2018: The year of pure transformation and life-changing lessons.

I was about to start this blog with a very plain title “The teachings of 2018”.

However, I thought that I’ll start with these life-changing conclusions first and elaborate on them next:

1. Slowing down is not a sign of weakness, but a sign of huge personal responsibility and strength.

2. Choosing differently every day is the most powerful tool ever.

3. Love is for free – you don’t need to do anything for it, you don’t need to work for it either!

Footnotes:

1. Boundaries are crucial.

2. Know your fears even the most shameful ones.

3. There is light in a tunnel, but you need to ask for help first and keep walking.

Conclusion:

I am ME, just the way I am and I will never be able to make everyone happy around me. Even if tried, I could end up making myself miserable before others and they are still not going to be happy.

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The biggest awakening came in my relationship, where I am still learning what unconditional love is. I dreamt about it since I was a little girl, yet never had any clue that one day I will be purely afraid of it. The fact that someone can love me for just who I am, without me needing to work for it, do things in return, become someone else, or fake it till I make it – is mind-blowing.

Love is for free. FREE.

And it comes from every angle of the life – no need to chase it, no need to be approved for it, no need to look for. No need to be different, too!  

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I learned how to say NO, set healthy boundaries and secure my own space for my own self-care and sanity. All done in the most loving way possible. Was everyone ok with that? NO, of course not. And that was totally fine with me.  

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I also learned that the only thing I am truly capable of doing is to make myself happy without expecting others to do it for me. It is just not fair to do so.

I started this year with fighting with extreme bulimia and depression. I wanted to be well. I knew that it’s out of my integrity to coach others battling with such disorders yet being affected myself so deeply. I needed to see the light in the tunnel… which I couldn’t for a long time. The help could come only when I asked for.

I understood that I have a free will, and nobody is going to cross that border unless I permit them to do so. This when “I need help” came out of my mouth and when it was delivered. Was is fast? Not at all. I learned in my life that things which are meaningful need real and affectionate work, with love, compassion, and acceptance. And all will happen at its own pace!

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This brings me to December this year when I decided to step back, slow down and rethink a lot of things in my life, especially my business, job, mission and life purpose. It was hard at first because I, as many of you, was wired to hustle, advertise, promote, chase and work hard for every single penny and client.

It was one of the most wonderful lessons to learn that slowing down is actually an act of strength and integrity.

I’ve never put something on social media that wasn’t sincere. If I’m having a bad day, I don’t say much. Because privacy is part of authentic wellness. And because I’m committed to offering hope- and love-bringing content. I go through the issue, I learn from it, I bring out the lessons from it and then I share it. I am a guide and teacher.

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Last, but not the least, is that I recognized the deepest fears of mine. Even writing them here makes me feel still ashamed and little uneasy. But I know how sharing them may help me and some of you who can resonate.

I am afraid of being happy, loved and successful.

Yes, I am. I didn’t realize until the end of this year how manipulation, procrastination and self-pity are huge in my life. I use them to protect myself in the most ‘artificial’ way. My ego feels safe when it’s in control. Experiencing pure love, happiness and success wasn’t in my cards in the past. When I see the huge opportunity for them in any form, my mind panics and retract. It feels afraid! And it does anything to not feel that way!

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Today I know that in 2019 my major goal will be to step out of that comfort zone and experience what’s meant for me!

That means – self-trust is the theme for next year!

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So, cheers to the 2019!!!

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  • What is your theme for 2019?
  • What are your lessons from 2018?
  • What are your goals for 2019?
















I am HERE. I am NOW. I am
ME. ❤



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Life is love – how Spartan Race changed my life!

On January 2016, after accomplishing my first Spartan Race in SoCal, I said to myself: “I can carry the entire world on my shoulders now!”

And this is how everything started!

 

In November 2015, I got ‘invited’ by my fitness and lifestyle coach to participate in a Spartan Race with her team. I literally had never run longer than 1.5 km and that made me pass out at the finish line. I was a bodybuilder, that girl with huge legs and the massive amount of muscles. There was no way I could do ‘cardio’ longer than 30 minutes and that was limited to Stairmaster. “Nobody will ever make me run” was bouncing in my head. However, under the ‘pressure’ of my very smart coach, I signed up.

