When I did my training at The Life Coach School, one of the concepts we studied was the idea that life is fifty-fifty.
Fifty percent of the time things go pretty smoothly, and things feel like they’re all good and fifty percent of the time we’re faced with challenges.
Now challenges can be difficult but the idea of fifty-fifty doesn’t necessarily mean they’re bad. After all, we learn a lot from life’s challenges, and we don’t usually learn that much when we’re walking on easy street.
Would you appreciate the good in your life as much as you do if it weren’t contrasted by more challenging times?
In this episode, I dive a little deeper into the idea of life being fifty-fifty and how accepting this perspective can actually make things a little easier on you.
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Read the full transcript below:
You're listening to the breast cancer recovery coach podcast. I'm your host, Laura Lummer. I'm a Certified Life health and nutrition coach, and I'm also a breast cancer thriver. If you're trying to figure out how to move past the trauma and the emotional toll of breast cancer, you've come to the right place. In this podcast, I will give you the tools and the insights to create a life that's even better than before breast cancer. Well, let's get started. Hello, and welcome to episode 225 of the breast cancer recovery coach podcast. I am back from Iceland, from an awesome vacation, which is kind of the background to set the stage for what I'm about to talk about here on this podcast. I want to start off by sharing a little story with you and the story. It's not to be whining. And it's not to get empathy, but to set the stage for what I think is an important thing to talk about. So one of the very important concepts that I learned in my training at the Life Coach School is this idea of life being 5050. Right?
There's good and bad all the time and everything in life. We go through life, oftentimes just wanting to be happy all the time. But we can't be happy all the time. And I often have given this some thought, because people say, Well, if you wouldn't want to be happy all the time, because then you wouldn't appreciate being happy. And I thought I don't know if I buy into that. But I gotta tell you that even though I had an amazing time in Iceland, I was with people that I love, we had so much fun, we had super cool experiences. I noticed one thing, I noticed that being in a place with that much cold and not much darkness gave me a real appreciation for where I live for being in a place that has so much sunshine, traveling to a place where I had to wear so many layers of clothes, just to be comfortable. And I hesitate to say comfortable.
Because I was semi comfortable. There were still moments where I was really cold, even with layers and layers of clothing, gave me a whole new appreciation for being able to throw on a single layer of clothing and go outside and be comfortable. So I started to think a lot about this idea of good in bed of 5050. And of how having both of those in our life, having the challenges and the successes and having the sadness and the happiness, how it makes our lives so much more well rounded and so rich, in that when we put ourselves in this place, this position where we tell ourselves like things shouldn't be bad, or we tell ourselves, things shouldn't go wrong, or things have to be perfect. We not only create a tremendous amount of stress for ourself, but it's a very unrealistic expectation. And what I find is that when we have that expectation that everything should be perfect that we should know how to do stuff the right way, that when we go into anything with that mentality, what we end up doing a lot is abandoning abandoning the thing, the endeavor that we were taking on because we don't do it right the first time out the gate or because we don't have it down or we're not perfect at it. And we abandon it rather than allow ourselves that space, to practice, to practice life, to practice things going well, not going well. And so hear coming back, circling back around. Here's the story that I want to share with you. So last week, I am traveling through Iceland, eating delicious food, bathing in the stunning geothermal lagoons looking out over the ocean. I mean, it was really an incredible experience.
When I get home, and I'm hit hard with jetlag, right I get home and I'm super, super tired, so tired, that I'm thinking, Am I getting sick? Or is this just severe jetlag. And a day and a half after being home, I realize that it is more than jetlag, and I am getting sick. So the next day, I spend the entire day in bed, and I sleep for almost the entire day. The day after that I'm feeling a little bit better, but still not 100% I have a lingering cough and I have to go back in the afternoon I have to go into my oncologists office for fulvestrant shots. Now if you don't know what fulvestrant shots are full vestment is my aromatase inhibitor technically. So instead of letrozole, I take fulvestrant And so instead of a being delivered through a pill, I get injections. I've been getting these injections for about nine months now, in the very first time that I got them I could not believe how bad it hurt, not the shot itself, not the process of getting the shot. But after having the shot, because you get a shot in one shot and each Bakshi, I could not believe how bad my blood hurt, I couldn't sleep, I could barely walk. For two days, it was just terrible. And in my brain, I felt like I was injured because the pain was so severe, I had to keep reminding myself, you're not injured, it's just an injection in the muscle, you need to keep moving, you need to massage it, you know, you need to get that medicine flowing through your body. And you need to get that that's kind of feels like a big hard lump in each budget, you need to get that moving and break it down. So I talked to my oncologist about I talked to the nurses about it. And they gave me some tips on how to get the shots going forward so that they wouldn't be so uncomfortable. Over the past several months of getting them sometimes it's literally nothing, I get the shots, they don't leave the lump. They don't I don't have any pain. And then sometimes I get them and I feel absolutely horrible. And it is literally like as if I'm injured, it's hard to walk, I can't sleep because there's no comfortable place to lay. And that's what happened. This time. I went in, I got the shots. And it was a pain from the back of my knees all the way up to my low back.
