Relationship Resumes: Things I Now Know Thanks to Failed Relationships

Several months ago, I was hanging out with two friends I’ve known since high school – a close girl friend who moved to Chicago and a visiting male, who also happened to be a former flame and my first real love.

The topic turned to relationships and experience in the field and I mentioned the notion of relationship resumes – the list of knowledge, skills and practice we draw from when dealing with significant others or summon on dates, showcasing prior successes, saving the failures for later. Personally, I look for partners who have their resume filled in a bit, like my own, indicating they are not novices to relationships or love.

Turning to the guy, I said, “Like you; I would use you as a reference as an example of one of my successful relationships.”

My friend interjected, “Well I don’t know if I would say you guys had a successful relationship….”

“Why not?” I asked

“Because, success means marriage.”

 

The idea that a successful relationship means more than “to death do us part” struck me in June right before my break up, in July a few weeks after and again Sunday morning with a re-print of a Chicago Tribune article on relationship myths.

The article reads:

“So many people stay in relationships for too long because they feel if it ends, that is a sign of failure,” said Tim Ray, author of 101 Relationship Myths: How to Stop Them from Sabotaging Your Happiness. “One of the things I work with clients about is to be more psychologically mature and part of that is to realize that people change and things change. The belief that you need to stay together can lead to people staying in an unhappy relationship or marriage despite the fact that they have grown apart and the relationship is no longer working … A relationship can be a success even if it ends.”

While in some ways I wish my hunt for my right person was a lot easier than the twists and turns it’s taken so far, I’m proud of each little bullet point on my resume that has gotten me to where I stand today.

My high school self would perhaps feel a little uneasy that I never found the right match in high school or college, like originally expected. But me, right now, 24-year-old me, can’t imagine anything else. She knows it is not the norm to grow with the same individual through every stage of life; that her growth comes from time alone.

I’ve detailed relationship lessons learned in previous blog posts, but what really strikes me is that there certain things I only could have learned from going through a break up. Things I now know about myself that my friends who have been in the same relationship for most of their life may never know or have to learn.

For all of us who have had to start over, say good-bye or learn the hard way: I think our collection of experiences, from former flames and exes and loves, is sometimes less important than the strength we now have from the scars and scrapes it’s taken us to gain them.

Things Failed Relationships Have Taught Me About Myself: 

  • I know how long it takes me to fully heal from a heartbreak. And more importantly, I know I can heal – that some love can simply cease to exist.
  • I believe break-ups mean something; I don’t believe they can be open threats or taken lightly into on-and-off occurrences.
  • I understand I am not afraid of getting hurt; maybe I hate being wrong about love, but the fear of being wrong won’t keep me from falling in love just like the fear of being alone won’t keep me in a wrong relationship.
  • I know what real work looks like in a relationship – how to productively work to build the foundation of communication, to keep getting to know each other, keep doing nice things to each other. And I know what it looks like when someone isn’t actively participating in the partnership.
  • I can recognize when a relationship is headed downhill. And though I hate the anxiety at the pit of my stomach, I know now there is relief at the end.
  • I know that even if you don’t ultimately get back together, even if your partner doesn’t say it outright, there will always be a point where your ex misses you or remembers your or fears to let you go.
  • I know that there isn’t really a race to the finishing line, to the win. Any ex that will be with someone else just to spite you, isn’t ready to be with someone else. Finding your own match is more improtant than the rate it takes to locate them.

And you know, I think my 16-, 19-, 23-year-old self would be proud.

What do you think failed relationships can teach us?

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On Fitness: Gym Anxiety

A little over two months ago, I stepped into my gym with a goal to clear my head, get my blood pumping and hit an emotional high before diving into a particularly traumatic conversation immediately following where I parted ways with my long distance boyfriend.

While most aspects of life have progressed as fun and normal since then, my love and affinity for my gym has waned as I’ve found every excuse to not keep up my routine with my personal training plan.

I’ve opted to keep seeing the gym regularly but I wonder if my romantic split is battling custody over my relationship with the gym.

