Working on me.
How many of us start each new year with a list of resolutions, usually topped with the idea of getting in shape or losing weight? In many ways, I think it is the curse of the American Dream-We work so hard, neglect ourselves to focus on the well-being of others, have an abundance of "things" available constantly and before we know it, we've lost track of who we are, what makes us happy and, ultimately, we see that indulgence expressed in weight gain (among other things, like mental health issues no one wants to talk about!).
When I worked as a teacher, I was so guilty of all of the above-I rarely went to the doctor because If I was going to be absent, it would be to take care of my children, rather than myself. I worked long hours, never disconnected from work, often replying to student or parent texts and messages all throughout the evening and again as soon as I woke. I organized team building events with students and their families outside of school all while neglecting my own family relationships. I never made time for me-it was just too inconvenient to schedule a massage or hair appointment because it took up too much time. or at least that's what I told myself. And because of this, I was unhappy and exhausted; I suffered from unexplainable aches and pains, had constant migraines, ate away my frustrations and had weekends where I just collapsed in front the TV as an escape; ignoring everyone and everything around me. I was functionally depressed, if that's a thing. Does this sound familiar to anyone???
So What Changed?
Then I quit my job to take Molly Tipton Photography fulltime and never looked back. I used the first months of summer 2022 to decompress-I didn't focus on booking any sessions from June-September. I spent some time traveling to see family during the summer and then, for the first time in 16 years, was able to take off in September and travel abroad to Cyprus, where my son would be completing a semester at university. I spent almost 3 weeks exploring the sights and sounds of Cyprus, eating great Cypriot food, drinking wine and eating delicious desserts. I lounged on beaches, snorkeled beautifully blue Mediterranean waters, explored ancient Byzantine, Roman and Greek ruins, read 3 books and took LOTS of pictures. I also got in a car accident where our rental was totaled (my husband's fault!) But the point is...I simply Enjoyed the time and didn't question just relaxing, which was a new thing for me! Check out some images from my travels below!
In Late September, I came home and started small-I made appointments for annual check-ups that I let slide by over the years, I schedule time for friends and socializing, I started doing things for MY enjoyment, even if that meant doing things solo..... and something in me started to change. I started to be happier, I started to laugh more, engage more, do more. I started to plan outings and travel and started to really plan out my vision for Molly Tipton Photography. And I challenged myself to shed the weight that I gained over the last few years of teaching. (of course that is one on my resolutions-I'm just like you, after all)
So here I am, one month into 2023-I've been scouting locations to create a location guide for my clients so we can explore the southwest together and at each place, I'm making a conscious effort to put myself in FRONT of the camera as a way to be accountable to myself during my journey to take better care of myself mentally and physically! I am working on one REALLY EXCITING CHANGE, but shhhhh, its a secret for now. Stay tuned for a big announcement!
I'd love to hear what you have planned for 2023 and I hope to see you soon!