Last time I posted about how I’ve changed since writing the ‘New Beginnings and Mottoes’ post over four years ago.
Sadly, I haven’t even scratched the surface.
Even just the act of ‘resolving to lose weight’ has become a challenge because I’m not consistent enough to make a difference.
For this, I’m going to try harder.
I’m putting this public so that you can all hold me accountable. I would like to lose 15 to 20 pounds by my son’s birthday (May 2nd).
I’ve done this before. I choose his birthday because it allows me to have cake to celebrate with him and not feel guilty.
It also helps me lose the weight I want to lose before cottage season.
I was thinking about this last night. If I stay the weight I am, I won’t go swimming with my kids this summer because I’ll be too ashamed to get into a bathing suit.
That has to change. It has to change right now.
Hold me accountable.
The Scariness of New Adventures
Having that said, that’s actually not what I want to talk about. Today, I want to address something else that was said in that ‘New Beginnings’ post:
I wanted to meet new people and step outside my comfort zone, so I joined a group, met a few girls, and went to a little get together. It was lovely. I walked into a house where I knew absolutely no one, and left feeling like I’d met some life long friends.
There are so many things wrong with this. Looking back on this actual day, I remember it differently.
If you asked me to do this again, I’d say “hell no, I can’t.”
Do you know it’s hard enough for me to walk into a building/room filled with my peers?
Why would I ever put myself in a situation where I’m walking into a room full of strangers?
That night when I walked into a house where I knew no one, I had a slight advantage. Those people knew I was coming and were prepared to be welcoming.
They were all strange to me, but those women had seen this time and time again. They were used to meeting and welcoming new people into the group.
I had just never been apart of any group before, and so that whole night was both scary and exciting.
Firstly, please don’t go running into strange houses, because I suggested this was a way to step out of your comfort zone. That’s a bad idea.
There are far better ways to be both scared and excited all at once, if that’s the thrill you seek.
Eat chocolate covered bacon.
That sounds horrible and delicious, doesn’t it? If that’s not scary and exciting, well, I don’t know what is.
Tangent story: One day I ate a breakfast poutine. For lunch. I’m such a rebel.
It was the traditional poutine of fries, cheese curds, and gravy, mixed with the delicious breakfast of bacon and sunny side up eggs.
Mixed with. Did you catch that? All of that on one plate.
It’s a heart attack waiting to happen and honestly sounds disgusting, I was thinking that when I ordered it.
But I did it.
I have no regrets either; it was fantastic! No, I won’t do it again as I’m clearly on a weight-loss path, but I thought this was a good story to share about trying new things.
The Fear of Comfort Zones
You want to step outside your comfort zone? Start small. Don’t risk giving yourself a panic attack because you tried something too big.
Earlier I asked, “Do you know how hard it is to walk into a room filled with my peers?”
I know that quite a few readers can relate, but for those of you who said, “No, please tell me.” Allow me to explain.
Take my office for example. Where I work is a four-storey building. About 1.5 of those floors are dedicated to my company.
Granted, I don’t know everyone I work with, but I know enough. It’s safe to say that of all the people in the building, I know about 25%.
Of all the people in the building, I only see maybe 10% each time I’m there. I don’t really run into those I don’t work with.
I rarely run into people who I do work with aside from the 1-2 dozen people I might see on my way to my desk, including my team and a few great friends.
That’s still a lot of people that I know, and a lot of people that I like and am comfortable with.
Yet after I park my car I have to take a few minutes to compose myself before I can actually walk in.
All the same, I assume that everyone in the building is watching me. I know that they are not.
I also assume that everyone has stopped what they are doing, went to the windows, and are currently waiting to see if I slip up in anyway.
I know that they are not. Nobody has that kind of time, and I’m really not that important to anyone else.
I know this.
But still, when I get out of the car, I do not look up. I do not look at any of those windows. I walk as fast as I can to the door and inside before anyone notices.
With each step I take, I am fearful.
- I am fearful that I might trip and fall.
- I am fearful that someone is watching.
- I am fearful that maybe I accidentally put my clothes on inside out today.
Each small, insignificant fear… each irrational fear… it all amounts to something big.
It’s a panic attack. My heart races and my head wants to explode.
There Are No Simple Choices When It Comes to Anxiety
Want to meet for lunch one day? You pick the place, because I cannot make choices (more on this in the future).
You pick a time that works for you. I’m far better with direction than alternatives.
Do not say, “I’ll meet you inside” because even though that’s normal for you, it’s so hard for me.
You’re thinking, “well, I got here a little early, how about I go in and get us a table, and I’ll text her to let her know that I’m inside already.”
Because I get that text message and begin to panic.
Now I have to get out of my car and walk across a parking lot to a restaurant where I know only one person inside. You.
I don’t really have any friends in that place that can support me if I fall, or if I wore the wrong outfit and look foolish.
99% of the people are waiting for me to make a mistake so they can point and laugh, and 1% of the people have no idea that my heart is racing and my head is pounding and I am struggling to make it to that door.
I have to chant to myself, “I can do this. I am being ridiculous,” or I’ll never make it inside.
Then I see you and everything is good, but it takes me a few minutes to compose myself, and no, I don’t know what I want to drink because I can’t even hear my thoughts over the sound of my beating heart.
It’s hard. All of it.
Maybe you could meet me outside instead.
Then I could see you and just focus on my great friend who I’m having lunch with, instead of the unknown.
How could you possibly know that I (or anyone else) needs to be met outside? You can’t.
We don’t talk about our needs for a lot of reasons.
- We know they are irrational.
- We know it’s not normal.
- What we don’t know is how you’ll react.
We tell ourselves we can do this, and ultimately we can. It just takes us more time.
If we can all just give each other more time, the world would be a much more relaxed place.