For as long as I can remember, I’ve been really hard on myself when it comes to sports and working out. I get so frustrated at myself when I can’t do something, or, worse, I get in my head about people judging me, and then, I just go into a loop of how bad I am at something. Or, I feel like I’m letting someone down, and then spiral again, into being not good enough for my teammates.
It started with running, which, if you’re a runner, you KNOW how much of a mental game running is! I had a lot of talent in high school with running...but, because I was so hard on myself, spoke to myself as if I couldn’t do anything, I had a mediocre time with it. I mean, I could have been a great runner. But, I was too hard on myself.
And what happened when I was hard on myself? I would look for some kind of external validation to tell me that I was good enough. Every. Single. Time.
Instead of using that energy to improve myself, I took this with me when it came to every other workout I did; and now, it’s still rearing its ugly head, on the daily, at CrossFit.
3 out of the 5 days I workout there, I’m hard on myself. Let’s be honest, it may be more like 4 of the 5 days. Why can’t I do X exercise? Why do I suck at kipping pull ups? But seriously, how big of an idiot do I look doing snatches?
Hard. On. Myself.
You know who I’m letting down when I do that?
I literally take away every single thing that I love about working out when I get mad at myself for something. What’s the point in that?
What does being hard on yourself do, aside from keep you in a miserable state, feeling sorry for yourself?
Who wants that?
And yet, I still do this to myself all of the time. I still get in my head, overthink, and make a really enjoyable thing something other than that.
You know what that’s operating from?
Fear of judgement; fear of rejection; fear of not being good enough.
I thought to myself today: I have two choices here. I can either continue to be hard on myself, and go through the same song and dance like I’ve done for years, looking for some kind of outside validation, or…
I can DO something about/with this frustration. I can use it to get better--I can transfer the “frustrated” energy into energy that can be used to get me to where I want to be!
I can accept myself exactly where I am right now, and use that as the first step forward. If I want to get better, it’s up to ME to get better. Not anyone else. ME.
And, I have all the resources to help me get better. Think about all of the energy I wasted in being frustrated that can be put into working, practicing to get better. Scratch that, actually--don’t think about what was wasted (the past); think about how much more awesome it’s going to be putting all of this energy into getting better!
Some reminders, if you’re hard on yourself:
There’s a kicker with all of this, though, that needs to be super clear:
I WANT to get better.
It’s a really big, burning desire inside my heart. Same thing with business. I have a burning desire to get better at it, and with that desire, I’m moving forward. It’s easy to take action.
When you really, really desire something, it comes down to making the choice to get better--not be hard on yourself, but be accepting of yourself, and go for it.
So, where are you hard on yourself? Where do you need to accept where you are...and use that to fuel you forward?
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