Tuesday, 10 March 2020

Stop Waiting for the End Result and Enjoy the Journey

Whether we're trying the latest fad diet or suddenly decide to wake up at 5am every day. It's like we are all so desperate to improve ourselves without actually living in the now.

We all do it. 

Whether we're trying the latest fad diet or suddenly decide to wake up at 5am every day. It's like we are all so desperate to improve ourselves without actually living in the now.

I am the worst person for it. When I 'have' to eat healthy and exercise, (I know, it sounds as though I'm being FORCED, doesn't it? You wouldn't believe I was doing it out of choice at all.) I find myself impatient - I struggle because I want all of the results now. I'm eager to notice some sort of difference and during the process, I am living mundanely day to day in order to get to the next milestone.

To put it politely... what a sad little life Shan! To be fair to myself, the main reason I decided to write this blog is because I am finally making some positive changes in the way I perceive such journeys. I don't diet anymore. One day I will eat a chicken salad for dinner without any pre-thought simply because I feel like it - in turn, I enjoy the salad. The next day I might eat a pizza, and equally, I will enjoy both choices. With limited guilt for a change.

I found the most struggling time in my weight loss journey to be when I obsessed over dieting - I wouldn't dare eat anything like pizza in fear I would ruin all of my progress. Funnily enough, the day I decided I no longer cared was the same month I dropped a stone. The same stone I have kept off for three years straight.

It's not all about dieting. It could be anything in life! You have to enjoy the process and the journey in order to appreciate the little things that occur day-to-day. Step by step, there will always be something to celebrate, no matter how miniscule in the grand scheme of things. 

Expectations play such a key part here, providing both negative and positive aspects. We expect far too much of ourselves and suddenly the fun you experienced playing a weekly sport has turned in to a chore. Or, at the other end of the scale, you could argue that without expectations, we would never succeed further than our starting point.

The moment I stopped putting pressure on myself it was like I felt a huge weight lift from within me. It's the same with going above and beyond for people. I used to be that person I now can't stand to be around. The 'people pleaser', the person who has to do anything and everything with perfection, just to suit somebody else's needs.

Well, guess what... that person never asked for everything from you. You set that expectation within yourself and desiring the same effort back or appreciation for doing too much isn't going to ensure you enjoy the journey. Especially when none of that effort has gone into yourself. 

I've been there myself, so please forgive me if I seem harsh. I don't know how I managed to go from making sure everyone around me was happy to putting myself first but I do remember the final straw where I realised I was no longer enjoying the journey to happiness.

I enjoy life so much more now because I am not forcing expectations anymore - whether it be on myself or others. Whatever happens, happens. I enjoy eating healthy and exercising now because I am doing it for me, and I am only choosing to do the activities that make me happy. If I get up at 5am one day or 8am the next, I don't believe I am a failure just because someone else prefers their early morning wake up call. We are all different, and our journeys and lifestyle choices, no matter how much pressure we put on ourselves, will always be different.

Self-care is so important in order to get anything and everything you want in life. I stopped believing in ''No one will love you unless you love yourself.'' and put my energy in to ''I will love myself regardless of who decides to love me''. I found that I quickly changed my tune in how I see myself, what I need to improve and how to do so - But, this time, just for me and my own personal journey.

Accept it, learn from it, grow from and in to it. Progress is positive regardless of how small or minor it may seem. ENJOY the process. Meditate, face your demons, look after you first.

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