We all have to deal with ‘life stuff’ at one point or another. Whether that is the big changes that come every few years or so, or the day-to-day running of things, ‘life stuff’ can be painful, distracting, and disruptive. Even more so when they stop you from achieving important health goals.
For those of you who have chosen to follow this blog, you might have noticed a lack of posts on my behalf. As you may have guessed, I myself have been dealing with a bit of ‘life stuff’. Namely moving to the other side of the country, and navigating my way through a job market that really doesn’t want fresh graduates. These past few months have been a little bitter; the weather seemingly reflecting that too lately.
My overall wellbeing has faltered a little. The constant rejections from job applications have definitely impacted my confidence and self-esteem, which in turn has led me to higher rates of comfort eating, and lower rates of heading to the gym. Although, the colder weather hasn’t helped much either! Nobody tells you how awful it feels going from a place of achievement and positive feedback, to being dismissed or straight up ignored despite all your efforts.
Rather than this turning into a pity party- table for 1- I want to reach a hand out to those all struggling under the weight of ‘life stuff’. Let me tell you a story…
As a kid I was very much a perfectionist. My essays were longer than the other kids, because I wanted to say so much more. Art projects would take far too long to complete, because I was never happy with the end result. I would stay up hours and hours reading and doing homework, to make sure I got the top grades. I was always on the edge of burning out.
One day, my middle school teacher approached me during a parent’s meeting, and asked how I was doing. I told him I was a little stressed, and had been feeling under the weather lately, but that I was ‘fine’. He asked my what was going on, and I told him about all the effort I had put into my school work. Surely he would praise me for my dedication?
Boy was I wrong! He turned to me and said (or at least something along the lines of): “While I’m glad you’re achieving good grades Andrew, your health shouldn’t have to suffer. Please look after yourself”. For one it was strange for a teacher to seem personally concerned about me. At the same time, it was shocking to think that a teacher was worried about anything else but grades. Looking back, I realise that that was the first of many instances that I had to challenge the internal ‘weight’, that I was putting on myself.
Now, that was no Aesop’s Fable, but I hope that there are 2 lessons you learn from this post:
- We should all, at times, reevaluate what is most important to our lives. Of course, deal with your personal and professional responsibilities, but we must remember not to sacrifice too much to fulfil them. All we have is our health and wellbeing, and that we should strike a balance between doing what’s right for us now, but also what is right for our bodies and minds for the future. And…
- You are not alone in your struggles, and you should not be so hard on yourself if you do not reach all of your health goals. Sure you may have slept in the past couple days, instead of going to the gym, because you’ve been stressed and working late. Find a way to work around these issues if you can, but do not put extra hardship on yourself for situations not necessarily under your control
I hope you feel more at peace, and know that we are all struggling with you.