I would say that in my life overall, I’m not a super competitive person. Well, at least outwardly. Of course, when I’m involved in an activity or when I played softball regularly, I did my best and tried to be successful. But I don’t think I’ve been way over the top, crazy, do anything to win. I do like to win, don’t get me wrong. But I suppose I have my limits as to how competitive I’m going to be.
Unless…….we’re talking about the competition I have with myself. Oh, no! I think I might have taken a turn to the dark side…..
Ok, the dark side might be a little too far. A bit dramatic. But I do have this bizarre competition with myself. I notice it in my daily life. I don’t think I have always seen it though. I would assume that I would have tried to curb this before it got out of hand. Dramatic again. It’s not really out of hand, but I see it.
Here is one of the places where I have noticed it. There are a few mindless games that I have downloaded onto my phone and I will play them at night when I’m unwinding. Now, if you are familiar with any of the many games that are able to be downloaded, you know there are multiple levels and you can earn 1, 2, or 3 stars on each level, depending on your “skill”. So in playing some of these games, I was realizing that very early on in the game, the levels were pretty easy. I earned 3 stars! Go me! I’m doing well.
As the levels increased, apparently, so should your skill level. “Oh no, I think I have only earned 2 stars on this level. I can’t move on to the next level now. I have to earn the 3 stars before I can go on.” What?? Now, keep in mind, I don’t really have to earn 3 stars at all. The game will progress either way.
Talk about me taking the fun out of something. Who am I competing against? No one is checking up on my night time playing ability to make sure I am earning my 3 stars on each level before I move on. Why do I do this? I have to “win”! Win what? I need the stars to validate something? Not really. I don’t share my gaming progress online with anyone, so no one but me would know this. (And now you do too…)
Another place I have noticed my competition with myself is when I workout. More specifically, when I do some kind of cardio exercise. Again, here I am taking the fun out of it. (Yes, I did just say exercise is fun.) Heehee. Anyway, I’m on the treadmill or the elliptical. And “I have to get to this certain amount of miles by this certain time. I have to run this many minutes before I can take a break”. And then what? I win? But, in a sense, my goal motivation backfires, too – for instance, if I wasn’t sure I would be able to reach the “goal” at today’s workout, then I would avoid doing it all together. I put too much pressure on myself to reach a made up goal that isn’t necessary. So in my quest to “win”, I’m actually hurting myself by ending up not doing something because I might not be able to win against myself. It all seems rather silly, to make the competition with myself take the fun out of things. I like to run. I enjoy it. But maybe I can just run for the fun of it instead of “beating” my time yesterday.
I don’t want you to think that I believe we shouldn’t have goals. Quite the opposite. But for me, if the “goal” was pushing me away from doing something good for myself or relaxing, then this isn’t a good goal for me. Maybe the goal can be “run until I want to walk”. And ps…..”good job running”. Or earn 1 star and be happy going onto level 72.
I’ve made the attempt to stop being so competitive with myself. It doesn’t need to be me vs. me. I keep track of my progress on the elliptical or treadmill but I don’t have to reach a certain goal to make this particular workout worth it. I’m happy that I’m sticking with the workouts. And I’m satisfied with my 1 star at times……as long as I can get 3 stars here and there.
For me, I need to keep the fun in it. Fun is definitely NOT overrated.
~Lynn Aspire Wellness
I’m not going as far as to say Jelly Beans changed my life… but, well, they gave me a reason to pause – and in an even more profound way than deciding on the best flavor combination I could concoct.
I believe part of being successful includes embracing our struggles. They really do define us – either we decide to become them, or we decided to become something usually quite the opposite. Wellness is certainly a journey, and mine continues, just as does yours… and everyone else’s. I work hard to choose a good path. It’s not necessarily the “right” path, as age has begun to teach me that there is truly no right and wrong, but merely decisions and choices, some of which lead to better outcomes than others. I am a fan of positive outcomes, so I work towards making choices that will likely lead me down that path. But nonetheless, being transparent, while difficult, is often essential if we really want to make true change in our lives.
Health and wellness are very much affected by the tides in our lives. Positive or negative, you can likely expect your habits to ebb and flow as well. Weight gain or loss, less exercise, missing routine wellness visits (doctor, dentist, massages) – these things happen when life throws us for a curve, even if we feel prepared for it! What am I talking about? Moving, getting married, having a kid, having another kid, taking care of parent, changing jobs, getting divorced, losing a loved one, kids starting college, and the list goes on and on.
Let me rewind my life for you briefly. Since June 2016, exactly two years ago, I have started a new business (including the build out construction), closed an old business, adopted a newborn, bought a house, underwent another construction house renovation, adopted a dog, packed, moved, and sold a house.
It’s safe to assume that some of my positive habits fell apart during all this transition. Ahhh yea. Lack of sleep, lots of working, tons of financial stress, it all took its toll. Cooking became a huge challenge. Not just the time to do it, but between house showings, it was just nearly impossible to know if we would even be able to make dinner at home. Cooked fish smell doesn’t go over well when selling a house. FYI.
We tried really hard to cook when we could and eat real meals. But, it was a crap shoot. This was also the time when we were introducing new foods to our son, and it was a whole new ballgame for us!
Turns out our toddler likes to eat! And he’s not afraid to try stuff. Basically, he wants everything you’re eating. Sharing is caring, right??
Well, turns out I didn’t want him to eat everything I was eating. Why?? Because it’s not food that’s appropriate for a baby! But, umm… what does that even mean? It means, he shouldn’t have it.
But why? Why shouldn’t he have it?
As I was sneaking jelly beans one afternoon at dinner time, it hit me like a freight train. He sees me in all my sneakiness. Nothing’s getting past him! And, oh you better believe he wants one! But, I’m not giving it to him because it’s not good for him. Hey, Einstein - news flash – it’s not good for you, either! Here I am, a grown woman, sneaking jelly beans so my 1 year old doesn’t get into a bad, sugary habit. But, it’s okay for me to do it??
We know the answer is no. NO. It’s not okay. If I don’t want him to have it, I shouldn’t be having it either. It’s as simple as that. I didn’t want to keep telling him “no” to sharing what I was eating. What kind of example does that set?? Certainly not one of a positive role model.
Nothing kicked my butt back into the right mindset faster than staring at those jelly beans and realizing how silly it all was. If I want him to be a good eater and like healthy food, then I need to set that example and eat right, too! After all, it’s not like I don’t know how. Not to mention that I actually LIKE eating healthy food (call me crazy, I know!).
On the surface, it seemed as easy as telling my son, “You can’t have this.” I’m an adult, by gone it, and I WANT it, and I say so, and I get to choose! So while my son’s tantrum is on the outside, the reality is, I’m having my own adult version on the inside.
It was time to pull it together. So, see ya later, jelly beans! We are back to home cooked goodness.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.