If 2015 was the year of highs (I got married, honeymooned in Bali, plus all the other lovely celebrations that came with wedding planning); 2016 was a year of lows.
Perhaps I should begin with Instagram on November 26, 2015. The day Superfoodsaydeez was born (I think back then it might have been superfood_saydeez, then changed to superfoodiva for a hot minute, then back to superfood_saydeez, and now finally settled on superfoodsaydeez.)
One year later, my following is now over 10,000 people! I couldn’t be more gracious and thankful for this fun and exciting opportunity to be a positive influence.
Despite this new venture and all the fun that came with it, 2016 started off rough. In fact, superfoodsaydeez MIGHT be the thing that got me through the rough spots of 2016. That and my supportive husband, of course.
My grandfather passed away on January 1, 2016. Following that was a 5 month period of a scarily stressful actuarial exam sitting. My blood pressure was high, my cholesterol was high, I had cracked teeth from grinding without realizing, and I cried almost every day for 5 months straight while failing miserably to prepare for this Actuarial exam. I could not study for the exam without feeling a constant nag in my gut like I should be spending my time on something else. Hence adding to my ever increasing stress levels. My diet was super healthy, and I exercised regularly, so it was clear I needed to get my stress under control in order to be healthy!
Above is an abbreviated and mild explanation of my stress levels.* Below is the non-sensical rant of some of the rest of my stress, because I can’t put it into clear sentences. I might add that I am aware that all of this was entirely self-inflicted. I was about to turn 30 (even though that’s a totally awesome thing; for some reason it tends to send people into panic), I have ADHD and need to take medication for my job and especially to study for actuarial exams, but while studying 400 hours on top of working full time, it’s really difficult for me to manage my medication because I need to study after work, but it wears off, so I need to take it later, but then I can’t fall asleep, so I would take NyQuil, zzquil, melatonin (I would try anything over the counter I could find) and then that would make me drowsy the next day and it would create this viscous cycle of insomnia. Coupled with the other negative side effects of medication. Plus with just being married and almost turning 30, we talk a lot about having kids. I know I can’t take my ADHD medication when I’m pregnant or breastfeeding, but I also can’t pass actuarial exams without the medication, and these exams take me YEARS to pass. (So far each one has taken me 2 years.) So I added even more pressure on myself to try to pass them really fast instead of how long it would normally take me. And as you can see I was just a total mess, and my body was angry at me.
The superfoodsaydeez instagram page helped me realize what I truly enjoyed and what I wanted to spend my time on.
After receiving several questions from Instagram followers I began to feel the urge to have a certification of some sort so I could answer their questions confidently. I stumbled upon a magazine article that mentioned how to become a certified health coach, certified holistic nutritionist, etc. I looked up the programs it mentioned and also explored other similar options online, and found my calling in the AFPA Certified Holistic Nutritionist Course. I couldn’t have been more excited about the syllabus and my decision to take on this new and exciting challenge.
I decided to skip the next actuary exam sitting (something I hadn’t done in the 8+ years since I started taking these exams) and pursued a certification in holistic nutrition instead. I’ve enjoyed it IMMENSELY and have learned so much!
As of December 11, 2016, My holistic nutrition certification is complete! I’m legit!
Now I will resume actuarial exams with a renewed sense of calm and self. Most importantly, I’ve gained an awareness of the importance of stress-management and will monitor my stress levels and take action to make changes to lower stress when I can. While remaining active on Instagram and my blog. We’ll see where it takes me! 🙂