Another new year has begun and everyone is busy making goals and resolutions. For many years I always had the same resolutions- eat less, exercise more, lose x amount of lbs by February 1st etc. Obviously some of those were very unrealistic and I never stuck with them. When I finally did a complete overhaul of my lifestyle the weight came off on it’s own – and this was not at new years! Last year my resolution was simple, stop swearing so much. I did pretty well, although I do need to watch it again as the potty mouth is creeping back up on me.
This year I want to focus on something I haven’t been able to shake for years- negative self talk. Although I’ve cleaned up my lifestyle a lot, have been able to maintain a weight I’m comfortable at (when I’m not pregnant), and have been pretty successful at most things I attempt, this is one bad habit I cannot get rid of and it hinders me in every single aspect of my life.
As long as I can remember I have been extremely self conscious and judgmental of myself. I constantly compare myself to others and it is a huge ‘thief of joy’ as they say. Every time I have ever set out to do something there is a little voice inside telling me I’m not good enough.
Take this blog for example. I was lying in bed the other night thinking to myself how I really need to get on here and write more. I have a notebook full of ideas I’ve thought of to write about. It makes me excited think about the possibility of having a successful blog and honestly, writing full time would be my dream job. But almost instantly it started– Who would want to read my blog? I’m not interesting, I have no amazing story. I’m just a normal person. In fact I’m not even that pretty or stylish, and I have no skills in life. My writing is mediocre at best. Who do I think I am? There’s thousands of blogs out there. Why would mine ever get noticed….. and on and on and on.
How awful it is to live this way.
It’s got to end and it’s going to stop now.
My husband loves me and is supportive of me. When I first started this blog my family and friends encouraged me and told me I am a pretty darn good writer (see I didn’t swear!). There’s no reason I can’t have a successful blog if I fully commit to it and put in all the hard work. All my fears and self doubt are just preventing me from even trying, and that’s really sad. Yes it’s a pipe dream to be a “famous” blogger. But even if I’m not “famous” and don’t have 100K in followers, I am still passionate about sharing my ideas and experiences through life with people. If I can help one person through my writing, then I’ve succeeded at my mission.
My self worth doesn’t depend on the success of this blog. Yet I am attaching a lot of it to this and then not doing anything about it in fear of failing.
This year I am resolving to go out of my comfort zone and put myself out there. When I hear that negative self talk I’m going to stop it in it’s tracks and say “No you are wrong”. I am not going to sit here listening and agreeing to it anymore. I am worth more than that. I don’t want my daughter to grow up thinking it’s okay or normal to keep putting yourself down and believing it. Failing or not being “good enough” at something is not the end of the world. You are not going to learn anything, grow as a person, or do anything great if you are so afraid of failing you don’t even try.
As far as comparing myself to others, well that needs to end this year too. There’s really no point to comparing myself, besides to make myself miserable. My parents have always told me that there will always be people who are better off than you as well as there will always be people who are worse off than you. That’s life. My husband can’t even comprehend why I care so much about what other people have, have done, or have succeeded at. A small amount of comparison could be a good motivation factor to be better at something, but the level I compare at is just downright unhealthy.
I am going to take this year to focus on myself and my goals. I will not compare my blog to other blogs. The only person I will compete with is myself.
I’m not perfect and no one is. I resolve to stop thinking everyone else has the perfect life and that I’ll never be good enough. If you are struggling with the same thing I encourage you to make this your resolution as well. No one deserves to be talked to that way. So stop talking to yourself that way and start really living your life. If you fail at something, learn from it and improve. You’ll never find true happiness if you never try because you are scared to fail.
I’ll leave you with two great quotes from one of the co-founders of Pixar.
We need to think about failure differently. I’m not the first to say that failure, when approached properly, can be an opportunity for growth. But the way most people interpret this assertion is that mistakes are a necessary evil. Mistakes aren’t a necessary evil. They aren’t evil at all. They are an inevitable consequence of doing something new (and, as such, should be seen as valuable; without them, we’d have no originality).
Ed Catmul, Pixar Co- founder
And another great quote from him
[Many people] think it means accept failure with dignity and move on. The better, more subtle interpretation is that failure is a manifestation of learning and exploration. If you aren’t experiencing failure, then you are making a far worse mistake: You are being driven by the desire to avoid it. And, for leaders especially, this strategy — trying to avoid failure by out-thinking it — dooms you to fail.
All images were found on pinterest (except the one with the title of the post, I made it)