Why “Shoulds” Suck and Celebrating “Small” Victories

Hello everyone πŸ™‚

Today I thought I’d talk about celebrating those small victories in life. They say you’re your own worst critic and I’m definitely mine. I can beat myself up alllll day long about what I didn’t do, didn’t do well enough, what I did and shouldn’t have done, but ask me what I’m good at, what I succeeded at this week and I have nothing to say. I actually find it very uncomfortable if anyone tries to tell me I’m good at anything. Anyone else have the knee jerk “no I’m not” reaction to compliments? #workingonit

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Anyone who struggles with mental health issues will know that, some days, it’s such an achievement just to get out of bed and shower (and I don’t mean to sound patronising when I say that.. I know because I’ve been there). Self care is one of the first things to deteriorate with mental health difficulties. For those with food-related struggles, achievements around eating are similar: because we feel like these are “basic” things we “should” be able to do, we don’t acknowledge how hard it was to do them and the victories they represent.

“Should” is a word we often use to beat ourselves up about things… “I should be able to do this! Other ppl can do this! I’m (insert age)! I should be able to manage this on my own!” etc etc… Familiar? My suggestion? Throw that toxic “should” away.

In last week’s post I talked about treating yourself like you would your best friend. Would you ever tell someone struggling with an eating disorder, depression, personality disorder or other struggles that they “should” just be able to do this or that?

I’m sure you’re a good bunch, so you’d most likely try and lift them up, encourage them to acknowledge what an achievement it is to manage this or that even though (to put it mildly) they’re feeling like poop.

So here’s my list of little-big victories for last week. I didn’t save the world but, I do struggle every day with a challenging mental illness and still managed to…

1. Go to work eventhough I felt seriously anxious and afraid.

2. Eat some fairly nutritious meals and avoid/prevent any really serious binges.

3. Avoid at least two panic attacks.

4. Shower and make the bed.

5. Go for a run.

Yeeeeah there’s a list of things I didn’t quite manage but those things up there… I nailed those on at least one occasion so well done me. Might just treat myself to an evening watching Netflix. Party hard πŸ˜‰

What have your big-little victories been lately? I’d love to know. Whatever they were.. Nice one πŸ™‚ #progressnotperfection eh?

Till next time xx

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