self love

#ProudToBeMe November Challenge

“You can be the most beautiful person in the world

and everybody sees light and rainbows when they look at you,

but if you yourself don’t know it, all of that doesn’t even matter.

Every second that you spend on doubting your worth,

every moment that you use to criticize yourself;

is a second of your life wasted, is a moment of your life thrown away.

It’s not like you have forever, so don’t waste any of your seconds,

don’t throw even one of your moments away.”

― C. JoyBell C.

Happy Monday!

I hope you all had a fabulous weekend! Having spent a good part of mine on the trails, I certainly did! Of course, my goal today is not discuss my weekend, but rather fill you in on the full details of the #ProudToBeMe Campaign I participated in last month. As I’ve mentioned previously, the #ProudToBeMe campaign was started by fellow blogger and Sweat Pink Ambassador Kathy of MamaMarathoner.com. You can read all about it on her blog here.

What I loved about the campaign was how well it promoted self love through its message that it’s ok to be proud of who you are and what you’ve accomplished. I am a huge fan of anything that involves empowering others (especially women), so I was excited to participate. Below I have listed the prompts for each day and my responses. The great thing about this gratitude challenge is that anyone can participate, and you can start at any time. With the New Year just around the corner, what better time to join in than now?

Help us spread the message that it’s not selfish or vain to love yourself. It’s a necessity!

Nov. 1 – I love my (personality trait).

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Nov. 2 – I’m proud that I

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“I’m proud that I am a THRIVER! What a blessing to be part of such a strong and empowered community. We are more than surviving. We are THRIVING!!!”

Nov. 3 – I do ________ well

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Nov. 4 –I am (positive adjective) because ________

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“I am successful because I believe anything is possible!”

Nov. 5 – I recently (action you did) that made me feel proud of myself.

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Nov. 6 – I love my (body part)

10389238_723912064366098_6067005243693889421_nI love my SMILE! Why? Because it’s a reflection of my upbeat personality. It also has the capability of brightening someone’s day- including my own. I never stop smiling! Frozen, terrified, exhausted, starved for oxygen, suffering- these photos cover it all. However, I am still smiling in ALL of them because SMILING MAKES EVERYTHING BETTER. Regardless of whatever temporary pain I’m feeling, I am still happy and grateful to be alive and healthy.”

Nov. 7 – I am a _____ person (positive adjective)

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Nov. 8 – Two positive words to describe the way I treat others are _____ and _____

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Nov. 9 – 1 thing I do to help others is ________

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Nov. 10 – 1 strength I have is my ability to ______

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Nov. 11 – 1 unique quality about myself is that I ___________

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Nov. 12 – Today I will focus on my (name a positive trait) ___________

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Nov. 13 – 1 positive thing my body allows me to do is ________

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Nov. 14 – I love my (1 positive thing in your life) ________

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“I love my husband, family, friends, and dogs!”

Nov. 15 – I am a great friend because I __________

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Nov. 16 – My (body part) is/are perfect

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Nov. 17 – I’m thankful for my _________

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“I am thankful for my integrity because it makes me who I am.”

Nov. 18 – 1 positive word that describes my work ethic is ________

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Nov. 19. – I’m strong because I can __________

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Nov. 20 – I am a good person because I ________

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Nov. 21 – I inspire others by ________

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“And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same”

Nov. 22 – Today I will take care of myself by _________

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Nov. 23 – 1 thing I did well yesterday was ________

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Nov. 24 – I’m proud of my ability to _______

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Nov. 25 – 1 accomplishment I made for which I’m really proud is ________

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Nov. 26 – 3 things I do well are

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Nov. 27 – I am thankful for _______

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Nov. 28 – I am a good _________

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Nov. 29 – I worked hard to accomplish ______

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Nov. 30 – 1 thing I promise to do to continue to find my strengths is ________

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So there you have it- my full 30 days of gratitude! Some days were more challenging than others, but overall it was a lot of fun and definitely worth the time and effort. If you decided to join in, be sure to use the hashtag #ProudToBeMe with your posts and leave a link in the comments below (so we can find you!).

