Comparing

10 Jul
                                                                        

 

I think as humans, particularly as women, it is natural to compare. As babies we watch others and copy what they do, comparing our technique and searching for ques and approval of our actions. At a young age it’s a way of learning, comparing how well we copy letters onto a paper to the ones on a chalk board, move our feet in a dance lesson to match the instructor, or making our bed so it looks just like mom and dads. However, as we age we begin to run into trouble when we start comparing things such as our body, hair, workout or eating routine to others. I believe the biggest issue with this type of comparison is that often we do not have the whole story. We compare our bodies to others without knowing their family history, their health status, or other circumstances. We view others workout schedules and begin to compare without understanding of their previous training, how they worked up to this point, their sleep schedule, their food intake, or what their life looks like outside of just training. We look at someone’s food consumption maybe for one week, one day, or even one meal and begin to make comparisons to our own. Yet we often fail  to factor in what they may have eaten earlier that day, what their health status is, how they train or don’t train, their genetics, or even if they may have just come back from an overly indulgent vacation. No instead we just begin to compare them to ourselves.

I think making comparisons is natural, often we do it without thinking or realizing we are doing it. I believe sometimes making comparisons can even be helpful. However, as I grow into myself more each day I am learning that the best comparisons I can make are of me to my old self. Looking at how I have made improvements from last month to this month and tracking progress has proven much more rewarding than comparing how much faster or slower I may be running then the person across the street, or balancing my diet in a healthful way for me opposed to looking at a body builders diet online of pure protein and beginning to compare. Because really how can I even make a comparison there, we have such different goals. So while it’s not easy, I am working on it. Working to stop comparing things that are not comparable. I would never compare a banana to a pea so why am I comparing myself to others I do not know!

Source: via Bob on Pinterest

Question?

Do you catch yourself comparing yourself to others?

What do you most often compare about your life to others?

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Happy vs. Healthy

9 Jul

So, while reading blogs, because in the summer sometimes that’s all I do! I came across this really cool idea from the blog ‘Happy is the new healthy’ where it challenges you to define what happiness looks like for you day-to-day, what healthy looks like to you day-to-day, and then compare and contrast. This is an awesome exercise, so let’s get it started….

HAPPY=

Running 8-10 miles each day

Working on my doctorate of psychology researching cognitive processes and body image in preadolescent females

Eating lots of sweets and drinking unlimited iced coffee

Making dinner with Jay

Feeling confident in my body and clothes, and abs would be nice!!

Hanging out with friends

Not dealing with injuries!

Healthy=

Running less than 40 miles a week and slowing building back from an injury

Not planning out every second of my schooling, taking opportunities I am given and being happy with working on a masters for the moment

Eating protein, drinking less coffee

Being thankful for the time I do get with Jay (especially if we happen to be making dinner!)

Listening to my body

Understanding that health is not defined by looks alone and being grateful for what I have (even if there is a lack of abs!)

Hanging out with friends

Now the fun part, time to compare! 

In both my happy and healthy world, exercise, school, and my relationships  are all definitely  priorities, just at different amounts and with different emphasises. Doing this exercise reminds me that I need to continue to work on not being such a control freak and that sometimes planning every second of your life isn’t possible as well as not worthwhile. Accepting where I am now is a tough thing for me! I want to be running a million miles, studying at a prestigious school, and want my boyfriend within an hour drive, which right now none of those things are possible. But you know what, that’s ok! I have to learn to accept where I am now, live in the present, and make  the best of the situation I am in, because you know what, it’s not that bad! Actually, it decent! I get to start school in the fall working on my masters, which is a step in the right direction, I am slowing coming back from an injury and am able to run some, and I have a boyfriend of 4 years who would do anything for me. Yep, life is pretty good, so let go of feeling like you must have a flat stomach, plan everything, and lay off the coffee a little would you!!

 

What do you do for YOU?

