Last weekend, I completed a 5k race. I use the word “completed” because I’d be lying if I said I “ran a 5k”. I don’t like to run! Ever! I always used to say that the only way I would run would be if someone were chasing me. 🙂 But, I want to LIKE running. I’m more of a motivated walker and kind-of-sometime jogger…for limited…very limited amounts of time.
I have a friend that, while I did the 5k, she ran a 10k. Notice my choice of words…I “did the 5k” and she “ran the 10k”. Yep…she ran it…all of it! And beat her last time by over 4 minutes! I’m really proud of her…and truly impressed.
I could look at her and say, “Wow, she’s so much better than me.” But that’s not really true. I mean, she is in her own way, but not in a way that makes me inferior as a person. She trains. She runs as often as she can and she practices running. I don’t practice running…or really walking/jogging for that matter. I’m not as dedicated as she is. But that doesn’t make me any less of a person, just different.
I started a new work out a while back and I told myself that I was no longer going to engage in negative self-talk. In my previous workout class, we did a lot of running and I always found myself being the last runner…the slowest runner. I always equated that to being inferior to everyone else…that they tried harder than me or that they were just better than me. But that’s not true either. That’s just what my thoughts would tell me…that because I don’t work out like her or I don’t run like her, that I’m an inferior person.
Eleanor Roosevelt said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” I’ve always liked that quote and it’s true. No one can. But, no one was…I was. I was making myself inferior to everyone around me. “She does that workout really well…I wish I could be like her.” Or, “Wow, she runs great…wish I could run like that.” It goes on and on and on!!
It’s not that anyone is making me feel inferior…I’m doing a pretty outstanding job of doing that on my own.
Want to know why she does that work out well? It’s because she goes to class every day and works really hard. She wants to be good at it, so she trains and she tries.
Want to know why she runs so well? It’s because she trains day in and day out; improving herself and working on her skills so she can be better.
I can do all of that, too. I just have to WANT to do that. If I don’t want to do that, then I’m not going to have the results that others do.
I have a choice. I can either keep looking at other people around me, comparing myself to them and think about what I don’t have or can’t do… OR…I can just be me. Am I perfect? Haha…no! Could I run more consistently or train in class regularly? Yes. Are there things I want to improve about myself? Yes.
But the sum total of all of that…I can be whoever I want to be and I can do whatever I want to do. The only person standing in my way…is ME!
So I made a deal with myself to stop feeling inferior to other people…to stop making myself feel inferior to other people. I am not inferior. I am exactly who God made me to be. I am created in His image (Genesis. 1:27). I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).
If I’m in a group of people and I’m not very talkative, then it’s because I’m more of an introvert. There’s nothing wrong with being quiet; it’s just who I am. If I go to my workout class and only do 5 burpees in the same time it takes everyone else to do 10 or more, then that’s what I do. There’s nothing wrong with that either. Everyone starts somewhere and I can only do what I can do. If I walk and jog a 5k while someone runs the whole time; that’s okay, too! They’re a runner and I’m a walker-sometimes jogger. They’re being who they are and I’m being who I am.
I’m proud of what I did last weekend. I completed a 5k. I walked and sometimes jogged the 5k. I did exactly what I was capable of doing and I am proud of myself.
I am not inferior. I am…ME.