There’s a particular song that’s been sung over my life recently and I’m really getting tired of it.
The song goes like this: You’re unhealthy and you’re not athletic.
It doesn’t rhyme, it doesn’t have a good beat, and it’s really quite rude.
I went to the Storyline Conference a few weeks ago, and my biggest takeaway was this: if your life continues on the path you’re on now, what will it look like in 5 years? 10 years?
In 10 years, what will you wish you had done differently?
Wow… preemptively predicting the regrets you’ll have about your life? That’s an intense thought. But as Donald Miller reminded us, you can’t edit your life after, but you certainly can make some changes along the way.
And it took me about 10 seconds to realize the thing that—should it continue for 10 years—could get really ugly.
And that’s my physical life.
I used to be a dancer, I tell you with a degree of indignation. From the time I was three until I was 18, I danced—constantly. It was my life. It was the thing that I got up for in the morning and the last thing I thought about before I went to bed.
I was an athlete. I was toned, fit, strong.
I’ve exercised on and off since then—even having six-month lapse in judgment where I did 5am spinning classes each day.
But in the last two years, a lot has changed. New interests and passions have taken center stage in my life—using my time and my thoughts and my energy.
I work hard, I play hard, I write hard, and I’m satisfied. I really like the way my life is going. Minus that one plaguing failure that I just haven’t taken the time to correct.
It’s like the junk drawer in your kitchen—the place where all of the crap goes that you don’t know what to do with. It’s a dark spot in your otherwise organized home. It’s the place you just don’t want to open up—afraid of what you might find.
And that’s how exercise is for me. I’ve tried—I really have. I’ve employed every “get yourself to do this” technique I can think of, and I just can’t make it happen.
And I’m tired of this being my story.
I don’t want people to laugh when they think of me and athleticism in the same sentence. Because, bless their hearts, even the ones that love me the most do.
I don’t want to avoid physical activity—defensively making mental lists of everything that I am, in fact, good at.
And I don’t like what this looks like 10 years down the road.
And so it’s time to make a change.
I’m determined to take back my body as something that can DO things, not fearful, or lazy, or full of excuses
And so for the last two weeks, I’ve been following a Couch to 5K app on my phone, getting up three times a week to run in a circle around my apartment complex. Glamorous right?
On the mornings I’m supposed to run, I lay in bed running through all the reasons that I don’t want to do it.
And then a loud, indignant voice breaks through all of the excuses that have kept me feeling defeated and weak and ashamed.
There’s a new song in my life, and it goes like this:
“We do hard things.”
It’s been slow, and sweaty, and sometimes really cold. And if you didn’t already know, I am probably the worst runner you’ve ever met.
But I’m doing it—proving to myself that I am not defined by laziness, excuses, or fear of something I’m not good at.
I’m changing the song of my life, and I’m changing my future—editing the path I’m taking so that 10 years down the road, I’m healthy and I’m strong. And I’ll know that I do hard things.
What is it for you?
What’s the thing that has you defeated, that you feel like you’ll never be able to do? What’s the thing that nags you, the junk drawer in your life?
Is it the way you manage money, or your social life, or your career?
What is the thing that you’ve been wanting to do, but have been too afraid to try?
What is your hard thing?
What if we tackled it together?
I’d love to hear your story of the hard thing you’re overcoming. You can either write it in the comments, or tweet it to me. I’ll be keeping you updated using the hashtag #LGWeDoHardThings, you can use it too! (LG = Lipstick Gospel)
What’s your thing? Are you ready to tackle it?