As little kids, we're taught to be kind to those we meet. Share what you have. If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all. See the good in everyone. We hear these things over and over, but I have this theory that they only sink in so far. Sure, we're (well, most of us) are nice to others, but what about being nice to ourselves? We may have learned to take care of ourselves on the outside (brush your hair, wear matching socks, take occasional showers-- kidding!), but the niceties we share with others aren't always extended to ourselves. We can kill others with kindness, but too often those little voices in our heads say some truly vicious things. Would you tell your best friend, "Wow, you really suck at your job"? Or would you scoff at your sister, saying, "Omg, you cannot wear that until you lose like 50 pounds"? The answer for most of us (hopefully) is a resounding NO, but somehow we berate ourselves like this, nearly on a daily basis.
Well, "no more!" I say. Or at least I'm really, really, really, REALLY going to try. I have decided that If I'm going to care enough about other people's feelings to stay on the sunny side, I'm going to do the same for myself. I'm going to try to shut out the comments that I keep allowing to creep up. I'm going to make a conscious effort to shut down seemingly uncontrollable subconscious voices that throw at least one barb at me every day. Whenever that inner bully starts picking on me, I am going to fight back and lob a compliment at her. I will tell myself one thing I really like about being me or something I'm really proud of doing for the day. I am going to stand up to myself, because sometimes I can be a real bitch.
I actually started this process a couple days ago, on Saturday to be specific. I decided that May 17th, 2008 was going to be Day 1 of the my journey to becoming less of a self-tormentor and more of a positive role model for myself. I guess this is Day 4, and so far, so good. I'm keeping a journal for 30 days (I desperately want to hold myself accountable in this!) to track all the good things that happen and that I feel during the day. (I even bought one of those old school composition books you get in like 3rd grade to practice cursive in.) I may have negative experiences but I'm working on flipping any of those around too. Instead of "I got a run in this morning, but I was late for work," I'm simply going to change it to, "I was a little late, but I was so proud of hauling myself out of bed that it was OK today!" I am NOT justifying my actions when I screw up, but once I put things in the past, I'm going to try to put a positive spin on them.
So, in keeping with the being nice theme, I am going to toot my own horn a little, and really put this being nice thing into practice. First off, I got up and went running this morning before work and before my roommates had even thought about getting up. I used to do this in college but then I didn't have class until 10am, didn't have to ride a train to get there, and was able to go to lecture a little gross and wearing sweats. Plus, I like totally fell out of the "morning person" groove so I'm finally getting back to that! I even did my hair (sort of).
Anyway, the rest of today went well because I keep encouraging myself. I got into work a few minutes late (however, our office is pretty relaxed about time as long as you get your stuff done), but I was cranking out the work like I haven't done in a while and I got a lot accomplished. I was even able to take a break and chat with the girls I work with quite a bit, which is great because I like the girls I work with a lot. They all are about two or three years older than me, but we all get along really well and it's a fun department (Go writers!)
After work, I got off at a train stop further from my house so I could walk (it was sunny!) and because the man sitting next to me was just a liiiiitttttllllleee too close. Killed two birds with one stone. Anyway, it was so nice to explore that neighborhood a little more, and I found some great stores (True Religion? BCBG? MAC? Yes! I love my part of town!) that I will be frequenting more and more as I started running more, ha (time to kick my butt back into shape!). OH, and I finished Ayn Rand's Anthem when I grabbed coffee. I actually read it in HS, but I wanted to do it again because I couldn't remember it that well and now I can say I read all of her novels within a year -- and by choice, haha. I know that might sound silly, but um, I think Atlas Shrugged could be used as a weapon and I had to take major breaks with lighter reading between her novels. So that wasn't ALL I read this year or anything. (Sidenote: In case you haven't picked up on it, I LOVE reading -- I fell asleep with books instead of cuddly stuffed animals when I was little. Foreshadowing of what was to come, I'm sure.)
OK, and last thing because this is just one huge jumble of things I was happy I did today (not coherent by a long shot). I cooked! I made some vegan chili and it was SO good. I will admit... it came from a box... and cans of kidney beans and diced tomatoes...BUT i made it on the stove! That's huge for me!! Trust me, the microwave and I are pretty much married, so I feel like it was some sort of kitchen appliance adultery... But I actually cooked! And now I have lunch for tomorrow that does not consist solely of bagged lettuce, canned black beans, and salsa! And I didn't burn anything or cause any explosions!!
And now I'm going to bed! And remember to be nice (to yourself)!