That was it. As a perfectionist and a fully committed to my goals athlete, I literally took the entire preparation into my hands and signed up to the local ninja gym to get my rope climb ready. All I wanted to master was rope climb. I knew in the worst case scenario I will end up doing 900 burpees during that Spartan Super run in SoCal Spartan Race in Temecula, CA. So, rope climb and burpees became my obsession for the next two months.

After I finished that race, the feeling of accomplishment was overwhelming. I have never felt like that. Not even after receiving my Ph.D. title or placing top three at my bodybuilding competition. The feeling of being able to do anything, including carrying the entire world on my own shoulders, was amazing. I felt high on life and I wanted more of it.

 

The 2016 year ended up with just one Trifecta. I am saying ‘just’ because something managed to stop me from getting more.

As I was preparing myself for the third race in April, and planning to do at least three more that year, I injured my knee. I was in a brace for a few weeks and not capable of doing a single long jump for several months. The discouragement and the feeling of being a personal failure crept in and all I wanted was to give up. However, not having healthy legs didn’t mean I couldn’t practice and train upper body. Wasn’t the upper body actually more important to complete the obstacles at Spartan Race, such as monkey bars, rope climb, twister, multi-rig and so on? So, there I was, in the brace and doing literally hundreds of pull-ups every day.

That entire life experience turned out to be a great lesson to the coach and a personal trainer like me. It not only taught me to look at the injuries through a more humbling lens but more importantly, to see how mental and personal commitments are crucial in perseverance. It motivated me even more to be a role model and show that physical injuries are not the end of the athletic lifestyle. It was a beginning of the journey called ‘how to love yourself through the obstacles that life puts in our way’.

After just five months after my injury, still not being able to fully jump or run, I created the beYOUtiful Team who raced with me (or rather I raced with them) in Breckenridge, CO, in Sprint Spartan Race. My team was extremely happy overrunning their coach, and I knew that I would allow them to do that again and again at any moment. I could see how the race which was changing my life, was changing their lives, too. I could see the happiness on their faces for not only beating their own trainer but accomplishing and completing something they would never think to be possible to do.

 

The path to becoming better was about to get started. I officially became a Spartan SGX coach.

In 2017 other life-changing events happened. I run multiple races and participated in the brutal events called Hurricane Heat. I was so high on life. I never felt more powerful before.

The Hurricane Heat 12 hour in Las Vegas, March 2017 was another one totally shifting my belief system and values in my life. For the first time in my life, I was tested mentally like never before. The past traumas and abuse were nothing compared to what I went through during that night. I learned one major lesson (and many, many more minor lessons), that we can do whatever we put our minds to. There were moments of total numbness in my body, where all I could do was repeating ‘step, step, step’ to myself and keep going. The HH12HR was the biggest challenge of my life, the best life lesson and my proudest moment.

 

In May 2017 something magical happened. At that time, I didn’t know it is going to be magical until after some time. However, the number of coincidental events happening around that race, in Colorado Springs at Fort Carson, was incredible. I had no clue why just a day before my friends left me alone to drive and race two races. I had never raced alone. But I did this time. I ran both of the days and in both cases, I managed to set my own personal records for both distances. In the meantime, I met cool friends and people, among them my future boyfriend. Yeay! That’s what happened!

After the first day, we couldn’t find each other on Instagram. We both knew that we just met someone we might possibly like but who clearly didn’t want to be in touch. It happens, it was just a race and we usually meet a lot of people. However, I knew that the next day he runs again, just 15 minutes earlier than me. I knew that all is in my hands. I ran so fast, that I not only set up another PR but caught up to him almost at the end of the race. I ‘screamed’ at him why didn’t he accept my invitation on Instagram. Surprisingly, he was asking me the same.

 

Who knew that two months later we would be a couple, four months later we would move in together and a year later we will proceed into another phase of our relationship.

One year later, at the same venue, in Colorado Springs at Fort Carson, I took my life fate again into my hands and decided to propose to my boyfriend. I was waiting for him at the finish line, with the medal in my left hand and the Spartan Groove Life silicone ring in my right hand. I was totally aware of the audience around cheering me on and I was even more aware of this what I was about to do.

 

I have never heard of any woman proposing first. Oh well, I do act on things which matter to me. So, I did that time again.

