Why All The Compliments In The World Were Never Enough.
I think anyone who has at some point in their journey, found themselves making real progress along the way, will have experienced the kind words of those around them.
“You look great!”
“How much weight have you lost?!”
Compliments and acknowledgement from others is usually a really good indicator of how well you’re doing.
Perhaps even more reliable than any set of scales could be..
However, are they enough for us to feel fulfilled and happy with our efforts?
Should we feel bad if they don’t have the positive and uplifting effect that was intended?
For myself, they never were. And I always wondered why.
Then it hit me fairly recently.
This might even seem obvious to some and I might just be arriving extremely late to the party with this, but I’ll carry on anyways!
The reason that I just couldn’t get on board with this attention, or take it as a genuine sign that I was making progress, was that I had a completely different picture in my head to what everyone else did.
They were simply comparing where I was at that moment, to where I used to be.
Makes sense, as that’s all they had to go by.
Myself however, I was constantly, comparing where I was at that moment, to what I hoped to be in the future!
I had become so attached to this “dream” body, that I refused completely to accept any notion of success, until I reached that.
The reason I use the word dangerous is well, because, truthfully, I genuinely believe it can be.
I’ll explain further on that point in a later blog post in the coming weeks!
Back to the point of compliments though. Why were they never enough?
Because I was measuring my progress to something that didn’t even exist.
Anyone else do this..?
This is something that I find can be quite common with a lot of us who make similar progress regarding our weight loss goals.
We set these huge expectations and standards for ourselves, and it can be quite easy to neglect the acknowledgments from others.
Or at least, genuinely accept them as signs of progress.
We can become so fixated with what we WANT to feel and look like, that we almost become unable to acknowledge what we USED to feel and look like.
I might be wrong. I might be the only one who’s ever thought this.
But I wanted to share regardless, in the off chance someone reading this finds it a bit all too familiar.
Having said all that, what’s the solution?
For me, it was developing perspective and an ability to view things slightly more objectively every so often.
It will never be perfect.
I still often have to remind myself to reflect back.
Take a moment or two to appreciate the things I’ve done in the past 10 years.
(The good and the bad!)
When giving compliments to someone making progress, try to see things from their point of view.
As we cannot possibly know for sure what picture they have and are using as a measuring stick to where they are now.
Likewise, when receiving that admiration for your efforts, use it as a reminder.
A reminder to stop for a moment and look back to see what’s been achieved and what progress you’ve made.