All night long. It was just horrible. And I had heat packs, and I took ibuprofen and I had followed all the tips that I've been following all along. And just randomly, sometimes, the shots are fine. And sometimes they're not. And this time they were not. So I'm laying there in bed, it's two o'clock in the morning, I'd like to say I was tossing and turning but I wasn't because I was trying really hard to be still because anytime I moved to the pain was horrible. And I start realizing, okay, I'm very focused on pain right now, I'm very focused on how bad this hurts. So let me try to turn to breath work. Let me try to get my mind off of concentrating on the pain and concentrate on the breath instead and calm my body down. Maybe I can get some sleep. And so I do that, we turn to some breath work. I'm really focused on just concentrating on my breath, calming things down, and I ended up falling asleep. Well, an hour or so later, I must have tried to roll over in my sleep. And in doing so I triggered my butt cheek and it hurts all that and that it woke me up. And it woke me up and I'm laying there and I'm feeling miserable from a cold coughing, I'm in pain from the shots. I'm tired because I'm not sleeping well. And I just noticed like tears welling up in my eyes, I think to myself, I just, I literally just want to cry. Like I'm just miserable in this moment. And I let myself cry. I mean, it wasn't like sobbing hysterically laughing but I let the tears fall that were welling up in my eyes. And I thought about it as was as it was happening. And I thought you know, people say it doesn't do you any good to cry? And I'm gonna say yes, it does. Because sometimes your body's at a point where it's just so much. But it was like my body wanted to cry. My body was like, Oh, I'm miserable right now. And to tell you the truth, when I allowed those emotions to come out, I started to feel a little calmer, a little more relaxed. And I still went on in fits and starts throughout the night with sleeping and not sleeping. And just really it was a rough night. Okay, let's just leave it at that it was a rough night. Now I share that story with you. Because I think it's important to recognize and to acknowledge the trials that we go through here. I started off by saying, you know, we don't always want to be happy. And maybe we wouldn't appreciate how beautiful it is to be happy if we were always happy. And I have to tell you that being in pain like that being uncomfortable. Like that gives me a whole new appreciation for sitting here now. Not feeling that extreme pain. It gives me a whole new appreciation for my amazing body's ability to heal. Thank God, thank God for that, right. But it doesn't mean that when we're in the tough spot, it's any easier. Challenges by default are challenging. And that's not going to change. But the space you create for yourself to be in those challenges and the grace that you can give to yourself when you adopt this concept of life being 5050 that can really shift and this podcast is an excellent example of that because this podcast is gonna go out a little later than it normally would because I didn't feel well all week and I wasn't able to stick to the schedule that I normally have to produce a podcast, but I gave myself enough space to be okay with that.
