WHEN IT’S NOT ALL SUNSHINE & RAINBOWSCaroline Fenton
Some days we are sunshine and rainbows. Some days we are dreaming big. Our middle name is optimism and we are full of no regrets. We love these days, they make us feel good. Content. Motivated. On our game. This is who we love to be, and who we wish we could be every single day… But not all days are created equal. Some days we just aren’t feeling the love, ambitions seem too great, and the thought of failure overrides any motivation for chasing dreams.
Whenever you’re pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone, uncertainty can creep in. Whether it’s looking after a newborn, dealing with a demanding toddler, working on a hobby, starting your own business, getting fitter or being crafty, doubting your abilities is all too familiar.
We hear all the motivational sayings. We see all the quotes on Instagram. We know that you just need to believe, to try, but we also have to remember that sometimes it’s okay to just be. To take a step back. To not try to achieve everything all in one go.
There is always time. Just pace yourself. It’s great to think of ideas, scribble them down. Writing to do lists is helpful, but sometimes this in itself can become daunting. Redefine them as wish lists. We all know there’s always things to do… the washing, the grocery shopping, paying bills… but there are also things which don’t have to be done, the extras, the niceties, the things that fill your mind but linger with no real time frame. These are the things that belong on your wish list! We don’t have to do aim to do it all at once. Say yes, and say no. Enjoy these niceties in bitesize, manageable chunks.
Worrying about failure is huge. When we’re putting ourselves out there, the risk of rejection is all too real. It’s much easier to just hide. The world can be scary and we certainly don’t want anyone to reinforce our own doubts. It’s easy to achieve when we are succeeding. It’s easy to motivate ourselves when everything is going well. It’s getting through the moments of unknown and uncertainty that’s hard.
Being motivated to try is great. If we don’t try, then we never know, right?! Surely trying is better than not trying at all? What about when we do try, and we don’t succeed? We have to reprogram ourselves for it not to be so black and white. Redefine. It’s not succeed or fail. It’s just not the outcome we’d hoped for, or thought it would be. Instead we need to look at different ways to achieve that outcome. Reattempt and refocus. Find another way to get there. Let’s not let a little set back get in the way of our goals. It can be done, it just needs a different approach, and most probably a different day.
Try not to judge everything as a success or a failure, more just an experience, a part of the journey. Every day is a new opportunity, but not to be everything and everyone and all achieving, just to use it as you need to, as best you can. It may not be a day to go for a run, to mop the floors and to eat salad. It may well be a day to eat cake, sit in your pyjamas and stalk ‘friends’ on Facebook. But it’s all part of the experience. Being content to just experience these less full on, all out, super mum days will make the sunshine and rainbow days even more inspiring. It’s not all good or bad, right or wrong, tick or cross, it’s all about the living. It’s then living these moments that become memories.
So if it’s one of those days when you look around you and the fashionably styled mums are pushing prams, sipping their lattes. The energiser bunnies are dolled up in their lycra. The work mums are tottering along in their heels, checking emails on their phone, while balancing bub on their hip. When you look around and every one else seems to be handling it better than you. When the grass really does seem greener.
When it’s a self doubting kind of day, just let it be. Make the most of the grey, the half ticked boxes, the maybes and the attempts. Embrace the day, enjoy the slow down, and know that this re-charge may well be just what you need. Just what you need for an all inspiring sunshine and rainbows kind of tomorrow.