Are you a couch potato or a dynamo?
Do you live a healthy balanced life or are you stressed out and overwhelmed with challenges?
No matter where you are in your life right now, you can start making changes today. Rest assured that it’s never too late!
A few days ago I shared with you how one of my blogger friends Steven Aitchison is on a quest to help you become energised and bouncing around with just five hours sleep a night.
Now I am delighted to share with you the wisdom and exuberance of another blogging friend Anastasiya Goers of Balanced Living who is launching an online retreat to help you go from a sedentary to active lifestyle in 1 month.
I don’t know about you, but I endeavour to fit in as much in my life as I can. If I could get by on no sleep, then I would be out enjoying life 24 hours a day!
But then my life would soon be a mess and even I would be washed out.
Clearly we all need a balance in our life between work and downtime as well as play and rest.
Anastasiya and I have been friends for over year, ever since we met on a blogging bootcamp.
From being a newbie blogger, she has made giant strides and is now a leading authority on balanced living. I am honoured to have her share her innate wisdom and also tell us more about her retreat.
1. Anastasiya, we met through the very first ever Alist Blogging Bootcamp. You had only just started blogging then and for me it has been heartening to watch your progress and development. Please share what got you started and why you took this route.
When I read my first blog post (I think it was an article from Steve Pavlina that somebody sent me) I thought to myself “Hmmm, this sounds interesting. I can write my thoughts and communicate with people who go through the same things. Maybe I should give it a try.”
After that I started following more and more blogs (including A-listers like ZenHabits, Problogger and others) and I was hatching the idea of starting my own blog.
I put a lot of thought into the topic of the blog and I decided to go with balanced living.
Life balance was something I was striving for my entire life and I felt that it was the right route for me. I thought I could write about various topics that people are interested in: health, self growth, spirituality, relationships, career, parenting – and show a way to balance all these important areas of life.
2. Your Active Lifestyle Retreat sounds unusual and almost contradictory in its description! How did you get the idea of the Active Lifestyle Retreat? What was your inspiration and motivation?
Active lifestyle has been my passion for many years. Living actively is part of a balanced lifestyle in my opinion because we need to take care of our bodies as well as about our other needs (spirituality, finances, family, emotional balance.)
I find that physical activity does not only promote good health, it helps to find connection between your body and mind, it helps to control emotions and find clarity, it helps to focus and find that inner peace that many of us are looking for these days.
I was never very active when I was growing up (I was a complete nerd who loved to read, study and could spend the entire day on some arts and crafts project) and my mom always pushed me to be more active.
Of course at a certain point my weight started creeping up and that’s when I understood that I needed a change!
Basically I was forced to start living a more active lifestyle, but once I got into it I realized how much I loved it.
Now I understand that active lifestyle is a perfect balance for my introverted, quiet and “nerdy” nature:-)
Once I learned how much fun it is to be active I made a commitment to show other people this joy. This is the reason why I became a fitness instructor (more than 8 years ago, I can’t believe it’s been that long) and I am running the retreat From a Sedentary to Active Lifestyle in 1 Month LINK starting next week DATE
I want to show other people that it is fun to be active and you do not need to give up your current lifestyle or all your free time for the sake of exercise.
3. Tell us more about the retreat? What does it entail and what will participants get at the end of it?
The retreat will last 4 weeks and during this time you will get daily workout videos, daily emails to keep you on track and to give you motivation.
You will also get articles that will teach you about active and healthy lifestyle with practical steps about how to incorporate this lifestyle into your life.
I understand that most people are busy today and they do not have time for exercise that is why the retreat focuses on weaving active lifestyle into your current schedule rather than changing your lifestyle completely.
I am really happy that several people who I greatly admire agreed to be guest presenters during the retreat.
First of all, Melanie kindly agreed to be a guest presenter and to share her wisdom about healthy eating during the retreat (thank you again Melanie!)
Of course during the retreat we will also have a forum where we can talk, encourage each other and participate in fun challenges that will keep us from getting bored.
I think that we will have a great time together but at the same time all the information will be spread out during the month so that we do not get overwhelmed!
4. What’s your suggested approach for taking part in the retreat?
The best way to benefit from the retreat is to join it (of course :-)) and commit to small lifestyle changes one step at a time.
I believe that it is very important to set SMART goals (more about those during the retreat) and create an action plan. I will facilitate all participants in creating their goals and action plans and how to stick to them.
I also believe that community and warm support that you get from people who are going through the same things as you are a very important part of the retreat.
Being part of this community will make your lifestyle changes fun and “sticky,” you won’t go back to your old lifestyle anymore.
5. How did you research and test your ideas?
During the 8 years that I taught fitness, I tried different approaches and routines. I watched my clients and their progress and also paid attention to how my lifestyle was changing over the time.
I am always eager to try something new and to bring the best parts of it into my workouts.
I also follow research about the effects of a sedentary lifestyle on our bodies.
The last findings were especially alarming:
people who spend more than 6 hours a day sitting are 94% (women) and 48% (men) more likely to die early than those who are active and sit less than 3 hours a day.
I do not want to be part of this statistics and I want to show as many people as possible how they can change their lifestyles for the better.
6. Are you yourself now living a very balanced life? Share 3 of your top tips for Make It Happen readers.
I feel very balanced now and I hope to maintain this state for many-many years. My top tips are:
i) Always go forward. Balanced living is not a finish line that you cross ones. As circumstances in your life change you need to change your priorities, goals, routines, habits. It is really fun in my opinion because you constantly grow and try something new in life.
ii) Find your core belief. I believe that everyone should have one deep core belief that can get them through the darkest hours of their lives; that can help them see the meaning in what they are doing and have faith that they are going in the right direction. If you have this belief life balance becomes effortless.
iii) Allow yourself to relax. Sometimes all we need to regain balance is a break. Spend a few minutes in silence, breathe deeply and let your thoughts and worries disappear. It is important to give time to yourself as well as to everybody else around you.
7. Finally what’s next for you?
Once the retreat is over my next thing is a vacation:-)
I have a lot of plans for future projects, some of those projects are joint ventures, others are new retreats on Balance In Me.
I am hoping to launch a Balance In Me club next year where members will find the most balanced approach to living.
Thanks Anastasiya for sharing your wisdom with my readers – and congratulations for your success and for creating such a useful retreat.
It has been a real pleasure and honour to get to know you and to share your journey.
I wish you even more success with all your projects in the coming months and years – the world is a better balanced place because of what you do.
The way forward
So what will you do from today to bring your life more in balance. Will you do fewer things or take on some new activity?
Please do share your ideas below so we can learn from each other.
See you all at the retreat!Images courtesy of CarbonNYC and lululemon athletica
Hmm.. that stat about sedentary ppl dying early scares me. I’m a computer programmer and my job is to sit on a chair for at least 8 hours a day. Do you recommend I quit my job and pursue another career that isn’t as sedentary? What practical advice do you have for someone like me?
Henway, being active does not mean quitting your job. Even if you have to sit behind the computer for 8 hours you can still get up every 2 hours or so and move for at least 15 minutes. You can also be active in the morning or after work. There are always to get a little more active. Just because you have a sedentary job does not mean that you have to lead a sedentary lifestyle.