The day I’m writing this, I was up before the sun. WAY before. I jumped out of bed at 4:30 am, went for a run, and completed a strength training workout before walking the dog and starting my workday.
I’m not sharing this information to brag or make you feel bad for not doing these things. I share it because when a car drove past me on this blustery morning, I didn’t feel a sense of pride or accomplishment…I felt shame and embarrassment.
‘WHY?’ you may be asking yourself.
Because if I had any control in the situation, I would have been fast asleep. I was only out running because I couldn’t stand laying awake anymore, and I knew that exercising would help me calm my mind.
I felt ashamed because I assumed the person in that car was silently congratulating me for my discipline to be running in the rain long before the crack of dawn. But in reality, I’m in the middle of anxiety-related insomnia episode and I’d been WIDE awake since 3 am.
In short, I wasn’t out running because I have perfect control of my life, but because I was feeling completely out of control.
Knowing the full story, you’re probably feeling a little less guilty for not doing the same. If so, good. You shouldn’t ever feel guilty because someone else did something positive that you didn’t.
That’s the kind of mindset that made me feel bad even in the middle of doing something positive for myself.
Sure, I was being pushed by a problem instead of being pulled by a motivation to do and be better, but I didn’t spend my waking hours watching TV or binging junk food like I have in the past. I think that’s a pretty big leap in the right direction!
We all need to give ourselves a little more credit when we do something right. It doesn’t matter if other people are doing more, or if your reasons aren’t perfect, or what other people think about it.
Hell, the person in that car could have been thinking I was an idiot, or that my form was off, or maybe they didn’t even see me because they were distracted by their own stuff. It doesn’t matter.
I’m grateful to myself for making the decision to make lemonade out of some shitty lemons instead of stewing about how many damn lemons I have. Pride may not have been my first instinct, but it’s what I choose to focus on now.
Who knows, with more practice, maybe my first thought will be: ‘eat your heart out bitches, I’m out running!’
If you’ve been too tough on yourself lately, let me know why in the comments below!