Well, this is it. My first ever blog post. It’s kind of intimidating actually. I’ve always toyed with the idea of having a blog, though, to be totally honest, it mostly came out of a negative place: some frustration that I had, or opinion on society or just some point I needed the world to know FOR CRYING OUT LOUD. Though some of my points in these hypothetical blog posts may have been totally valid, I’ve shied away for fear that my blog would basically just turn into a massive vent fest (which I do not believe social media is the place for and is, in itself, the subject of one of said hypothetical posts).
All that to say, I’m very glad that this initial entry into the world of blogging is not only a positive one, but something I’m actually pretty excited about! If you read Hayley’s post announcing our year-long journey of discovery and improvement, you already know a little something about what exactly we’re embarking on. So I’m basically just a guest here to share a little more insight into this adventure from my point of view. Here goes…
I am not good at commitment. I am not what you might call a “disciplined” person. There is a reason I chose acting as a career – this way I don’t even have to be committed to a single job! I can be a wife, college student, nurse, PR professional, mom, or old-time prairie rancher. Those jobs last for two months at the most and then I get to move on to the next role. It’s perfect.
I do find myself wishing I had a bit more discipline in my personal life. I make all these promises to myself like “I am not going to eat carbs anymore!” and then the panic starts. “Ever? Why did I say that? How long is this promise supposed to last? What if I go to Italy? Can I not have pasta? Can I not have anything I like?! Ugh, the rest of my life is going to be impossible.” And I go that very night and order extra breadsticks from Olive Garden because they are made from heaven and what’s the point in trying to do the impossible anyway.
Hayley and I began talking one day about committing to things for occasions like lent and new years resolutions. Basically, we both decided we are terrible at it. But we so admired people who even attempt it, much less succeed! Part of the problem for me is always what to change or give up. There are so many areas of my life that could use an improvement. I spend too much money, eat too many cupcakes, don’t see my friends enough, and don’t manage my time well. Where do I even begin? And the idea of changing only one of those things and having to stick it out for an entire year before I attempt another one just felt like I would spend my whole life waiting to change something about myself.
But what if it didn’t have to be that much pressure? If it only takes 21 days to make a habit, why can’t I just try one thing at a time, maybe one month at a time? And, over the course of a whole year I might just be a different person… hopefully at the very least I’ll be more disciplined. That’s one thing anyway!
The point of this exercise is not to beat yourself up if you slip. Nor is it to focus and stress about what you can or can’t do. It’s just to wake up each day knowing that there is at least one area of your life where TODAY you are going to make a purposeful decision. TODAY you will be better in at least one way. And that’s not stressful at all, in fact–it’s encouraging! It’s about empowering myself to make smart decisions that will hopefully lead to better habits and make me a more well-rounded person. But ultimately it’s not about what happens to me at the end of each month or even at the end of the year, it’s what I’ll learn in the day-to-day. The exercises in self control, the confidence that I CAN resist certain urges and still be okay, the sense of accomplishment at one more day with a goal met.
This first week in itself has been a learning experience. Perhaps the most interesting aspect has been just seeing how people react to what we’re doing. Some think it’s admirable; they want to know more, they tell me they’re proud of me. Some ask why I’m punishing myself, one person just said “nope” and walked away. But to each their own. I’ve found that some days I don’t even think about sugar. It’s so easy! Other days, I promise I’m not even lying – little cupcakes and Ghirardelli brownies swirl around my head like birdies in a cartoon. Those are not my favorite days.
I do hope people join us along the way. It’s always easier with a group cheering you on. And feel free to make this journey your own. It should be personal, not some formula. At the very least, I hope someone finds encouragement in watching our journey. I know it won’t always be easy, but that’s not the point is it? The point is to remind myself who’s in charge of my decision-making, to line up my priorities and to make a daily, purposed motion toward the person I want to be.
Thanks for joining me on this first blog entry! I look forward to sharing more with you all during this year of transit. Though, in the interest of honesty, one week into this sugar fast – I’d really like to celebrate this blogging milestone with a donut… ugh.
Be sure to follow us on Twitter and Snapchat to see how we’re making progress! Or leave a comment for us here if you would like to join the challenge!