For the past year, I’ve likened the gym to my private reflective place where I completed solo missions and awarded personal accomplishments.  But now I can’t help but feel my bond with the physical entity is somewhat tainted.  Looking absentmindedly at my phone has a way of reminding me of the anxious feeling from two months ago, where I kept counting down the minutes, trying to fit in my work out before the scheduled time I promised to place the phone call.

Even now, I am left with a terribly anxious feeling at the memory.

And I’m not quite sure what to do about this.

In early July, at the mercy of some free personal training sessions, I completed some of the most mentally and physically challenging circuits, thinking to myself “If I can get through this, I can get through anything.” The personal high afterward affirmed my self-confidence at my ability to move forward.

But I may have spoken too soon.

Whether I’ve needed a new water bottle, new headphones, new gym shoes, new podcasts or music, I can’t seem to get my act together to complete a full scheduled week of workouts. Additionally, my appetite is all over the place, switching from ravenous to completely void.

I’m left contemplating how to change-up my routine; how to bring back that loving “spark.”

I have grand ideas of pursuing a more group-centered approach, accepting my humbled loss of strength, spending more time stretching and dancing. I know, most importantly, my priority is to keep up my fitness – I am proud of pushing myself and proud of the physical results that are more important than ever.

So how do I make fitness a priority when one of my more sacred places has been corrupted? Is there a good goal I could distract myself with? Honestly, I’d love your ideas.

How to Pick the Right Workout Plan for You

With my 24th birthday come and gone, I was struggling how to address my thoughts on growing older and my never-ending search for stability.

So I thought I’d talk about the early birthday present I gave myself almost two months ago when I signed up for online personal training with Tara.

After feeling less than perfect in my skin the last 2 years, I really wanted to enter into my 24th year feeling like the old, early 20’s Mel: beautiful, optimistic, fun, confident. And smaller.

My 21st birthday.

I am sooo proud to say that from May 15 to June 21, I followed a personalized plan designed to challenge my body in ways I have never imagined. Tara designed a nutrition and 5 day-a-week workout plan and it PAID OFF!!

On my 24th birthday, I felt like I was back in my own skin. The fun, sassy and confident Mel celebrated with a pole dancing workout class with 11 girl friends, effortlessly lifting herself up and around the pole, oozing with strength, void of self-consciousness.

Vegas with the girls, the day after finishing Week 6 and the program.

You’ll hear it over and over: Being dedicated to a plan will yield results

But in my experience, it can be very difficult to find a plan that makes you want to stick with it the whole way. Whether results don’t come fast enough, the work becomes monotonous or not challenging enough or too challenging or there is no support or you get interested in another sport or goal – the right program is different for everyone!

Before signing up with Tara, I was pondering 4 different types of programs: an online bootcamp, an in-person bootcamp, various online personal trainers and a free online follow-as-you-go program. I’ve been known to weigh the pros and cons of options for days, so I’m really glad I didn’t dally and choose Tara. The way I feel and the way I look says it all. Finding the right program WORKS.

Since finishing my 6 week plan, I took a few weeks to workout with an awesome personal trainer at my gym who pushed me to my limits, made sure my form was correct and gave me confidence in my strength. Now I’m rearing to go for my next 6 week plan with Tara!

Having gone through this process, I can affirmatively state there is a fitness resource out there for everyone! Answering the following questions should help you evaulate your needs to guarantee a program or trainer is right for you.

How to Pick the Right Workout Plan for You

  1. What are your goals?

    Goals can include fat loss, muscle growth, “losing weight and looking toned,” adopting a healthier lifestyle, competing in a race, or looking good for a wedding, vacation or event.

    Mine was to look good for my Vegas vacation and 24th birthday by losing fat and adding muscle. Knowing there were only a few weeks until I’d be in a swimsuit next to my beautiful friends was a constant reminder to stay on track.

  2. How much can you afford to spend?

    You’ll find a variety of costs when it comes to online personal trainers, in-person trainers, boot camps, online programs, etc. Depending on the resources available, pick what’s right for you. For an online trainer, plans vary around $7 – 10 dollars a week. A 4 to 6 week training plan is usually around $50. Bootcamps – depending on the included resources – can range from $25 to $150.

  3. How much support do you need?

    Online personal trainers will usually be accessible to you by email and sometimes by skype for any questions, checkins or adjustments. Online (and gym!) boot camps fuel persistance by having fellow members cheer each other on. Free “get fit” plans require self-motivation.

