Thursday, January 17, 2013

Hearing yourself think....

"Don't confront me with my failings / I have not forgotten them...." -- Jackson Browne, "These Days"

Okay, the specifics: my great weigh-in on 1/1 was offset by two gains over the last two weeks. One was entirely understandable because my 1/1 weight was a fluke -- I'd been sick the night before, and weighed in very early instead of my usual late afternoon. So I wasn't expecting miracles, but I was floored by my gain this week. Not enough to send me into a tailspin and throwing my hands up and quitting. One, I don't quit, at least not this! and Two, why?

I got some insight into that today at work..... I made a mistake on something, and while it was completely understandable, I sat there and thought to myself, "How could I have been so dumb? Why didn't I think to make sure I had done X before doing Y? AAARGH!! Oh, I hate making mistakes! I hate not being able to do things perfectly!"

Did you hear that? I just told myself in two sentences that I hated being human. Self-loathing of a massive degree. Yes, I can't stand to make mistakes, especially when they do affect other people. It's one thing to (for example) mess up a nail polish job on myself. It's quite another to mess it up on someone else. I can easily pooh-pooh when I mess up my own paint job, but I absolutely cannot stand messing up something for someone else. And worse, I hate when I am (as the lyric said) confronted with my failings --- I assure you, I am all too aware of them. I'm all too aware that they bind me in a way that my successes do not. It's odd, but true.

But it happens. To every last one of us. A million times in the past and a million times to come. We will make mistakes. It is part and parcel of human nature. To expect to do everything perfectly says -- in effect -- "I hate who I have been created to be. I hate that I'm not something better than who I will always be."

Accidents will happen...... so get over it.
Setbacks will happen ...... move beyond them.
Perfection is an ideal........... not a reality. At least not in this life.

Instead, what if we all embraced ourselves and our humanity fully? What if we forgave ourselves with the same compassion that we show when we forgive our best friends and our family members? What if we simply hugged our inner soul and said, "You're a good person. You will always make mistakes, so learn to cope with it."

I am doing my best to be just as forgiving with my weight loss battle. My obesity was 26 years in the making. Taking a short 3 years to lose the weight was slow, but sometimes I wonder if it was still too fast. I'm learning to forgive myself for not enjoying the ride as much as I should have. I'm learning to forgive myself for my failings, and trying to remember that I am only human.

So let's be good to ourselves -- as much as possible, as often as possible, and as compassionately as possible.

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