A Reminder to Press On
When you set a goal for yourself, let’s say losing weight for our example, there is a period when you’re especially motivated. those first few weeks, months, maybe even year is great. You’re taking strides, mad excited and even seeing some small changes in your body. All this and the encouragement of those around you keep you pressing on.
At some point, maybe the novelty has worn off a bit, but you’re still determined to finish what you’re started. Then you pass your first major milestone. Maybe you’ve gone down a few pants sizes or were able to beat your time on the track, or did your first set of chin ups. Whatever it is, you feel great about it. You revel in this victory knowing it was no small feat for you. Those around you even start noticing the difference in your demeanor and compliment you on how good you look. You feel validated.
But then something happens. You hit a bit of a wall. You’re no longer as motivated to press on. I’m good, you think. Look how far I’ve come. My clothes don’t fit, I can run a mile without effort. I have done well. Although all those things are true, you are aware that you are still far from your ultimate goal. This is no time to sit on your laurels. But that’s what you’d rather do cause now you’ve reached the point in your journey where grit is needed. The novelty is long gone. Consistency, discipline and perseverance are your new friends and you’re not sure you like them yet.
That’s kind of how I feel emotionally.
A year ago I set out on this journey to get to challenge my defaults in the realm of my emotions. I shared with friends, got some solid advice and a challenge to try new things and challenge my fears.
It’s been good. I have tried new things, faced some fears, had some cool experiences and even won some battles. I am starting to see the difference in how I interact with myself and with others. It’s been good and overall pretty encouraging. Some of my friends have even started to see some changes too. In many ways I am a healthier person today than I was a year ago and for that I am thankful.
The thing is although I am healthier and showing improvement, I am aware that I have not arrived. I know that fear is still too predominant in my heart and mind. My behaviour and thoughts are still majorly influenced by fears that have plagued me all my life. But to get to the other side will take the hard work.
Not to downplay what I have seen to date, but I know that the next season will be about grit, consistency, and perseverance. It will be about follow through and creating new patterns. The temptation is to let this last year be my one hit wonder. It was a good run, I’m healthier, I’ve seen growth, now we can chill. But that would be a disservice to myself and the work I have put in.
I was thinking about this tonight and remembered some of the things I wrote over the last few months. To love myself is to choose to press on even if it scares me. Even if it hurts. Because the truth is freedom doesn’t come free, it is hard fought and I am worth that fight. I am worth loving well and being good to myself. And sometimes the good thing sucks: it hurts, it stings, and it makes you want to run. But I have to remind myself that it’s oh so worth it.
So tonight, I remind myself that I am called to love myself well. I remind myself that I must be open to change, lay down my fears and choose life everyday. I remind myself that I will always be on a journey and I have never arrived. I remind myself that things are never as bad as they seem. Though the night may seem dark and hopeless, the morning always comes. I remind myself that I am not alone, I never was, I never will be and that I don’t have to do this in my own strength. Tonight, I remind myself that there is beauty in my brokenness and that to be exposed is not always a bad thing. I remind myself that my heart won’t hurt forever, and that the fact that I’m hurting at all is a sign of health and of growth.
It’s a sign that I’m feeling. And that, after all is always a win.