It’s week 3 of 52 Weeks of Passion!
This week we took some time to interview Janet Cameron who took control of her health problems with such passion that she made a career out of it.
Where did it all begin?
Janet: The catalyst for my ‘Good Life Crisis’ was struggling with my health. I had a lot of surgery, but the main thing that affected me was debilitating migraines. I had never even suffered from headaches so when the migraines began I had no concept of how debilitating they can be, often lasting for three days and towards the end I was sometimes having two a week.
Quality of life had gone out the window and I was getting worse and struggling with the strong drugs I was taking. After being someone who rarely took tablets I would almost eat anything if I thought it would reduce the pain and the fog I was in! Life was suddenly not on my terms any more.
Ayurveda taught me to take responsibility for myself and look for the answers within instead of elsewhere… I began to change my diet, behaviour and thinking…Eating foods that were good for my particular constitution, thinking positively, viewing situations differently and learning to relax and deal with my own emotions instead of burying them.
The transformation was so incredible that I have totally changed the direction of my life and I am now an Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultant and Masseuse.
What was the greatest challenge you face?
Janet: My biggest challenge is not falling back into old habits! We spend our life time creating habits so breaking the bad ones takes time and perseverance. I still have moments of difficulties, anger, being negative and sadness as we all do but now that I understand myself better I am able to turn them around so much quicker and not get caught up in them.
I have learnt to view things as lessons instead of problems and this enables me to look at things from a different perspective and move on quicker into a new positive direction.
What was the most important lesson you have learnt?
Janet: The most important thing is that I no longer drive myself to exhaustion trying to strive ahead as I am in control and can take appointments when it suits me and allow myself time out when I need it. I still enjoy the challenge of working for myself and helping others but most of all I’m loving it!
I’m now living the dream of operating my own business and earning a living while enjoying every moment of it and feeling the joy of helping others along the way! Life sure has an amazing way of working out – sometimes we can be racing so fast through it that we miss the most important things on the way… this crisis taught me how to actually stop and really smell the roses!
The most important decision I made that enabled my ‘Good Life Crisis’ was to slow down, even as I regained my health I could have easily fallen back into old habits of always doing and being busy but I chose to enjoy life more and realised the important things are not always outwardly achieving but inwardly enjoying!
What has been your biggest mistake?
Janet: My biggest mistake of this journey was not listening to myself sooner… I was always so busy helping everyone else have a good time or striving to achieve a deadline that I forgot to look after me. The best lesson is that now I know to look after my ‘Self’ first, I’m healthier and happier than I’ve been in years and that means I have the energy and enthusiasm to help those around me, so we all benefit.
We are often taught that when we look after our ‘Self’ first we are being selfish but the truth is, We are all We have and if we don’t look after our ‘Self’ then who will? If we are always giving, giving, giving we eventually become so exhausted that we are unable to care for or look after ourselves or anyone else, therefore we all lose!
What advice do you have for others out there who want to transform their lives?
Janet: Listen to your ‘Self’ – begin to take note of how you really feel not what you should or shouldn’t be feeling or doing. Get to know who you really are inside and what makes you feel good. Be kind and believe in yourself!
Determination is also needed to change your life and break old habits. My ill health gave me the determination to want to find an answer, to regain my quality of life. Sometimes we need to be pushed into a corner where we have no other choice before our determination surfaces, others find it quickly.
What do you wish you knew when you started your journey?
Janet: I wish I knew more about myself. I wish that I had been taught to understand my ‘Self’ and my own body more, how to handle emotions, how to deal with my feelings, how to look at things positively and from different perspectives.
My dream is that one day we will teach this to our children in schools instead of filling their heads with so much information that is never used again and then falling over our own feet to discover it later in life.
Without having suffered from migraines forcing me to slow down my life style, I wouldn’t be where I am today. My life has certainly changed tack; I’m happier and healthier for the experience and to be able to assist other people in turning their lives around and to find their own positive direction when they are in pain or struggling – that is the most amazing challenge and experience I have ever had.
Do you have any words of inspiration to share?
Janet: Know that you deserve it – no matter what circumstances you find yourself in you can always find a better place and improve things. Take off your super hero cape and ask for help, we can’t always cope and manage everything on our own. It took me a while to be able to admit that I wasn’t coping as I was so used to managing everything – there are so many pressures on people today so give yourself a break!
I won’t pretend that it is all easy, but if you keep chipping away and making positive steps, don’t berate yourself if things don’t always go the right way and continue looking for that glimmer of positiveness – you can achieve anything!
Janet Cameron is a Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultant and Masseuse, working in a Natural Health Clinic in Port Vincent in South Australia.