The Butterfly Effect

“A butterfly flapping its wings in Brazil can produce a tornado in Texas”.

Have you heard this statement before? It is something known as THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT. The essence of this quote is that small causes can, in turn, have large effects. This concept that was initially applied to weather has eventually found its place in economics, aerodynamics, chemistry….and, well, my life too.

One of the most powerful thing that I’ve learned in life so far, is that LIFE DOES NOT JUST HAPPEN. The choices that you make – from big lifestyle decisions (where to go to college, which house to buy, etc) to the very small (what to wear today, etc) – are all important!  Each choice that you make can truly leave a mark on your life. I’m not saying that because you wore jeans today instead of your normal leggings…or those times when sweat pants are just, ooooh, so cozy can alter your life dramatically! BUT, hopefully, you realize that even making the conscious decision to put on an outfit that you feel comfortable in, can make a difference in some way.  It’s about realizing the importance of the choices you make on a daily basis – and finding the value in them (and in yourself), can be a game changer!

This being said, I’m not asking you to contemplate every single thing you do during the day to ensure you are making the best possible outcome — I mean, who has the time to process and make a list of pros & cons on whether or not to order coffee or tea, large or small, Starbucks or Bigby, etc. It’s simply recognizing and acknowledging that decisions & choices that you make have the power to make big differences!  In fact, who you are today is a result of all the decisions you have made in your life. That includes everything you’ve done, thought, and said in the last few days. Little decisions, that eventually lead to actions, are what define how your life will look like someday. So, with everything you do, you’re creating your future.

So, how did I really start to believe this – or, actually, how did I start to really believe in the power behind my actions?  Let me break it down for you — it was 10 years ago today (May 14, 2009) when the butterfly effect started to transform into a ripple effect in my life!  I was looking at this picture of myself – and I was SHOCKED!! I couldn’t believe that the person in the photo was me. I decided right then & there, that I needed to make a change in my life. Because, although I was smiling in the picture and seemed happy, I knew that I deserved more. I didn’t realize the full potential of living a healthy life – and it showed. I wanted to be my healthiest and also be a great example for my kids. Most importantly, I knew that I wanted this for myself. So, I reached out to a friend and made the small (or so I thought!) decision to better my health.

So….what did I do in order to fix this?  What was the catalyst of the butterfly effect?

Simply put, I signed up to coach!  I did this STRICTLY for the discount as I had NO intention of working the business. I mean, who doesn’t love getting 25% off products that they are using regularly and believe in? I starting losing weight and feeling great – and people took notice. I started to gain confidence and slowly started thinking about working the business because I wanted OTHER women to feel the same way that I was feeling!!  I’m all about empowering others – there is no competing and no putting others down in my circles. We are all in a journey of some kind, so the more support, encouragement, and kindness that we can spread – the better. But, I was fearful. I still had some doubts in myself & my ability to do this. Although my confidence was soaring and I felt amazing, I was still unsure if I had the ability to inspire & motivate others.  I did start to put my story out there but there was that fear in the back of my head; “why would people want to listen to me?”

I was soaring in life, a bit fearful in my choice to put myself out there, but things were amazing. And as amazing and great that I felt, I never could have dreamt that things would come crashing down. Darren was diagnosed on September 19, 2009 with brain cancer. Our world was turned upside down!! The prognosis was grim and we were absolutely shook to the core with this new reality.

We were both face to face with FEAR.  Fear of not knowing, fear of change, fear of failure, fear of cancer, fear of our future, fear of almost everything.  This is when we remembered that F.E.A.R has two choices – we can Face Everything And Rise or we can Face Everything And Run.

Darren and I decided to rise.

We were thinking today, on the anniversary of a small decision that ended up being a huge one, where the heck would we be if we hadn’t made this decision to rise:

  1. Unhealthy
  2. Depressed – again, looking back at the picture which started this path. My smile wasn’t reflective of how I truly felt. And to continue my lifestyle that I was on, was deeply affecting my hormones and attitude.
  3. Alive. Honestly, with the path that I was going with my health, maybe I wouldn’t even be here.
  4. Financially stuck. Darren is not able to work due to his cancer and I was in a job that I was not fulfilled at. And since I am the main income provider now, going to a job that you are not happy at can deeply impact your earnings no matter your job!  Plus, although the money in my previous job was steady, there is NO way that we could have been able to fly to Houston for his surgeries (which provided us with the gift of TIME with him and the ability for him to continue to fight this disease).
  5. We wouldn’t have the friends that we now have! And these are the real deal friends that you want in your corner! We all have the same mind-set; of bettering ourselves all the while empowering others. Who wouldn’t want a #girlieboss bestie?
  6. We would have never have been able to afford to send Maddie off to receive the care she needed in her struggles. (If you are unsure about this story, it’s another podcast to check out! Or message me!).
  7. Fulfilling items off our bucket list: We would not have been able to move into our dream home just a few years ago, we would not be able to travel the world like we have been able to, and we could not be able to live our best life by our own design!
  8. We would not have the self-care and self-confidence to take Darren’s diagnosis and still continue to LIVE. Darren’s attitude has always been amazing but a cancer diagnosis is tough for all those affected. Knowing that we had the power to still LIVE instead of simply accepting the diagnosis came from the ripples of the butterfly effect!
  9. Most importantly, we would not be spending time with our kiddos as we both cherish doing.

Our choice to RISE instead of running has been an incredible one. And we are beyond grateful – every day – that I took that leap of faith 10 years ago and just went for it!  What is holding you back? Are you struggling with making decisions and creating your powerful butterfly effect?

Here are a few ways to take more deliberate decisions and stop being indecisive:

  1. Stop and be aware about the little decisions. We live on autopilot most of the time and do things unconsciously. So, before you do anything, try to stop for a few seconds, look around, and try to understand what’s going on.  Really think about it before simply acting upon it. Doing this will make you mindful of what you’re about to do.
  2. Examine the pros and cons. BUT, as I mentioned above, don’t take years to make a decision! ESPECIALLY, if you know that the impact could be such a good one!  And bettering your health is reason enough to say, YES!
  3. Think about your future self. Will it have a positive impact on you? Or negative? If there’s NO way it can have a negative impact on you, then what do you have to lose?

The butterfly effect. It’s pretty amazing isn’t it? The power of your choices is mind boggling! You truly have the potential – right now – to start your own ripple effect. I believe in you and I will make sure that you believe in yourself, too!  If you need one more sign, to empower yourself and to start your own RISE journey, look no further! Let me help you spread your wings: I have 10 FabFITNation boxes for the first 10 people that get signed up with a challenge pack!! You will get some amazing treats from me – as a celebration in MY 10 years of choosing to rise, a celebration in YOU for starting your own journey, and a celebration in life for believing in it’s beauty and the ability to LIVE in it!!!  Let’s do this!!

Message me TODAY!

Your friend & coach,

Jen Delvaux