20. mirrors

Lately, I’ve been struggling with comparing myself to others.

You know, the kind of comparison where you determine your value, self-worth, and success in life solely based on what someone else is doing, where they live, how much money they have, or how they look.

Completely illogical and irrational to read, but dangerously easy to do.

Man, the comparison slope is a slippery one, I tell ya. I will embarrassingly admit that I’ve started to believe that I’m not where I should be in life, that I’m a mess, that I’m going nowhere.

After two different conversations in which I voiced my concerns about my life with people who I love and trust dearly, I was challenged to stop choosing people as mirrors.

Mirrors. As women, I feel like we have a love/hate relationships with these darn pieces of glass anyway.

When you are doubtful of how something looks, you look in a mirror. Sometimes it gives you a startlingly accurate reflection of what you are trying to see. On other occasions, what you see is actually a bit skewed from reality. The majority of the time, we are not pleased with what is being reflected back.

I have come to realize that the more uncertainty I feel, the more obstacles I’m faced with, the more I use people as mirrors to gauge where I’m at in life in an attempt to make myself feel better.

Instead of looking at MY successes, taking inventory of what I have accomplished, and celebrating how far I’ve come, I use someone else’s life as a benchmark.

How’s that working for me? About as well as trying to do my makeup while looking through one of those full length fun house mirrors. Not at all. The majority of what I should be looking at it is diminished while the small amount of challenges and defeat I’ve faced are amplified, enlarged, and steal the show.

As the new year approaches, I’m going to challenge myself to stop using people as mirrors. Instead of focusing on where others are, I’m going to celebrate where I’m at, what I’ve accomplished, the experiences I’ve had, and all that I’ve learned.

Because really, what better mirror to use for your life than yourself?

Here’s to celebration not comparison.
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19. smiling & failure

The past two weeks of my “Crossfit Rebirth” have been painful. My pride has been thrown aside and my body has felt as if I was repeatedly hit with a hammer. This morning’s workout was no exception.

I’m not going to sit here and write about how I PR’d, what weights I used, or [insert cliche CrossFit post here]. In fact, I’m going to do quite the opposite.

It was one of those “smeared makeup, sweat dripping down my face, chalk all over my spandex, ripped hands, why did my muscles fail me” type of workouts. I’m quite certain that I looked absolutely ridiculous as I stood there staring at the clock.

I tripped up on double unders, failed miserably on a handful of muscle ups for the first time in a long time, and did hand release pushups at a snails pace. Don’t EVEN get me started on the wall balls.

I did something though, throughout the ENTIRE workout, that I haven’t done in a very long time.

I smiled.

I didn’t just turn up the corners of my face after someone said something funny. I ACTUALLY smiled. The grin present on my face reflected what exactly what I was feeling emotionally.

Happiness. Triumph. Excitement. Motivation. Bliss. Exhilaration.

Despite my screaming body and struggles, I was (and still am!) incredibly happy to have a chance to rediscover my passion while constantly striving to be a stronger person both emotionally and physically. I’m lucky to have the chance to do all this with motivating coaches pushing me to be better and friends who remember who I am even when I forget.

As I continued on throughout the day with a smile on my face, I realized so much.

My worthiness is completely separate from outside factors. I am NOT the amount of weight I lift, the relationship I was in, or the mistakes I’ve made. I am worthy just because I am.

Life doesn’t have to be all figured out at this moment. Life just needs to be enjoyed, not endured.

Despite the challenges and obstacles that have been put in my path, I am where I need to be. I am perfectly okay.

So here’s to smiling and laughing through everything. To rediscovering my passion and myself. To being grateful for each experience and all the wonderful people who did not take NO for an answer.

Here’s to working on hand release pushups and muscle ups.

Here’s to being me again. Imperfectly whole, fearlessly happy.

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