I’m sure we are all guilty of it. Those little negative thoughts that pop up telling us we aren’t good enough, we aren’t fast enough, we aren’t successful enough. I sure am. These negative thoughts must have some purpose; like all human behaviours they have survived evolution because they have some use or benefit. To make us push for better maybe? But like many human behaviours we have let them run amuck.
I find myself being a tad mean to myself. I’m my own bully. Every failure makes me even more angry at myself. Most recently it was running, dog training and work. It was my fault I wasn’t happy at work, It was my fault our dog had no recall and I wasn’t fast enough or pushing hard enough with my running. I was failing to hit decent times, failing at training and failing at enjoying work (if that’s something you can realy fail at!) This is a common theme with me; while I was at uni I picked on my grades, at work my performance and so on. I was so negative and had bogged myself down so badly that I became even more unhappy with myself and my running fell to pieces. I had to just chill out, take a breath and re evaluate. My husband, for ever my cheerleader, did his best to tell me this. Recently I took his advice.
It did make me stop and think; why are we so hard on ourselves. What does that really achieve? Does it push us past the finish line or trip us up just before we get there?! I don’t know. I have a feeling that more often than not it’s the latter. But I do know. I was told (by a very smart human) that there are two types of people in the world: those who’s problems are a results of everyone else and those who blame themselves for everything, they followed this up by telling me I give myself too much credit and that I couldn’t control everything. Very good advice. Another smart human (my husband) tells me I’m a stress head who needs to chill out.
Every time I fail I forget to look on it as a lesson. But more recently when it came to training our dog I’ve learnt to see things that don’t work as just a test a way to learn how not to do it. Sometimes we can’t be an expert at everything right? Failing can be upsetting, discouraging and madning. But it has a purpose: to help us figure it out. The good thing with dog training is you can’t just give up on it when you fail and stew in your grump, you have to keep going.
Finding a new job helped; but that only came when I chilled out a bit (well done husband) and gave myself time to look for one. I learnt from the knock backs and readjusted my C.V. I kept mentally beating myself up if I hadn’t heard back from companies (which was silly as sometimes I was beating myself up to soon! I felt abit sheepish when they did finally get in contact).
The running only improved when I stopped focusing on it so badly, I just went out for a run: didn’t look at my watch, slowed down where i needed to. So maybe their advice is right. The more I come to think of about it all the amazing things that happen in my life, the good things I have achieved, my major successes, all happened when I took that wonderful advice! Maybe I need to just be a little easier onmyself a little more often.