Hi, my name is Anthea. I currently work as a Registered Nurse in a regional emergency department. My life used to be chaotic. Like, super chaotic. But now I am finding authenticity and happiness through simplifying and living intentionally.
Although I had the average childhood with loving parents who did the best they could with what they had, I never learnt how to love or appreciate myself. I hated myself. Judging myself incessantly. I was the person who was never happy. If only I was better looking, cooler, edgier, had better clothes, smiled better, laughed better, you know the deal. I strove to find happiness, and it never eventuated. I would think that I would get there, but it never lasted. After obtaining my Degree in Nursing, I achieved a Masters in Drug and Alcohol. I was at the pinnacle of my career, kicking heads and making waves. Worked my way up to middle management! I had a second job as a fitness instructor, teaching every day, on top of my day job. I had a child in high school. We lived in the ‘right’ suburb for her to go to the ‘right’ public school. I had a successful husband who was happy in his career. We were in debt up to our eyeballs. But hey, wasn’t everyone. We needed things, and lots of them. We had a rental property that was bleeding money, but we were negative gearing, just like every one else in Australia who wanted to save forty cents but lose sixty in the process. We partied and socialised regularly. I was on my journey to attain a Ph.D. based on Grounded Theory.
Then, I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and it had spread to my lymph nodes. I was 36 years old. Dreams I thought I wanted, made me feel hopeless and desperate. I delved deep into depression and self-destructive behaviour with a façade of turning my life around. I kept working my two jobs through surgeries, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. People started calling me a machine and I was proud of it! Within a year of my diagnosis, my husband incurred a medical discharge from his job. The only thing he ever wanted to do with his life. He felt lost and needed support. I couldn’t even support myself. The only man in my life who had ever truly loved and supported me through the good and the bad, and I was barely able to get out of bed to make him a cup of tea. My life crumbled around me. We grappled and groped for the right decisions to make.
We moved to the country, knowing somehow it was going to be the start of something to help us. But not knowing how. We were without family or government jobs. I had to make it work, and I had to learn what I wanted out of my life, however long or short it was going to be. It has been a long hard road. Where I am now has not come easily. But I am here. I have been through the mill. I am not proud of some of the things I have done. I have not made the right decisions all the time. But failure can be the biggest motivator to get it right. These failures have led me to be the person who is creating Authentic Essentials. Consciously living my life with integrity every day.
I started this blog to encourage others to move towards curating an intentional life. However that looks for them. The information aims to be realistic and practical, helping you to live an abundant, grateful and amazing life. Right now. Not later. It is not a place to feel guilty or less than. I am not perfect. I have only just started to understand true self-acceptance. I still have to catch myself and practice self-compassion in the middle of my tirades of self-judgement. I struggle and sweat over a lot. But because of these inner brawls, I find myself living with intention and authenticity.
On these pages, I share the tips and tools I have used to simplify my life and live more intentionally. Topics related to minimalism, ‘low-tox’ living and personal growth.
Why don’t you visit my manifesto page? You will learn a bit more about me and how I try to live my life. Then journey on to the categories that pique your interest. Take what you need. Some of the information may seem a little extreme, other information simplified. Not everyone is in the same place. Please leave comments if you desire. I prefer you are respectful of others including myself. Everyone is entitled to different opinions, but you do not need to be nasty or disrespectful when expressing them.
I wish you well on your journey to living a simplified, more intentional and authentic life, however that may look like for you.