Through life we begin to build this perception of ourselves. I’ve talked about it before. Negative self talk that is just plain damaging to us and our confidence. You start to see life’s negative aspects rather than focusing on all the beautiful things around you. We are blessed with many wonderful things, relationships, friendships, and food on the table. Some more than others. However, we continue to focus on maybe not having a nicer house, or a better car. Maybe not having more friends even though the friends right in front of us are the ones who have had our backs the whole time. We want our spouse to be perfect, even though we fell in love with who they are as a person, both the good qualities and the “bad.” The fact is that maybe our perceptions on certain things may have been lying to us for most of our lives.
When I write these posts I like to give some insight on what’s going on in my life in order to relate to my readers. The last month or so has been a lot of ups and downs but I was solely focused on the negatives. My perception kept me thinking that this just hasn’t been my month and that everything that will go wrong lately will go wrong. For starters a big one that got me down was losing my job. For four months I was sober. I quit smoking marijuana and drinking alcohol. I started to slip up with drinking and eventually took a few hits of marijuana. Typically I wouldn’t consider that to be a problem but I drive a truck for a living which means I get tested for drugs regularly. I was lucky enough to get randomly drug tested a day after I smoked. As you could imagine there was a lot of fear as I was taking the test. I didn’t know what would happen. Would I be fired or suspended? What would happen to my CDL (Commercial drivers license)?
Eventually it got back to my employer that I came up positive for marijuana and I was fired shortly after. I wasn’t even allowed to finish up the day. I came home early, not knowing what to do. I have a family to provide for. What would happen if I couldn’t make money for my wife and child? I have a seven month old. How could I let this happen and make such a stupid mistake? A million different thoughts were coursing through my brain. I frantically started searching for different jobs, all of which I would’ve started at a significant amount less than what I’m used to making. It felt like my world was ending.
We all go through rough times in our life. Sure, I made some mistakes but that wasn’t the problem. The problem was my perception on the situation. Instead of seeing this as some downtime to get some things done, such as the blogs on this site, I shut down. I stopped working out. I stopped writing. I stopped living a healthy life. I stopped trying all because in my mind I was less of a man because I didn’t have a job. It’s not until you see it differently that you could take control of your life again.
Who here has ever realized much later, after a situation has subsided, that maybe it wasn’t as bad as we once perceived it to be? It felt like the end of the world at the time. Like you could never get past those obstacles. Essentially our brain was tricking us the whole time. We had tunnel vision and that tunnel consisted of only the negatives.
Change your thinking and you can fix the problem. After all, the problem has always been within. Life will always throw you a curve ball. It’s up to you to be able to see it and knock it out of the park. If you feel like you’re going to fail, maybe that’s because in your mind you already saw yourself failing and you didn’t make it possible to reach your full potential.
What kind of things has your mind falsely made you perceive? For me, I always see myself as heavier than I really am. Yeah, I’m a little overweight, but I am strong and a pretty good boxer. All of my life I kept telling myself that I’m fat and ugly. I actually started to believe that and it would always get me down. Recently I decided that I will not allow myself to think this way anymore. I’m going to have confidence in myself. I’m going to eat a little better and make some better choices like going to the gym or maybe going on more walks but I don’t need to go overboard with everything like I usually do when I first start a diet back up.
We don’t need to be perfect. I’m not perfect. You’re not perfect. In fact nobody is perfect. Why make yourself go insane trying to measure up to some perfect being we can never be. It’s alright to work on some self improvement, but be realistic about it. My goals before may have been too far out there and I’d get down about not being able to reach them. Keep reminding yourself that it’s OK to fail. Just get back up and try again. Be nice to yourself. Talk to yourself like you would talk to your best friend. Ultimately you are the one who will bring yourself to failure or you can help bring yourself to a wonderful success.