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Read this if you ever doubt yourself

Read this if you ever doubt yourself

| MAY 30, 2024

When it comes to mental health awareness, the advice is mostly the same. Move away from the discomfort and move towards the things that make you happy. That will solve everything.

I believe the opposite is true.

I’m 6 years old.

I’m running in the rain with my classmates. 

I’m annoyed that I’m cold and wet while our teacher is in a big coat.

We start the last lap of the field and my teacher nips inside to grab equipment. My classmates realise they have time to cut across the field to avoid running the rest of the way.

I had two options, follow the crowd or follow my instinct

I follow my instinct and continue the last lap around the field - with two others who decide to follow.

I didn’t understand my decision at the time, surely it was better to cut the corner? I’d get no praise either because the teacher wasn’t there to watch.

But I remember thinking - If I’ve come this far, I may as well do it properly. Otherwise what’s the point?

Looking back, I think this was the moment I realised there could be a benefit to doing hard things for yourself and not for validation from your peers or teacher. 

I finished the lap and felt really good about myself, for the first time in a long time. The payoff wasn’t a pat on the back from my teacher, it was a glimmer of self-trust. I remember feeling my heart expand, knowing that I could rely on myself.

Not following the crowd in this case meant I was outcasted. I was seen as a “try hard” and a “teacher's pet”. To my surprise, I didn’t care as much, because I’d listened to my inner knowing.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago…

I was feeling pretty crap and I couldn’t be bothered to go to the pilates class I’d booked. I felt sad and unmotivated, so I skipped it.  I didn’t book one for a week or so. The excuse I kept coming back to was - I’m being kind to myself, I need to rest. But I felt crappy and as the week went on I felt crappier. I realised it was because I’d been lying to myself.

Being kind to yourself doesn’t always mean skipping your workout. Cutting corners does way more harm than good and it leaks into other aspects of your life. 

The kindest thing to do is accept that every time you show up for yourself you’re going to be different (especially as a woman with a cycle) but you show up anyway. 

Turning up to the class is usually the hardest bit - unless planks are involved!

I’d rather feel uncomfortable a few times a week than live with that icky feeling of discomfort that comes with a lack of self-trust.

I take a lot of wisdom from little Liv. Doing the hard things despite everyone around her telling her not to.

I hope this inspires you to finish the last lap, whatever that means for you.


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