July 4, 2018

What Will Make You Proud of YOU?

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I posted a graphic on my Facebook profile & Instagram account that said, simply, “I am going to make you SO PROUD!” It was signed, “Me.”

Hmmm….

I’ve written notes to myself before, but, never have I written a note that declared I would make myself proud

We sometimes think of how we might make our parents proud or our children… Maybe our spouse? For me, there is A LOT of looking to the day to make my husband proud…

But, what if part of making all of those loved ones proud actually required making our own selves proud?

i am going to make you so proud! - Self

How will you be the most happy?

Don’t you think when YOUR cup is full it will be A LOT easier to fill everyone else’s too?

Damn. How about that? There might be something to that, eh?

In that social media post, I said I was working on it… & my friend & mentor called me out. She asked what will make ME proud of me.

Uhhhh….

I have no flippin’ CLUE!

But then I thought about it… Maybe I do know. Maybe the answer is just not an easy one to talk about.

Maybe, sometimes, saying, “I don’t know,” is total bullshit. Could it be, “I don’t know,” is the running-scared-because-the-truth-makes-me-uncomfortable answer?

Maybe.

So, “I have no flippin’ CLUE!” might be just as much of a cop-out answer as, “I don’t know,” in this case, huh?

Ouch.

So, what would make ME proud of me?

Once I get past the bullshit response, my initial reaction is that, in many ways, I am already proud of me. I have come a long freakin’ way, y’all. I have.

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I shy away from saying that because my past isn’t always of something to be proud. It isn’t something to be displayed as a model citizen & is not a good representation of who I am today, even if it helped form the woman writing this.

It’s embarrassing. Humbling. But.. Also a little empowering when I look at it in my REARVIEW MIRROR instead of through the windshield, so to speak…

I have spent two different stints living in my damn car. I have been on drugs I am not proud of & hung with people I shouldn’t have… Overall, I have seen some dark times in my life. They weren’t all for nothing; I learned a lot.

But, they were my dark times.

I’ve cried myself to sleep in the cold — WAY more than once! — praying for morning to come sooner rather than later. I’ve sent my children to live away from me. I’ve woken up & not known where I was or what I did the night before.

If you think I am a hot mess now, you should have known me in my 20’s. It was not pretty…

I have come a long way. I don’t put myself in those situations. I have let a wonderful man love me the way I should be loved. (And, let me tell you, that was hard to surrender to. You wouldn’t think it would be, but the feeling of “not deserving” is STRONG sometimes.)

I am in a much healthier frame of mind, living a much more stable & healthy life, despite whatever short-comings my brain will still point out.

It’s hard to separate reality from potential.

I am learning to look at how far I have come instead of dwelling on how far I have left to go. Where I currently am is such a good place! It really is. I need to remember that.

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Yet, I know how much better I could be doing. I know I could push a little harder to accomplish more & be a better person… So, when I don’t get immediate results, I beat up on myself about it.

Ugh.

I am working on that. We all know beating up on yourself is NOT a productive use of our time or energy. It is totally counterproductive. Why?

Instead, GRACE is where it is. Seriously. If I am tired, I am tired. Or, if I took three baby steps today & only make two tomorrow, I am still five steps further along than I was yesterday!

I am learning to find that silver lining.

Sometimes, I even succeed at making that silver lining SHINE! But, the point is, I am looking for it. I am catching my thoughts & correcting them to look at what I can do instead of focusing on what is outside my current reach.

Even more so, I am focusing on retraining my brain to recognize that I can do — & see & be & experience — absolutely ANYTHING I put my mind to. If it is out in the universe somewhere, it can be mine if I just focus.

It might sound “hippy dippy” to some, but I believe it. The brain is powerful. Intentions are powerful. And, when you believe something strong enough, you subconsciously start to DO things to help make it a reality. Then, the more you do things to nudge along what you believe & want for yourself, the more the universe conspires to make it happen.

That is when those little miracles occur.

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What will make you proud of you?

So, long story, short: I am proud of myself.

I am a mama, a wife, a granddaughter, a college student, an ENTREPRENEUR. I am a lot of things. I may not be as great at any of these things as I would like to be, but I am doing them all & doing them to the best of my abilities with what I know in this moment… & I am learning more each day.

I have recently taken steps to be healthier mentally & physically. Calculated risks are being taken to secure a better future for me & those I love, (which is a HUGE difference from the careless risks I was taking with my life a decade or more ago!).

I am juggling a lot. I am not a graceful person, but I manage just fine — & I am learning to laugh at myself in healthy ways. (Mostly.) Learning to overlook my awkwardness & insecurities & embarrassment is serving me well at this stage in my life.

I am the happiest I have ever been. I am proud of me. I am. And, one day, I will look back at this time & say that THIS — when I was able to say, “Holy moley! I am proud of me!” — is when all of those other things I want for myself & my family started to fall into place. One day, it will be obvious that this was a pivotal point of my life.

My future is forming now.

Can you say the same?

 Reta Jayne

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