Change your life: How to stop reacting and take action

Change Your Life | Sedruola Maruska

It’s spring 2016. I’m getting ready to go to my son’s soccer game. I pull on a pair of ‘mommy’ sweats and a sweatshirt and start to leave the room when I catch a reflection. Mine, I think. “Is that me? NO WAY!” I run back into my closet, put on some jeans and a fun t-shirt and go. That was the beginning of the end. . . .

The end of me, walking through life without intention and without purpose, but just existing. That’s when the feeling of wanting to take back my life began. What about you? Has your “Awakening” happened yet?

With life as uncertain as it is right now, deciding to take charge of your life is daunting. But if you’re feeling like now is the time, listen to that inner calling. Maybe you’re not sure where to start, but you have this nagging feeling that you’ve been going with the flow for too long. That’s what I felt that morning before soccer. I thought “who is that? What’s she doing?”

Are you failing at life?

The good news, there’s no right way to start. The key, do something. Taking action, any action, will motivate you to take more action and before you know it you’ve completely transformed your life!

Today I want to give you a few steps you can take to change your life. You may not feel the need to change the way I did. Mine was a real slap in the face wake up call. But that nagging you feel, deserves exploration.

As you continue reading, keep an open mind and heart and know, I share this in love and with a deep desire to see you become your very best.

Change Your Life: How to stop reacting and take action | Sedruola Maruska

Set Goals

I can’t express to you how important it is to have clear actionable goals. Goals give you a map or blueprint for where you want to go and what you want to do. Making any type of change means setting goals.

Step 1 – Look at your current situation and decide where you want to go. If you’re feeling frustrated with your life find out why by asking yourself:

  • What makes me sad right now when I look at my life?
  • What scares me about changing my life?
  • What passions did I have growing up?
  • What do I feel I’m missing in my life?
  • What do I really want?
  • What’s most important to me right now in my life?

When you go through this list of questions be honest. Be brutally honest with yourself about the answers. Write the answers in a Journal where you can refer to them over and over again.

Writing your answers and reviewing them will motivate you to make a plan for your future. As you get clearer, build on your answers until you’ve created a foundation for your planning.

Then, write out some tentative goals. Start with a long-term goal, like where you see yourself in five years. Then work backwards. Decide on short-term goals for the next year that’ll help you move toward your five-year goal. Each day, week or month, write out small tasks to help you along the way. Always keeping your large goal in mind.

Make Changes

Once you have a tentative goal plan, it’ll be easier to take intentional action. You’ll be able to start making changes that’ll add up to a big transformation. Now’s the best time to change the way you do life. The best way to know what to change is to look at your list of goals for inspiration.

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Do something from your list every day. Why? Because it’ll help you get to your end goal faster and easier. Look for different ways to take action. Try new things and meet new people. Anything that moves you from your comfort zone and toward where you want to be is good.  

Let Things & People Go

The hardest part about making any significant change in your life is letting some things, and people go. What you’ll find is that some friends and loved ones won’t react well to the changes you’re making. They’ll have opinions about everything you do. They may even be discouraging.

Remember, people in your life will react because change is hard and scary for them too. Taking time to communicate what you’re doing and why will go a long way to helping those who are unsure, either support or continue to challenge your choice. Take note of what’s happening and act accordingly. If you’re not ready to let go of someone in your life entirely, set boundaries to protect your time and space.

Remember, every step counts no matter how small. What’s important is that you do something.

Nothing changes in your life until you do.

Your action steps to get started on changing your life are:

  • Answer questions about your life
  • Write out a 5-Year goal
  • Write out a 1-Year goal that relates to the 5-year goal
  • Write out smaller steps along the way
  • Stay aware of people, habits and things that don’t line up with your goals

Who decides beauty?

Sedruola Maruskaj Blog

I was having a conversation with my sister that turned to beauty. We were talking about marriage and anniversaries and how long some of our cousins have been married. We’re a huge supportive clan so we’ve all been to almost all our family weddings.

Anyway, my sister lamented that she looked “so bad” at our aunt’s wedding, but she just knew she was beautiful back then. “Why didn’t anyone ever tell me about my mustache or unibrow? How did I feel so beautiful?”

I didn’t think long before saying “we told each other we were beautiful so that’s what we all took into the world. We didn’t see your mustache or unibrow as ‘ugly’ we saw them as you.”

Who decides?

The more I’ve thought about that question the more I wonder, who decides what beauty is? Who decides that a woman with a mustache is less desirable than one without?

