"You won't know if it works or not until you give it a chance"

Photo by Stephanie Villa Davis

Photo by Stephanie Villa Davis

Meet  Marisa! She's a 35-year-old mom of two girls, 4 & 1, a married lady, and an ISFJ who cares deeply about others. She works as a trainer at Young Life, and feels most like herself when she is helping others.

We spoke to her about her passion for service and being a "recovering people-pleaser," while keeping in mind that:

1. You can't pour from an empty cup.

2. Doing the Good Stuff doesn't just mean moving your body (though that definitely helps!)

3. Your priorities WILL change, and that's okay. Keep living for who you are now, not who you used to be.

Our founder, Lizzy, got to learn a bit more about Marisa, and now you get to as well!

Lizzy: Being a working mom is never easy, but always rewarding - or so I've heard! Tell us, what does a day in your life really look like?

Marissa: I spend a lot of time managing the house and making sure the girls stay alive! I also work from home, so that means time on the phone and at the computer. I try to work out, or at least take the girls on a walk, but sometimes it’s just a short online pilates or yoga video. I love that there’s flexibility for days when the girls have a lot going on or when life has a lot going on, but I can easily neglect myself because there is SO much going on.

Photo Courtesy of Marisa Avramavich

Photo Courtesy of Marisa Avramavich

Lizzy: You seem so together now! Can you tell me about a time in your life that felt formative, like you were really finding yourself?

Marisa: I'm inspired by art, nature, and people who live their life for others. I served for 10 months with AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps in the South. It was the first time in my life spending significant time outside of Southern California and it changed my life. I was physically, emotionally, mentally & spiritually challenged every single day for 10 months. That was equally exhausting and engaging. It changed my worldview and opened my perspective to the realities of poverty in our country, a microcosm of poverty in the world.

Lizzy: How do you feel about the health and fitness of your life? 3 feeling words...and Explain, please!

Marisa: Aware, overwhelmed, hopeful -- I’m aware of the lack of health & fitness I'm able to pursue now, compared to other seasons of my life. I’m overwhelmed by making the right choices and the busyness of life. I’m hopeful that the season I’m in is just a season and not my forever reality.

Growing up I played sports and I grew up in a family who holds exercise as a high value - our family vacations consisted of 2-4 physical activities every day like hiking, tennis, running, swimming laps. Up until I got married, my physical activity was a normal rhythm in my life. But marriage, pregnancies, and children have been challenging seasons for health and fitness for me.

These days, I just want to feel comfortable in my clothes--the ones I already have! That’s important to me. I also think about the energy it takes to take care of my kids and be as healthy as I can for them and to be a good model of health.

Photo Courtesy of Marisa Avramavich

Photo Courtesy of Marisa Avramavich

Lizzy: What’s one positive change or habit you have made recently to benefit your real life? What’s the benefit?

Marisa: Yoga. I started it about a year ago. It’s the one place in my life where I exhibit myself the most amount of grace. I’m not very flexible, I’m out of shape, and I have to modify most poses, BUT, when I’m doing it, I’m 100% ok with all of those factors. I think that's because it’s something I started in my current season of life/health. I don’t have an old standard to hold myself to.

Lizzy: What’s something you want more of in your life this year?

Marisa: Laughter and adventure--the throw everyone in the car and drive somewhere and see what happens kind. I’m trying to discern what I should do work wise--the phrase I keep coming back to is “just because I’m capable doesn’t mean I’m called.” As a recovering people-pleaser, I am quick to say YES!, even when it’s detrimental to my health, family, etc. Working on that is hard!

Remember: If it doesn’t work for you, you don’t have to keep doing it--but you won’t know if it works or not until you give it a chance.


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