• Sandy Reynolds

How are you measuring your life?

I've been thinking a lot about how we measure our lives. What criteria do you use to measure whether or not you are successful? For a long time I measured myself by how much I weighed. It was unhealthy. At times I was dangerously thin but even more damaging was how I felt about myself if I didn't see a certain number on the scale. The self-loathing that I lived with makes me sad in hindsight. I am thankful that I no longer measure my worth by the number on a scale. I still have metrics that I use to measure myself. I don't think it is wrong to have goals that we want to achieve. I've just started to focus on my 5K speed. I set a goal to hit a certain time by May 1st this year. Today I really pushed myself and I reached my goal. Of course, I feel pretty good about it. I haven't been this fast in seven years. But I don't think I'll feel bad if I don't hit that target again tomorrow. I've learned to enjoy my success without attaching my self-worth to a number. Most of us have ways we measure our lives. I think it is important to be aware of how you measure your life. You probably find it easy to identify how other people measure their lives. They will mention it in conversation. They may talk about how much money they have, how much they travel, how many followers they have, how many awards they have received, how many books they have sold, how many degrees they hold, etc. It can be a trap if you start comparing yourself to their success in areas you aren't even focused on! It is important to develop your own measurements of success. A few years ago, my then podcast co-host, Jo-Anne Gibson and I created a Balance Wheel. The purpose of the wheel is to give you a tool to examine different areas in your life and evaluate where you are in each area. A good exercise is to use the wheel to decide how you want to measure success for yourself in each area. Spend some time getting clear on exactly what standard you are holding yourself up against. Is it realistic? Are you surprised? Do you want to rethink it? Is it even a value for you? You can reframe how you measure yourself by focusing on how far you have come not how far you have to go in reaching a goal. A year ago I was worried about spending one night out in the woods solo camping in the summer. I hadn't been camping in decades. Now I am spending one weekend a month outdoors and just finished a weekend camping in -25c weather. I've come along way. If I compare myself to others in my wilderness course I feel inadequate. But if I compare myself to myself, I see incredible growth! So how are you measuring yourself? The fabulous thing is only you can decide what measurements to use. And only you can take steps to live in alignment with what you consider most important. It's part of living a soul-centered life.

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