Self confidence is a funny, fragile thing. Maybe not everyone's, but mine is for sure.
I can go weeks at a time thinking I'm doing well. During those times I'm able to clearly see my blessings. My son is healthy, my career is thriving, I own my own home and vehicle, and I even have a side job that I enjoy. My health is on the upswing, my weight is on the downswing, I have a love of words that can make me smile whether I'm playing Words With Friends, shuffling words around here or listening to the sad lyrics of an Adelle song. During those times, life is good.
Then something will happen, usually an ill-timed criticism or some sort of personal setback. Some days I can take something like this in stride. Other days, and I don't know what the differentiating factor is, but the same situation will put me into glass half empty mode in which I tend to stubbornly wallow for a bit. For a while I will only see the discipline problems in my son, the long hours in my job, the mortgage, the car payment and the long way I have to go to make the second job a success.
I had such a situation last week. What I'm doing is obviously not good enough for someone, and they feel the need to "help" me do better. This person hasn't bothered to ask me if I'm happy with what I'm doing, or with the results I'm getting, she only feels the need to tell me that my ego is getting in the way of my success. One of my best friends, someone who knows me better than anyone else in the world save possibly my ex husband, responded to this news with two words..." Ego? YOU?"....but I was full blown into glass half empty mode and didn't see that as evidence that the shortcoming in this situation was in the person who was pushing me, in her complete lack of knowledge of me as a human being, and I was deeply into feeling sorry for myself because, in my head, nothing I do is ever enough.
If you're picturing me staring vacantly toward the sky, with the back of my hand against my forehead, you have my posture about right.
Woe is me.
While I would have completely deserved a smack in the head at this point, followed by an order to get over myself and see the good in my life, instead the universe dealt me two good turns. I am truly not worthy of the blessings I have received in the last two days, but I am wide awake now and to the universe I say a deeply felt "thank you".
First I spoke to a Beachbody client who is finishing a challenge and was trying to figure out how to proceed to continue improving her health. I am not at all comfortable in the capacity of "salesperson" and so often feel like I should apologize for offering people the products I sell. But early into this conversation, the craziest thing happened. She THANKED ME for getting her involved with Beachbody. She told me she felt good and was seeing results and wanted to continue.
She THANKED ME!!!
Yes I was trying to sell her a product, but I had also helped her get closer to her fitness goals, and she was grateful.
This boggled my mind.
Here, in this business where I have thought I wasn't good enough, I helped someone. And I am so humbled and grateful for that.
I told her what I thought would work for her. Time will tell if she follows through. I hope she does, but if not, I've made a difference. I brought to her something that helped her and nobody can take that away from either of us.
Now I'd love to say that after that conversation my attitude completely turned around, but I honestly didn't recognize that event as the bop on the head it should have been. It should have completely wiped out all of the "you're not doing enough" messages I received earlier. In all honesty it took a bit of time for me to let the good sink in enough to cancel out the bad. But it eventually did.
I'm a lil' slow sometimes.
But wait...there's more.
When I woke up this morning I was still brooding about the criticism and the not being enough. And I would have completely deserved for the universe to throw up its hands and say "if you can't see what I'm throwing at you...forget it"....but somehow that didn't happen.
A friend told me on Facebook last week that she wanted to talk to me about something, so we made arrangements to meet for breakfast this morning.
When we sat down with our menus she told me that she's been reading my blog (I'm NOT just talking to myself here!!!) and seeing me go through the breakup, witnessing me finding myself and becoming stronger has encouraged her to make some difficult decisions to improve her life.
I'm not going to go into too many details, it's her private stuff, but I think the decisions she has made, which somehow I helped her make without knowing it, are going to lead her away from something that could have been a disaster.
So here is my question....why would I allow the comments of someone who thinks what I'm doing isn't enough ring louder in my head than the thanks of two people who I've helped.
Universe...I hear you.
I am doing exactly what I should be doing. For myself, for my child, for the Day Job, for The Night Job, for my health and for my friends. If the paint on the front porch is peeling that's because I was too busy working out to paint it. If I don't sell as much Shakeology as someone else it's because I feel the need to stay true to myself and not be pushy or fake to make a sale. If I miss a workout one day it's because I felt the need to spend some quality time with my son. If my house isn't as clean is it should be it's because I sat down to write this blog rather than dust and if my laundry remains undone today it's because I sat in a booth at Perkins for five hours catching up with a friend.
And that, by God, is enough.