Anytime I have an “either or” decision to make, I find myself going back to a tactic I was taught as a teen – make a list. The first time I was semi-unhappy in a relationship I had someone tell me “Andrea, just make a list of good and bad of being with that person and make your decision based on that”. Seems simple and a little juvenile, but to this day it stuck, and I still make lists in all my “this or that” decisions.
Most recently I made a decision to get my Level 1 Training Certificate for CrossFit. Now I am a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer (not to be confused with Certified trainer, I am not that — inside CF joke…sorry). My list was as follows:
Good: I love CF, I love learning about CF, I love effective coaching, I want to coach with purpose, name on a list somewhere in the universe that says I took a class that says I know things
Bad: $1,000 to take the class and test and if you fail…that sucks, nerves, worry that I won’t pass
So what did I do…I took the class, took the test, and PASSED! Made my damn year! 2018 started off with a REAL bang!
Before this decision I had to make another decision regarding one of my passions….photography. The older I get, the more I realize I simply cannot do it all. I can’t sustain life with a good attitude on 4 hours of sleep a night. I can’t be a good wife or a responsive friend continuing to burn my candle at both ends at the speed of sound.
So after much struggle and thought and effort to “slow down” in the photography department….I had to do “this or that”. I had to either put energy into photography or put it into CrossFit and coaching. I couldn’t stand half-assing both things I love, I prefer to put my whole ass in everything I do. So, the list for photography began…
Good: Being around children, seeing people smile, seeing photos on the walls of people I adore that I took, capturing important memories, meeting people, being social, making money, taking vacation, new equipment, practice, honing in the skills…
Bad: Becoming bitter with people’s demands/expectation, being too busy, no quality time with my hubby, no quality time with my family, missing EVERY horse show in 2017 for my nephews, always feeling guilty if I’m doing something other than working, working on photos during lunches….
Then the CrossFit list:
Good: the community, feeling accomplished, my tribe, taking photos at our competitions, meeting new like-minded people, healthy relationships, not being responsible for Everything at the gym, spending time with my mom, teaching people to use their bodies to the best of their ability, functional fitness, the sheer energy in the room, togetherness, celebrating small and large victories
Bad: nothing…I literally have nothing.
So, while it seems this should have made the decision easy, it didn’t. I have been actively taking photos for 17 years or more. I am self taught and take a lot of pride in my photographs. The thought of people I love getting photos taken by someone else literally made me sick but I realized there wasn’t a grey area. It was going to have to be all or nothing. Photography is such a huge part of my life, but I struggle to ever put myself first. I am a people pleaser and have never known different. So, the decision to quit taking photos was one of the hardest I’ve made in a while. I have, however, since found that taking photos for my own joy is incredible.
I was so nervous after I took my CFL-1 test. I could hardly even think about it because they don’t tell you whether you pass right away…they make you wait up to a week…and 8 days after my test was going to be my 36th birthday and I was prepared to allow this to make or break my year. Five days after the test I got an email. It said I had to sign the legal waiver before I could get my results. My heart literally almost leaped out of my throat. I initialed about eight thousand things and signed and sent, and DING….another email from CrossFit HQ saying “Your test results are in”….I almost threw up. Seems so silly, but I was sick. Just a few lines down it says “Result: Pass”….I almost died. I cried a little to myself and would be lying if I told you I didn’t screech…but luckily no one noticed. I texted my mom, husband, dad, best friend…and was giddy as I could be to head to the gym and tell my CF family! Hugs all around! It was a really good day!
You see, if I had failed that test I would have felt regretful for what would have seemed like wasted energy. Now my decision to retire as a photographer is vindicated. I feel so thankful and free and happy. The incredible amount of joy that comes from teaching someone to do something they never thought possible is that same joy I get when someone loves their wedding photos. But, there’s no waiting involved, no worry, no stress. I go to class, I do the job, and every day I cheer them on…and I leave with a smile on my face.
Every year I get to know myself a little more. Sometimes I’m lost in my effort to love myself, but I think we all have those moments. I just hope, if you ever have a decision to make, you sit down, you make a list, and you stick to the good. 🙂 Life is about doing things that don’t suck with people who don’t suck.
Till next time…peace, love and CrossFit!
#crossfit #sweatplaylive #crossfitingenuity #mevsme #ironwill #loveyourself #sharpentheaxe #noregret #liveyourlife