The “When I, Then I” Effect
Have you ever found yourself talking to a dear friend, or chatting with your spouse on the couch and saying the words “When I do this, THEN I will be this.” When I finally make enough money, then I can buy that or do that. When I finally lose all of this weight, then I will be happy about myself. I bring it up today because I found myself saying this quite a bit over the year of Hell, but also recently. Like a literal light bulb going on in my head, it occurred to me that every time I say or said this, I was self sabotaging myself. Let me explain…
It’s important to have goals and dreams, otherwise what the heck are we looking forward too? I have been that person all of my life, where I do better having something to look forward too then looking back or sitting stagnant without any forward motion in my life. I have always struggled with my weight since having my girls, many ladies do. We convince ourselves that while we are fluffy or not “our best” that somehow during that time nothing matters because of how we feel. The thing is, the time will pass anyways. I started to look at it that it’s just a life in progress, my life in progress, and sometimes we are buffering and other times we are complete.
Have you ever looked at pictures of yourself from years ago, or maybe currently, and cringed on who or where you were at that point? I lost a lot of weight years ago, and I’ve looked at my scrapbooks and don’t even recognize that Amy. My kids didn’t care what weight I was, the memories made at the Park or the Zoo were the point. But here’s the thing, it’s my history, it happened, and it deserves it’s place. So because of feeling like that looking at the past, I know someday that the “right now” I am living I will also look back on. What am I getting at? Whether you are what you are, where are you, what you are doing, the today matters. You may not think it does, but it does. The smallest act to the largest, we must rewire our brains to say instead “Today I will do my best. I will work on my job, I will try to eat better, I will try to save my money, and I will try to work on something of myself (Or whatever your goals may be) .”
Yeah, I know, maybe you aren’t into all that “Be yourself” or staying positive stuff….I get it. This past year just sucked. But think of it this way, we are at the bottom, now let’s start looking up. You may not be there yet, but looking at what brings you joy every day and not what upsets you will change your perspective on things. I have to practice it EVERY DAY and when I can’t dig deep enough to find it, I retreat, I stay silent, to just find peace without the world’s noise. And that’s ok….be upset, be disappointed, be angry, be mad. Just don’t unpack and live there, visit for a time, and move on.
When I focus on the positive, then I am the happiest. Maybe it’s not that bad after all?
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