Musings On Instant Success


In recent weeks, it has become quite clear to me that one of things I place the highest value on in my life is success and achievement. While I'm thankful that I rely entirely on my own definitions of success and achievement rather than letting other people tell me what that actually means, I do put a lot of pressure on myself to adhere to these values. No one else is telling me I have to do this, I have to do that, but I've still become quite obsessed with the idea of overachieving and being successful, but most importantly, I want my achievements and successes to be instant.

I want to be feel completely healthy NOW.
I want to hit my goal weight NOW.
I want to have loads of blog followers NOW.
I want a viable business NOW.
I want my debt gone NOW.

I want the changes I am making to my life to happen literally overnight, I want to be able to draw a very definitive line between Old Emily and New Emily and I have taken a very all or nothing approach to success and achievement.

This kind of behaviour means that any progress I do make is often ignored. For example, if one day I had a healthy breakfast, healthy lunch and no snacks in between but went and had a pizza for tea, I'd immediately deem that day a failure rather than accepting that having two healthy meals is a great improvement on going a whole week without any vegetables.

It's NOT a healthy attitude to have.

I recently reblogged this post on Tumblr, and it really hit home:
"Some people have this “all or nothing” mentality when it comes to healthy living. You either run every day or you’re not a runner. You never have unhealthy thoughts at all or you’re not recovering. You have to never eat fast food or you’re not a healthy eater. You love yourself everyday and never have bad days or you’re not body positive.

Like this whole all or nothing mentality is toxic because people feel like if they’re not doing it all, then their progress is nothing & that’s not true.

It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Every little bit is a step to a better life.

So if you ran yesterday and today you’re not able to - you’re still a runner and I’m proud of you.

If yesterday you were “ok” but today you’ve fought the urge to restrict or purge since you woke up - you’re still recovering and I’m proud of you.

If today for the first time in weeks, you eat burgers and fries with friends or just on your lunch break - you’re still a healthy eater & I’m proud of you.

If you woke up this morning and immediately didn’t like yourself this morning, it’s okay - You’re still a body positive person & I’m proud of you.

Just take each day step by step, each run, each urge, each dining experience, each negative thought. Because it’s not all or nothing. It’s a little of this & a little of that & each piece turns progress."
So today, I promise myself to drop the all or nothing attitude. I promise to praise myself for the baby steps I take each day towards my goals and forgive myself when I fall backwards. I promise to recognise that all progress is progress, no matter how small. I promise to accept that hitting my goals is not an instaneous process and stop berating myself for failing to change at the click of my fingers. I promise to realise that even if I achieve all the goals I have today, I will likely make new goals and so let go of the idea that there will be a definitive line between "Old Emily" and "New Emily." I promise to stop placing completely unnecessary pressure on myself to achieve impossible standards in my life.

I invite you to do the same.