I’m not perfect! I bet you knew that, but did you know that YOU don’t have to be perfect. I have struggled with this for as long as I can remember and today I strive for more. I strive for more than perfection.
If you have ever beaten yourself up for not being perfect I strongly suggest you continue reading. This isn’t just about fitness, women beat themselves up about everything, perfect hair, perfect body, perfect student, wife, daughter, mother, etc. You see where I’m going with this…
So what is perfect really? Here’s what the dictionary says.
PERFECT: having all the required or desirable elements, qualities, or characteristics; as good as it is possible to be.
PERFECTIONIST: a person who refuses to accept any standard short of perfection.
The Merriam-Webster Medical Dictionary’s definition of perfect is even better. “A disposition to regard anything short of perfection as unacceptable; especially: the setting of unrealistically demanding goals accompanied by disposition to regard failure to achieve them as unacceptable and a sign of personal worthlessness.
“Failure to achieve…unacceptable…sign of personal worthlessness.”
STOP IT! Why are we striving for perfection? There is nothing healthy about this.
I always knew that the need to be perfect wasn’t good for me but I ignored that and would say I’m striving for perfection and that’s ok. It’s a motivator that pushes me to achieve my ambitious goals and brings me success. Right? Sometimes that’s true but mostly it’s just discouraging and actually causes me to look at how far from perfect I am and just disappoint myself.
Have you ever freaked out because you have company coming over or an unexpected visitor and the house is a mess, you’re a mess, the kids are running around, etc. You’re worried about what people are going to think and say about you.
Well probably nothing! Most of the time the only one that cares is you.
Nobody has their hair and makeup done all the time, the house isn’t always clean and kids aren’t always peaceful. And if they do then they probably need a break.
I’ve spent most of my life striving for perfection. I can’t count how many times I freaked out and made my kids crazy because the house is a mess and I didn’t want anyone to see it or changed my clothes a bunch of times because I feel fat in everything. When I became a personal trainer it just got worse. I’m ‘supposed’ to be perfect, I have to have a six pack and eat perfect all the time. Well I’m not perfect I cheat A LOT and i don’t have a six pack. However, I’ve had five kids and am in good shape. So what if I don’t have a giant squat booty or six pack abs yet. I’m healthy and working hard on my body, most of the time lol. Most importantly I’m good at my job, I know how to help my clients, I’ve studied hard and continue to study and work hard to be an excellent trainer and health coach.
Ok so it’s hard to not strive for perfection. Some days I look in the mirror and see a gorgeous woman looking back and some days I hate everything about her. That’s an awful way to feel about yourself and I know I’m not the only one. All I want you to do is change your mindset. Strive for more than perfection. Strive for Excellence.
EXCELLENCE: The state, quality, or condition of excelling; superiority.
“I am careful not to confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence I can reach for; perfection is God’s business.” – Michael J. Fox
There is nothing wrong with having high personal standards and goals, or striving for the best. This commitment to yourself is healthy and motivating. It’s so important that your not dwelling on any mistakes but looking at it as learning and looking forward to what’s next It’s also important to set goals and have deadlines for those goals. However, they need to be realistic so your not setting yourself up for failure.
Constantly remind yourself of your successes and don’t be afraid to shout it out to the world. Give yourself props!
Maybe you didn’t hit your goal but you came really close and worked really hard. Why can’t you be proud of what you accomplished instead of dwelling on what you didn’t. Think of everything you did right to get as far as you did and learn from it. This only makes you stronger.
And PLEASE stop comparing yourself to everyone else. Why are we doing this to ourselves and teaching young girls to be the same way. And let me not even get started on social media and the unrealistic expectations there. Be kind to yourself… Love yourself and think of how truly EXCELLENT you are!
“Empowering Women to Create their Own Health & Happiness!”
Let’s go back to basics here with one of the most common and effective exercises that you can do anywhere with absolutely no equipment. So yep no excuses. The world’s best exercise and my true favorite is THE PUSH-UP! Did you cringe a little when you read push-up. I get that with pretty much every new client I work with.
I choose this article because so many of the women I work with struggle with push ups and would rather do anything else. However I don’t say push-ups are the world’s best exercise lightly. And I assure you it’s not my favorite exercise because I want to watch you suffer. The push up is a compound exercise. It helps build better posture, flexibility, and while activating every large muscle group can be a very effective cardiovascular exercise working hard to deliver oxygen to muscle tissues. Yep I said it’s also a cardio exercise.
There are also so many variations to the standard push-up making it my favorite body weight exercise to help anyone meet their fitness goals. So if you don’t already do push-ups I want to change that. And no I don’t allow anyone to do knee push-ups AKA “the girl push-up”.
It’s possible you may need to begin with a PLANK rather than go right into a push-up and that’s totally fine.
Now hold your plank for as long as you can even if that means 5-10 seconds in the beginning. Over time I want you to aim for 90 seconds.
*I recommend only slightly lowering your body in the beginning. If you feel your losing your form, (hips sagging) then only go that far down until you can go all the way down without losing form. You can go a little further each time until you can do a full push up.
Bonus: The wider you place your hands the more you work your chest. The closer to your body (elbows in) the more you work your triceps.
The wonderful thing about pushups is you feel the results quickly as your body gets stronger.
I suggest every morning when you wake up and every night before you go to bed to do as many pushups as you can. Then add an extra one pushup every day or more.
“Empowering Women to Create their Own Health & Happiness!”