present moment, cutting myself lots of slack. My ego didn't like it. I got sick and burned out. I had one last HUGE epic break down last month, involving a never-ending cold and anxiety so bad I actually went to the doctor to make sure I wasn't dying. (She told me I was super healthy and gave me some Xanax).

December : I finally cracked through and learned how to let myself recover through a self care mindset.

Where I'm at now

I'm really good. I'm spending lots of time reading fiction books for fun (!), sitting and thinking without freaking out over being alone with my own thoughts, journaling and reflecting. I'm eating what I want to eat and listening to my body, which means lots of healthy foods and greens but some sugar and holiday treats here and there too.

I'm not motivated to grow my business right now, so I'm taking the pressure off. I know my energy and motivation will kick back into gear next month, and I have lots of plans :)

For the first time in my adult life, I’m letting myself relax and just BE.

My brain is calm, I’m content, I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished, and I know I still have a long way to go before I reach my big dreams and goals...but most of all I’ve learned how to be happy within the process of growth and dream-chasing.

At the beginning of the year I didn’t know how to separate my sense of self worth and success from my accomplishments, achievements, paycheck, and work.

Now I know that all I have to do is be myself, and that’s more than enough.

I'm finally aligning with my purpose in life, and for the first time I feel successful and worthy simply for being myself.

For the FIRST TIME I am at peace with my body.

I'm at peace with the fact I'm not perfect.

I'm at peace with the fact I don't have to "be productive" 24/7 or work long hours to feel like I'm doing something with my life.

I'm at peace with the fact my business is growing slower than I thought it "should," and I'm not making the income I desire yet.

I've been seeking this peace for so many years, in jobs and opportunities and accomplishments, and I had no idea it was inside me the whole time. 

This is why I love sharing my story on my blog. Because when we're in the middle of something, we can't see the other side until we're at the other side, but it's fascinating to look back and be able to tie the pieces together.

I've let go of a lot of the stress and pressure I was placing on myself for 2015 because let's face it...there are some goals I simply didn't meet and they're not going to happen now. And that's ok! There's a brand new year waiting just around the corner.

Next year is going to be full of creativity and more growth and discovery, and I can't wait.

Wishing YOU lots of peace as we head into the holiday season. Let yourself relax and be present in the moment...everything will get done, I promise. You deserve to relax :)

xo Anna

p.s. Want to work on your OWN inner and outer transformation next year? I'm super excited to be welcoming new clients to my January group coaching for details!