Thursday, October 2, 2008

Inspiration Comes in Many Forms

Have you ever felt insignificant compared to someone? If you don’t compare yourself to other people, then congrats! You are way ahead of the game. But I however, still fall into this trap. Every now and then I get what it is called a “girl crush.” I’ll see a girl or meet a girl and when I learn her story I find out she’s inspiring. Maybe she can balance a full time job with two kids, a husband, volunteer at an animal shelter and still find the time to happily bake a cake. Or perhaps she’s an entrepreneur that founded her own company, jets around the country, manages a team of employees and in her spare time competes in triathlons. You get the picture.

Now immediately, I’m in awe of these people. Then right after the initial impressiveness wears off I get those nagging feelings of how much my accomplishments pale in comparison. Right now I feel so exhausted from work, yoga and fitting in personal training sessions that I’ve pretty much abandoned my goal of running my first 5k this year and I’ve not seen nor eaten a home cooked meal in days! I wonder why some people have all this energy and enthusiasm for life and are truly non-stop while I’m always struggling to catch up. Some people have more experiences in their teens then I may have my whole life… Now I’m still young and I know I have time to do things, but when I look at what other people do (and automatically decide that I at some point want to do it to) I find that I’m going to run out of time. I struggle to balance everything and when I over-plan I get stressed… before I know it I start to feel pangs of anxiety.

I think this is another reason I’m so determined to rid myself of anxious feelings. In the back of my mind I always wonder… if I had the chance to travel and explore the world or run my own company… would my anxiety mess it all up? Would I blame anxiety for incompetence if I did fail? So many fears and questions…

But I do try to look at this as a good thing. I might always compare myself to other girls that I am inspired by or in awe of, but rather then focusing on the negatives in my life when I do it, I should use it as inspiration to change what makes me unhappy. I know my stressing and anxiety tire me out – but I need to look at these girls and try to embrace their spirit and excitement for life. Something interesting that I learned once was that anxiety and excitement often feel the same – what separates them is how they are perceived. So maybe these girls feel anxious when they are out conquering the world, but they see it as excitement. And maybe, as I work on changing my perception, I’ll see it that way too. I don’t really know if comparing myself to people is good or bad… but I guess the lesson to be learned is what I get out of the comparison. If it’s motivation to strive for what I want and the courage to take on challenges, then maybe it’s not such a bad thing. Maybe “girl crushes” are more valuable than we think! And who knows…. Maybe one day I’ll be someone else’s “girl crush!”

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