Your Life, Your Way

First they ignore you
Then they mock you
Then they fight you
Then you win. – Ghandi

I met up with a friend recently.  As we were catching up, he mentioned he did a program called hard 75.  Curious, I asked him what it was.  After he told me, I was definitely intrigued – for him.

If you haven’t heard of 75 hard, it’s a personal development challenge that you do for 75 days straight.  You have to choose and follow an eating plan, work out twice (once outside, rain or shine), drink a gallon of water, read 10 pages of a non-fiction book and take a progress photo.  Every.  Single.  Day.  And here’s the “best” part – if you miss one of these tasks anywhere within the 75 days, you go back to day 1 and start over.

I was happy for my friend – he said it really focused him and showed him he could do more than he thought he could.   Even though I had no desire to do it, I was curious about his journey.  He mentioned that his friends and co-workers were skeptical at first, but then impressed as they saw him stick to the program.  Then they started encouraging him and holding him accountable.  It occurred to me that I’ve experienced the same reaction, although not with 75 hard.

I remember times in my life when people thought my actions were crazy.  Like when I cut grains out of my life (OK, 80% of the time.  This is one of the reasons I won’t do 75 hard.)  At first, there were all these comments about how I didn’t eat bread, how they couldn’t imagine giving it up, that it wasn’t bad for me, etc.  Then after a while, they started to understand it was my choice – and it wasn’t a judgement on anyone.  It was simply me doing something good for me.  It ceased to be a topic of conversation.  One of my friends even decided to cut back on her own.

We all have this amazing ability to put ourselves front and center in every situation – even when it’s not about us.  We feel that if someone else is doing – or not doing – something, then it is an indictment of our life.  And it’s simply not the case.  Most of the time, the other person is on their own journey.

So, eat – or don’t eat – healthy.  Choose whether to exercise and how.  Go after your dreams no matter what others think.  Because the thing is, you’re the only one living your life.

Live it the best way you see fit.  And if someone judges you?  Keep going.  After all, it’s not about you.  And who knows – you may end up inspiring someone else!

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