A wise man once told me that at the end of each day, you’re going to be tired. No matter how hard you worked or how lazy you were, night will come and you’ll still be ready for bed. But, he emphasized, it’s completely up to us whether we’ll be good tired or bad tired – and our actions and activities throughout the day are the determining factors.
Yesterday was a bad tired kind of day for me. I wasn’t sick or sad. I just couldn’t get going. I had things to do and places to be, but I had absolutely no energy to make it happen. No gym, no writing, no wedding planning, no meeting. Just tons of sleep and way too much TV.
In earlier days, I might have really been upset with myself – especially considering my list of things to do while I’m unemployed (which I’ll write about later). I would’ve beaten myself up to no end and stayed up late to compensate for having such a lousy day. But, surprisingly, I’m actually ok. I’ve been so committed to going hard and keeping busy, that I really just needed a day off. So I took one.
But today is a new day – which means it’s time to get back on track. One lazy day isn’t reason enough to forget about our goals. If we allow one day to turn into two (or three!), it soon becomes much easier to just give up completely. Our ability to move on from yesterday, no matter what happened, and truly embrace the opportunities of today is so important. Today is another chance to do all the things that really matter to us along the road to our success. But we have to follow through, which isn’t always easy.
One of my greatest struggles has been keeping promises to myself. Many times before, I’ve vowed to work out consistently or to start writing everyday; and just as quickly as I’d make the promise, I would break it. Missing a day at the gym or abandoning my journal was interpreted in my mind as not being important enough to commit to the goal. But, oddly enough, I would have no problem committing wholeheartedly to the goals and projects of others. When I thought about this fact, it hit me hard that I had very little respect for my own ambitions! So I had to make a change. By making my goals top priority, I was better able to focus on today and to keep moving forward without the guilt of messing up in days past.
For some, the fear and exhaustion that comes with the idea of starting over is enough to never begin again. But the truth is, one day off doesn’t mean your cause is lost. Everyday we’re faced with the choice to work towards our goals. If we choose to eat a donut at work, stay in bed all day, write one page of a novel, be positive, or run a couple of miles, we do so consciously. All of these decisions are well within our control if we are mindful of our actions. Further, if we remember that nothing worth having comes easy, we’ll be a little more prepared and understanding of the tough times when they do arrive.
One of my many goals towards maintaining a happy attitude is accepting and being aware of the good and the bad as they come. Messing up here or there isn’t the end of the world. So respect your ambition, cut yourself some slack and get back to work! I swear it’s all worth the effort.
Are lazy or missed days hard for you to overcome. How do you bounce back? What helps you get back on track? Let me know in the comments below!