If you’ve been to my website before, I am sorry – this post will be seem very off-brand. But if you were here early on, maybe this post will bring you back to the original voice behind Ironwild Fitness.
I am choosing to interrupt my normal vibe. Because what you see here on most days is in fact not always what I want to write – it’s what I feel I must write in order to keep up with the competition.
But that is, in fact, what I like the most about blogging. There are no rules – only suggestions. And the longer I blog, the more I need to do this – I just need to let it be enough.
I’m writing this after lying in bed all day, emotionally drained by the world.
My life has taken a lot of unexpected turns lately. And while the sacrifices will almost surely be worth it, it has been an emotional rollercoaster.
I find myself under pressure to be better. Be stronger, fitter, more successful as a mother, blogger, writer.
In the midst of trying to stay level-headed as I go through changes, I’m also trying to “grow on social media” and stay fit.
I find myself trying to support my husband as he becomes a new business owner (licensed in three states!) and as we navigate relocating to a new state as well.
Trying to endure political stress and turmoil, medical freedom issues, and questioning my morality as a whole.
Inside, it can just be an inner battle to do more and be more.
I feel like a basket-case just writing this, because there are so many details that you don’t know. So many factors that contribute to this.
A lot of things made me sit down and write this.
I started this blog in 2017, right before becoming a personal trainer. I had never aspired to become one, but when I found blogging in 2014 and became obsessed (seriously), it became really unhealthy.
When I hadn’t lost my 45 pounds of baby weight after my first baby, and it became clear that blogging wasn’t healthy, I gave myself an ultimatum. If I wanted to continue blogging, it needed to be about living a healthy life.
So, I started this blog to keep myself accountable and force myself to continue learning about being healthy.
When I had my second baby in 2018, I used it for postpartum updates and sharing about my journey to becoming a personal trainer.
I was jazzed about it then. Very passionate, very motivated.
But the blogging world has changed.
If you aren’t aware, both Pinterest and Google went through some significant changes in 2020. They hurt most bloggers like me.
I used to be able to write and easily get people to see my site. In 2019, I was enjoying over 30,000 visits to my site every month. Sometimes it was well over 45,000.
My goal was to get to at least 100,000 monthly page views, and it seemed like an achievable thing.
Then, changes were rolled out (greed and algorithms, man) and now I am barely able to get to 13,000 views per month.
I have tried everything I know to do – I have spent thousands of dollars on courses and ebooks. I have learned what Pinterest and Google say they want from us creators. But it still just isn’t going well.
So, I chose to change my focus to Instagram and more search engine optimization.
But, as a person with a long history of depression, it’s really wearing on me. I had started to make really decent money here on the blog, and I wanted more.
When the money started to go down, so did my motivation. Why would I work 20 hours per week to earn $300 per month?
To say the least, I am discouraged. With all of the changes that are happening in my life, I started to let my emotions rule.
Barely ever working out. Having a poor work ethic when it comes to writing and blogging. Not eating well at all – one hint of a setback, and I’m chugging a cherry Pepsi while wishing for a greasy burger.
No sense of willpower can be found at the moment, but I do have a shred of inspiration left at this moment.
I know myself well enough to let a bad day be a bad day, but I do have something to say.
Let it be enough.
Sometimes, I have to remember what I truly enjoy and am truly good at. What do I really value? Is it really so important that I do that thing that everyone else is doing?
Why does there have to be a certain standard? Who set that standard, anyway?
I just deleted Instagram off of my phone, and I am going to consider deleting my account.
It makes me feel absolutely nuts and desperate. Some people are making great money there, but it makes me feel like a slave.
Why do I have to be an influencer?
I don’t. If I could choose to make good money without any shred of fame, I would. Lol.
I don’t need to box myself into this typical blogger scene. I can still write and enjoy my little bit of income without being huge on Instagram.
A famous entrepreneur recently said that if you’re not on social media, you’re completely irrelevant to the world. You will never be successful.
That put a lot of pressure on me. (Is it even possible to run a business without social media anymore?)
But, do I want to be someone important to the world?
Or do I want to be someone who is important to my family and friends? Do I simply want to love myself?
I’m learning to let it be enough.
We all just need to go back to the drawing board. What do we really enjoy? What do we really need?
Chances are, those things are still there. The need for fame, money, success – are they ruining us?
How can I go back to the basics and relearn how to love my life? I think about the things that I truly enjoy, the things that I need, and the things that I am naturally good at.
I love to write. I need to work out (and I enjoy it, too). I need my family, and I enjoy being at home with them. I have a dream to live on a small homestead in a small town. I dream of friendship, connection, and community.
My dream life is to live all of those things each day. Family, gym, writing time, home, friends. But I get caught up in the obsession with perfection and success, and it takes away from those things.
Can I learn to let it be enough?
What would happen if I no longer wrote with the expectation of becoming a six-figure blogger? How would my life change if I quit exposing myself to the harmful social media game of comparison?
Would I quit wanting so much out of my life if I simply quit seeing so much of what others have?
I am certain that lowering my expectations for myself would make me infinitely more satisfied with my life.
But how can I learn to be okay with what I do have and focus on that?
Lowering your expectations too much can lead to laziness and indifference. That’s not what I’m after. I’m after a balance between moving up and onward, while also enjoying every step of the way.
Scaling way back – while also setting realistic goals.
Letting the joy of writing alone be enough to propel me forward in my career as a blogger.
Letting my love of endorphins and movement be my only reasons for exercising.
Letting my family appreciate what we have together instead of always wanting more for them, when if fact they have what they truly need.
It’s also letting go of anything I’m not. It’s time. I’m not some big-shot influencer, and I never will be. Let me be honest and say that it makes me feel mentally unstable and it makes me feel like I’m ignoring my children and home when I focus too much on social media.
It makes me get sucked into politics, it makes me angry, it makes me jealous.
Truth be told, it hurts me by showing me what I’m not.
Let be enough that I have two perfectly healthy children, a stable marriage, a roof over my head, and decent health.
Let it be enough that I have skills that others don’t and vice versa.
Let it be enough that I taught myself how to start a blog. I taught myself how to market online, how to use WordPress, how to build a Pinterest account, how to code, how to design.
I taught myself how to make money from what I enjoy doing – even if it’s not a lot. Let that be enough!
I became a personal trainer to challenge myself and become accountable. I may not have the perfect body and I may not have a bachelor’s degree in anything, but it’s going to have to be enough.
My path is my own – let it be enough.
I have recently updated my blog to reflect me more than ever. It’s not longer just about what most people think of when they hear the word, “fitness.” It feels vain and superficial to be obsessed with weight loss and looking good.
I’ve learned that these days, health looks so much bigger and deeper. It’s mental, emotional, and it involves community.
Really, it’s about family and community, getting back to basics, and learning to ignore hype.
It’s not a certain product, it’s a whole change in lifestyle. The food we make from scratch, the fresh air we choose to enjoy, the ballet class we choose to take, the music we listen to, the people we surround ourselves with.
It starts in your heart and brain, and though it feels complex, it’s not.
Stripping back – peeling layers off – removing what isn’t serving you from your life. That is how we regain our sense of self and begin to be healthy again.
If your heart isn’t alright, and if your brain isn’t in the right place, you will never be healthy or happy.
Choose to be intentional about what you let take up space in your life.
It’s back to the basics for me, and God, please let that be enough.