Allowing Self Love To Motivate Your Exercise

Allowing Self Love To Motivate Your Exercise

Going to the gym doesn't have to be intimidating.
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For most of us, just the thought of going to the gym is painful. We make up excuses like "Well I ate really good today so I don't need to" or "I already did my cardio today by taking the stairs."

If we were being real with ourselves, the gym is an intimidating place full of fit people doing weighted squats while I'm breaking a sweat just looking at them. Behind our numerous excuses lies a deeper problem than just motivation.

Going to the gym is also about self love. I'm not talking about the kind of self love that means you embrace how you look no matter how curvy or even skinny you are. I want to define self love as, "caring for your health by exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy diet."

While the first definition is just as important as the second, most of us forget about the second. We become too focused on our outward appearance that we forget that the inside needs to be taken care of as well.

Also, focusing on our outward appearance can lead to disappointment, like when we go to the gym 7 days a week and don't lose a single pound. The question we should be asking ourselves is "How do we FEEL?"

"Does my body feel good?"

"Can I tell it has been getting the amount of water and right nutrients?"

"Am I tired all the time or am I mentally alert?"

When we start asking these kind of questions, the gym is less intimidating and suddenly you want to go to the gym because your mind and body want to feel refreshed instead of thinking about all the super fit gym rats who make us feel bad about ourselves.

Next time you go to the gym, don't get on the scale first. Don't get on the scale afterwards. Don't even look at the scale. Don't look in the mirrors in the weight room. Don't worry about the "fit" girl next to you. Just go in there and do what makes you feel good and confident.

Do this because you know that being healthy is important. Do this because you want to prove to yourself that you have the endurance and the grit to do what's best for yourself even when it's not easy. Do this because you want to feel better, not just look better.

Cover Image Credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/healthy-person-woman-dark-136410/

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To The Person Who Feels Suicidal But Doesn't Want To Die

Suicidal thoughts are not black and white.
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Everyone assumes that if you have suicidal thoughts that means you want to die.

Suicidal thoughts are thought of in such black and white terms. Either you have suicidal thoughts and you want to die, or you don't have suicidal thoughts and you want to live. What most people don't understand is there are some stuck in the gray area of those two statements, I for one am one of them.

I've had suicidal thoughts since I was a kid.

My first recollection of it was when I came home after school one day and got in trouble; and while I was just sitting in the dining room I kept thinking, “I wonder what it would be like to take a knife from the kitchen and just shove it into my stomach." I didn't want to die, or even hurt myself for that matter. But those thoughts haven't stopped since.

I've thought about going into the bathroom and taking every single pill I could find and just drifting to sleep and never waking back up, I've thought about hurting myself to take the pain away, just a few days ago on my way to work I thought about driving my car straight into a tree. But I didn't. Why? Because even though that urge was so strong, I didn't want to die. I still don't, I don't want my life to end.

I don't think I've ever told anyone about these feelings. I don't want others to worry because the first thing anyone thinks when you tell them you have thoughts about hurting or killing yourself is that you're absolutely going to do it and they begin to panic. Yes, I have suicidal thoughts, but I don't want to die.

It's a confusing feeling, it's a scary feeling.

When the depression takes over you feel like you aren't in control. It's like you're drowning.

Every bad memory, every single thing that hurt you, every bad thing you've ever done comes back and grabs you by the ankle and drags you back under the water just as you're about the reach the surface. It's suffocating and not being able to do anything about it.

The hardest part is you never know when these thoughts are going to come. Some days you're just so happy and can't believe how good your life is, and the very next day you could be alone in a dark room unable to see because of the tears welling up in your eyes and thinking you'd be better off dead. You feel alone, you feel like a burden to everyone around you, you feel like the world would be better off without you. I wish it was something I could just turn off but I can't, no matter how hard I try.

These feelings come in waves.

It feels like you're swimming and the sun is shining and you're having a great time, until a wave comes and sucks you under into the darkness of the water. No matter how hard you try to reach the surface again a new wave comes and hits you back under again, and again, and again.

And then it just stops.

But you never know when the next wave is going to come. You never know when you're going to be sucked back under.

I always wondered if I was the only one like this.

It didn't make any sense to me, how did I think about suicide so often but not want to die? But I was thinking about it in black and white, I thought I wasn't allowed to have those feelings since I wasn't going to act on them. But then I read articles much like this one and I realized I'm not the only one. Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, and my feelings are valid.

To everyone who feels this way, you aren't alone.

I thought I was for the longest time, I thought I was the only one who felt this way and I didn't understand how I could feel this way. But please, I implore you to talk to someone, anyone, about the way you're feeling; whether it be a family member, significant other, a friend, a therapist.

My biggest mistake all these years was never telling anyone how I feel in fear that they would either brush me off because “who could be suicidal but not want to die," or panic and try to commit me to a hospital or something. Writing this article has been the greatest feeling of relief I've felt in a long time, talking about it helps. I know it's scary to tell people how you're feeling, but you're not alone and you don't have to go through this alone.

Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, your feelings are valid, and there are people here for you, you are not alone.

If you're thinking about hurting yourself please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or visit suicidepreventionhotline.org to live chat with someone. Help it out there and you are not alone.


Cover Image Credit: BengaliClicker

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An Open Letter: To The Simple Things

An open letter dedicated to living within the small and simple things in life.

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To the Simple Things,


I know there's probably a saying dedicated to the "simple things," that life gives us. I suppose one could label that phrase, indeed, a cliché. However, could it be that maybe, just maybe, the simple things do impact us positively?

Recently, there was something that happened to me that I wished would come to pass a while ago. I let that hope pass as time quickly produced no results. But then, without warning, little bits of positivity would come about: a word of encouragement here or healthy advice there. It all seemed to be smaller pieces of a bigger puzzle. These simple things lead to that one event I wished for long ago.

We often times think that the major occurrences should happen right now. And if they happen right this moment, it'll appease us in all we've hoped for. But what is overlooked is the simple things that helped build your positivity along the way. I understand that it may not seem like much, but any sign that everything will work in your favor is worth remembering and living in. The smaller moments are just as important as the bigger ones.

Life is difficult. However, I wish for everyone out there to admire all of the simple things that come your way. And most importantly: believe that those small moments will lead to something greater for you. Anything is entirely possible, and you're worth all of those possibilities. I've said many times before, but here it is yet again: never let others mute your happy little moments. These simple things in life hold various meaning for each individual. No one in any shape or form is allowed to tell you what exactly that meaning is. That is completely up to you.

As with anything I write, I am only voicing from perspective. But I know how hard it is to see the positive in small bursts and not getting the immediate result. I have learned to look at these simple things as building blocks and relish what they give to me. All things will work out fine; just believe in the simple things.

May you find comfort in these mini bursts of happiness even if, at first, they're hard to place faith in.


Positively,

Jessica

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