Sunday, March 8, 2015

Patting myself on the back

I often have a difficult time finding positive things about myself.

Maybe that's not an entirely accurate statement ... maybe it's more like I am good at seeing what is wrong ... or maybe just what can be improved in just about everything. I've always been tough on myself ... on my shortcomings, but this seemed to escalate into being harsh ... to the point of being brutal to myself.

I am often vicious with my self deprecation ...

and I am not easily willing to give myself credit for many things. It doesn't seem to matter if I'm average ... a little better than average ... possibly even good, I focus on the mistakes ... the flaws or even what could have been just a bit better.

Since 2012 I have made some of the most absolutely amazing friends ... far too many to name.
On the one hand I can't believe it's been nearly three years since I said my first incredibly insecure words as Tiffanie online ... Tiffanie Someday.
I wasn't even real in my own mind.

On the other hand I can't believe it's only been three years. Despite some rough times it seemed as though my life just flowed into Tiffanie. I became comfortable very quickly online ... in public was a little different, but even that happened so much more easily and suddenly than I expected.
It even feels like I've known the friends I've made for much longer than three years ... like we knew each other from some distant past. It is likely without their support, advice and encouragement I seriously doubt I would be where I am today.

From the start they told me I was too hard on myself ... they encouraged me to see the good I've done ... they treated me better than I treat myself.

I didn't believe them ... or didn't want to believe them.

They persisted ... and persisted. Eventually I started to listen, but still could not be nice to myself.

I really do not understand why I cannot compliment myself ... I want to appreciate my accomplishments without focusing on the errors ... the small and often insignificant details that have no notable impact on what has been done.

Recently I decided to find something positive ... to take credit for the little victories which I tend to overlook. Not daily ... not weekly ... no timeline. I don't want to feel forced to find things; it defeats
the purpose.

I just want to try and be nice to myself ...

to give myself credit for what I've done ...

the tiny victories ...

When I talk about my fitness ... my training ... my exercise, I tend to say I don't do anything. Prior to my knee surgery I did do very little, but I was not completely sedentary. Since my surgery I have been gradually increasing what I do.

If I compare my "training" today to what I was doing in 2011 it is laughable ... but everything was different then.

A few weeks ago my daily sanity walk (a necessary break from the insanity that is my job) were maybe 1/10 mile, and not even daily ... these very short walks have increased to 1/2 mile every day.
Is this "training?" No ... not really, but it is one of the steps that lead to more significant endurance training ... it is an accomplishment.

Recently Pam and I went grocery shopping ... without a shopping list. This is usually a dangerous situation ... the times we usually grab things that sound good rather than what we need. This time we stuck to things on our healthier eating menu.

Is this thrilling? No, but it did feel good to pass by the cheese and salami and say "No ... not today." Just a small victory to celebrate.

I did indulge on some cosmetics, but those are not fattening.

Neither of these are earth shattering. Typically I would not think twice about things like that, but it is the little things that often make a big difference.

Last weekend we had a thunderstorm ... well, a Ventura County version of a thunderstorm. This is incredibly rare here, so I did what any normal girl would do ... I grabbed my camera and little video camera and ran outside.

The lightening was not directly overhead ... in fact it was sunny where I stood, but the storm was very close. I haven't seen actual bolts of lightning in years. I was thrilled.

I managed to capture one pretty incredible shot. I sent it to an L.A. area television station ... they led there broadcast with a story on the storm ... and my picture!!

This is the 4th time this station has used one of my weather photos.

To everyone who has been telling me that I am a good photographer, thank you.

I've also been on twitter sharing my food photos, kitty photos and weather photos. I am a bit surprised at the responses as I do not have many followers ... but people like my pictures.

I guess I am better than I give myself credit for.

I really am trying to learn to be nice to myself ... this is new to me and is not easy to practice.

I use an app called Spark People ... basically a free food and exercising app. The website has community boards and other ways to interact ... talking to people with similar issues makes trying to be healthy a little easier.

One of the features is a goal board ... a slide show of my goals, pictures, motivational slides from the site an my own personal motivational thoughts.

My personal motivators include ...

"What would David Lapoff say?" David was such an incredible man. He helped me and so many others with health and fitness goals.

"I am worth the effort." I added this a while back. It truly was not my own thought ... it was something that many people all told me in about a 1 week period. I typed it in, but never really took it to heart.

The other day I wanted to add to this board.  I wanted something simple ... something nice ... about me.

I started typing, "I am ..." I stopped. I am what?

I wanted to be positive ... I wanted to say something that I would not normally say about myself ... something that would help me build a better self image.

"I am ..."

I don't know why I was having trouble finishing the sentence.

"I am ... ... beautiful."

I stared at the screen. I hesitated , then hit the save button

It was a catharsis ... I don't think I have ever said anything that positive about myself. Now I see that every day as the slide show runs.

I may have to do this more often. I think I might like being nice to myself.

I cannot thank all my friends enough for helping me realize how I was truly treating myself.