Last night, I couldn’t seem to get to sleep for the life of me. I wasn’t stressing about my jeans anymore, and I think sitting down and realizing I was upset and stressed and getting it out in that blog post helped me move on to what’s really bugging me. I’m anxious. I’m scared. and I’m full of questions…really really confused by all the stress and anxiety of applying to grad school. Is journalism the right program? Do I want to do this for the rest of my life? Am I giving up on the opportunity to work in health and fitness if I do my masters in something else? What if I’m meant to be a teacher? What if I hate living in the city? What if I don’t get in? Should I take a year off? Should I move out west? If I don’t go now, am I stuck in Ontario forever? Why am I still single? When will this eating disorder go away? What if I can’t do it? How the heck am I ever going to pay my own rent?
Okay, I’m sick of hearing the same old questions (but I’m sure some of them are similar to other peoples’, no?). They all come from a place of FEAR. Rather than cry myself to sleep, I decided to distract myself. Enter the Jillian Michaels podcast that was freakishly relevant to how I was feeling (choose number 18 if you want to listen). She talked about finding your passion (what did you love to do as a kid?) and about getting to that point where you feel like you’ve made it (for her, it was getting on daytime with her role on The Doctors).
“Look inside of yourself, and ask what you love, where your heart is calling you.”
A journalism degree is going to be a) fun, b) hard work and c) a chance to at least give a dream a shot. It doesn’t mean that I give up on my other passion: helping people find healthy. I can blog, I can lead by example, I can teach fitness, I can inspire people all while I’m in school. I’m allowed to do all that. I think if it’s what I’m meant to be doing, it will happen–while I don’t expect things to be handed to me, I’m a firm believer that if you follow your passion and just live your life, things will fall into place. Faith.
What’s stuck with me is what Jillian had to say about jealousy:
“If you’re jealous, look at jealousy as a blessing, because it shows you what you want.”
I guess it’s quite different from lululemon’s:
I feel like if you CHANNEL that jealousy, clue into what it’s telling you, and then use it PRODUCTIVELY (not to take it out/tear down the other person, but to use them as an inspiration), then you can make it a good thing, not an emotion you need to feel bad about! There’s no shame in wanting what someone else has, and it’s my thought that there’s PLENTY to go around (be it wealth, love, whatever…we’re all entitled to it!).
If jealousy is about insecurity and not feeling good enough, I’m going to remind myself:
“Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt
…and get on with things.
So, today I keep thinking about what I want to do, who I want to be, and considering who I’m jealous of. Here’s a few with some thoughts:
- Jillian: Obviously I’m jealous of her–while I think maybe she sold out a little (fat burners, seriously?), she gets it. She’s undoubtedly helped a LOT of people and I think now (not necessarily in her earlier books), she has a pretty sane and balanced approach to things. Eating real food, not spending hours in the gym, and looking at the reasons why you’re holding on to weight are all healthy steps regardless of where you’re at. I like that she wrote a self help book that really doesn’t have anything to do with nutrition but makes so much sense when it comes to health journeys. I’m jealous because she didn’t even go to school for any of this–she’s self made. What that says to me is that it IS possible. Not to mention she came from a place of struggle and has done so freaking well. I’m classifying this as inspirational jealousy. I want to be an inspiration, I want to influence others, and I want to be a success story.
- Tanya at the gym: She is one of those instructors that makes everyone happy. I remember the first time I went to her class, I thought who is this lady? She’s crazy. but then I realized: she is 100% legit and living her passion. I’m jealous of her playlist, her genuine personality, and her ability to remember everyone’s name in her class. I am classifying this as role model jealousy. I want to be a better instructor who connects with my participants and really shows my passion in EVERY class.
- my good friend Tanya: If there was an award for being organized/put together, this gal would get it. Dubbed “Tidy Tan”, she’s got it together. I think that how your place looks is kind of a reflection of how you’re doing on the inside (right now, my disaster of an apartment comes from last week’s mental turmoil, I think…but getting it all together goes along with me sorting this stress out) and I know I can get my act together!