2 Jul

Today I wanted to talk about the things I do that make me feel good about me. I think there are so many things in society we as women do because we are expected or are suppose to do. We workout so we can look good in a swimsuit, we read “classics,” New York Best Sellers, or CNN because we want to keep up with the world, we cook dinner because even in today’s society it is often an expectation of most women/mothers, or do countless other things because it is considered the standard. Now there is absolutely nothing wrong with doing any of these things, in fact I take part in most and some truly because I love them however, as I was think of each of these things I challenge myself by asking which of these things would I take part in if I didn’t feel I should or I was expected to. Also, if any of these activities would look different if there was no hidden expectation behind them. So here is what I came up with

1. Run- I would run no matter what. No questions! I started running in high school, ran for a couple of years in college, and have never stopped. My high school coach actually use to call me the energizer bunny because I just love moving around. However, recently I have been battling a number of injuries and have not been able to run consistently for quite some time, which has led to me working out in different ways to stay in shape (exercise machines, lifting weights, blah blah) What I have come to realize though is I actually do not really like working out, really I just like running. I am not that girl who wants to do a tri, take every workout class, or even run races and you know what that’s ok. I don’t have to be a fitness buff, workout a certain number of minutes everyday, or pretend I like zumba because I don’t. I do have to take care of my body, fuel it, and make sure I get some movement in each day, until I can run again.

Source: via Chrissy on Pinterest

2. Bake- Love it. Love making desserts, cakes, pies, you name it. I like trying to make food look pretty and enjoy sharing it with others. I think I enjoy baking so much because I have a crazy sweet tooth and would take a cookie over a chip any day of the week so subconsciously I bake for others thinking it will bring cheer to their day as well. Whether it does or not who knows. Cooking on the other hand, not something I would choose to do everyday. I don’t mind it but really I could take it or leave it. When my boyfriend asks what do you want for dinner I often respond with grocery store salad bar? haha he is learning to no longer ask the question!

3. Reading short articles and blogs– Love a good blog entry, especially ones that often have a lot of thought put into them or are especially straight forward and honest (healthytippingpoint.com or runeatrepeat.com are a few favorites!). Love a good research article on a topic I care about (i.e. health, body image, women’s issues) but get bored with books, articles about celebrities, or constant political bickering.

4. Showering and dry hair– Lets get something straight, I hate getting ready. I hate the idea of dressing up everyday, putting on makeup, and I really hate doing my hair. Hate it! If I could have one magical power it would be that as soon as I stepped out of the shower my hair was dry and straight ( I have curly nappy hair, it’s gross). However, I loveeee showering, something about standing in warm water at the end of the day ( I always shower at night!) is just so relaxing!

So your turn, what are things you do just for you?

Define Woman?

29 Jun

Hello, again!  As a first time blogger I am still figuring out this whole blog thing and how it works so please bear with me (meaning the one reader I may have…..have to start somewhere? haha) I want to preface this by saying by no means was I an english major or a writer, and spelling was my least favorite subject in elementary school so I apologize to all who are any of the above….

Now back to that definition, at this point in my life I believe being a woman for me means a few things…

1. Properly functioning body- making sure my reproductive system is functioning properly and that I am nourishing my body in a way that is healthful, is essential for me as a 23 year old. I see so many women my age struggle to get this right and struggle to fuel themselves in a way so that their bodies can do something that it was designed to do!

2. Standing up for what I believe in- too often I see women give in to bosses, professors, and even parents on things they do not believe in.  Now I am not talking about a rule set in place to keep things fair or for safety reasons, but rather a rule when questioned gets a response of ‘well that is the way it has always been’. My thought on life is that if things are not always changing then they are never improving, so I am learning to challenge the things that are worth it to me.

3. Being myself- this one seems so obvious right?  Well, it also happens to be the toughest one for me!  I have learned through talking with professor and interviewing for jobs I often come off as “sweet, young, innocent.” Now while I may not be that old, and generally consider myself a kind person, this description comes off to me as “clueless, easily manipulated” which are two things I do not want to portray.  So, I am working on it, but at the same time I refuse to alter all aspects of myself just because I feel someone may be misreading me.  In fact I often respond to this by asking that person to give me a task, to challenge me, in a sense put me to the test!

So there you go, that is what being a woman means to me as of now…. What does it mean to you?

Source: imgfave.com via Amy on Pinterest

Welcome

28 Jun

Welcome to willinglybe!

The purpose and hope for this blog is to inspire young women to “willinglybe” themselves through embracing ourselves flaws and all! As women it is essential to learn to appreciate our whole selves (mind, body, soul) in order to grow into our fullest potential. Here at “willinglybe” I hope to create a space where women can come and express, accept, learn, vent, grow, laugh, and be who they are, free of judgement from themselves and others.

Please come visit as I work to continue to expand this space. My plan as of now is to create posts/tabs involoving

-daily exercises (mind and body)

-I love my…

-I cannot stand…

-Inspire me

-Pick me up

-Rambles ( this is where I hope to post and do updates)