During the first episode of the 100 Day Warrior (in Sept 2014) I asked a handful of people from the creative industry to send me questions that they would like to be answered by the participants of the 100 Day Warrior. Out of approximately 30 questions I selected 13 that seem to cover most of the curiosity of most followers. Suzanne is the first of the 100 Day Warrior III to answer them.
1. What were your expectations from the 100 Day Warrior? And have they been met?
I expected an intense training of body and mind that would enable me to make changes in my life, my habits, my health, not for just 100 days but for the rest of my life.
Since I haven’t even reached the end of the 100 Day Warrior program yet, I cannot tell you if the changes that I have made will last for the rest of my life, but it sure feels like I want to keep living like this forever. I started this training as an exhausted and literally depleted version of myself and I truly feel like a phoenix risen from the ashes! That sounds dramatic but pretty much sums it up. I feel like I am back on track, ready to face the challenges life throws at you.
2. How does the 100 Day Warrior affect you?
This training has made it possible to make a U turn; away from the luring burn out, towards a balanced life with more energy and fun and more endurance. But also more silence, more self reflection and more compassion. I can see which choices probably will work and which ones won’t, I can recognize my own pitfalls before falling into them. I feel stronger, both physically and mentally.
3. How long before you started experiencing results?
It took a while. Since I was really really exhausted I felt that in the first 3, 4 weeks I was only going more downhill. During the 21 day detox I got a heavy duty flu and the work outs with my personal trainer Mike (de Koord, A.P.) were so tiring in the beginning, that the only thing I could do was sleep right after.
The meetings and the meditations however felt good right away. Meditating felt like a relief, a relief of my always busy brain and it started to put things in a different perspective after a week or two.
4. What was your biggest misconception of the 100 Day Warrior?
My biggest misconception was that the once a week group session would be my least favorite part of the 100 Day Warrior. I was afraid of the group dynamics and that maybe I would dislike people in my group. But the fact is that being part of this group of (wonderful) people, each with his/her own struggle and challenges is inspiring and strengthening. And…very helpful! Now, approaching the end of the training I feel that we are a group of warriors, capable of making big and small changes in our environment.
5. What impressed you most so far?
The way the program is put together. The way the subjects are arranged during the weeks of the training, everything links to previous or next chapters. Every week more of you, yourself is revealed and the physical training is linked to your mental training as well. The whole thing is composed in such a skilled way.
6. What was most challenging, scary or demanding?
Opening up, being vulnerable amongst people you don’t really know. And also keeping up the eating habits with a family of 5 that loves pasta and pizza has been challenging sometimes.
7. What is your biggest revelation until now?
The influence of my well-, or not so well-being on the people close to me. The moment I started changing, my environment changed with me. In a good way. And I learned that I am more of a perfectionist than I could have ever guessed.
8. Which part of the 100 Day Warrior program would you rather have started 10 years ago?
Daily meditation, with the emphasis on DAILY! What a way to reset your brain, to survive in a world that is filled with stimulants, distracting impulses, tempting screens. And what a way to have impressive insights in your own train of thoughts, your mechanisms. A wonderful tool to create peace of mind and an excellent tool to feel, truly feel.
9. How does the 100 Day Warrior serve you in daily life and work?
I am able to organize or take more time for myself which before seemed impossible. I allow myself to fail and start over. Therefore I deal better with stress and all the other things that come with life as a freelancing photographer and mother. I feel fitter and stronger and more patient and have become less of a relentless perfectionist. Because I am making a daily effort to be milder and friendlier towards myself, I feel I have become milder and friendlier towards the people around me.
10. Does the 100 Day Warrior have an impact on the way you relate to your life?
Yes it does, in a very positive way! I feel like I have a clearer perspective on things, more awareness. And because of this I see and really believe I can make a difference. For myself and for others. I think of my life in a lighter way, I guess because I feel stronger, inside and out. I have made a stronger connection with what is really my essence which makes it easier to choose my path in life.
11. What do you expect from the 100 Day Warrior in the long run?
I expect a lasting change. Although I am sure it will be difficult sometimes to keep up this intensity, this focus, I feel that I have enough tools to keep myself from wandering away from this awareness. Living my life the way I did is not an option anymore.
12. What does the term ‘warrior’ mean to you?
For me a warrior is a peaceful, well balanced, courageous and honest person with a heart full of compassion, not lead by his/her fears or egomania and not afraid to make mistakes.
13. What is your wish for the future?
More true warriors, more compassion, more meditation. I think that it will help to make this world a better place. Although the outlook right now is not so sunny, happy people make a happier world. It is as simple as that.
Suzanne Karsters (46) is a gifted freelance photographer and a mother. She is a creative soul with a keen eye for beauty and a warm presence. Feel free to check out her portfolio at Suzanne Karsters Photography. If you want to connect with this inspiring lady, click here.