Last week, I spent 3 days and 3 nights, stuck in a hospital bed.
For someone who never had to spend much time at the hospital and who never had any surgery, this was quite a wake up call! That’s why I wanted to take the time to write down the big learning lessons I am processing right now and share them with you all.
During this time, alone in my room, and most of the time, stuck in my bed, I had the space and time to reflect.
Looking back on the situation, I am actually quite happy it happened. It’s like I needed this to step back from my daily life and ponder big questions. The universe always knows best, right?
But I was definitely not prepared for this when it happened. The fact that this was very sudden probably played a big role in this wake up call.
On that same day, I was having lunch with a dear friend of mine early afternoon, and just a few hours later I was at the urgencies, barely able to walk and being told I had to be admitted at the hospital. What!?
I already knew how much we tend to take things for granted but this time it hit me in the face like a wall (or should I say in the kidneys*). From one second to another, your whole world can dramatically change.
It also struck me that we are all growing older and our health and energy are not eternal. I know it might sound obvious but when it hits you, this concept takes so much more importance all of the sudden.
At the end of the day, the luckiest of us will end up just as it all started… totally dependant on someone else, without the ability to do whatever they want when they want. I don’t want to be negative here but some of us might lose the ability to walk properly, or to get dressed or to shower by themselves. It’s horrible when you think about it but the highlight of your day might become the simple fact of stepping outside for a couple of minutes to get some fresh air. Goodbye long brisk walks in nature or whatever makes you feel alive.
When your days come down to staying in a (hospital) room, you suddenly realise that your youth, health, energy, vitality, beauty, clarity of mind and all the opportunities that come with that are just temporary.
When you think that some people are watching their life go by as if it lasted forever… It makes me want to cry!
Don’t be a watcher, be a creator!
So what are the big life lessons I got from all of this?
Let me know break them down for you…
1. Don’t postpone your dreams
How much time do you think you’ve got left on this planet?
Even though I am wishing to anyone a long and happy life, I’ve had so many dear friends and family members taken away from me already! So what are you waiting for? Have fun, don’t hold back!
While I am not scared of death, I am certainly scared about the circumstances that lead to it (I probably should work on that by the way, as I think motherhood most probably accentuates this fear).
If one day, I have to be stuck in a hospital bed for the rest of my life, knowing that I won’t be able to get out of it anymore, that I won’t be able to swim in the sea and walk in nature ever again. I don’t want to have any regrets!
I want to look back at my life and be happy about what I’ve done and accomplished. Happy about the connections I’ve made in this world, happy about what I’ve learned and taught.
In that situation, I certainly won’t care about the amount of stuffs or money I’ve accumulated. But I will certainly care about feeling like I’ve led a successful life and taught my kids and my tribe how to do it (including you, my readers, followers, family members and friends).
I’ll be happy about leading a happy and successful life and show the way, be the example and inspire people to do the same.
So how do I do that?
It first comes down to defining your vision of success. Of course, this can be different for anyone but here are a few tips in order to get there:
- Live with your heart (not your head) and follow your dreams (not your fears)!
- Find your inspiration – it might be people who inspire you, places, businesses, pictures, books, words of wisdom, etc) and soak everything in.
- Be bold. Be happy. Enjoy every minute.
2. Take time to make sure you’ll feel awesome every single day.
For me, this was quite a big one.
Since I became a mum, I have to say that there is not enough hours in the day to do everything I want to do: to take care of my baby and my family + work on my business and pursue my passions.
So, I started to skip the make up phase in the morning. I also started dry shampooing more and more often… When I managed to put make up on in the morning, I started to skip the make up removal step and sleep with my make up…
I stopped juicing, because you know, it takes a while to clean the juicer afterwards
All of this, to free more time to work on my projects and passions (and yes, working from home is awesome but it has its downsides too).
Now, I am not saying that you have to wear make up in order to feel awesome but personally, by taking less and less care of myself, I realised I ended up not being aligned with my own values and vision anymore. Not to mention the type of girlfriend and mom I was becoming. I was just not acting as the person I wanted to be…
So let me ask you this: who do you want to be?
