Everyday people struggle with labels that they put on themselves or others give to them that they cling to. It’s not right and it doesn’t have to exist if you do not want it to. You don’t have to accept a label, but if that is what has happened to you, we need to talk.
Being Labeled as A Weakness
Why is it always the faults that tend to become the nickname, the label, the identity we accept? Why can’t we focus on being the “Compassionate Parent”, the “Caring Sister”, or the “Loving Neighbor”. Even if we are viewed by others as a wonderful person (as you probably would say about some of your friends), why do we condemn ourselves over and over again everyday? That takes a toll on us. We end up beating ourselves up more and more everyday until it gets to the point where there isn’t much left for us to give to others. It’s pretty terrible when we think about it. We end up getting so run down and beat up by it that we become paralyzed where we are.
So many people allow their struggles to define who they are as a person. It begins to impact other areas of their lives and keeps them from being the wonderful, amazing person that they are inside. It’s not right and it’s not fair. When you have fat, it does not make you lazy or less intelligent. It means you have an excessive number of stored calories in your body that can be burned off to improve your health. That’s all it means. At that point it’s a simple formula of becoming more active and making healthier eating choices. Of course there are other factors involved such as hormones, injuries, and other medical conditions.
When Medical Conditions Take Over Your Life
In the same vein as dealing with excessive fat, there is also the situation where people allow their injury or medical condition to become their identity. Diabetes is a disease that is managed, but it doesn’t make anyone any less of a person. You can’t allow something to take over who you are and prevent you from achieving goals. I have seen a woman who is 71 years young with numerous back injuries climb rock walls and a client with a strained hamstring train and complete a triathlon. I have to stress to you that you should not let your injury or medical condition hold you back from moving forward. Don’t let it keep you from living.
Digging Out and Moving Forward
I was talking to a client this week about what it was like for her a few months ago when she was struggling with her weight. (She’s lost over 20 pounds the last 3 months, and is well on her way to achieving her goal in the next 2 months. Not bad for a 68 year-old, young woman.) She talked about how paralyzing it was for her. She couldn’t figure out what to do and it impacted just about every area of her life. Even when she first came in, she was terrified of having to eat more calories to lose weight, and having us work on helping her reduce her back pain instead of focusing on a heart-pounding, sweat-inducing workout. (With injuries, we reduce the pain first, and then we push harder in the workouts in order to achieve maximal results.) It was completely opposite of everything she thought she should do. But she’s so happy now. Her back pain has reduced to an occasional pain and she is back in her old clothes already. She said that after the first week when she saw two pounds fall off of her and her back begin to feel a little better, she was ready to push ahead. She has been a completely different person since that first week and she will have an inspiring story to share when she gives her testimonial. But it was that first step that made the difference for her. Just that first step. So no matter where you are, take that first step. Build your confidence, and look ahead to where you are going instead of focusing on where you are.