Experience Your Life Through Analysis and Action.
Success seems to begin with the practice of a morning routine.
- Wake up
- Express gratitude
- Place protection around your energetic field
- Shake off the stagnant energy through movement, exercise or dancing
Reflecting on my life a year later from a short video I created, I cannot believe how far I’ve come. From trauma at home to paradise in a pandemic.
I’m so proud of myself and my journey.
It hasn’t been easy, nobody goes through life skipping along the yellow brick road while being handed a silver platter. We all have our own struggles and internal battles.
But the biggest realization for me as of late is that we have a choice.
Living in London, I was so unhappy. There was a multitude of individual personal struggles, but as a collective society within the UK, we are angry.
I battled hard with societal pressures and my depression during my time in London as a young adult. Gentrification was such a personal and collective problem for me that I created a photography exhibition on the hardships of London Living.
Estate of mind (2018) was a photography exhibition that featured photographers from the four corners of London who came from a BAME background. We had authors, politicians, and communities come together to create something that had a meaning and a purpose. Most of all, it was inspired by the council’s willingness to demolish my estate, my home.
I did not find myself here in New Zealand, creating and writing every day, by moping around and engaging in nonproductive activities.
I had to put in the inner work. I had to look within myself and face what was happening to me.
I remember waking up one day and deciding that I wasn’t going to let my depression kick my ass anymore. It was a narrative that I didn’t want to become a part of my personality. I know people who introduce themselves and include their depression as a part of them.
I understand when you’re in a dark place, it’s hard to get out. It’s hard to see that there are better alternatives out there, better opportunities. I know living in London is hard. There’s so many people, so much competition, and it’s so expensive to live and breathe. London doesn’t care about its people.
As soon as I became aware of that reality, I wanted a change, and change can only happen through action.
It’s the small steps, taking it a day at a time. Staying focused, alert, and aware.
It’s taking advantage of the opportunities that are being presented to you. I decided to move back into my parents’ house, away from my reality, and what was expected of an adult. It almost felt like a step backwards, but moving back into my parents’ house gave me a chance to take a moment to analyze my life.
I did not sit around watching TV and eating snacks. Instead, I read self-help books, I meditated, I wrote, I went to yoga, I exercised. I really limited my alcohol and caffeine intake, and felt a huge shift and difference by doing so.
Coffee creates anxiety, and alcohol enhances your depression. These two drugs, combined with long hours at work and living in an unhappy environment, is a cocktail for disaster and self-sabotage.
I was putting in the work, I was doing, I was taking action to create a better life and reality for myself.
Within eight months of being at my parents’ place, I decided to go to New Zealand as there wasn’t much left for me in the UK.
Inner work is a continuous journey, and it’s never-ending. Therefore, I set myself a challenge to really put myself out there with my art, writings, and creation.
For too long I’d sit around, contemplating, overthinking, and procrastinating, until I realized and remembered I have a choice! I have a choice to do things! It is up to me to create the life I want, and that begins with every single action of every day.
Drinking excessively is an action that affects your tomorrow morning and future self.
It’s hard to be productive and feel good about yourself when you feel sick and are fighting with a self-inflicted hangover.
Willpower is a muscle we must exercise in order to be able to say no to those things that do not make us feel good in the long run. Placing yourself outside of a toxic environment is a catalyst to becoming your greater version.
I walked away from an environment that was no longer serving me. Since then, I have gained an abundance of love, gratitude, and positivity towards myself and life.
A city girl from London never would have thought that she’d be on 10 acres of beautiful New Zealand land during a pandemic, eating the finest vegan food, enjoying wonderful company, all the while learning and creating.
I did not get here through not-doing/non-action.
This was a manifestation and creation through my act of doing that enabled me to be where I am today.
There is no shame in feeling proud of yourself and expressing gratitude.
There is no shame in being you.
People’s opinions really don’t matter, so long as you value your own opinion on yourself. We hold the power of greatness, and this is usually what we fear.
When you shine, you allow others to shine too.
It all starts with doing. It all starts with taking action.
Make the choice today to better your future.
Chantelle Whitehead is a writer, journalist and truth-seeker from South London, who is currently based in Aotearoa, New Zealand. Chantelle studied at Coventry University, and has written for Elephant Journal, Sivana Spirit, and Tiny Buddha. The surrounding themes within her work include personal discovery and spiritual growth. She aims to use her reflections, experiences, travel, and observations as a gateway to knowledge for others on the same path. The journey of self-discovery isn’t always pretty, and she is here to share some of her truths, including the good, the bad, the ugly, and the beautiful.