There Is No Instruction Manual

Quit Measuring Your Progress Using Someone Else’s Ruler

A few weeks ago I can across this quote in a book I was reading. In the moment, my reaction was minimal…until I kept taking myself back to it. It had hit home. Honestly, I will admit that in the beginning of this journey, and I’m still learning, I tried to compare myself to a lot of people. It was never a good outcome. I never ended up measuring up. I think that this changed with time, though. I realized that my progressions and my milestones weren’t the same as others so it became easier to shy away from that mentality. Also, I think what helped was surrounding myself with people who had some of the same ambitions, although all on different levels, as me.

I slowly learned that their progressions are their progressions and their milestones will always be different than mine. That’s a breath of fresh air to think of. It lifts a heavy burden of having to measure up to people when it’s not necessary.

So, why the need to talk about it now? Well, I’m falling back into the bad habit of comparing myself to others but not in the traditional sense, not to the people around me. I’ve been guilty of comparing my current self to my past self. You see, right now, I’m very stuck, physically. I can’t feel that same range of motion that I had months ago. The same range of motion that I was so proud of and had worked hard to get. I mean, many factors go into this feeling. I’ve been hurt a few times and my body feels restricted because of it. Also, I know that I’m not feeling my best because of my lack of sleep, my nutrition, and my stress levels. It’s making me feel very vulnerable and uncomfortable. But I realized something after having a talk with Carlos, my trainer, these aren’t steps backwards that I’m taking , these are just part of the process. He helped me see that. I may have always known that, but we are our own worst critic.

I think one of the biggest things for me in attacking this whole lifestyle change is to handle the mental first. I got this advice from Carlos. I didn’t know this. There is no instruction manual when it comes to becoming a better version of yourself. Man, I really wish there was. I have no experiences to draw upon or any idea on what important questions to ask as I go through this journey. It seems like most of things that I learn along the way are just accidentally learned. Honestly, I had no idea just how much adversity, perseverance, and heart had a say in one’s journey for better health.

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