At risk of sounding complainy at the start of this post (don’t worry it gets positive), I want to admit that it has been a difficult past couple of weeks, and this post is a personal one. I got pretty sick with the flu earlier this month. I hadn’t been that sick in a long time, and I wasn’t anticipating exactly what it would do to my overall health both physically and mentally.
I was out for about a week before I tried to exercise again and realized that ten minutes on the elliptical was the probably the worst ten minutes I’ve had exercising in a long, long time. It was extremely discouraging. I lost a noticeable amount of weight because I wasn’t able to eat much for a week and had no appetite for even another week after. I just felt weak. On top of that, I have still been struggling to find enough hours in the day for my school work, exercise, meal making, maintaining a long distance relationship, having a modicum of a social life, and relaxation. This is easily the hardest semester I’ve had in college yet, and senioritis was becoming super real, super fast.
All this negativity sort of came at me at once. And instead of facing it head on, I let it totally consume me. I am disappointed. I hit a wall and stayed there, welcoming every shitty thing into my mind and letting it flood everything. I forgot how to stay positive. I forgot how to keep myself healthy and happy. But last night, I made a decision to change that because this is just not me. I am a happy person, and being depressed over trivial bullshit is just not the kind of mindset I can live in. I love life and when the things that make me happy start feeling like a chore, it can’t be the things, it’s me.
So here I am admitting that I am starting back at square one. To hold myself to these impossible standards of perfection in every area of my life is just ridiculous. I have to come to terms with the fact that there are things I can control and things I can’t. Those that I can’t I have to let go of. Those that I can, I need to react in a way that is best for me. No more “I need to work out hard six days a week and never reach for a handful of potato chips.” I have pretty good self control when I want to, but right now the OCD needs to relax so I can focus on what I need to get done, which is, much to my chagrin, school. I have a month and a half left, and there is no reason I need to so strict with myself at the detriment of what is really important.
And that is not to say that I will not continue to be healthy, eat well, exercise when I can, breathe, relax, bake, etc. All those things make me feel good when I am not making them chores. But my god, why on earth do I feel like a failure when I can’t do it all? Why can’t I accept that if all my body is capable of doing right now is a long walk and some yoga then so be it? That kind of addictive disordered behavior is exactly what I have worked so long to correct. I’ve been in this place before and worse, and I refuse to go back.
SO! Time to start compromising with myself and understanding what is truly important. If you find yourself in this position–overwhelmed by everything and not sure how to fix it–sit down, write out a list of everything and start prioritizing. DO NOT hold yourself to impossible standards. DO NOT deem yourself a failure if you can’t get it all done perfectly. DO NOT be disappointed if you need to start back at square one. We are only human, and our lives are continually evolving. It would be silly to expect to be the same person through every twist and turn. Adapt in a way that benefits you. Don’t equate happiness with getting everything you want. Understand the complexities of your life and realize that it isn’t all black and white…that sometimes you have to let things go and move on. That, to me, is finding happiness. And that’s what I want. What else even matters?
And because this is partly a food blog:
Breakfast this morning (holy awesome): Scrambled egg whites with grilled salmon, spinach, mushrooms, cherry tomato, avocado, and fresh chives.
Dinner last night: Grilled salmon, spring mix salad with tomato and cucumber, spaghetti squash with a primavera sauce (mushroom, peas, peppers, broccoli, carrot, celery, olive oil, garlic, spices)
Apple crisp that I dug into immediately…sorry. Wonderful healthy recipe here.