Fullyalive101 is a conversation about health and wellness in mind, body and spirit. We believe that joy, success, and happiness all come from curating a life that explores fun, unique and creative ways to live FULLY ALIVE, to live the life you were born to. In this series, we are celebrating visionaries who embody this spirit and help others to live an awesome, empowered life.
Dedicated to inspiring and empowering others to live life more fully through example, Summer Slevin traveled across the U.S. completely alone in pursuit of adventure, healing, growing, and transformation. She captured her experience of her cross-country trip in her heart-felt blog; Summer’s Epic Journey (summersepicjourney.blogspot.com). Here she talks about her journey, learning to forgive herself, creating healthier relationships, and developing an understanding of her own worth.
What does living fully alive mean to you?
To me, my life is slowing becoming exemplary of living fully alive. I meet new friends on a daily basis, I take little adventures constantly, I like who I see in the mirror, I come home to an amazing puppy and wonderful boyfriend, and I work a fantastic job. Already, at the age of 24, I know what drives me and I know where I find solace.
I am true to myself and I try to be the best version of myself possible. I know this all may sound pretty braggy, but believe me, it is far from it. I wasn't always like this, in fact, the Summer of years past is quite different from the Summer of today. I used to be a complainer. I used to blame my problems on others. I picked fights with my boyfriends and love ones, swinging from one relationship to the next. I used to vent all over social media and take the friends that chose me, liking the attention and not being selective enough with who kept me company. I used to roll my eyes when I was given advice and scoff when I would be disciplined by teachers and bosses. I used to wake up the wrong side of the bed, a lot. I would get so angry when someone would question me. And I used to suck everyone around me into my cloud of dissatisfaction.
So what changed? My perspective, mostly. My desire to live a more 3 dimensional life, my willingness to disregard my ego, and my shift into becoming more introspective and spiritual rather than judgmental and logical. I started genuinely loving people, not the unhealthy relationships that I had been dragging with me, instead I consciously made an effort to surround myself with passionate, positive, and like-minded people, especially fellow women. And I loved them with no expectation or thought of what they could do for me.
I started forgiving myself. I forgave myself for being too critical, for being so anxious all the time, for jumping from one relationship to the next, for finding myself in my significant other, for the drugs I had abused my body with, and for all the many, many mistakes I had made. I started hearing an inner voice, you know, the one so many people claim to hear? I had never hear it before because of all the other things I had let myself get distracted by. It was so small at first, and as I practiced the art of listening to it, the voice started to grow. I started understanding what "following your gut" really meant and how to start doing just that. I started putting myself out there and living with a "no regrets" philosophy.
I started putting my value in myself and not only in those around me. I started choosing my significant others carefully, and knowing that if that relationship wasn't forever, it would be okay. I stopped trying to control everything and everyone around me. The biggest thing I started doing was saying no to the toxic things and saying yes to the opportunities I wanted. I am by no means saying that I am perfect. Far from it. I am constantly evolving and fluidly changing. I am not the person I will end up being ultimately and yes, sometimes I do make mistakes and question my choices, but I am so happy with who I am and who I am becoming. I have found my inner guidance, and I found my passion.
This shift did not occur overnight, it took years of watering my open-minded garden. It took meeting strangers and taking advice, finding role models and mentors, going to counseling, quitting the jobs I didn't like, taking myself on a solo two month cross country road trip, and making small decisions every single day to become who I am today.
You can do it. It starts right now. Who do you want to become? It doesn't have to be one big huge shift. It just has to be a bunch of tiny shifts in the right direction.
Go, become who you want to be. Nothing is holding you back.
Journey on, friends. <3