• Ashley Mulkern

Conquering the Seasons of Life

Updated: Jul 27, 2020

Tips for getting through those times in life when you just don’t feel like yourself.


Have you ever gone through a season in life where you just DON'T feel like yourself?



Maybe you don't realize it while you’re going through it or maybe it completely consumes you — But you just weren’t your best you. You get that feeling when you look back on that time in your life and you're just like "thank goodness I got through that".


That was ME right before I became a Registered Dietitian (RD). I was in the final steps of completing and publishing my thesis for my Masters degree and preparing for the RD exam. The pressure of those two BIG life events was weighing HEAVILY on me.


Looking back, it’s clear in so many ways that I was not myself — I developed serious IBS symptoms, my anxiety was through the roof, I had random mood swings, and I didn't enjoy social or fun situations as much as I normally did. I disconnected emotionally from my family, my friends, and my boyfriend because it was taking all of my energy and mindspace to get through the “season” I was in.


Overall it was just a really tough time. I'm not sharing this experience to tell you there is a magic trick to overcoming these seasons in your life, but what I am here to tell you is to KEEP ON GOING.



Your motivation, your dedication, and your ability to see the light at the end of the tunnel are what will get you through to your goals. Whether it's a month long struggle or years at a time — It all has to come to an end at some point. The season WILL change.


You may be thinking, “Well, Ashley, if you were this miserable then why didn’t you stop what you were doing and change directions?”


My answer to that is simple; when you set real goals for yourself, you won’t want to stop and turn around when things get dark. When you make the mental commitment to change your life and reach your goals, you’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen!


This can be applied to your nutrition, fitness and wellness goals, relationship goals, your career, and so much more.


You choose these goals for yourself because they are going to make you a better you. The road to get there may not be pretty, it most likely won’t be all sunshine and rainbows... But that journey and those tough experiences are what you need to get to your goal. IT’S CALLED GROWTH. It’s tough, it’s scary, and sometimes it hurts but it’s necessary.



I’ve written down some tips that weren’t so clear to me when I was going through my tough season but when I reflect on that time I realize that they were what really helped me reach the light at the end of the tunnel.


1. Surround yourself with people who try to understand, listen, and support you


One of the very first things we learned about nutrition in school wasn’t about how important it is to have a solid support system if you’re looking to change your behaviors. I could write a book about this topic and I’m sure I’ll write a blog about it but for now we’ll stick to this paragraph. There is a ton of research out there backing up the importance of good social, emotional, and psychological support when you’re going through a change in life.



When you surround yourself with people who actually listen and try to relate to you, it makes a huge difference in how you feel about your own situation. For me, this was my boyfriend and my best girl friends from college. My boyfriend didn’t understand my anxiety, he didn’t understand what my IBS symptoms felt like or why they were happening, but what he did do was stand beside me through it all, he never judged me (even when I was in a ball crying on the floor like a crazy person), and he listened to what I had to say. He acknowledged that I was going through something while also accepting that he couldn’t fix it. He was just there. My girl friends would listen to my professional struggles and boosted my self-esteem by recognizing all the work I was putting in to get to my end goal. They were my personal hype-women and I didn’t know it then but I was so lucky to have them in my life.


If you feel like you don’t have a solid support system, try cleaning out the judgement in your life and see where that leaves you (see tip #5 for more on this).


2. Find things you do enjoy and focus on those


Even if it’s just for 5 minutes a day, take time to do something for yourself that makes you happy! Making it a priority in your day will give you something to look forward to and something to help you keep moving forward.


A couple of things I like to do are: read a book or magazine, study my devotional, color or doodle, clean my home or desk, bake a dessert that I love, do a workout, go on a walk, paint my nails, journal, listen to relaxing music, shop on amazon.


3. Remind yourself that this is temporary


Even if it’s just for 5 minutes a day, take time to do something for yourself that makes you happy! Making it a priority in your day will give you something to look forward to and something to help you keep moving forward.


4. Allow yourself the time to get through it


More than likely, your life isn’t going to change overnight. Allow yourself the time and grace to not be okay and embrace the season you are in. Although it may not be the most enjoyable time in your life, remind yourself that you are lucky to be alive and lucky to have the ability to chase your goals. It’s okay to live your life while going through complicated situations. Put your head down, embrace the hardship, and keep on pedalling to that finish line.



5. Don’t apologize & clean out the judgement


Don’t ever apologize for doing what you need to do to be happy.


Now go back and read that again 👏


There are going to be people in your life who don’t understand what you are going through, they won’t understand that you need time, and they may even be nasty to you about it. I’m giving you 100% permission to kick these people out of your life. Whether it’s temporarily or forever, that negative energy is not welcome.


Cleaning out the sources of judgement in your life will lift a HUGE weight off of your shoulders. Whether you have to distance yourself from friends who make you feel poorly about your current situation, staying home to rest on a girls night out, unfollowing people on social media or ignoring someone’s negative comments — Get. Rid. Of. It.


Don’t apologize for doing what you need to do to be happy.


You are in control of your life and you can do whatever you want with it! Let go of the people who don’t align with your current focus and keep moving forward girlfriend ❤️️


About the Author


Ashley Mulkern, MS, RD is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist with a Masters of Science in Nutritional Sciences and Bachelor of Science in Dietetics from the University of Cincinnati. She loves anything covered in chocolate, sprinkles, or butter. Her favorite things to do are exercising, baking, and reading.

#SeasonsofLife #Dietitian #SelfLove #Positivity

17 views0 comments