Carefree Blonde

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

3 Healthy Mindset Tricks

I'm getting ready to start prep again for my next NPC Bikini competition! Depending on how prep goes, I'm thinking of either competing in May or July so we'll see what happens! With this goal in mind, something I've been thinking of a lot lately is keeping a healthy mindset.

Health is often associated with physical shape. It's easy to see someone that looks good and think that they're "healthy".  The more involved I've become in the health and fitness community, I've quickly learned this is not necessarily the case. 

I’ve talked to quite a few people who’ve damaged and had to work to repair their metabolism after not fueling their body correctly, people who’ve developed eating disorders, or people who do drugs to maintain a lean figure. Social media is so deceiving in this way. To me that’s so sad. Sad that people get sucked into this mindset where if they want to appear to have the body and physique people will admire, they have to do whatever it takes to get  there. As women we feel a pressure to look or be a certain way and I really do feel this has been amplified by perfect little photos that fill perfect boxes online. How can we keep a healthy mindset, not compare ourselves to perfect little photos, be happy for others instead of jealous, and not be overconsumed with perfecting ourselves all while not settling  and striving to constantly improve? Phew that was a mouthful! I have far from perfected this but, let’s start with what I’ve learned about myself. 

So I’ve only competed once so far but I remember feeling freaking HOT on stage! Man I worked so hard and really cut the last couple weeks leading up to the show. The week leading up to the show I started cutting out a lot of foods and water so that I would “peak” the day of the show and my muscles would pop....I looked freakin GOOD!!! After the show was done and I added calories and water and started gaining back some weight. It was hard for me. My new idea of “fit” was what I looked like on stage. It was hard for me to separate that, that was for a show. I was putting on a show or a performance. That wasn’t realistic for my everyday life. Did this mean I all of a sudden was ok with gaining weight? Nope! From the outside did I look good and would I get eye rolls for explaining how I felt to people? Yup!

This taught me a couple things. First, no matter where you are with your journey in fitness (in momming, in “insert struggle”) we will always have insecurities and areas we feel a litttle “less than”. I originally started competing to get myself to a healthy place. I wanted to be in better shape than I was before getting pregnant with my first Tyson. I wanted to show moms that you don’t have to settle. That having kids doesn’t mean you have to lose yourself or physique. Did I accomplish this? Well I can’t really answer if I was able to help others but to my first point, not only was I in better shape than I was before ever getting pregnant, I was in better shape than I was as an athlete in high school! So why in the world would I still have insecurities!? This is where I realized I needed to focus on strengthening my mindset. 

We will always want to improve. This was my first big aha moment. No matter what goal we set for ourselves be it physical, financial, or with being a mom, once we actually hit that goal we will want more. That’s human nature. We aren’t designed to not want to improve. This shouldn’t depress anyone. Really, life would be so boring without goals and striving to better ourselves.  This is what I do to work on my mindset and keep my goals in perspective. 

1. Self Improvement literature. I love self improvement so much more than “self help”. I love filling myself with positivity and new tactics to improve and love myself. An amazing book for this is “For the Love” all about loving yourself for who you are and what you can do instead of  why can’t I bet like so and so. Let’s celebrate who we are and what we can do. A parenting book I love and can’t shut up about is “The Collapse of Parenting”. The book I’m reading now is “Mindset The New Paychology of Success” 

2. Relax. What helps you get out of your own head? I like to soak in the tub with Epsom salts and candles while I flip through a magazine. This magic time only happens after kids go to bed for the night. This is something I need to make more time for. It doesn’t happen often because I’m usually cleaning. I like to go to sleep with a clean house so in the morning I’m starting fresh and not feeling behind from the day before. So my goal is to set time aside to be able to soak away the day. I also love drinking a hot cup of herbal tea.  I usually drink one right before bed because it really helps me unwind from the day. My favorite one by far is the Egyptian Licorice by Yogi tea. When I take time to relax, I’m able to see things a little more clearly and gain perspective on the things I’m hung up on. 

3. Who are you? I am a wife and a mom. To me these are my most important rolls and come before anything else. It is so important to recognize and have a higher purpose than your image. Is stressing over how I look as a mom or how my Instagram fitness photos make me appear to others going to help me be better at my higher calling? Heck no!! When I find myself starting to obsess with my image, I notice I get stressed which in turn deprives me from giving my full positive energy to the areas in my life that matter most. That’s not fair to my family and makes the photos I post not on par with my lifestyle. I’ll occasionally take breaks from social media for this reason. To bring me back to the real world and what in that world is most important. For me, reminding myself of who I am and of the person I want to be for myself and my family keeps me grounded. I often ask myself if I’m the kind of person I would want to be friends with. I want to be friends with someone who is happy, positive, and encouraging. I don’t want to be friends with someone who is judging others, comparing themselves to others, or obsessing over small stupid things. I’m not perfect but reminding myself of these things helps me to keep a healthy mindset when it comes to my goals. 

I will always have room for improvement. I will always want to be better and get to that next level. These 3 points help me push myself in a healthy way. Whether you feel like you have to appear perfect or struggle with feeling like you don’t measure up, know you’re not alone. It’s what you do when you start to feel consumed by these feelings. If you find you are still struggling with keeping a healthy mindset and can’t break it, maybe take an extended break from social media or look into more professional help. It’s so so hard to not compare, but we are all so amazing in our own ways that need to be celebrated. Please remember how amazing you are without perfect photos. 

These adorable comfy lounge pants can be found at Pink Blush Maternity. They are the perfect pants to read while settling in with your next self improvement book or snuggling an adorable almost 5 month old! I hope you all have an amazing weekend!!!

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