    As I mentioned, when I signed up I wanted something that would be tailored to my needs so I was looking for some support in case I had any questions or needed any adjustments. I think the group support is one reason I would love to try a boot camp one day. Tara was awesome about sending me updated nutrition plans when I had a very late or very early morning workout.

  4. What is the relationship you want with your trainer or group?

    This may be more important to some than others. I know some people like the think of their trainer as a service-provider or someone who fulfills a professional need, while others want someone tough and strict, and others look for their trainer to become a very, very close friend.

    What was very important to me is my trainer supports my goals. I wanted a trainer who would support my desire to lift weights, would allow me to get protein in non-animal forms sometimes and would let me have the occasional treat. I went with Tara because we seemed to agree on all points so I trusted her with devising a plan just for me.

  5. How do you like to work out? What works best?

    The personal trainer is a fitness professional who should be trusted to devise a plan that will kick your butt and knock you out of your comfort zones into some new territories. But every trainer will ask you a bit about your likes and dislikes so you will be content with the plan. It’s important to find a plan that will cater towards your loves, whether that means you get to take your favorite spin class twice a week or split your strength training by certain body parts.

    I knew my body responded best to lifting weights but my plan kicked me out of my comfort zone by taking me to new machines and exercises. I also knew that because I care about adding muscle as much as I care about losing fat, I would not do well on a program where stepping on a scale every day is encouraged. Something like Weight Watchers where calorie counting and weigh-ins are part of the program isn’t as right for me.

  6. How much time can you dedicate to this plan?

    It is important to know both how long you’d like to be on a plan – whether it’s one month, 6 weeks, three months or longer (very usual durations) – and how much you can dedicate each week to the plan – a certain amount of hours or days a week – an hour four times a week perhaps.

    Because I was looking for some intensive results in a 6 week time frame, I trained 5 days-a-week.

  7. What are the trainer or program’s credentials?

    Most importantly, how can you be sure to trust this individual with your fitness and health?  Look up reviews and blogs by previous participants who discuss their experience. Locate the trainer’s professional certifications and read their blog, website or brochure to see their viewpoints and background. Make sure you feel comfortable in their qualifications and are sure they’ll support your goals.

    I read reviews before trying Live Fit Trainer; I looked for blogs of participants in various boot camps; I did a trial fitness assessment with my gym trainer and I sent Tara an information request before signing up with her. I found the proof I needed…and now I’m just another example of a success story.

To all the personal trainers and fitness enthusiasts out there, is there anything else a client should consider? How do you create the perfect match of trainer/program and client?

Lifting My Extremes

Being the cool kid I am, Saturday night I found myself loading my backpack, ready to tackle my friend’s personal statement for medical school at the only suburban joint open passed ten pm: the gym.

After more than an hour of rearranging sentences and searching through thesaurus on the gym’s main level couches, my long time high-school friend Tats and I closed our laptops and laced up our sneakers for the shift from mental exertion to physical exercise.

As two of only five or so members in the large gym, and with any and every weight and machine at my fingertips, I quickly completed my planned bicep and tricep work out and wanderded back to Tats to interrupt his legs workout. What continued for the next hour or so was the most fun I’ve ever had at the gym!

It lined up to a perfect combination for a work out.  Although both of us were pretty new to being in the gym so late, a midnight work out seemed only natural. Tats is a fellow night-owl; we used to instant message each other about our AP Psych projects until three in the morning, long after our AIM Buddy Lists were near empty.  Because he’s someone I trust and someone I trust in the gym with his Kinesiology major and work out background, our game of “How strong are you?” was better than any stranger trainer at the gym could have given me.

He loaded up over fifty pounds onto my bench press and I nearly keeled over as I lifted two 35 pound weights on the Olympic dead lift – I mean, wow, the added distance of the weight threw off my exertion! Inverted, my legs pressed 100+ pounds as effortlessly as right-up. We practiced correct form of clean and presses with the Olympic sized bar and went through a whole slew of hammer-strength machines. I laughed hysterically when we both failed at the triceps machine because although each side loaded thirty pounds, we could both clearly push our right arm through while the left stayed quite stationary. At 5’2, I cleared a new height on the box jumps, still nervous to tackle the highest box. And he   shared my disdain for the chin up machine, especially after my accidental run-in with going too light on the weights and nearly falling off.

