Did I Set Myself Up For Failure?

By the way, I came close to calling this post WTF!

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At the time I thought it was a great idea.  At the time I expected everyone to share in my enthusiasm and to join in.  At the time I thought it would be cool to challenge and encourage one another; to be accountable to one another and to reach some personal goals.  At the time I didn’t realize that I would fail miserably.  I’m not sure why; perhaps I set myself up for failure in the beginning.  What I’m referring to right now is the following Facebook post from June 24th ….

Hey guys! Do any of you have goals that you are trying to achieve but need a little extra encouragement and support to help you get there? If so, I would like to invite you to join me in a 90 Day Challenge. My goal is to lose a few pounds and to look my best for my son’s wedding celebration which takes place exactly 3 months from today. Your personal goal or challenge can be anything…pursuing a dream, simplifying your life, saving money, paying off a debt, finding a new job, breaking a bad habit, developing a healthier lifestyle, whatever! If you’d like to join in, please go to my website at https://www.lifesimpleperspective.com/ and shoot me a private e-mail (top right corner) letting me know what goal you’d like to pursue. With encouragement and accountability we can get there!!

What I’m also referring to is my blog post titled “Life Simple’s 90 Day Challenge”….

My goal at the time was to get into the best shape possible for my son’s upcoming wedding in 90 days and I knew that I couldn’t do it alone.  I needed your help.  Now I don’t want you to think this blog is about blame.  What I’m trying to figure out here is what happened?  I weigh more now than I did before I “never” started the challenge!  I never got my ship out of the harbor (that’s another blog post title).  I was an “excuser” and not a “chooser” therefore I was not the “loser” that I had hoped to be.  Here’s how it played out for me….

I did not consistently track my food and frequently I ventured outside the realm of fruits, veggies and healthy carbs…remember the blog post about Key Lime Pie?!  I haven’t worn my Fitbit in weeks so it’s a little difficult to track 10k steps per day when I’m not wearing it.  The bike rides that I was going to take…well the bike is still in the shed needing a shot of WD-40 and air in the tires before I can even leave the driveway!  The only dancing I did was a couple of times to the YouTube video of “Stand By Me” by Ben E. King.  It was the mother-son wedding dance and I wasn’t sure I could dance to it so I needed to practice.  The hand weights for toning up my arms are right where I left them…in a pile on the floor.

If you’ll recall from the 90 day challenge post, my goal was to look “sexy” in the little black dress which hung on my door in a smaller size for at least 3 months to motivate me.  Somewhere along the way however, I thought it would be great to swap the “little” black dress for the larger size majestic blue one.  I was even told that the blue color looked great in photos!  My mantra for 3 months was “I would do my best and let Spanx do the rest”.  In hindsight, maybe Spanx should have been my 90 day challenge partner…we ended up being very close to one another and we made a great team at the end!

Needless to say on the evening of the wedding, I felt confident in the dress in spite of my failed weight loss attempts and I actually received several compliments.  It all started to fall apart for me the next day however when I saw the photos…I looked “super sized” and the lighting on the majestic blue dress accentuated all of my unflattering flaws.  I immediately fell into a funk vowing to never show some of those photos to anyone.  I beat myself up with laments of “I should have stuck with the black dress.” “What was I thinking?” “Why was I so married to that particular dress?”  “Why didn’t I let the dress pick me instead of me picking the dress?” “Why couldn’t I stick with the challenge?”.  I went on and on and on until I was reminded (with a little help) of how hard we tend to be on ourselves, how we tend to focus on our flaws that others probably don’t even notice and how we’re our own worst enemy.  I finally accepted the fact that maybe my 90 day goals were a little aggressive (but probably not) and I was really not a failure just because I had failed.  I finally accepted the fact that I was comparing myself to a photoshopped, thinner model and maybe it was more about wanting to look like her in the dress than loving the dress itself.  I finally accepted the fact that I did not put forth the efforts needed to achieve my goals and I gave up too easily when no one else joined me in the challenge.  I finally accepted the fact that I felt confident and beautiful that night regardless of my size and what the photos said to me later.  I finally accepted the fact that the night wasn’t really about me after all as you can tell by the smile on my son’s face…and that’s what really matters.     

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8 thoughts on “Did I Set Myself Up For Failure?

  1. You are beautiful! You looked absolutely beautiful in the blue dress. This is your 90 day challenge: Love yourself just the way you are, know that beauty is what is on the inside (of your heart), know that life is too short and precious to spend it worrying about a little weight, and enjoy that piece of key lime pie.

  2. You are a beautiful person, Sandy, inside and out! We are our own worst critics and see flaws that others don’t necessarily see. I am finally beginning to believe that we are never completely happy with whatever our weight/size/wrinkles/whatever….we will always find something to be critical of about ourselves. At least that seems to be true for myself.
    Enjoy life and rejoice that we have another day to live ….enjoy your friends and family…treasure the time you have with your loved ones. You are a treasure. Love ya!

    1. First of all, you DID look beautiful and the blue dress was fabulous! I don’t think there are many women around that have not pledged the same, especially as we get older. As I am in my fifth year of retirement I , too, had made promises to myself – better diet, more exercise, lose a few pounds……And, I have kept those promises but not consistently! Unfortunately, I also love chocolate and salty snack foods and soft drinks! But in between these promises, life has taken me to other places and somehow those promises faded. Instead I choose to keep it real – but not to excess. Enjoy the desserts, lay on the sofa when you need rest, curl up with a good book, cook a good old fashioned fattening meal…you get the idea! Family, friends and being who you are – far more important than the size of our clothes. Thanks for your honest approach to writing – we could all use a little of that every once in a while!

      1. Jayne, thank you, thank you, thank you! You really have a lot of this thing called life figured out and I appreciate you sharing your thoughts. I love what you said about choosing to keep it real and giving ourselves permission to enjoy life to the fullest.

    2. Thanks Donna! Yes, self acceptance is key because you are right; we can always find something to be critical of ourselves about. If I’m real honest with you, I believe some of the pressure for me comes from being single at my age and believing that I have to wear a certain size or look a certain way to still be attractive to men, especially until they get to know me. You are a treasure too Ms. Donna and I appreciate your comments.

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