Sometimes I really wish it was easier to change the dialog that’s going on inside my head. You know that little voice that tells you that you just don’t measure up and no matter what you do your best doesn’t feel good enough. That dialog, that voice, is what messes my military life up more often than anything else…and frankly I just wish it would go away – permanently.
“You’ll never measure up”
“Who do you think you are?”
“Do you really think your experience is worth talking about”
“There are tons of Military Spouses more qualified”
“You are such a fraud”
And then it quickly spirals into a self-image issue…
“So what if you’ve lost 37 pounds – you are still fat”
“Everyone in the audience is probably watching your arms flap like a bird taking flight”
“You ONLY did 35 minutes on the elliptical today how are never going to reach your goals being so lazy”
“You need to do more”
You get the point. And the funny thing is that I do too. But somehow I have this belief that it’s never good enough deep down inside where it matters. There is always something more I should be doing better; some type of self-doubt that takes hold and makes me wonder. I mean wouldn’t life be easier if I just asked my husband to leave the military so we can go back to our “real” lives. But some how I really don’t think that’s the issue…
Almost a year ago I wrote a post about being angry that I had to start my weight loss “journey” all over again after the stress of military life derailed my health. And then I ranted about “the standard” and why I don’t give a damn.
Truth be told, I must give a damn otherwise I’d be proud of my accomplishments and stop comparing myself to others. You would think I’d see how far I’ve come as a military spouse in just 6 short years and I’d stop focusing on what is still left to do. I’d be glad with the analytics/growth of my brand and the number of military families I inspire. I’d acknowledge that it’s only been since mid 2012 that I re-branded The Direction Diva to support the military community.
But NO, instead the voice in my head says it’s not good enough. I should be here. I should look like that…
I’m sure there is some “thing” that started this inner judgment about whether or not I’ve really got what it takes to be a military spouse. I know for a fact that I’m not alone when I question if I can actually put my big girl panties on day in and day out for the next 10 years. I wonder who I think I am when I try to empower other spouses when, on days like today, I question whether my best is good enough.
And then I remember that I have a choice.
I can stay in this place of self-deprecation or I can understand that I am human and that means that there are good days as well as the bad. As I’ve said thousands of times, military life is a roller coaster. Yes, even for those of us who work to help pave the way and lead others out of the muck. You see we live through the same muck, we are not perfect, in fact I’m far from it. But I have learned that even when I “go there” for a moment, if I work to focus on all that I’m grateful for and force myself to replace every negative thought with something that is empowering my mood and feelings will improve.
I’d be lying if I said it was easy, but I know that if I don’t get a handle on these thoughts and turn them around, when I say “see you soon” to my husband as he leaves tomorrow (for yet another training) I will lose it. And that’s not what either of us needs.
So I’ll do what I tell you to do, I’ll redirect my thoughts and do something (well anything) to take my mind off of the fact that today I don’t feel as though I’m “good enough” to master this thing called military life. Funny thing is that I really am handling it (probably better than I give myself credit for)! How do I know this? Because I’m doing it – sometimes not well mind you, but I am doing it day in and day out AND that is all that I need to know in this moment.
~Judy Davis, the Direction Diva is a motivational speaker, author and lifestyle blogger as well as a military life and teen suicide prevention expert. Co-founder of DASIUM, Judy’s books Right Side Up and Warning Signs: Is Your Teen at Riskare go to resources for families and her websites are filled with tips, inspiration and resources for those looking for direction. Connect with Judy at TheDirectionDiva.com