Spartan Race truly changed my life. It showed me what a real feeling of accomplishment is. It brought wonderful friends into my life. It gave me motivation, courage and mental strength to deal with my injuries. It taught me life lessons in the middle of the night. And it brought my fiancé into the life of a woman who went through abuse in past relationships and didn’t truly believe there was someone out there who could love her. Who could love her for being a crazy Spartan Lady. Who could be a crazy Spartan himself.

 

I am so lucky! I am such a happy Spartan Lady!

 

 

 

Once upon a time…… – the childhood memories of mine!

*** What made you happy when you were a kid? Find out and do that now. Seriously, go. Now.  ***

 

Someone recently said that whatever you were doing, effortlessly and joyfully, as a kid, that might be the clue to who you really are, who you want to be and what you truly want to do in your life. That could be your true passion!

Finding passion is not an active act of searching for, scrolling down million of pages, stalking others and copying the most successful person. Passion is something what you were born with, what you innately have within you and the only action you need to make now is to tap inside of you, listen and follow it.

But the question many of us have is how to do that?

My first response to that question is by simply giving yourself space and time to silence yourself, listen to that voice within you, feel and see what sparks you up.

 

However, to help you out little more, I would love to share this story with you.

 

As a kid, little Izabelka, I loved sacred moments, space and rituals. My mom told me that praying, going to the church, reading books and chanting them in the little corner in the bedroom, while kneeling and creating a little ritual around it was my thing. I could spend the entire afternoon by simply being with myself and spiritual beings. Whom I was talking or chanting to, nobody knows. What I was feeling and experiencing, nobody knows as well. Not even me. But I definitely loved it.

In meantime, I was a very responsible person of others and myself. I took good care of my younger siblings already at age of 3. I was quiet and peaceful. I was extremely kind and super helpful. I was serving others until I saw their happiness and smile. Because their smile was giving me the smile on my own face.

Since I remember, I lived my life by the saying ‘treat others as you want to be treated, love others as you want to be loved, be kind to others as you want to be kindly perceived, be honest as you want others to be trustworthy.’

I was extremely smart and humble. I was sensing others feelings and was very quickly ready to help them. I was an empath and sympathizer. The hurt, unfairness, and abuse to others were hurting my heart, too.

I loved flowers so much! I loved candles. I had my own altar, too.

 

The more I look at that Little Girl, the more I understand my life passion and purpose now.

There is nothing else more beautiful, magical and enlightening to me than helping others. There is nothing more nurturing than seeing others beautiful souls blooming and expanding. There is nothing more joyful than creating the world changes I want to see at every corner of this planet. There is nothing more aligned with me than being kind and loving to every human being, no matter the circumstances. There is nothing more freeing than loving people just the way they are. Because everyone is good at heart, and I always believed that. I always saw that in everybody’s eyes, no matter how dark they appeared at first.

There is nothing more lighting me up than the true, real, raw, vulnerable, and authentic self. The true identity of all of you. The one we innately have within.

 

This how I discovered who I really want to be, how do I want to live my life and what makes my soul feel at best. The feeling of being aligned with my highest purpose and myself.

 

Who did you want to be when you were a child?

How did that manifest in your adult life?

What did you dream of?

Did you follow your passion?

How does that look like to you now?

How would that look like if you were to follow it?

 

There is something truly magical happening when we tap into the childhood memories and connect with the Inner Child. There are so many answers there. There is the entire guide book there for us, accessible at any time and for free!

 

How do you feel now?

 

I love you, beautiful soul!

I am HERE. I am NOW. I am ME. ❤

 

 

 

 

The letter to my gift and my life purpose

Dear gift,

I haven’t had any clue for a long time what is my life purpose, what is my gift!

I haven’t had any idea why I am here.

So many times, I wanted to disappear and just leave this life.

But also, so many times I got back,

to the present moment,

to the awareness of my mission,

to the unknown life purpose,

to that, someone wanting or needing me to be.

 

The unclear mission, blurry life purpose, questionable gift, and the unknown path.

Asking so many times….

Why me? What for? What is there? Who am I? how do I do it? When is my time? What is it? Where should I be? How should I show up? How could I serve? How could I see that I am meant to be here?

Am I?

