I will be the first to admit that I am extremely negative and hard on myself (just ask Raymond), and I have been for as long as I can remember. Things that I would overlook in others, I beat myself up over. When I wrote a post about my New Year’s resolutions back in December, I said I was going to be nicer to myself. I don’t really think that I have done a great job with this, so it’s time for a reality check.
I was thinking about my resolution and this whole issue when I was on the treadmill today at the gym (I had a lot of time to think because it was a 12 mile run). I feel like I doubt myself often, and I definitely put myself down much more than I should. Here are two recent examples. I was intimidated to attend a meeting on Thursday to help create a quality improvement plan template to be used by local health departments because I didn’t think I would be able to offer any worthy input. I actually considered backing out of the whole thing. When I was running on the treadmill today, I kept seeing all of the “gym girls” (you know, the ones that are super fit) walking around and thought, “I wish I looked more like that.” I looked down at my legs as I was running, saw my thighs jiggling, and just hated them. In my head, I know that all of this is nonsense, but I still felt this way.
Time to counteract all of this negative thinking by actually taking some time to realize that I can be pretty great, even amazing, at time. Here are some things I would like to share with you.
1. Okay, so my thighs jiggle a little. So do the thighs of most women I know, and if they don’t, I think they are among the few who are genetically blessed or work out like fiends. And about those jiggly thighs – they carried me through countless hours of training and three (soon to be four) marathons, one half marathon, three 10 milers, three 5 milers, and many more 5Ks and 2 milers than I can even remember. I would like to see those gym girls do that. They also allowed me to jump, cheer, flip, stunt, and coach my way through 15+ years of cheerleading. They now allow me to keep up with my children who are endless bundles of energy.
2. I must be doing something right in terms of my profession because I have been fortunate enough to be given a new position – accreditation coordinator for our health department. I will still continue with my regular duties, but this job will come to the forefront as we move through the accreditation process. If I were a complete dummy, I don’t think our boss would have asked me to take this on, and I wouldn’t have been asked to take part in that QI plan meeting I was nervous about attending.
3. This is going to sound kinda crazy, but here it goes – I went through labor and delivery naturally three times (BOGO on round three) and actually liked it. It was a test for me, both mentally and physically, and I won. Knowing I was stronger than the pain, I welcomed the experience, and after each contraction I though, “That’s it? Bring it!” I learned a lot from this experience, mainly that I am stronger than I thought possible.
I could go on with examples, but I think you get my point. We all have things that we don’t like about ourselves, and most of us spend too much time focusing on the negative, which is not good or productive. There will always be people who are better, stronger, prettier, skinnier, faster, smarter, etc., etc., etc. It is much better to focus on things that we do well and make us unique. Maybe I should take my own advice and find a little happiness in being me.