I haven’t got much progress to report this week since I’ve been taking it easy since my burn (see last post), but I did want to talk a little about self care. When I started this project I was pretty much solely focused on the end goal, being able to do push ups. I feel confident when my body is strong and capable, and since I’ve quit my job in a laundry room where I lifted 50 lb laundry bags all day every day, I’ve lost a fair amount of my strength.
This semester has been riddled with modifications since I was sick for three weeks at the beginning of October, burned myself last week, and am currently battling a sore throat. It got me thinking, why am I more focused on the end goal than the experience of getting there? Normally I enjoy the process of working out, but I had gotten so distracted by the goal and getting there at all costs, that I was sacrificing the ability to care for my emotional needs. I’ve seen my physical setbacks as burden, something that is dragging me down and away from the goal, even though I said from the beginning “I have a goal of December 15th but i’ll keep going until I reach it”.
This is me acknowledging that I should have used these opportunities to exercise other areas of myself like patience, kindness, understanding, and self care. Exercise is important for wellbeing, but not if you’re turning it into a stressful event that you make yourself feel bad for if you can’t accomplish goal X in the amount of time you expected it to. I plan to refocus my energy on working out to make myself feel good and strong, and not make myself feel bad if I am too mentally exhausted, or in too much pain to do something just because I’ve put it in my scheduler. I’m already overwhelmed thinking about everything I have due in the next week, so I’m going to focus on reframing how I think about exercise as a stress reliever – not something I need to get done so I can achieve the goal. My mantra this week will be “enjoy the process”.