 

Today I sit and all I know is

that I am the one in seven billion,

that I am unique,

that there are nothing and nobody like me,

that I am loved, that I am supported,

that I do care about my soul,

that I do care about your soul.

 

Today I know there is a wonderland and wonderment where we all belong.

I know that my life wisdom, experiences, and lessons are my true gift, which is seen as soon as I stop hiding, putting the mask on and speak up.

That’s the moment when I feel I have a gift – the gift of a true identity seeker, uncovering something that was brutally kicked into the corner – myself and yourself!

My mission is to show every single woman that she is not who she is now, that she is not who she should be or other told her to be.

 

However, there is a danger warning here;

Once you uncover who you truly are, real things happen and huge changes are coming – the changes which are dangerous to everyone around you, especially those you were trying to please, make happy, or those who were trying to make you small.

 

My gift is to create the earthquake in your life,

My gift is to initiate the tsunami in your mind,

My gift is to extend the storm in your soul,

My gift is to ignite the fire in your heart,

My gift is to open the valve to flood your potentials with the unlimited energy.

 

My gift is to change the way you see, hear, smell, taste, feel and sense anything in your life, including yourself. Because I can see the person you are hiding behind.

And if I can see her, that means she exists!

That means she better come out for the highest good of this life, for the highest good of her life!

 

Dear gift,

Serve me well so I can create that explosion in every women’s hearts so they can become finally who they really are!!

 

Love you beYOUtiful ❤

 

 

 

THE UNIVERSE IS A FUNKY PLACE

“Everything that happens in your life

is the best possible thing that can happen to you”

– Chris Prentiss

Every single moment we have a choice to make.

Every single moment of our life is given to us.

The question is, what will you do with it?

 

GRATITUDE

— If you invited friends to a dinner and they didn’t show their appreciation, would you invite them again? —

Say thank you. Be gracious.

First and foremost, appreciate Yourself. Be grateful for the life you live. Show thanks for the world around you, for your loved ones. Don’t take your money or housing for granted.  Especially, be grateful for your feelings and emotions. Be mindful of your inner voice and instincts.

Appreciate your loved ones. Find amazement and joy in the little things, such as a smile, a kind gesture, or a hug. Be aware of the beauty around you.

Appreciate your friends and co-workers. They are in your life for a reason. Be mindful of what your life could be without them.

Appreciate the stranger. Discover the magic behind the “thank you” expressed as you walk past someone in the grocery store. Be amazed by how much impact simple courtesy can have.

Appreciate the Universe. Would you be who you are without all the moments and experiences? By expressing appreciation for what you already have, you open the doors to receive more.

 

Say and give THANK YOU to your life: moments, events, people, items and whatever else you are grateful for. Avoid the temptation to compare yourself to others.

 

WHERE TO BEGIN?

** Write every morning and evening what you are grateful for – be honest!

** Ask yourself why you are grateful– be honest!

** Ask yourself what you could do to make someone else happy – act!

** Ask yourself how you could best contribute to create a better tomorrow – act!

** Say thank you to both the stranger and your friends.

 

RESULTS:

By appreciating yourself and others, you will feel lighter and happier. It will provide the encouragement needed for facing any obstacle you may have during the day.

As your day progresses, by expressing appreciation, you will experience more love, more smiles, and kindness.

 

LOVE

Self-love is different than self-care. Sure, you can get yourself a nice haircut, manicure or treat yourself to a fancy dinner. These are all external.

Self-love is internal.

Light a candle in a secluded place. Feel the silence. Feel your body. Feel your anxieties. Feel your happiness. Feel your inner voice.

Just be, and just listen. Is it making you feel uncomfortable? This is part of the process. Your inner voice is sending you an important message. Whatever it is, be in that feeling.

Marinate in the feelings. Say them out loud, write them down, and read them again. Cry, smile, or dance if you must.

All emotions have a purpose. They are not bad or good, they each have a purpose.

It is the actions that we chose to take that becomes bad or good. When we attempt to escape or hide, it simply extends our pain.

 

MINDFULNESS TIPS

** Mediate first thing in the morning. Resist the temptation to grab your phone.

** Give yourself time during the day to breath, to “space out”, to day dream.

** Journal your emotions. Try your best to be a “neutral observer” and refrain from being critical and judgmental.

** Stay alert to all the good things around you.

 

RESULTS:

The more you take care of yourself, the more love you are able to spread.

