For some time now I have been working out with a passion-mainly for my health-but a small part of me has been eyeing this particular bathing suit I have been determined to fit in by my vacation. As I worked harder, it seemed that I saw less of a change. I considered working out less because of the seeming lack of results, but something in me would not allow me to give up on my goal. I received compliments from many people. Yet, because I did not fit that image of me in my head wearing that particular bathing suit, I became super critical of myself. Where there was no fat, I found some. When a shirt did not fit how I thought it should, I stressed. Yes, me working out made me healthier, but I still criticized myself. My husband told me over and over again how great I looked, but it took me learning to love myself before I could accept anyone else’s compliments. When I learned to love myself, I developed a new attitude. Instead of looking at what I would want to change, I began to look at all the great things about me. I learned to appreciate my curves, and the small things that make my body unique. Little by little, I have noticed that my body is changing, and my body is starting to look like my set goal. Even if I never reach that ideal body that will fit in that specific bathing suit, I know now that everything about me is beautiful. When you learn to love self, then you are confident regardless of anything else. Everyone is unique. So be happy with all that you are. I finally am…and I know I’m going to look great in that bathing suit regardless.
It is so easy to want to give up-especially when it seems that the harder you try, the more disappointment you face. It is so much easier to throw in the towel than it is to keep pushing towards that dream you know is meant for you to accomplish. It may seem that for every two steps you go forward, you go ten more steps backward. You may wonder, when will it be my turn to succeed? I know I have wondered this, and that led to frustration that I seemingly could not make things happen like I wanted them to. Then that frustration led to strength. “How?”, you may ask. I’ll tell you. It is in those times of my greatest frustration that I realized the strength of what is inside of me. All of the times when I have been disappointed and wanted to give up, somehow I did not quit. When things have been at their lowest point, and it would have been easiest to walk away from all that I know I am supposed to do, I could not stop. When I thought I was at my lowest point, then I got another rejection, but somehow that was brushed off–therein was strength. I think that the measure of a person is not so much in how many obstacles they face, but in how they respond to those obstacles. Some people quit. Others get depressed. Still others decide to become something they are not so they do not have to face the difficulty of becoming who and what they are supposed to be. I am none of those things. I tried to be, but they never worked for me. Instead, I am in that group who, when obstacles present themselves, I rally back. I may get struck for a moment, but I refuse to stay down because I know that my life has purpose beyond my low moments. I am not saying that I have never contemplated giving up, because believe me, I have. I realized though that I would never be happy as long as I did not fulfill my purpose. I would wander endlessly, trying to find something else to be. That’s no life for anyone to live. Instead of allowing various obstacles, and disappointment after disappointment to dissuade me from living out the life I am meant to, I have chosen to daily reaffirm myself. Sometimes others can encourage you. Other times you need to know how to encourage yourself. So today, I urge you to take a deep look at yourself. Who are you meant to be? What is your purpose? If you’re not pursuing it, why are you not? Turn your frustration into motivation, and see the strength that resides on the inside of you. There is so much more to each of us when we take a moment to look.