Have a fantastic day!!!

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Enough

“All I can tell you really is if you get to the point

where someone is telling you that you are not great or not good enough,

just follow your heart and don’t let anybody crush your dream.”

-Patti LaBelle

enough

There are a lot of things in this life that I am not good at… that I struggle with in fact. At the top of that list is feeling like anything I do is ever good enough. Despite being a complete devotee to self love and acceptance, I have to admit that I am by far my own worst critic. I am pretty sure I am not alone in this admission. The thing is, it’s not because I’m unhappy with who I am. It’s that I’m not happy with where I’m at.

I have accomplished EVERY major goal I set my mind to in the past year. I overcame numerous obstacles including not knowing how to bike or swim, surgery, and injury (and FEAR!) to not only become a triathlete, but complete my first Half Ironman (in less than 7 hours!). I finished not one, but TWO 50K ultras with a third in the works, AND ran in my first sponsored race thanks to Bondi Band at the Ragnar Adirondacks.

Beyond the athletic sphere I have made strides in my personal life as well. I successfully negotiated for a better (and more importantly healthier!) position at work with better pay and a better schedule… which means seeing the hubs more… YEA!!!! I also have spent another year actively involved with CT-ALIVE in various projects to raise funds for victims of domestic violence, including my next run for the Running For The Color Purple Campaign this weekend.

I have taken on every challenge full steam ahead without ever taking my eye off the goal. Yet, despite everything I have achieved, I have yet to ever feel satisfied or fulfilled. Sure, it’s exciting when the task at hand is accomplished, but almost immediately my thoughts turn to the next challenge. There is no resting or stopping to savor the moment. I simply don’t know how to slow down.

The fact is, no matter what I do or goal I reach, I always feel like I have more untapped potential that I am just wasting. So many people go through life fearing failing above all else. I, on the other hand, fear not trying. I would rather chase a dream I only have a fraction of a chance of completing than go after one I know I can obtain. I want to live every moment to the fullest and know I used every ounce of my potential. I don’t want to waste a single second! When I leave this earth, I want to be sure I made the absolute best use of my time here. That is why I constantly feel pressure to do more to make an impact.

I know there is something greater I should be doing with my life; and, at times, I struggle with trying to figure out exactly what that is. I am well aware that I am not the brightest, most charismatic, or talented person out there, but I do have the desire, drive, and resolute determination to make a difference. I want to inspire people to chase their dreams. I want to change the way they view what is possible. I want to educate the public, demystify domestic violence, and give a voice to those victims and survivors who can’t speak for themselves. I want to do all these things on a larger scale than I am now. I want to affect lives!

That is why I see myself as an author and public speaker. I am already taking steps to get there. I have no idea how long it will take, but I intend to stick with it until I am successful. All the women I admire (Diana Nyad, Meredith Atwood, Brook Kreder…) all have something in common- They are inspiring others, particularly other women, by chasing their dobetterdreams. They all took on goals that other people questioned their ability to obtain, and they found a way to make them happen in spite of any obstacles. These are my role models. They have achieved the type of impact I want to make. (Okay, so realisticly, I am never going to achieve Diana Nyad levels of inspiring, but I would settle for my own TED talk… just putting it out there, Universe)

It may all sound a little looney; but I am a firm believer that the people who possess the power to change the world are those who believe they can.

I believe. I just need to figure out what my path is to get there.

In the meantime, I have been trying to remind myself that while it is great (and completely healthy) to constantly strive for more in life, it is also necessary to accept yourself as enough. It may sound contradictory, but it falls in line with Maya Angelou’s quote “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”

I may not feel like I have reached my full potential in life yet, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t continually strived to become the best version of myself. Everyday I am doing the best I can with what I have to work with. That in itself is something to be proud of. I will continue to push outside my comfort zone and challenge myself until I grow into a person capable of changing the world. However until then, rather than focusing on the destination, I intend to make a better effort at appreciating the journey and trusting that the universe will guide me.