Making a Commitment to Myself

I am far from an expert. I am simply a woman that has decided to make a change in her life and, along the journey, has gleaned from experiences. I am not always confident in the choices I have made but I am confident in the journey and the destination. At different stages of the process, I have received questions from other women that want to make similar lifestyle changes. I always try to be as frank and exposed as possible when giving an answer. My hope is that others will learn from my successes and my failures.

I have noticed that many of these women believe that I have some character trait that they do not possess: a superhuman ability to go to the gym consistently and ironclad willpower to turn down junk food. Not really. Not at all. I am imperfectly human and with this comes vulnerability, poor choices, and moments of utter weakness. I am a recovering emotional eater and I sometimes succumb to eating my emotions.

These women share with me their stories of frustration:

“I started a program, but I did not finish…”

“The whole process was overwhelming and I stopped…”

“I just don’t know where to start…”

“I wasn’t getting results…”

“I’m just too busy…”

At one point in my life, I have made each one of these statements. Sometimes I have said them out loud and other times I have whispered them inside my head. Like these women, I have been discouraged by the emotional, psychological, and financial weight of a lifestyle change.  Like many of these women, I looked at myself in the mirror with critical and disapproving eyes. So how is that I am here…now?

I made a commitment to myself and to my body. In that commitment, I made a conscious and unconscious choice to make myself a priority. I decided that I would love myself with the same intensity that I love others. I choose to allow myself to pursue my goal of competing in a figure competition with the same focus that I pursued other passions. I decided that I would forgive myself for my mistakes and I would learn from each fall. I would continue to get up because I had made a commitment to myself to do what was at times hard because I am strong.

Am I different than the women that recounted their frustrations? No. Not really. Not at all. These women, like myself, have made commitments in various areas of their lives. They are running businesses, going to school, raising children, and being fabulous. Often, these women, like myself, have made commitments to others in expense of themselves. I am guilty of helping someone else to pull his or her dreams into reality while ignoring my own. I am guilty of loving another intensely while making myself a last priority. I am guilty of “holding down” another while allowing myself fall.

But today…today, I choose to make a commitment to my body and myself. This commitment pushes me towards my goal of being a figure competitor. This commitment pushes me to get out of the bed in the morning and to decline junk food. This commitment also allows me to forgive myself when I do not get out of bed or decline junk food. I realize through this commitment that I will be a better person physically and emotionally. I will learn my worth. I will learn perseverance. I will learn that my strength can be limitless. And, ultimately, I will learn to love.

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