By: Angela McNally, Regular Contributor
I like to think of myself as an optimist. My closest friends would definitely say I’m always looking on the bright side, even when things are looking dark. But, I have been through the ringer enough times to know that when darkness comes in to our lives, it’s truly hard to see the good in the moment. Recently my experience has proved this ten-fold.
I’m a passionate entrepreneur. By trade I am a nutritionist and one of my first businesses was selling nutrition plans online. However, deep down – I hate diets. (You can read about that, here.) Oh, the irony.
I truly love educating women on how to properly fuel their bodies to feel healthy, vibrant and alive. But in the twisted world we live in “skinny sells.” For me, moving forward in business was an inner battle with some wicked darkness. I don’t believe in skinny. I believe in healthy. I believe in food that heals. I believe in being happy in your own skin, today, now and always. But I would be lying if I didn’t admit I felt the pressure to go on an extreme diet, take sexy pictures, and sell my diet that way. It was an inner battle that had no ending in sight.
Here’s where the story gets crazy though. I expanded my business to teach and work in wellness. Money was coming in and I was feeling better about staying true to who I was and what I believe. I still had regular nutrition clients and they were seeing fabulous results, loving themselves and feeling great. It was a win-win!
In my own life I was also following my own nutrition plans and health advice. I love eating greens, doing yoga, being active, and taking care of myself. But, I kept gaining weight and I wasn’t sure why. My inner demons were telling me I needed to hit up my old extreme dieting methods and start getting back on track. My beloved inner voice told me there was something wrong.
I ended up listening to my inner voice, and going to a naturopath who did some routine blood tests. A week later news came in that would change my life forever.
I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, an autoimmune disease that attacks your thyroid. Since your thyroid controls your metabolism, this would explain the weight gain. The disease is incurable, and apparently I had it for five years and didn’t know.
Cue extreme darkness.
My career, my voice in the world, and my big plans for the future all revolved around being happy, healthy, and influential.
Who was going to take advice from me?
Have I just wasted the last 10 years of my life developing my passion for nothing?
Will I hate how I look for life?
….and so on.
It’s not that fun to admit this. But it’s essential in showing how dark things really can get. I truly thought my career was over. My dreams shattered. My desire to inspire women and wellness, now a thing of the past. There were many weeks with lots of tears and self-doubt.
But here’s the thing about a girl on a mission: nothing can stop that light from shining in. And slowly I started to put myself out there again. I started practicing what I preach and incorporating wellness into my everyday life. I chose a form of treatment that works for me, and I’m feeling a lot better.
What’s even better, putting myself back out there exactly as I am has drawn in more good energy, opportunities, and amazing people than ever before. My wellness business is flourishing, I only teach nutrition the way I want to and I’m happier than I have been ever before.
I AM THAT GIRL because I let the light shine in on my toughest moments, and it drowned out the darkness. I am exactly who I am and proud of it. You can be too. No matter how difficult in your life might seem – baby, let the light shine in.
Tough times are TOUGH and can seem really hopeless. But that's when you need to dig as deep as you can to find your light and let it shine!
- There's NO weakness in asking for help, in looking for guidance to help you find your way. List out three people or three ways you can get support when things are tough to get you back on track and remind you how bright you really do shine!
Angela McNally is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and Wellness Coach from Toronto, ON. She loves green juice, gourmet food, writing and yoga. Her mission is to eliminate ‘the diet’ and reignite health and wellness through teaching self-love. Angela is the founder of Eating Pretty Nutrition and currently works as a wellness consultant (www.angelamcnallywellness.com)