The more you love yourself, the more compassion you will find.

The more you respect yourself, the more kindness will be in your presence.

 

INTENTION

What you choose to focus on…is it serving or hindering you?

Do you visualize your future as if it’s happening now?

Do you see yourself as a successful, happy, balanced and empowered woman?

The way you see yourself walking, feeling, reacting, living is what you will become.

Do you want to be anxiety-free? – imagine that lightness!

Do you want to be loved? – know that you are loved!

Do you want respect? – act that way!

Do you want to be debt-free? – picture that financial freedom!

Negative intentions will delay progress, positive ones will move you forward.

 

ACTION

** Practice affirmations every day by using the words “I am…”

** Believe and trust in yourself

** Honor and nourish potential

** Feel what it will be like to be your genuine, best self

** Appreciate the wonderful person you are now

 

RESULTS:

Manifest and create a vision of where you want to be. You will see it, feel it, and be there! Your soul will feel aligned and peaceful. The universe will send many cues your way. You will become who you so deeply desire to be!

Stay mindful of yourself what you are asking for. 😊

 

I am HERE. I am NOW. I am ME. ❤

 

@ Photo by Kurt Tysver and http://www.highaltitudephotos.com/

 

Step by Step… [The Emotional and Mental Memoir from Ultra Beast Spartan Race]

This is not a recap of an Ultra Beast Race. You can read those elsewhere. This is a mental and emotional piece about somebody’s inner world.

This is not a blog with ideas and tips on how to train. It is not about how to eat and prepare for one of the toughest obstacle endurance races. This is an expression of a soul screaming after facing an unknown field of defeat and disqualification.

The “Ultra Beast Spartan Race” is one of the longest obstacle races in the OCR series. What does that mean for an overachieving athlete like me? It means there is going to be a mental challenge. It inevitably leads to the question of “to be or not be” in the game.

 

Weeks before….

In the weeks leading up to that moment, I often found myself overthinking and over-analyzing the upcoming race. Of course, this would be interspersed with moments of calmness, and times of not thinking about the race at all. As a professional athlete, business owner, and life coach, I have learned firsthand how overthinking will never result in anything good. It only leads to fear, stress and demotivation. Overanalyzing is even worse; it creates an overpowering fear of losing control. I am the last one to predict the weather, the course, the obstacles, and most importantly: to predict my own body’s reaction and feelings.

I find it very relaxing to not think about the race at all. Yes, “spacing out” can irritate the ones who love you most. But guess what? I love spacing out. I bask in the moments when I allow the universe to think on my behalf. I love not knowing what the future may hold. I love to be at peace, doing what I do every day: eat healthy, train hard, stretch, rest, and sleep.

 

The night before….

That day before the Ultra Beast was one of the most serene days of my life. All my work was done. I was up to date on updating my clients’ plans. Everything was taken care of. The trip was planned, I had checked the weather. Even the last-minute gels had been purchased and packed. I was ready.

I decided to go on a walk. I was fully present. I looked up at the sky to see the stars, ever grateful for that precious moment! Silence is the best medicine for me before such a race.

Every professional athlete takes time to just sit with their own thoughts.

I shut down all the voices and all the stress.  This is the best anyone can do the night before a big race!

 

On race day….

Morning brought silence. With a carbed-up breakfast and mental focus, I knew what I wanted most in that moment. I thought: There is nothing else but me.

Me, the way I am now. Completely present, two hours before the start. Me, the most athletic, the best prepared, the healthiest person. I can face the unknown. All will be good, because I will take it step by step.

I did everything within my power, right? I am the strongest I could possibly be, right? I prepared every single detail for this race, right? Yes, I did.

Let’s do this!

 

The Race….

Start, slow start…

I relinquished my inner-will to chase the rest of the competitors. I kept repeating: “Pace yourself”. It soon became my mantra for the race.

“When the breathing peaks up, all I do is pace myself.”

Suddenly, I recalled everything I ever read or heard about the importance of breathing. How successful of a tool it is for stress management. Was I stressed? Not particularly, but I was very focused. I wasn’t going to let any breathing struggles get in my way. “You got this” and “keep going” was mentioned frequently by those passing me.