You know if I look back years ago, I would have beat myself up I would have been totally stressed out because everything wasn't on time. And now I just I have a different space for when challenge has come up in my life. I even considered at one point that I wasn't feeling up to recording. And I thought, I'm just gonna write an email and let everybody know that there isn't going to be a show this week, that was another potential option. So when I talk about creating space for challenges, I mean, taking pressure off yourself, when challenging times in life come up, allowing yourself to be very present in that challenge, and very aware of what you need to do to support yourself. Rather than stressing yourself out even more about it. I think that this translates a lot into the perfectionist idea that I see my clients struggle with, often, in so many areas of their lives, especially when it comes to their own health and wellness. We approach the idea of eating well, and exercising and having a healthy lifestyle. With this all or nothing attitude. With, it's all got to be good, it's all got to be right, it's all got to go one way. And when it doesn't, like I said earlier, we just oftentimes abandon it. And we give up on supporting ourselves in the way that we know we deserve and need to be supported. I think that applying this 5050 concept to creating a healthy lifestyle can be really beneficial. Because it's saying that half the time, this is not going to be easy. Half the time, it's going to be a challenge, to create enough time to prepare the food that you need, it's going to be a challenge to motivate yourself to get up and get in the exercise that you need. It's not always going to be easy. And when we approach something like that, rather than having the story of I've got a plan, I'll stick to the plan. If I don't stick to the plan that I'm just not able to do this. And instead of that, we switch it and we say, I know things are going to come up, and I'm going to do the best that I can with it. And I'm going to keep adjusting as I go along. until I figure out how this works best in my life. And creating a healthy lifestyle then becomes a practice a daily practice what works and what doesn't. When is it challenging? Is there anything I can do to make that a little less challenging? Is there anything I can do to create space for me to support myself to get through these challenges a little more easily. But we go into it knowing okay, this isn't going to always be easy. And that's so much better than going into it expecting perfectionism from yourself. There's no room for growth in perfectionism, right? You've already got it perfect. So you don't need to learn anything, you don't have anywhere to grow, you decided you wrote a plan, you stick to it, it's perfect. Boom. And that's just not how we work. That's not how humans work. That's not how life works. So knowing that there will be challenges, there'll be successes, there'll be easier times there will be more difficult times accepting that and going into anything with your eyes open, that creates space for growth, that says I know that there's going to be things for me to learn when it's challenging. And I'm open to that learning. And then on the other side of that, it all so makes the sweet times a little bit sweeter.
It helps us to put life into perspective. So I'll share a story with you, my sister that I went to Iceland with, she likes to play this game at dinnertime, she's always done this with her family. And oftentimes when we're together, we do it. And you go around the dinner table and you just ask everyone, what's your high of the day? And what's your low of the day? Well, it's really interesting, because as we did that, on our trip in Iceland, there were some times where people's lows were just not that low. Right. I think there was one time when my niece said that the low point of her day was this restaurant we had gone to ensure at a cocktail, and she didn't like it. And if a cocktail you didn't like is your lowest point of the day, you're having a pretty good day. So I think that when we look at life as 5050, and we think about what was my high today, what was my low today? What about this month, what about this year, it helps us to really put things into perspective, whereas our brains have a tendency, oftentimes to catastrophize to just put way more emphasis on negative things that happen than they do on the positive things that happen. And if we can look and say, at least 50% of the time, there's all this positive stuff. And this other 50% of the time, there's all of this room for growth, there are things that are happening that I can learn from and grow from, and then you start to see the balance of life. And you start to see that the lows sometimes aren't that bad, and that the highs sometimes are a lot sweeter than we tend to give them credit for. So I offered this to you now to play around with. Take this idea to this life is 5050 concept. And think about the year that you're looking forward to think about how does this fit into your year? And how will it make things more approachable in your year.
If you have goals, if you have resolutions, if you have behaviors that you want to change or adopt, knowing that there's going to be successes, and there's going to be challenges, planning for those, accepting those and giving yourself more grace in those spaces, how will that change things for you? Are you open to that idea? Can you accept that 50% of life may present challenges? What are your thoughts around that? I know when I first heard that concept, I didn't even want to believe it. I heard that I thought 50% There's no way it's going to be more like 8020. And I think that the more that I contemplated it, the more that I played around with that concept, I realized that the actual percentages don't matter as much as the overall idea that there will always be challenges. And that if we know that rather than trying to resist or avoid challenges in life, we embrace them and create space for them, and for ourselves within them, then we make life easier on ourself. So give that some thought. And I would love to hear how it's going to make life easier on you in 2023. And you can find me on Facebook and DM me and let me know on Facebook, you can find me as Laura Lummer, the breast cancer recovery coach, and on Instagram, as the breast cancer recovery coach, I'd love to hear your input. Or you can even come and join the breast cancer recovery group which is my free Facebook group. And of course, if you like what you hear in this podcast, and this work interests you and you think that it may benefit you in your life, come and join me in the better than before breast cancer life coaching membership, you can find that on my website, the breast cancer recovery coach.com forward slash life coaching, because this is the kind of stuff we dig into. We dig into our thoughts about life, the perspective we have on life, what we tell ourselves and how what we tell ourselves creates the life we live and what we want that to look like. It's a lot of fun. And I know that you'll enjoy it. I'll talk to you again next week. And until then, Please be good to yourself. Take your friend