Do you want to be a woman who takes care of herself and feels good in her clothes and body?
Or are your projects and time more important than yourself?
Personally, I know my answer!
Even though I think it’s totally fine if your time / schedule / projects take over from time to time, I still found that once you allow yourself to do to so, it tends to spiral down quite easily.
So wear your nicest handbags – not the biggest one to put all your (baby) stuffs in it.
Wear make up if you feel more beautiful with it. Wear your nicest clothes, wash your hair as often as needed, give presents (to yourself as well!).
On my side, I now know that as long as I am not in a hospital bed, I’ll enjoy this opportunity to take good care of myself, feel great and beautiful on a daily basis.
3. Enjoy yourself
Don’t wait to see your friends, to organise city trips with them, to plan holidays, to see the world, to make dinner for your friends and family, to go out – and the list goes on and on.
Don’t wait to tell people you love them, don’t wait to give and don’t wait to ask for what you want.
Life is just too short.
Even if you end up living 100 years, you might not keep this level of energy, clarity or strength that long!
You never know what the future holds, so enjoy that while it last.
What is the point of accumulating money on your bank account for example?
Of course, you have to plan for the unexpected but once you have enough for that, is it your end goal to die with a bank account full of cash because you saved all your life without ever enjoying it? Accumulating money just for the sake of it, and then what?
Money is also there to help us feel good. Of course, I am not saying you should borrow or contract debts in order to have a fancy lifestyle. Not at all!
But if you have enough money to allow yourself some little pleasures, go for it! Go for a massage if it’s what you need, buy nice clothes, allow yourself to get the help you deserve by hiring a coach or joining a program or a retreat. Invest in your wellbeing, in the food you eat and in the place you live in.
Life is just too short and believe me, when you’ll be stuck in your hospital bed, you won’t care much about your bank account. But you’ll definitely remember the retreat you attended, the coach who’s helped you, or the awesome spa you had with your best friend, etc.
4. Have a bigger vision for your life
I deeply think that if you don’t have a big vision for your life, you can’t possibility make the most of it.
I’ve always been interested by those people who doesn’t seem to question anything. They gently follow the same patterns they’ve been told without looking anywhere else.
I’ve always thought “Those guys are lucky. They don’t need much to be happy”.
Well, it turns out that I don’t think so anymore. After more reflection on this topic, I think that if you don’t have a bigger vision for your life and for yourself, growth will not happen very quickly. However growth is exactly what we need in order to understand who we are, expand and be happier. This is – to me – the reason why we came here, on earth, as human beings. We came here in order to grow!
And as you know, growth doesn’t happen in your comfort zone! You have to stretch yourself. I am not saying this is the easy path but this will definitely be worth it!
Luckily I am quite good (honestly, maybe a bit too good) at stretching myself out of my comfort zone ). But looking back, I don’t think a life without that will be worth living!
(Big thoughts to all my coaching clients who have stretched themselves out of their comfort zone with me over the past years in order to grow! And OMG, I’ve got goose bumps thinking about the amazing results I witnessed!)
So what’s your bigger vision?
But pay attention! You have to know yourself first to know what’s your vision – BIG personal work I think anyone should do!
Then, whatever it is, go for it. Don’t just dream it, make it happen!
To me, this is the only way to feel fulfilled, to increase happiness and to avoid regrets when you’ll be on your hospital bed!
Personally, I have many visions (personal and professional for example). Let me share my professional one here:
I want to empower women in a big way!
I want to empower them to take control of their life. Not only to heal their relationship with food, their body and themselves, I also want to teach them how to lead a successful life. That includes coaching them if they want to create and run their own online business, like I’ve done – because to me, this is total freedom.
I really think fulfilment is a whole that includes body, mind, spirit, self-love and soul. And my goal, my big vision, is to help women fulfill all of them!
That was a long post and thank you for reading!
I’d love to have your thoughts on this! What resonates with you the most?
Have you had a similar wake-up call before?
If so, I’d love if you could share your main learning lesson in the comments below! Let’s empower each other!