Yes, my legs keep moving step by step. “There is no other way but forward” my mind exclaims. “You got this, beYOUtiful!” I said to myself, as I approached a steep hill.

Step by step. I removed any thoughts about the obstacles that were ahead of me.

“That is the next step, let me focus on the uphill right now.”

I relinquished all care about the future. I knew that all I had to focus on was my next step. I had brief bursts of energy, helping me refocus, recharge.

Suddenly, I was battling an obstacle. My mind went blank. I swiftly reminded myself that I was moving forward. In my mind, “burpee” became synonymous with “obstacle”. I thought: “I will not allow ‘burpees’ to disturb my stubborn Taurus personality.”

Do you remember saying from the movie, “Dori”?

“Just keep swimming.”

Exactly. Keep moving. Keep swimming. Keep running!

 

Suddenly, my body was telling me something….

Was it a pinch in the knee? I tried to decipher the feeling. “Listen knee, we have a second lap to do. We’ve got this. Just cooperate with me and stop fighting, ok?”

As the miles added up, I felt my body in places I wasn’t expecting. I tried to reassure myself. I had never had issues with my ankles and knees before.

“Let me change the way I run. Let’s try to slow down and let refocus on the course. I know my body, all will be fine.”

As I made it through another obstacle, I thought, “That was easy, which means I’m a badass! Even the cold doesn’t bother me as much as others that I am slowly passing. Wow, I prepared really well.”

I had just finished facing the biggest fear of my life. Swimming didn’t kill me physically, but it broke me mentally.

As I plunged in to the icy water, I tried to my best to have a positive mindset. But, unfortunately, the panic attack was stronger.

“That’s ok, it’s in the past. Let’s do burpees and move on. I’ve got a second lap to do and I need to have a serious conversation with my body parts.”

 

Downhill…

I know the difference between pain and discomfort. I have an incredibly high pain tolerance. But this pain was excruciating.

“Knee, please, please don’t do this to me now. Why are you actually hurting? I’ve been so kind to you. I’ve been pacing myself this entire time.”

My pace began to slow.

Still, I moved on, step by step. But I felt it. No, it wasn’t pain. It was fear, creeping in to my thoughts. I had worked so hard on letting my fear go, just days before the race.

“Go away!!!!”

As I pictured my ligaments tearing and visualized tripping and rolling down this hill, my inner self shouted “NO, NO, NO!!!”

But I’m stubborn. The overachiever, the badass, the winner.

 

I had to decide….

The pain became unbearable. Do you know those pain scales in the hospital, with “1” being the best and “10” being the worst? I was at a 9, maybe 10, and it brought tears to my eyes. It was so intense that I could barely hold my focus as I limped. A fight between my inner-worlds ensued.

“Didn’t you accomplish 12 hours of the brutal Hurricane Heat event? Do you remember what you were telling yourself there? Yes, so keep repeating: step, step, step, step. Don’t think about giving up. Just: step, step, step, step. Shut up and move on. Step, step, step. This is your dream. Step, step, step. This is your life. Step, step, step.”

I couldn’t take another.

“Please don’t do that to me! Don’t fade, please. I can go, I can move….”

Having to give away your inner power hurts more than any knee ever could. I had to decide to let my partner continue through the race without me. I felt like I let myself down, and I had never envisioned this would happen!

 

Afterwards….   

I felt empty, I felt lost, I felt disempowered. I had lost myself somewhere on the 15-mile mark.

Someone else must have decided to DNF on my behalf. It was not the Izabela I know. She never gives up. She never whines. She never uses pain as an excuse! The Izabela I know lives by the saying: “be comfortable with uncomfortable”. It was someone other than me that decided to quit. I know I could’ve gone on and finished it!

But no, continuing with that pain wouldn’t have been possible.

The Izabela I know is also caring of herself and others. She is supportive. She inspires and motivates herself and other. She might be unstoppable, but she also knows when it’s time to practice self-care. She may have the strength to break ice, but she also knows how to melt ice with self-love. She knows that dreams do come true. They just come true during the right time, at the right place.

 

Everything happens for a reason.

 

You got this beYOUtiful! ❤

….. step by step ……