Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A lesson in change

Just a note: This blog is about stress just because it's what I'm dealing with, but you can just as easily swap stress out for whichever emotion plagues you and it will mean just the same to you. The general thought here is that becoming who you want to be and overcoming these emotions and issues CAN happen, but it takes work.

I've talked about stress before, but today I want to say that no matter how many times you plan, you will STILL feel stress. No matter how many times you have a talk with yourself and coach yourself through a situation, you'll still feel stress. But it's really how you deal with the stress that lets you know you are coping and if you are changing.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Stress is nothing more than a lack of confidence. You feel stress or anxiety because you are not confident with your ability to cope. You are not confident that other's will approve of the decisions you make. You are not confident in your ability to perform. The list can go on and on, but trust me - next time you feel yourself in a stressful situation think about what is realllly going on and I guarantee you'll be surprised and better able to handle the stress once you break the situation down.

So as much as I can tell you these tips and I can remember these tips for myself, it all comes down to the heat of the moment. HOW are you going to act in that moment when you feel stress? Are you going to throw yourself a pity party and walk around sad and crying all day? Or will you stand up to stress and use your tools and techniques and beat it?

I wish I could tell you that it's easy. That once you learn the techniques and you master the mental battle and you have the stress relief process down that you'll have no problems. But today, I'm here to tell you that it's not easy. It's a choice every single day that you have to make to be a different person - no matter what you are trying to change in your life. Every day if you wake up and just try to make it to the end of the day you probably aren't feeling very accomplished are you? Change takes work and that hard work will pay off if you can dedicate and commit yourself to it.

You'll never be the person that you want to be without some hard work, some sacrifices and some conscious choices every day to make yourself better.

I say all of this as mostly a reminder to myself that this is what I'm doing. I'm working to make my life better in a thousand ways. I am working to become happy. I'm working to become healthy. I'm working to become something that I never thought I could be. I'm working to control my own life, instead of letting my stress or worse, someone else, control my life. And every day I have to wake up and make those small changes and small adjustments to make these big goals happen.

Every day you probably won't be able to do it. And that's okay. In fact, it's better than okay because it shows you that it's work You think you have changed? Throw yourself in a hard situation and see if you can navigate on auto-pilot. Even if you can't, that's okay. We are not perfect, nor are we striving for perfection. I remind myself this every single day.

I had a bad day yesterday. It wasn't any single event that made the day bad, but rather just a series of situations that I did not control individually so they all snowballed together and threw me really off. I had a lot of stress and instead of dealing with my stress and using my techniques, I ate my stress. And instead of having one weak moment and picking myself back up, I threw myself a pity party and I blew the entire day. Am I proud? No. Am I okay with it? Yes, I am okay with it. I'm not perfect. Not every single day is going to be perfect. Some days I'll beat my demons and other days I won't. The best thing about yesterday though, is that it was yesterday. It's not today. It's not tomorrow. What happened yesterday, happened and now it's over. Today I woke up and I chose to make today better. I chose to swallow my hurt pride and my mistakes and I'm going to make today better. Is today going to be the best day ever? No, probably not. But I'll make it as good as I can given the circumstances and tomorrow, I'll shoot for an even better day.

That's what I want to do now. I want to make every day better than the previous day. Why wouldn't I? Every day I learn something new about myself, I test myself and I grow as a person. It only makes sense that I would wake up and try to be better the next day.

"A man who wants something will find a way; a man who doesn't will find an excuse." - Stephan Dolley Jr.

Which do you choose? A way or an excuse? Make today better than yesterday and make tomorrow better than today. Continuous improvement is the best gift you can give yourself.

1 comment:

  1. Good post, Laura ... really REALLY good post! Headed to the foot specialist tomorrow - things are getting bad. I hobble just about every time I stand up :( I am REALLY looking forward to getting on a plan that will make it all better - even if it means a boot for a month or two!!!