I felt like my 6-year-old self back at Discovery Zone crawling through tubes and climbing ropes. Bouncing from machine to machine for a few reps at a time was the ultimate adventure.

While I’ve frequented various gyms for years now and have steadily began a relationship with weight lifting, I never had the full benefit of having someone watch my form and correctly show me how to use some of the scary-to-me equipment.  Especially with my newest work out plan, I am pushing my muscles but I’m always left wondering if I am performing at my best.

Leaving Life Time at 1:30 a.m. I had a high that one wouldn’t normally assume could be found by staying “in” on a Saturday night. But improving my strength and my body has been a long trend in the two years since I graduated college.  I may not be the strongest kid around but I will never be a woman who cops out by saying she doesn’t have upper body strength.

And the results have felt more noticable than ever since attending my little brother’s college graduation earlier this May.

Because my own graduation day in 2010 was not something I’m proud of. Confused about my next steps and in terrible relationship with my body, I hid from all photos. It had been too many days having my “last” meals of campus restaurants, drinking 14 days in a row and piling on more fat and bloat from a weight gain I’d be struggling with most of senior year. I was generally uncomfortable in my skin, finding every flaw.

But at Josh’s graduation, I was full of pride for him and comfort in myself. The scale may read only a few pounds difference, but the noticeable shift in my body composition and in my pride is palpable. While I wish I had more progress and less plateaus while working hard over the last two years, the most important thing to me is that I hit a low and never looked back. I didn’t let it continue but I turned around my habits and my opinion of myself.

Lifting and jumping to new heights this Saturday night only seemed to confirm the I pride I feel in myself.

Even if everyone looking at me can’t tell how different I am, I know I’ve changed for the better.

Overcoming a Slump

I don’t think it’s unusual that every few months I fall into a small rut.

The problems feel as if they’re piling, stress tacks itself on to the struggles and sometimes it seems impossible to be your usual self.

When I hit that state about 3 weeks ago, I wracked my mind to figure out why now? What was the catalyst? Sure things weren’t easy. But they were seemingly small matters:

A library book I’d desperately wanted in the one section of the library that was under construction for a month. An extra day spent on the perfect cover letter, only for the job to close before I could submit. My boss put on temporary reassignment right after acquiring a ton of new projects. Veins growing in my eyes, prompting $200 in eye drops and rendering me unsure when I could wear contacts again. A sense of insecurity in my glasses. A feeling of loneliness prompted by the long work hours of my guy. Oh, and the spider found in my bed.

As I tried to trace the reasoning behind my pity party I realized that my mood didn’t start because my struggles existed; my upset mood was a result of my inability to solve the problems immediately.

Because I am not the strongest Type A planner who needs things to follow order. I am an adapter, I thrive in thinking up a Plan B, C, or D when crisis strikes. My strongest trait is my ability to expect change, embrace it, think on my feet and move on like nothing happened.

And I’ve been this way for as long as I can remember – from the day my parents announced they were divorcing ten years ago to when my house caught on fire at 3 in the morning junior year of high school when I also had 17 friends staying over from out of town and the expectation of hosting a New Years party two days away. Or let’s not forget the whole process of applying to study abroad junior year of college – from six weeks before departure when I was notified I didn’t have housing, right up to the week before depature when I got my wisdom teeth out and realized my passport and visa had gone AWOL with UPS. Always adapting. Always okay.

So, when things started unraveling this last time, I was unafraid to face any issues head on. But..that didn’t happen. Everything needed time and patience. And with my inability to steer the situation, I dragged further into feelings of defeat and doubt.

But then my little Blackberry – who has been with me for one-and-a-half years (a record) – stopped charging two weeks ago. The USB was broken. And while I had sentimental pangs for my phone, I recognized the situation. This was an opportunity for redemption. Phone issues, I can handle.

So, I made my mental list of options and visited my friend’s store where he fixes phones for a living, borrowed a temporary phone to charge my battery, finally found a provider location with a manager who was happy to send a replacement and just in case – got ready to blast a help message onto Facebook.

