I was in a coffee shop with a friend earlier this week laughing at the expectations we have as women. Expectations of ourselves and sometimes of others. I expect of myself to get waaaay too much done in the day. Mr W will laugh at this. Just last week I told him…
“I don’t have to get to the hospital until 10:30 so I’m going to clean the house, get dinner in the crockpot, get to the post office, write a new blog, work on my eBook and get ready for my Pampered Chef show.”
My husband looked at me. Slowly repeated back to me what I just said, and laughed. What?? What’s so funny? Of course I could get all of this done before leaving the house at 10am.
The more he laughed the more I started to see what he thought was so funny. But my brain really does think like this. If I didn’t have someone laughing at me I wouldn’t have thought twice about my statement. I would have gotten very close to getting it all done, although completely frazzled and exhausted and frustrated I didn’t get it all done. I changed my plans, picked two of those items, and had a way more relaxing Monday.
We do this with weight loss and health goals too, don’t we? And the more I feel desperate to get my eating and weight on track, the more unrealistic my expectations get. I will do turbo kick Monday through Friday this week, and walk in the evenings. I will write down every bite, lick and taste in my food journal. I will only drink protein shakes for snacks. I will eat before everyone else at Life Group so I don’t lose focus and eat poorly.
If someone said all of those things to me, even as their dietitian, I would probably laugh at them myself. You’re going to do all of that in one week?
There are times in my life when I am so focused on doing well with my diet and exercise, that I would get all of those things done. However, it’s the times I’m not totally on track that I don’t think those goals would be the best for me. I would set the bar too high and feel inadequate when I didn’t meet my own expectations. That’s exactly what they are. My expectations that no one else made up but me!
Instead I need to ask myself where I’m really at. How about Turbo Kick twice this week (it’s an hour long after all!) and 3 walks this week. That still adds up to 5 workouts! Instead of all protein shakes for snacks, how about giving myself a few other options: plain greek yogurt with cinnamon or a couple low-fat cheese sticks. Even a few changes of my expectations and I’m starting to feel more realistic on where I am in my life right now.
I challenge you to sit down this week and ask yourself where your expectations for yourself are getting way too high. Maybe it’s your to-do list. Maybe it is your food and exercise goals, maybe it’s financial goals. Avoid setting the bar too darn high, it leads to feeling poorly when you might be doing better than you think!