Did we lie or mislead her?

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Who decides whether we did or didn’t? I’m not sure. What I’m sure of is we were sincere in our praise of each other. We loved each other unconditionally and saw our beauty beyond the norms.

I was 95 lbs. until I was 34. That made me self-conscious because I didn’t feel I was beautiful at that size. I didn’t wear bikinis or show my arms. No one told me I wasn’t beautiful, but those I was around had curves I wanted.

My family always told me I was beautiful so I never truly doubted it, but there were counter messages that got through anyway.

At some point, someone in advertising decided what the “ideal” look would be. They took parts of ethnic women and created an ideal that has been etched into our minds. If we don’t feel we fit into that ideal, we think something needs to be changed. But does it really?

No changes necessary


Beauty isn’t a product of what you look like on the outside, it’s a compilation of inner and outer beauty. I’ve seen men and women turned off by beautiful people because their beauty was skin deep. Then I’ve seen those men and women turned on by someone who would never fit the “ideal” because they glowed.

Scars To Your Beautiful

The next time you’re looking at yourself and thinking “I need to change. . . ” stop that thought. Think about your spirit. Think about your aura and consider if that’s what needs changing rather than your outer appearance.

Take it from a woman who walks around with and without breasts . . . no one cares how you look, they only care about who you are. Your person is what they respond to.

“Those who care, don’t matter and those who matter, don’t care.”

You are enough. You are beautiful. You decide, remember that!

Are you indulging in premeditated stress?

Sedruola Maruska | Personal Development Coach

You’re driving. A car on the right looks like it’s about to cut you off. . . .

You’re in line at an amusement park. A woman and her child look like they’re about to jump the line to join the rest of their family. . . .

You heard your friend say something rude about you. . . .

I’ll bet you started thinking about what you’d say or do in each of these situations didn’t you?

If you were wondering what “premeditated stress” is, that’s it. Anticipating a situation and deciding in your mind how and why you’ll respond in a certain way. Most of the time, it’s a negative response that creates stress in your body without the actual event happening.

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If you’re honest with yourself and us, you’ll say yes, you’ve indulged in premeditated stress. We all have because it’s a way of protecting ourselves from being taken advantage of, being hurt, abused, or manipulated.

Stress is a killer

But why create unnecessary stress? Stress is worst for your body than eating badly. Why? Because the hormone, Cortisol, it creates in your body was only meant to be in response to “fight or flight”. Once a threat was over, the levels would go back to a normal low ‘healthy’ level.

Stress is like being in a sustained ‘fight or flight’ situation that keeps the cortisol levels high. High cortisol levels are associated with lower immune function and bone density, increased weight gain, blood pressure, cholesterol, heart disease, depression and lower life expectancy.

That means, the conversation you have in your mind about being cut off is actually killing you slowly. Because every time you indulge in that premeditated stress conversation, you’re elevating your cortisol level and keeping your body in a state of readiness to ‘fight or flight’.

Premeditated Stress relief

There are hundreds of reasons to be and stay stressed in our society today. Between family, work, bills, aging, world events, and so much more, it’s no wonder there are increasing cases of mental illness, cancer, depression, heart disease and so on.

So, in an effort to help relieve some of the stress, here are a few ideas to help curb premeditated stress syndrome so we can let go and start enjoying our days more.

Breathe deeply – Whenever you feel something begin to creep up on you and take your joy. Stop, breathe ten deep breaths then move on. I know it sounds ancient, but it really does work to just breathe deeply. It allows your body to know that you’re not in a state of stress and relax. Helping you think clearer.

Exercise – Yeah, I’m like you, this is not my favorite thing either. But, moving your body helps you expend the energy needed to relieve stress. Don’t think of it as trying to lose weight or as a mandatory thing. Think of it as a release from the stress of life. Exercise as often as you need without regard for the benefits beyond just relieving stress. You may find you like it. . .

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Change perspective – When you’re looking at a situation, instead of only seeing your perspective, try to see things from the other side. Doing that will slow down your reaction, help you think of other possibilities for a given situation and calm your stress. This isn’t going to work for every situation (if not try the first to suggestions) but, you’d be surprised how quickly you can calm yourself if you shift your perspective.


Those are suggestions to help you in the immediate, but there are a ton of other things you can do to prevent premeditated stress getting the best of you.

You may be the best at your diet and exercise routine, but if you’re always in a state of stress, you’re doing more damage to your whole system than you realize. So, don’t indulge, release. Your body will thank you.