Somewhere inbetween taking control of my phone situation and reuniting with some friends in a public, social setting over that weekend (golf theme – perfect for my glasses), I got my groove back. And my confidence meant that suddenly all those tough still-left-to-be-solved situations didn’t seem that far off either.

I really wanted my point of this post to highlight the message of fixing your own problem to fix your mood. But I realize, the message is much deeper than exercising control. This was a great reminder of the importance of a positive attitude, no matter what you can and can’t control. For every funk, there is positivity to be found to kick away the doubt.

You get the idea.

My favorite lesson.

“Sorry, I have a boyfriend.”

I am guilty of this.

You make a new friend of the opposite gender or maybe strike up a simple conversation at a networking event or giggle with a table-mate at a wedding or reconnect via Facebook chat with an old high school friend. And they ask you for your number and if you’d like to go on a date. And you say, “Oh sorry, I have a boyfriend.”

But lately, I’m finding this statement fully loaded and bothering.

Technically, have we been saying that all that stands between us and a potential hookup is our current commitment?

IS that all that stands between us and a potential hook up?

(Source)

I’ve recently upped my weekly dosage of Dan Savage as I’ve transitioned his podcasts into my workout routine background music. This has led me to pursue a bit more about his personal life, specifically, his take on monogamy; that monogamy is harder than we allude to and that our society values being with one partner over honesty, trust, communication and an established relationship.

So you know, I’m all about monogamy. I feel miffed if my guy tells me he ducked out of a night a little early because some girls were overly flirtatious. I want to be mentioned! Why didn’t he remind them about me?

But I think Savage has some valid points. It’s not too far fetched to assume that being in a relationship and being committed aren’t strongly correlated.

My friend expressed something very similar the other day when a guy wouldn’t stop texting her.  “Isn’t it clear I’m not interested?” she shared, “I told him I have a boyfriend!”

Maybe it’s not clear. Maybe that’s not enough.

Gossip, news outlets and even history share that celebrities and politicians falter into infidelity everyday. And I have witnessed plenty of people who wouldn’t care if the person they pursue has someone else at home.

So what’s the best way for me to paint a picture of an honest, trusting, communicative and also monogamous relationship? One I’d rather choose over anything else?

How you turn someone down?

  • Leave out the chance for future reconnections:  “Thank you but no, I’m not interested.” Is that rude?
  • Focus on the reason behind your relationship: “Oh sorry, I have a boyfriend who l am very in love with/ satisfied by/ consumes most of my time and thoughts.” Is all that necessary?
  • Make an active statement: “Oh sorry, I’m dating someone.” No possessives necessary?
  • Realize that 80% of the population will respond to the usual cultural norm:“Oh sorry, I have a boyfriend.” Fine?

Thoughts? 


Lessons Learned from Blogging Fails

Now that Mmm Stories has celebrated its (undeserved yet uncelebrated) one-year anniversary, I felt it was time to step in from my hiatus and act like a good blogger mama and show some love to my baby.

Whether this post is my last forever or my first in a new stream, I’d like my little blog to have some closure on this whirlwind of a year. Because while it hasn’t been heavily documented, it has been one of great self-actualization.

And that includes figuring out why my first year was..well..

kind of a Fail.

So please people: If you’re looking to start a blog – or are wondering why you can’t keep on track – here’s some things to note.

Lessons Learned from Blogging Fails

1. If you’re going to try to fit into a genre, actually dedicate yourself to it.

If you’re trying to show the world that you know what it means to balance life while still maintaining a healthy lifestyle – make sure that you are committed and truly interested in those actions.

I learned pretty quickly that it’s hard to talk about tough workouts, strength gains and weight loss if I’m not really getting in any great gym sessions. And I’m not going to show people how to make a tasty dessert or a healthy snack for a party – if I’m not really into writing down recipes.

So if you have a topic you’d like to focus on: make sure you’re sticking with it in day-to-day life.

2. Sometimes you may not need an outlet.

When I first started reading healthy living blogs, I was afraid to talk about weight loss or exercise or eating right with my friends in real life. Discovering other blogs was like magically finding the missing community I’d been searching for. 

