Read This Before You Get to Work on Your Next Goal.
I've been right there in the thick of it: I dreamed a dream, didn't ask enough questions (mostly of myself), got tunnel vision, and forgot to look up. I didn't even look around to realize that I was miserable.
I once inquired about a position with a company I used to work for, thinking that that new position was the ticket to my happiness. I sacrificed, I lost sleep, I moved to live closer to this position. I dovetailed all of my work -- every program I wrote, every hour I scheduled outside clients, every new project idea that floated -- to what, at the time, I believed to be my dream promotion.
I'm sure you see where this is going.
When that promotion was handed to someone else, it was the first time in my life I felt shock (which is pretty fucking lucky, if you ask me): my vision went blurry like the bug fights on a bad old TV channel. My stomach dropped through the floor. Blood pounded through my ears. I was, by all accounts, completely devastated.
I didn't know what to do next.
I spent a solid entire summer drinking wine by the pool and playing around with my fitness, but when it was time to figure out how to pay the bills, I asked myself some serious questions, and realized some deep truths, the most important of all:
I had been chasing a goal I didn't even really want.
If I had gotten that promotion, it wouldn't have changed who I was. If I had succeeded in that mission, I would feel more fulfilled temporarily, but I'd still have the restlessness that came with playing small and being surrounded by people who didn't share my values. If I had graduated to that position, I'd never have had a reason to stop, look around, realize I was deeply unhappy, and ask myself what "happy" would even look like.
We do this ALL THE TIME with our fitness goals.
We get focused on those 10 pounds, that squat PR, or that jean size, and we never stop to think about if that's what we're really seeking. Our culture tells us that, as women, our ultimate desires will be unlocked when we're tall and thin with flat stomachs and satisfied eating only vegetables but taking cute Instagram pictures with stacks of pizza once a month. And we've all bought into some version of that, at one time or another.
But is that what you genuinely want? Do you want the jean size, or do you want the ease and freedom that comes with not worrying about your body? Are you measuring your worth by your inherent power, or is your worth wrapped up in your appearance?
Are you chasing something you really want and a lifestyle that would accentuate and nurture your magic?
Or are you buying into a path our culture says is the key to happiness, without realizing that it's already in you?
I'm all for goals. There's nothing wrong with naming our desires and chasing them down. Hell, I'm not even anti-aesthetic goals, really, because let's be serious: if we're spending a significant amount of time in the gym, most of us want to have that effort reflected in our appearance at least a little bit. But, before you put the blinders on and chase down that number on the scale, take a moment to stop and ask yourself if it's a goal you chose for yourself, and if it's a goal that will lead to what will satisfy your soul.
Are you headed in the direction you truly want to go?
If you need help figuring that out, fill out the coaching form here. I'd love to dig deeper with you.