- The bloggers on my blogroll: There’s a reason I put them there (and if you’re not on there and you should be, know it’s pure laziness and not an intentional snub)…they’ve got something that I think is inspirational. Tina at Carrots N Cake is my ultimate big name inspiration (she’s really done well and made a name for herself and published her book that is full of good, healthy, sane advice!). The pictures that Chelsea at One Healthy Munchkin takes are so beautiful, as are the ones that Kath at Kath Eats Real Food posts. Bonnie at This Is Blam I Am posts only the good, inspirational stuff. Meg at A Dash of Meg has a way of writing fun posts that always have a positive spin/message. Lauren at Lauren’s Marathon Blog is ridiculously organized and has run a freaking marathon. Sandra at Just Do It Just Did It is so honest and just seriously genuine. Kate @ Chasing It is dealing beautifully with an injury…strong and sane is my best description of her approach to getting back to running! Bee at Bee Goes Bananas keeps surprising me with her blogging skills. I could go on, but everyone’s doing their thing and I’m JEALOUS. Instead of saying screw it, I’m giving up and letting them do it, I’m trying to take little bits and pieces and to learn from them! The nice thing about blogging is that people are genuinely friendly! When I interviewed Tina for the article I wrote for my writing class about health bloggers she told me that there’s plenty of room at the top. If you’re looking to inspire people towards health, the more the merrier, right?!
- my friends (who I won’t name): I envy people who can take a night off and sit around watching TV or calling friends or skyping. I envy people who find time for boyfriends, girlfriends, whatever. I find that I think of myself as “different” and like I could never just relax or just go out with friends. And that’s stupid, because I am no different than anyone else and everyone deserves a social life and down time. So I’m using this jealousy as fuel to give myself some time to relax and to cut myself some slack.
- My sister: Who deserves a big congratulations for switching her Masters to a PhD. She has left big footsteps to follow in, and while I don’t think we are the same or should go on the same path, she’s really got her act together. She manages to take care of a dog, be married, keep her act together, AND ace school all the time. She eats like a normal person, she can handle the family that seems to throw me off so much, and she is probably the nicest person ever (unless you’re playing cards or board games, then look out!). Did I mention she’s gorgeous? This is the ultimate of if she can do it, so can I. I might do things differently and the things I aspire to do might be different, but it’s nice to have a big sister who has been so successful to show me that it’s possible! ❤
- Tory, Sabre, and other yoga instructors: There’s something so powerful about going to certain people’s yoga classes. It comes from PURE PASSION for teaching and for yoga. I’m not there yet, but it’s nice to know that it’s a possibility for me that could happen down the line. For the time being, going to their classes should leave me feeling inspired and not jealous. I appreciate their passion instead of envying it and I get a better experience. Yoga’s about leaving the ego behind and has really actually been a big factor in that. Seeing other people in a class who may be there for the first time but can do things that I can only dream of (or that took me months to get) forces me to realize that we’re all different, we all have our own strengths, and that the reason I practice is NOT to compete, not to prove that I can “do” things. Yoga for me is about being present, slowing down, and finding some kind of balance.
- Michael Pollan: This guy’s a journalist but he’s seriously changed the way people think about food. The Omnivore’s Dilemma changed how I think about food and anything this guy writes, I love. The same goes for Mark Bittman. They’re all about changing the way that the world looks at food–for health, for the planet, etc. I think when you consider things on such a bigger level, they get simpler. It’s not about calories or fat grams or certain vitamins/nutrients or whatever, it’s about getting back to a healthy place and to a system that works for the world and for ourselves.
- ED Survivors: This jealousy is CLEARLY something that drives my desire to get better. I aspire to be like Jenni Schaefer, like Geneen Roth, like people who are seriously RECOVERED and who are inspirations to people out there struggling. All the books I’ve read and all the authors I’ve been inspired/helped by are just examples of who I’d like to be. There’s no reason why I can’t.
I think that’s enough for now.
Realization: There’s nothing stopping me from being as great as any of these people. There’s no one who’s going to stop me from putting all of the best things about them that I envy together and making myself the best version of me. Sure right now I am full of fear, ED is trying to stop me, and I feel like I’m kind of stuck. But thinking it all through, realizing where my passion is and what I really want for myself is the first step in deciding who I want to be and what I need to do to get there.
“Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it.”
“The indispensable first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: Decide what you want.”
“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.”
Who are you jealous of?