But fortunately, since following my first blogs in July 2010, I have begun talking about all things fit and healthy with my real life friends. We are honest and upfront with our struggles and we cheer each other on with our accomplishments. Having work out and healthy eating partners has meant I have needed to reach out less online.

3a. Make sure you like pictures – editing them or being in them.

It’s going to be hard to document your life if you think every picture of yourself is terrifying.

Even if they are.

3b. It’s going to be hard to star in photos and text about your life – if you don’t really like who you are.

This is really the most important lessons I’ve learned about blogging!

If you’re too uncomfortable with the way you look to take a picture of yourself, but also too afraid of admitting that you’re unhappy with the way you look…you’re going to run out of things to blog about.

There is no hiding your unhappiness when it comes to sharing it all on a blog. So either document your struggles or wait until you’re happier. Authenticity is key because in the end, you’re the star of the show.

Fortunately 12.1 months have taught me a great deal and many ways to overcome previous obstacles. It’s just another one of those examples of when you let go of trying to be a certain way, things start to fall right into place.

I look forward to seeing ya’ll around.

Discovering Grown-Up Relationships

I haven’t blogged about my love life – or any part of my life – in a long time and I think part of the reason is the lack of stability or consistency I’ve felt lately. It seems 23 will be a year of shifts and changes, something I’ve heard many times about being in your 20’s and really discovering who you are.

But there’s a great lesson I’ve learned since I first began mentioning relationships on the blog and it is perhaps one of the greatest accomplishments I’ve felt. Better than anything food or fitness has ever taught me.

What you need to know, is that I used to have a deep-seeded need to WIN in relationships. That meant I withheld showing feelings or affection until my partner took the reins first.  I thought by not openly showing my partner that I cared, I stayed in control and kept myself from showing hurt (ie: weakness). I used to say I was forced to act this way because I was perpetually attracted to men who were afraid of commitment or who were such players that they didn’t show they cared. But really, it was my own mentality that doomed me to failure.

Weheartit.com

Because before, I thought the only way to feel special was to be the girl who could put up with (sh)it. Who toughed out rough situations and played the “game” better and stronger than many men. I could handle day long gaps of communication because I busied myself up instead. And I could handle pangs of jealousy and lack of commitment because I just tried to mirror the issue. I believed this was worth it because I was occasionally rewarded with a few personal, meaningful moments of affection.

And I thought this was a good thing – I thought I was different from other girls because I could put my own needs aside and be cool. I thought other girls were crazy for being so nit-picky. I thought I was awesome for “winning the game.”

Really, I got hurt a lot because I never spoke up and implied anything was wrong.

Weheartit.com

I attribute the significance of LA Boy in my life to the fact that when he came in my life, for the first time I could love the way I wanted to love. I could give love without fear and speak my mind without analysis. His own honesty and realness inspired me to get out of the game and make an effort!

And it worked!

I stopped feeling insecure and nervous and started feeling special. In return, he felt special that I shared myself with him. We grew close in a shorter time span than it’s ever taken me to get to know someone. I stopped daydreaming because the reality was wonderful.

The greatest lesson I learned from my relationship with LA Boy was that relationships are about being yourself and opening up about your thoughts, feelings and problems. 

I almost feel silly how long it’s taken me to realize that no girl can ever be the cool girlfriend forever. I was compromising part of my sanity in order to achieve such status before.

Weheartit.com

As I approach further relationships, it is my belief now that relationships happen when two people give. It will not happen when two people withhold.

Moreover, I don’t want to wait for months of the game anymore to figure out if I am with the right person! I’ve made it my goal to put myself out there about my intentions and goals and thoughts. I’m letting a partner and I make honest and realistic decisions about where we could be headed. I’m attempting to own my faults instead of placing the blame on the men – who really only assumed our relationships were fine because I never spoke up.

This challenge is hard on my heart in it’s own way.

The most interesting consequence this change has meant for me is that it makes commitment scarier than before. When I was in these serious, but uncommunicative relationships, commitment felt right because I didn’t have time to think about playing the game with 2 guys at once. Commitment was the ultimate sign that I’d “won!” Oh but now…but now, commitment is scarier than ever! Because if I’m committing myself to someone I’ve learned about and expressed myself to that means shit is real. It means I’m on the adult relationship trajectory. Combining Lives. Thinking about marriage. Etc.

