Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Rut a tut tut...

My diary posts are almost always inspired by conversation topics that I find to be recurring at any given point in time. Don't you sometimes feel like certain issues just keep on crossing your path? I don't know how or why it happens, but it always gets me thinking...

These past few days I've been thinking a lot about our insecurities and our personal thoughts on our own self-worth. Well, I can't say it's a new topic on this blog, I'm quite sure I've mentioned it several times in the past, but for some reason the issues seems a little more pressing...not only in my mind, but in the minds of others. Recent conversations with friends (from various circles might I add), and the December 2010 issue of Shape Magazine has me convinced that I'm not the only one that ponders or struggles with this issue.

Somewhere, deep in the back of my restless, vast (though not necessarily crowded) mind, I know that I have come a long way. I am sure that I have accomplished a lot...whether it be in terms of education or in terms of health and fitness. I know it. But how often do I believe it? That's a different story...

One of the several articles in Shape that focus on this issue brought up an interesting point: "Most people pay attention to the huge achievements int heir lives: running a marathon, hitting a five-year mark on their marriage, losing 25 pounds. But by also celebrating your smaller triumphs, you'll be happier and up your odds of reaching those bigger feats." (p. 32) As obvious as this statement might sound, when I read it I kind of experienced a eureka moment. A marathon of interviews recently, for both small part-time retail positions and larger full-time career jobs, forced me to speak openly about my past accomplishments. I had no trouble rambling on and on about the charity fashion shows I organized, or my graduation from a top Canadian university, but never once did I come out and say "well, yesterday I was especially tired, hungover and lazy, but I got my ass to the gym and did the best that I could anyways, even if it was half of what I usually do." Why not? In retrospect I realize what an accomplishment that was for me, at that moment in time, and how much of a struggle it turned out to be, but at the time I would never see it that way. Why not, again? Because at the time, all my negative mind could focus on was how upset I was at the fact that I wasn't doing my best and that my workout wasn't as intense or as long as it should have been. Maybe if I focused on how much it was I would have felt much more confident (which is exactly how I should feel) slapping on a skirt and nylons that same evening for a night out on the town...

Isn't it so funny how our mind works? ...But is it our mind, or how our mind is trained to think? Sometimes I feel like we programmed to expect the worst and dismiss the best. A friend of mine said to me recently that whenever she's blessed with a bit of success, the thought of it being ripped away from her scares her away from pursuing the said opportunity she's presented with. I've felt that many times myself.

Isn't it funny how I am now exactly who I wanted to be 5, 10, 15 years ago, yet I'm still not satisfied? The chubby, teased little girl of my past is screaming and yelling at me from inside, reminding me how many tears were cried in yearning of the body I've worked so hard to achieve....why do I keep silencing her?

Isn’t it funny…how the things we are most hard on ourselves are the things that people seem to compliment us the most on?

Isn’t it funny…how after one hurtful experience, we are so quick to build a wall around our emotions and ourselves, that seems so impenetrable? That one hurtful relationship outcome fills us up with so much self doubt and drains us of our self love to the point where moving forward seems so daunting, so impossible?

Isn't it funny that when we initially receive a compliment, of any kind, we are elated, but in the end, how long do we actually carry it with us? I'm speaking for myself only, but I find as soon as I step back into the ever-critical workings of my mind, the kind words and happy thoughts are instantly replaced with harsh reminders of all the goals I have yet to achieve. 

I wish I could conclude this post with a suggestion, with encouraging words. And I don't want to be depressing or negative. There are days when I could run to the top of the mountain and shout to the world how proud I am of myself. But then there are the dark days, when I can feel the failure in every over-worked muscle in my body...including my heart, my mind. I think that we all need to realize that these painful feelings are unavoidable. That no one can be positive all the time. That the gym won't always make you feel better after you binged one too many times. I think the second we can see past these feelings, when we are plagued with them, we will realize that the brighter side as never really left us, that it will creep into our horizon again slowly, if only we have a itty bitty bit of patience, if we just keep on keepin' on...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Sleepytime Tea is a Rip Off

Mission camomile tea=fail

Mission eat early to avoid nightmares=fail

Mission warm glass of milk=fail

Mission cut coffee and other caffeinated products from diet=fail

Mission cut down on workouts=fail

Mission sleep=epic fail

Seriously, will I plagued with insomnia for the rest of my life?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

On to the next...

After LiLi's Diary spent some time on the shelf, as the desk of femme fraiche left very little room for its pages, I've decided to brush the dust off the cover and indulge myself in some non-foodie-writing. It just so happens that my thoughts are once again inspired by a life change, obviously.

This summer, as I restlessly lay in the Taormina heat, my idle mind wandered to many-a-places. Shortly before I left, I met with my cousin, Twin, to get to talking about the possibility of a career in the insurance industry--something I would not have even looked over once, not to mention twice, on my own. It is my firm belief, however, that ignorance is not always bliss, that sometimes when a little light is shed on something that might be out of our line of sight, we might realize it may be much more fitting than we could ever imagine. With careful thought and research, and a compelling testimony thanks to AP, the dirt road to my future began to take on a much more paved gleam. I decided to pursue it more feverioushly upon my arrival back home.

I am a self-proclaimed extremly impatient person. Well, that's not entirely true, but when I want something I want it and I want to have it....5 minutes ago. So as the vacation came to an end, and the Moxie's bashing with TBagg became more intense with every vodka water San-Pellegrino-Lime, my need to leave (again) hit its strongest point. When I got home, I called my close friend LG on the ASAP to set up an interview with her at her store, even though it meant a move from one retail place to the next. A move was all I really needed, I told myself, to get the ball rolling. I wanted to have a full-time position by Christmas, and I needed the motivation that change and challenge bring me to accomplish my goal.

I got the new job with LG, but unfortunaletly, the position did not work out the way I thought it would. So after leaving Moxie's not once, but twice, I returned. Though this time, I had a little less patience in my drive and a lot more desire to move to the next step in my life than ever before. I spent the past few months sending my emails out into the abyss of the internet, a process I have become oh-so-familiar with since graduation, only to learn that the opportunity I was looking for would come knocking on my inbox door. After a referral thanks to AP, two interviews, a gruelling waiting game (whoever said patience is a virtue obviously never had to wait for anything), I was informed yesterday that I got the job!

My excitement for starting this next phase continues to course through me with fever, as I sit here, the next morning, after a night of extremely restless sleep. It's funny how my stomach knots got tighter with energy as I learned the good news, instead of unravelling like I expected them to. In less than two weeks time, I will officially become the career girl I have been dying to be for some time now.

For any one who graduates without a definite plan, the process of finding your path can be both disheartening and depressing. Just when I thought my objective of being employed by December 25th was unattainable, opportunity presented itself and I learned once again to never doubt your goals. And on top of that, how important it is to make them in the first place.

As I pat myself on the back, I wish it were your hands that were patting me too...