Just try a little, try a little more and you will succeed. I have heard this so many times in life and have always felt that it is very easy to say these things and very difficult to actually implement.
Just push yourself a little. But isn’t that what I am doing (apparently), yet failing? Or maybe I am just lazy and this is how I will be. I am happy in my place and don’t want to change.
But last year I decided to change, though very slowly, but just a little change every once a while. This last year has been an year of pushing myself. Pushing myself in so many ways that I had never imagined I could.
I have pushed myself to participate in plans.
I don’t like to go out a lot. Plans scare me. Be it for a simple coffee or a weekend getaway. The planning that is involved scares me, the feeling of being surrounded by so many people for such a long time scares me. More than getting excited about doing something fun, most of the time I am stressing about how it will turn out to be, or cursing myself for agreeing in the first place. I am not going to lie, but there have been times when I have celebrated a little in my head when certain plans got cancelled just because I did not have the energy to be a part of them. But this year I learnt to say yes to plans, even if I did not want to go at all. And turned up for almost all of them (there were few times when the lazy person took over). And mostly, as it turns out, it is so much better than sitting at home 🙂
I have pushed myself to read a little more.
Reading random mystery novels was once the only escape I had when there was a lot of pressure of competitive exams, with no phone, no friends to help me pass the time. I used to spend hours reading Agatha Christie, re-reading Harry Potter and not studying. With the entry of phone, friends and work in life, I stopped reading altogether. Maybe 2-3 novels in one year. But this last year I really tried to read a lot! I almost completed my 20 book reading challenge on Goodreads as well (with only 100 pages left to complete the challenge, but I am still proud of myself).
I have pushed myself to make up my bed everyday.
I never used to understand why my mom used to scold me everyday to make up my bed, fold the sheet/blanket. I never did it when I started to live away from home. Everyday in the last 6 years that I have stayed away from home, I used to come back to an unmade bed. Life was messy and my room was messier. But then one day I decided to fold that blanket neatly on the foot of the bed and the joy of seeing that beautiful bed at the end of a bad day was amazing. Henceforth I pushed myself to make up my bed every morning, no matter how late I am getting for office. And now I just cannot stand the sight of an unmade bed 😀
I have pushed myself to cook.
Sounds funny, and it will sound silly as well when I will mention that I might have done it only 2-3 times this last year. But this was big for me. I hate cooking (or so I think). Even if there are guests in my own house, I will look more like a guest when it comes to preparing meals. But there were a few instances when I forced myself to cook. It mainly started with a promise to make paneer for a friend who was leaving the city and a two hour long phone call with my mom, but it was worth it. After that I have cooked twice or thrice for myself, same paneer dish, not always better than before, but it felt amazing to me. I now have this confidence that if the time comes when all the food ordering apps close down, I will not die of hunger.
I have pushed myself to workout.
Yeah the same old workout story. I am not looking for a fit body. I eat a lot of junk food! But somehow these days there is an unsaid bad feeling if you are not working out. Because given our 9-5 sitting jobs, and then the binge watching sessions in the remaining time, sometimes it is necessary to take out some time to stay healthy, to stay alive. And I was told by a friend recently how working out takes away all the negative emotions of the day. That was a real motivator. And I started to workout. I am not regular. Never have been. But atleast these irregular sessions are consistent. Atleast I have started to not totally give up if I skip workout for a week. I go back again, and yes I have seen how on some days my emotions have changed drastically over a workout session.
I have pushed myself to stay motivated when I think that everything is going bad. And I cannot even begin to explain how much it has helped me in keeping my sanity. I was this person who used to get worried about things a lot. I still do! I don’t think that will go away easily. But I have learnt to let go of things a little. I have learnt how to stop worrying about the consequences of every word that I say because in reality most of the people don’t care. And those who care, either you will make sure they are not hurt or they will know not to base your entire relationship on those few words. And those days when everything seems to be going awry, I have learnt how to convince myself that things will come right back on track. And even if they don’t, I know I will learn to live happily with that off track phase of life.