Love Yourself - All the Way to the Gym

Yesterday I finally made it to our apartment's gym.

Sometimes I surprise myself.  Sometimes I don't.  Sometimes I disappoint myself. But Sometimes I find myself in a moment of clarity which somehow seems surreal because it is so surprising.

How do you get from the comfort of your apartment (home) to the gym?  Where does that come from?  Well....this is very good question and I believe, for me, a very important answer. 

Its kind of like playing Candyland.  You get your little man, always choose your favorite color because this enhances the visual pleasure of playing, and then pick a card.  You know all the cards have color blocks but some have the bonus spots.  When you get a bonus spot like the candy canes you rejoice because that will take you further down the path to your goal much faster!!!  That is how you get to the gym!  One day the planets align, you have the time, you have the energy (sort of) and you think okay what will take me closer to my goal faster?  Oh yeah - the gym! 

This is just a silly little analogy but at the heart of it is - Have a goal!  Making it to Candyland is a goal. Winning is a goal. Having fun and engaging in life is a goal.  Next, you can't enjoy playing Candyland or even winning Candyland if you look at it as a drudgery.  So the second truth is play with gusto, play to increase the pleasure and happiness in your life.  (I'm writing this to me)  The next truth, don't give up.  Even if you only draw color block cards you will get to Candyland eventually but if you are diligent you are probably going to draw a "bonus" card now and then.  Take advantage of those days when you do make it to the gym.  That forward motion is contagious and you can make it deliberate if that is your desire.  And...you can stack the deck if you want to - its your life, load it with bonus cards if that makes you happy.

And last but not least, love yourself with childlike abandon. Pick your favorite childhood moment and I hope you have one, if not make one up and love yourself like you did in that moment - without judgment, fear, or baggage. I never accomplished much by guilting myself into it.  Most of my breakthrough moments come when I find myself loving me, appreciating me, holding other's accountable for how they treat me and holding myself accountable for how I treat others.  Shame and blame really don't ignite greatness.  Believe me, going to the gym yesterday felt like a moment of greatness.  I almost scared myself because that girl in the mirror was someone I hadn't seen in a long time.  She looked determined and confident and she was having fun - working out, strengthening muscles and omg - sweating.

So I am loving myself all the way to the gym.  The two voices that sit on my shoulders and war for control of my thinking may feud over these moments but the voice that speaks of love and pride in me is getting louder!  You go girl she screams at the top of her lungs...do it, do it, do it.

Closing with a poem that my oldest daughter put on her facebook today.  It really wraps it up and was the inspiration for today's post.  Love Yourself all the Way to the Gym and Kimberly, I'm speaking to you. Love others, give to others, but Love yourself and give to yourself too and do this often.

That's all  ~  Thanks y'all

Love after Love

     The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self....
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

- Derek Walcott

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