January is quickly coming to an end. It’s gone by pretty quickly, hasn’t it!
I know so many people who set goals for themselves and then who stopped short and decided to quit trying. Here’s the thing, it’s better to fuck shit up and fail than it is to not try at all. A lot of people have failed before. That’s part of the learning process. The trick is to never give up!
Let’s go back to Michelle. I asked her a while back what the hardest part of her weight loss journey was and if she would do anything differently:
I thought that the actual act of losing weight would be the hardest part – counting calories, exercising, all of that. But after the first month, those become habits just like everything else and do become easier. What I didn’t realize was that every step of the journey comes with its own unique set of psychological challenges that you also have to overcome. Challenges such as:
- Learning to be okay with being hungry.
- The first time you feel sad and you want to comfort eat but don’t actually want to comfort eat, leaving you just feeling frustrated and more sad and not yet knowing how to deal with that without food yet.
- Learning how to be okay with days when you eat too much and just jumping back on it the next day without beating yourself up about it.
- The frustration that comes from eating something disappointing and wishing you hadn’t wasted the calories on it.
- The irrational anger that comes from calculating the calories in something you thought was healthy and realizing you just spent 800 calories on a salad and you just know you’re going to be hungry again in two hours.
- The weird dissonance that occurs the first time you decide to relax on your calories for a meal and yet all you want is a salad so you will end up being within your calories. It’s hard to explain but it’s weird being allowed to relax and eat extra but not wanting to eat extra.
- How uncomfortable you can feel in your own skin, so much so it led me to having a panic attack in a dressing room because the dissonance was just so strong.
- Your body not looking like you thought it would when the weight is gone and learning to be okay with that.
Michelle also said, “I wish I had been kinder to myself throughout the whole process. I wasn’t prepared for the mental challenges this journey would bring, and, being unprepared for them, I was way harder on myself than I should have been. The process is slow. You’re going to make mistakes. You’re going to skip days at the gym. You’re going to have days when you eat too much. That’s okay. I promise you, it’s okay. That’s why this is called a journey – it’s long and hard and will never truly end. As long as you don’t give up, you haven’t failed. As long as you learn from your mistakes and keep going, you will see results. Every day, every step becomes easier. It’ll take time, but the time will pass anyways. Where do you want to be when that time passes? Where do you want to be in a day, in a month, in a year? It’s your choice.”
Look, I’m not here (and Michelle isn’t here) to preach to you all about where you are in life and to just get up and start kicking ass and taking names. That sounds fun in theory, but growth isn’t linear. If you’re struggling with addiction or mental health or any of it, recovery isn’t linear. I’m sure you all have seen this meme going around:
This is true not only for success but for growth, for recovery, for new ideas, for goals. For life in general! Things will go well one week and will totally veer off course within the next! Hell, one hour could be better than another hour! Just remember to Keep Going. Life is tough, but you’ve made it through all the other hardships in your life up to this point which means you already have a 100% success rate, so keep pushing!
So, dear reader, here’s to you:
I’m sure that there are problems abound and that life can get really overwhelming really quickly. Just think how fucking boring life would be if we didn’t have things come up every now and then. I’m sure some days it feels like you’re swallowing sand, (thats a katy perry quote, no shame) but you will get through whatever curveballs are thrown at you.
In the mean time, I will leave you with some advice. I call it my personal rule of 3’s.
- Do something every day that challenges you. Whether it’s reading something new, or working out, or solving a math equation, or apologizing because the relationship is more important than your pride, or saying yes to something that scares you like giving a speech, or whatever… just fucking do something. Make it a habit to step out of your comfort zone every single day.
- Do something to brighten someone else’s day. At the end of the year you’ll have brightened people’s days 365 times. That’s a lot of joy to give and it can be found in the mundane. It can be a small text or a compliment to someone in the grocery store, or opening a door for someone, or whatever. Just spread joy around like it’s fucking confetti because that shit comes back to you. I promise.
- Do something for yourself every day, but don’t over indulge. Play a video game, read a book, soak in the tub, write, color, sing, dance, work out….whatever it is that helps ease your stress, find that thing and do it. Daily. No one can serve from an empty cup… even Jesus filled the wine goblet, so fuck off with those excuses! 😉
So, if January hasn’t been the greatest month for you so far, tomorrow is a new day and even if tomorrow is January fucking 23rd, it’s better to start making those changes now! You never have to wait for a specific date to dictate the way you will live your life! YOU are in the drivers seat. Where do you want to go? How quickly do you want to get there? Fuel up, and GO!
All my love,
Remember to be kind to yourself and if you or someone close to you is in serious distress or simply needs to talk to someone, please call the national suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or text 741741.