Scary.

But so so exciting!

Weheartit.com

My lesson is on the power of letting go of the game. It can only take you so far. You can only really “win” once you realize that winning a relationship only means losing a meaningful one.

And..if you want the real juicy part.. there is someone else who made me realize just how life changing this outlook will be…

The Unhealthiest Habit…Owned

When I wrote my How to be Bad at Blogging post, I was very aware of what brought me to my blogging lapses. It’s actually one of the things about myself I am most aware. But it seemed too…taboo   crazy   honest   abnormal..to talk about.

‘Cuz the thing is – I have a huge lag between knowing the right thing to do and actually doing the right thing.

I seem to have perpetual procrastination. I think I feel comfort in not having something done.

Finishing is scary. Because what’s next?

Waiting.

And it kills me.

 

Yes, there is always waiting in incompletion. But it’s all resting on my shoulders, not free-falling into the universe, waiting for someone else to decide whether to accept or reject my project, blog, comment, picture, idea, etc etc. Sometimes it’s easier for me to put off knowing whether my completion will mean success or failure.

Because waiting to do is sometimes easier than waiting to fail.

 

This is one of my unhealthiest habits and it eats up every part of my life.

working out.
applying for jobs.
waking up.
responding to emails.
commenting on blogs.
dealing with relationships.

I actually know this about myself.

 

But the worst part? I know that most of you might read this and think “How could you be like that?!”

Most of you are planners by nature.
Most of you like being in control.
Most of you feel a sense of release and happiness by crossing the “To Do’s” off your list.

 

I mean…it’s not that I  don’t feel a thrill in accomplishing. And if you want me to be completely honest with you…

 

My procrastination is more than just putting it off.
It’s a piece of my perfectionism.

I don’t post because I’m waiting for just. the. right. time.

I didn’t turn in the cover letter because it’s just not good enough.
I’m not responding to the email because it deserves more of my attention.
I haven’t told him what I needed to say because I can’t word it right.

 

See, the anxiety is my friend.
Something I know how to handle.

I’m just like that quote we all grew up with:
The one that says failure is less scary than success and that complacency is our safe place.
It goes against all my intution to post this – in a community of perfectionists dedicated to taking every measure possible – and I’m aware of this marketing mistake.

 

But my sorry excuse for explanations are not worth as much as me just telling the truth.
SOMETIMES I DON’T DO IT WHEN IT’S HARD.  SOMETIMES I’M TOO AFRAID OF FAILING TO TRY AT ALL. SOMETIMES I PICK THE EASY WAY OUT.

I know the difference between doing it right and doing it wrong.

..and sometimes…I pick wrong.

Don’t Blog Like I Blog

Blogger No-Nos I Do Anyway/ Breaking the Blogging Rules/ How To Be a Bad Blogger: 

1) Take photos with Blackberry camera
I wouldn’t exactly call them artsy. But maybe it’s an art I have to learn..That’s why there’s editing software!

Bish, what you eating?! 

2) Avoid any mention of Healthy Living
Remember when I made up healthy recipes and worked out? Me either. I mean…barely. It would appear, however, that my blog details quite the adventurous party and love life. There’s gotta be a compromise in there somewhere.

3) Post irregularly 
We’re talking 4 times a month, random dates and time – sorry for the mindfuck, folks.

4) Poor commenting
I promise I’ve been reading your blog! Actually I’ve been following and getting immersed in tonsss lately but I’ve been the worst at showing the love. Let’s get that out of the way now: You are too funny! That meal looks delicious! I’m sorry about the injury.

5) Stop telling stories
Resort to lists.

Sigh. The truth can really sting. And while I’d like to say #sorryimnotsorry I’ve been busy living life, the fact is that I do want to put my best blogging foot forward. I need to amp up the blog juices these days. Is there a fluid to aid in this? 5-Hour Energy? Kombucha?

New Goals, Mel. Be a better blogger. Be a better healthy liver. Figure life out.

I’ll be back to expound further on what’s been going on for me to make these realizations. Or at least I think I will?

Seriously, what are your hints for blogging at your best?