If you follow me on Instagram you may have noticed that I have very recently changed my account name from BritBeHealthy to BritEtheridge. Yes that is my name and it is who I am.
Since September last year I have been living almost a double life. Passionate about my 9-5 during the day and in any of my spare time pouring my heart and soul into an online world I have create. BritBeHealthy is the health crazy side of me that has always been there but until late last year, I had never really cultivated. In some of my earliest memories I remember telling my mother that I was going to be a Vet and help animals. Since making that decision I followed that path and didn’t even consider any other option. I was so sure and persistent. Fast forward to the present and while I may not be a vet I did complete 6 years of university, walking out with a Bachelor of Animal and Veterinary Bioscience as well as honours. But even while I was studying in an animal based field, the more I learnt about science and the way bodies (even if they were dogs and cats) and cells interacted to many different stimuli be it food, exercise, disease and stress, I became infatuated with the idea that I could learn more about my body and optimise it.
When I look back, I was quite health conscious as a kid based a lot on my own intuition. I knew what felt good to my body, so I made life long habits around them. For my school lunches I always packed salads because I wasn’t impressed by old ham sandwiches. I drank mainly water and even surprised other parents when I requested water over soft drinks. I at times would even meditate, not that I knew what it was back then, but I would sit around the pool, close my eyes and just listen. I grew up very active and even by the age of 13 had some pretty outrageous abs. I am so, so grateful that I was able to grow up with such a healthy connection to my body and mind however it did get lost and to this day I am still trying to find it.
The truth is life caught up with me. High school came around, along with that the horrors of puberty and finally the news that my father was terminally ill. All these changes came within a couple of years of each other. Looking back, it is no wonder that my naturally calm and intuitive lifestyle altered dramatically, and not just that, everything did. In the coming years there were some really hard times, but as my parents had raised me tough, I pushed through.
With my father laid to rest and my high school studies completed I now thought I was an adult and ready to take on life. With my own aspirations looming and my family home grieving the loss of a member I decided to move to Sydney and start my big journey with the dream of making a difference and changing the world.
Fast forward to today. That dream still exists. I still strongly desire to make a difference to the world, I want to leave it better than I found it however the method for that fantasy has changed. I see so many of the people I love who are over weight, in pain, sick and dying. Hell, I’ve been living this pain! While it hasn’t been to any extent the same as some of those around me, I know what it feels like to have boundless energy, to be almost weightless in the freedom of your body and to be happy because you are truly content with all the magical things within your life. I know that that is an option for living and while I may have lost that for a while I am fighting so hard to get it back.
I am not perfect, nor do I think I ever will be, but I am doing the work and I am trying.
I am passionate about feeling that connection again and I know it is possible for everyone to feel that love and connection to their own bodies. Over the last 7 years I have been experimenting in my own body what works for me. While this has been something that a lot of my friends and family would be savvy to, the greater public would never really know. That is because while it was a huge passion of mine I was studying an animal degree and was really too scared and too far in to change it.
I created BritBeHealthy as a secret alias. Truthfully, I never told any of my friends that I had started the Instagram page. I was scared I would be laughed at and not taken seriously because of it. Honestly, I’m not only scared that people will discount me for doing an animal based science degree but also because I an not perfect. I do not have it all figured out, I still regularly struggle with stress, with anxiety, with heartbreak, loneliness and fear. I don’t always get to the gym, my skin still breaks out and I eat burgers on the regular.
I have been holding myself back because of my biggest fear! I care what people think of me.
The way I am perceived is something that I am constantly afraid of. But not anymore, I am no longer giving it the power to hurt me. This is my announcement to the world. I am no longer standing behind closed doors and hoping that one day someone will help me to rise to better the world. Today I am putting it all out there and saying, ‘This is me! I am not perfect, I do not have all the answers, but I am passionate, I am hard working and I m determined to empower myself and anyone else who needs help to also find their better selves!’
I am now studying to become a qualified health coach and with that knowledge as well as my own learning am planning to impact the world one person at time. Good health is something that I believe everyone deserves and if being true to myself is going to raise my level of health then it is time to get out there and be honest with my story. Although this post really doesn’t give any insight on how to achieve good health I hope you still get some value from it. At the very least you are not alone and this journey is hard, but stick with it because it is so damn with it!