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NOLA Girl Gone Green: Change your mind, then you can change your life

Written by  Nicolette Colly
Editor’s Note: Ms. Nicolette Colly is as New Orleans as they come. Born and raised in Gentilly, a graduate of Eleanor McMain High School, Loyola University New Orleans, and Southern University Law Center, Nicolette is currently an Assistant Attorney General at the Louisiana Department of Justice in Baton Rouge and fitness guru. Join Nicolette on her journey of healthier living.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us" (A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of "A Course in Miracles").

In response to the oft-asked question “Where do I start?,” I usually respond with: drink more water, and cut back on caffeine, sugar, salt, and processed foods. I even wrote an article, NOLA Girl Gone Green: 10 tips to get started on a healthier lifestyle. However, I believe I have been skipping over the most crucial part of what will most certainly be one of the hardest mental, spiritual, physical, and emotional challenges of your life.
Taking control of your thoughts and emotions will far outweigh the sacrifice and dedication needed to take charge of your health and change the course of your life. Before you buy some kale, water bottles, and a blender, you first have to decide that you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, of feeling sluggish and lethargic, and of looking in the mirror with disgust. In order to make this decision, you have to be willing and open to finding the pain. What are you holding on to deep down inside that allows you to overeat, drink too much, not exercise, and not make routine doctor visits? What do you use as your excuse? What do you hide behind?
Speaking for myself, it was insecurity, low self-esteem, bitterness, and anger. Hiding in the corner, not talking with arms folded was comfortable. All the while my soul was dying. I was suppressing the power that has resided in me since before I was even created. I used it as an excuse to not take responsibility for my hurtful actions and words towards others. I thought I had a right to do and say whatever I wanted because I was a “victim” and “victims” are entitled to do whatever they please. No one pulled me to the side and said, “Get over yourself”.
It’s not until your world caves in and the control you thought you had is gone. When no one feels sorry for you and there’s no one to talk to. It’s just you and a Big Mac. This has been or will be the tipping point in your life, the fork in the road. This is where the choice comes in. Are you sick enough of yourself? Do you want to continue playing the victim or do you want to come out victorious? Will you take the time to uncover the hurt, pain, anger, or bitterness? What happened to you and how and why did it change your mind? Where on this journey did you forget that you are perfectly made, specifically chosen, and appointed for a divine purpose? When did you forget that the only way to effectively use the time you have is to take care of the vessel that has a ticking timer?
There won’t be enough diets, workouts, or supplements to get you over the hurdle that is your mind and all its negative thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes. This is work that will take time and most certainly will be unpleasant. No one can help you and no one is responsible for you. No one owes you anything. Is forgiveness what you need? Forgiveness for yourself or someone else? What’s your pain? How hard are you willing to work to seek it out and fix it?

So before you throw away your whole pantry and run out to buy a top-of-the-line blender, sit quiet, be still, and listen to what your mind is saying. Is it whispering that you are a failure, that you’ll never do that, and that you’ll never be any better than what you are now? If you don’t seize these thoughts and attitudes and take control, you’ll never reach your goals. You may get a good running start, but your mind will always pull you back. It will always be there to whisper to you and call you back to your comfort zone.
You can’t build a stable house without a foundation. The foundation for a healthy life will be a healthy mind and soul. When the withdrawals from salt and sugar start, the headaches, dizziness and fatigue, will you quit because it’s uncomfortable? Will you reach for the caffeine, a donut, that Big Mac? Will you go back to the very place that causes you pain, weight gain, and misery because you like it there? Will you continue to suppress your power and leave this place with your tasks and purpose unfinished? Not only will you suffer, but you’ll never touch the lives that you were assigned to change. That is the tragedy. Not high blood pressure and disease.
Eating healthy and taking charge of your life goes far beyond drinking more water and squat challenges. You are charged with a purpose and that purpose cannot be completed if you are not functioning at your highest, most effective level. That level cannot be attained if you are spending time feeling sorry for yourself and talking negatively to yourself leading to stagnation. You are not only cheating yourself out of the gift you’ve been given, but you’re being selfish by withholding your light from the lives you could’ve touched.

I’m pulling you to the side here. There’s no pain that’s bigger than your purpose. Uncover the pain, change your mind, and then and only then can you change your life.

Follow Nicolette on Twitter and Instagram and be sure to check out her new website!
Last modified on Monday, 11 August 2014
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