Last week was a rough week for me. I was tired. I was busy. I didn’t feel strong. Yet I kept pushing through knowing that at any minute (or in this case, day) I would feel better and back to my normal self. Knowing all of this didn’t stop me from being frustrated one day in our in studio class. Yes. I admit it. I didn’t keep “my eyes on my own mat” as we like to say in our barre3 class. I felt myself getting frustrated that I wasn’t able to challenge myself like I normally would… One of the values that I treasure the most at the studio (that we are all so unique and have such varied backgrounds but all come together and work with the strength we each have available to us) was the very one that I wasn’t honoring. I wasn’t honoring my own body and making it the best 60 minutes I could… instead I started comparing myself to other people. At almost that exact pivotal moment, my friend and studio owner Katie (who was teaching this particular class I was in…) said:
It was the perfect quote at the exact right time. Who knows what Teddy Roosevelt’s reason for saying this quote but I know that it was the perfect reminder that there wasn’t a need to compare myself and my abilities at that moment to anyone else in the room. I was able to bring my attitude back around and almost instantly felt stronger using my modifications and working where I could and making it the best 60 minutes I could. This week, I am back to myself and feel awake and strong.
So my own experience got me thinking… I’ve always tried (as best I can) to not compare my journey to anyone else. My journey is exactly that…my own. Ultimately we have control our joy…our inner peace…our experiences. By comparing our work, our lives or anything else takes away that control of our own joy and allows someone else to have that power in our life.
How true! Unless we give someone else that control, no one can make us feel inferior or lesser than. Why hold ourselves up to some vague standard of greatness when we can hold ourselves up to our own principles and standards of greatness? Doesn’t that allow us to then experience higher levels of joy, inner peace and strength?
I’m guilty of this. I’m sure at some point in our lives, we’ve all been guilty of this. I truly believe deep in my heart that the reason I’ve been successful with my weight loss over the past year is due to the fact that I stopped focusing on what I wanted my body to look like and instead started thinking about what I wanted my life to look like. My physical appearance is just a mere fraction of the total piece of the “my life is good” pie. Just because a pie may be browned and have an uneven crust doesn’t mean that the inside doesn’t have the most delicious apple pie you’ve ever tasted.
So I stopped comparing my life to others. When I’m having a moment of feeling not as strong or awake or peaceful, I hold my own power of not letting anyone make me feel inferior. I took control of my own destiny. I choose to shine my inner light of strength and peace. I’ll leave you with one of my favorite Dr. Seuss quotes: