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Live Life on Your Terms By Kevin Arndt, FORMA Trainer

May 02, 2016 12:25PM ● By Elena Hutslar

Originally, this article was going to be about when the right time is for kids to start lifting weights. But, as soon as I sat down, my mind started taking me in a different direction. I had an urge to write about something important to me, a different side of health. It’s what I learned from one of the harder times of my life. April 10th was the one-year anniversary of my shoulder surgery, which made me reflect on the past two years. Nineteen months ago, my dad was diagnosed with lung cancer; three months later he was gone. Three months after that, I had a terrible snowboarding accident, dislocating my shoulder, as well as breaking it, tearing the labrum and causing some nerve damage. Needless to say, it was a very serious injury that I am still fixing. Losing my dad and suffering the injuries was devastating to me. As hard as it was, I knew I was going to be stronger in the end. I didn’t realize how long it was going to take to feel better, though.


It was almost a year before I was “myself” again, although I don’t know if that will ever fully be the case. But that’s not necessarily negative.  I had a lot of time to reflect, and I still do on a daily basis. What I’m finding is that you just have to live your life on your terms. 


We know anything can happen at anytime. When our time is up, it’s up. We don’t get a say.  I always knew that, but never fully understood.  When I got the news about my dad, everything changed. When I broke my shoulder, it happened instantly, without warning. It’s scary to think we don’t have control over everything. But what we do have control over is how we live. Too often we get caught up in work and the routine and we don’t make time for much else. I was no different, very focused and goal-oriented. I still am, but now I have a different approach to life.


I work hard, but take vacations often. Responsible with money, but spend it too. Eat healthy, but enjoy all food when I’m with family and friends. I get good sleep, but not if I am having a good time. Get stuff done, but will be lazy and watch a movie with my wife and son. Focus on developing my career, but open to moving to somewhere new in an instant. Go on random day trips. Buy gifts for people. Be present for my wife and son. Have fun at work.  Genuinely try to change people’s lives for the better, including mine. Take life very seriously, but not seriously at all.  Just live.  I do what I want on my terms. 


Too often we get stressed about the negative outcomes from the most miniscule decisions.  Yeah, sometimes it won’t work out, but you will find out more often than not, it will work and you may be even happier from the experience. If you aren’t content with something, fix it, but love yourself regardless.  If you do nothing else, just be present with your family and friends and watch how much better life will become for you.  At the end of the day, we are all going to pass.  Most important in life are people and experiences.  Go out and start creating the experiences with people that matter the most to you.  


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