As a young career woman I always prioritised exercise, I had a steady gym habit that left me feeling amazing. There were times when work demands or my health saw my commitment to my beloved gym drop off, but when I was ready to jump back on that train I would find myself fitting back into the gym life in no time. The light burn of my muscles being pushed to their limits, the hardening of my body, the feeling of breathing in air until my lungs could almost burst and the fast tapping of my heart reminding me that I was truly alive! But the part that I loved the most was the sense of achievement in committing time to doing something purely for myself.
Insert motherhood, a husband who works away, a couple of businesses to run and the ups and downs of everyday life and suddenly my treasured exercise is so far down my to do list, I have to wipe the mold off my runners nearly every time I use them! I have clung to the concept that if you want something badly enough you just have to make it happen, but sometimes life events are so unexpected and significant that the mantra “the most important thing I have to do today is exercise” is difficult to enact when your child is sick, or there is a work crisis to be attended to, or you are supporting your mother through breast cancer treatment.
“At this point in my life where my time is so precious, I can’t bring myself to do anything that is monotonous or beneficial for my health but not enjoyable.”
There have been times, post babies, where I have managed to prioritise my own health and wellbeing, however I haven’t ever truly found the sustainable balance between being a mother, running my own businesses and having a DIDO husband. What I’m focusing on now is the concept that my health and wellbeing has to be tied into something that I love and that I have to be okay with just getting to it when I can.
I’m trying to be kind to be myself and acknowledge that any steps I take towards enhancing my health and wellbeing is worthwhile. That near enough is good enough and that I just have to keep getting back on that horse. I have to let go of the expectations I place on myself. It is okay if I don’t progress past beginner level because I keep stopping and starting. As long as I am getting there sometimes! As long as I am moving! As long as I walk away feeling good about myself! That is what being active is all about!
The other thing that I have realised in this busy life that I am living is that it is important that I love everything that I am doing. At this point in my life where my time is so precious, I can’t bring myself to do anything that is monotonous or beneficial for my health but not enjoyable. I don’t have the stamina to overcome all of the barriers that I face in fitting physical activity into my day, to be spending time doing something that I don’t love every moment of. That’s what I love about adventure activities – the challenge, the element of surprise, the sense of achievement!
So join us on this journey. Let’s navigate this path together and figure out how everyday women, with demanding lives, can make time for themselves and their health!
About: Jarrah is the co-founder of The Life Approach and Approach Adventure and has a background in social work and supporting leadership and management within not-for-profit organisations. Jarrah’s passion is supporting individuals to move through barriers to achieving the life that they want for themselves. When not running after her children aged three and five, Jarrah’s adventures of choice are yoga and bushwalking.