Updated: Sep 16, 2020
As you can tell by the title, I'm currently going through a mid-life crisis. With all that's going on right now, I never thought I'd see the day where I didn't want to be in bed all day. It's post number three, and ya' girl is questioning her existence!
Like I've said before, it's perfectly okay to be confused. It's almost inevitable, in my opinion. You're not gonna' know the answer to every problem you have or the best decision to make every time, and that prompts healthy mistakes. Trust me, I've had plenty of moments where I couldn't feel that "gut-feeling" or special intuition to guide my confusion. There have been plenty of times when I asked someone for advice and they told me the total opposite of what I wanted to hear, so I'm stuck having to make the final decision. I mean, at the end of the day you have to learn how to have the final say-so in your life, whether you trust that decision or not. You gotta' build enough confidence to say, "I don't know what the heck I'm getting myself into, but I'm strong enough to handle whatever comes after it." Whew, I'll save the rest of that for another post, but let's get into this one!
I've been stuck in the house for the past two months, and a lot has crossed my mind. With so much time on my hands, I thought this would be the perfect time to try something I've never tried before while I'm free of literally .... everything lol. While I was sitting, I thought about something:
Everyone says that it takes hard work to become successful at anything in life, but how much work is too much work?
Or was that a dumb question?
How do I know if I'm overdoing it, or not doing it enough? "Am I being weak and making excuses for myself or am I being too hard on myself?" A lot of times I overthink things, so that just may be a debut of my crazy thoughts. I'm not really sure, but here goes nothing ...
"Don't Do Too Much, Don't Do Too Less"
(it sounds familiar to some, I know lol!)
Before I begin, I'll start by saying this:
"Nothing is difficult. Everything is a challenge."
Let's be real. Everyone has had that shining moment when they said, "I'm gonna' start working out everyday. I'm gonna change how I eat and start drinki-" ... yeah I'm everyone lol! Even if you're reading this and you don't agree, you've done something like that before ... trust me lol.
So that next morning you wake up EARLY around 6:30, and you get ready to run. "I'm gonna' run four miles today. Then I'm gonna' workout and hit these abs, these arms, AND this butt too !" Nevertheless, you actually stick to your word and do ALL of that in one day. You even started drinking gallons of water and got yourself to start eating healthier (mind you, you had Popeyes and a gallon of sweet tea last night for dinner). You may stay steady for about 2 good days.
Now, it's day three and ...
You're BURNED OUT!
I call this, "the pat on the back" syndrome. It sounds seriously weird, but let me explain lol.
When approaching any long-term goal, we often set our short-term goals based off of how we feel at a particular time. We set crazy expectations with the intentions that their intensity will either expedite or magnify our big-picture goal. In the end, you're only setting your goals to satisfy your ego rather than to strengthen your sanity. It's just enough to "pat you on the back" for the moment of your thoughts, but not enough to get you to the next level. Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with wanting to go hard, but the next step is ...
1. Be Realistic, Rational, & Reasonable.
So far, I've learned that in order to truly be successful at anything in life, you must be realistic, rational, and reasonable with your goals.
"Okay Armani, that's so redundant ... like, huh?" Yes, I know. Let me explain.
I had a hard time wrapping my head around the thought of "being reasonable" when it came to trying to accomplish a goal. I used to think setting goals were instant changes. "You wanna lose weight? Okay. Do push-ups, crunches, squats, calf-raises, high-knees, and run up and down Panola Road for an hour."
Like, how reasonable is too reasonable? "Is running 3 miles a day really overkill or am I capable of doing it? Am I just being lazy, or am I making excuses for myself now?" It's NEITHER! You have to build and strengthen your experience over time to figure out what's best for YOU. It's okay to start small as long as you're willing to expand yourself. And that's with ANYTHING! Don't think of attaining a goal as a straight line. It's okay for your line to look a little squiggly.
Reaching a goal is a journey too! If you can't see your goal as a lifestyle, then you may need to reevaluate some things. It's a matter of strengthening your body physically, mentally, and emotionally to be able to normalize the new stage of life you're trying to reach. Think of your goals as a routine ... a new part of you! Which leads me into step number two ...
2. Get Over Yourself
Stop worrying about the next person and how people will look at you. Get over yourself. It's not about you anymore, it's about the goal. It's about where you want to end up in a year from now. So what if you feel stupid? So what if you look stupid? The minute you take yourself and the people around you out of the equation, you're only left with the grind and no distractions.
Failure is inevitable, so stop stop trying to avoid it. "Fail forward" and learn from your experiences. Try new techniques, and most importantly ...
3. Be Consistent.
In addition to being realistic, rational, and reasonable with yourself, you HAVE to be consistent! Another cliché point, yes, but still very true! I'm going to keep saying this because I have to drill it into my head as well, "Life is a journey, not a destination. It is all about the experience". What I mean by that in this sense is that, again, it is OKAY to start off small. You owe your mental sanity the time to adjust to the lasting changes you want to make in your life. That first step towards your goal is one of many and, of course, you won't start off perfect. Overtime, you will grow and become stronger. Period. Overkilling the process in the beginning will make you either tired or intimidated by your goals, and you don't want that.
No one starts off perfect or anywhere near how they want to look. Start your journey with realistic, rational, and reasonable goals that you can maintain and build upon over time.
4. Be Kind to Your Mind
Stay in Your Bag & Stay in Your Lane.
Something I always had to work towards when attaining goals was to stop comparing myself to other people. Although I think its more of a instinct to be inspired by someone else, I think its also essential to ride your own wave. It's already enough that you're working on yourself to do something you've never done. You don't need someone else's success story to make you feel inadequate because your story will be just as good, if not better. You just need to get up and start creating your story.
Don't ever let someone else fuel the fire in you.
Nothing worth having will come overnight, in a week, or even in a month. We sit back and look at the end results of someone else's hard work, when they were once in a position like ours . You have to be able to encourage yourself and endure the process. Be patient and work!
To everyone that is afraid to try something or chase a goal ... start today. You'll thank me a year from now.