my highlight reel

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


One of my favorite new bloggers, who just so happens to be an old work associate of mine, recently wrote about the correlation between her lack of cooking ability and feelings of inadequacy as a woman. I thought it was interesting that she chose to share that insecurity (in her adorable, humorous way) because I was actually considering writing a similar post of my own today. 

I feel inadequate to other people, period. And I feel this way particularly about women. I could actually care less what men are doing because, quite frankly, men aren’t my competition. Other women are. And, whether we choose to admit it or not, society has done an awesome job of pitting us against one another, be it comparing how we dress, the shape of our bodies, or what we do for a living.

And you know who I blame?

The internet.

That’s right, I blame the entire internet.

I blame Twitter, the biggest bragging platform of them all, and its ability to show me tweets from other women who were up at 5:30 a.m. for a brisk 20 mile run or to bake pies for a dinner party that night. You know what I was doing at 5:30 a.m.? Snoring. Don’t get me wrong, I never miss a workout, but you can guarantee my sweat session won’t be happening until after I get home from work … and after I take a nap.

I am not a morning person. No matter how hard I try, 10 out of 10 times I’m going to choose an extra 20 minutes of sleep over getting a head start on the day’s productivity. I didn’t wake up early enough this morning to scramble a healthy egg white omelet with a side of turkey sausage and a cup of fresh coffee I ground myself. Not even close. I tossed a store-brand protein bar into my purse on my way out the door and then crammed it into my face while I read the news at my desk. And when I say news, I don’t mean I was perusing CNN.com. to brush up on what’s going on overseas or with the election.  I was checking gossip websites to see if Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds released any wedding photos yet. 

I blame the health and wellness bloggers who are forever posting pictures of the amazing, delectable recipes that they magically came up with on their own because they understand ovens and how food works. Me? I can’t even bake a frozen pizza without reading the box. For every okay-looking recipe I post on this blog, there about 100 other cringe-worthy cooking disasters that I would never dare openly admit to in public. If I don’t have a recipe to follow, I hit the panic button. 

I blame Pinterest for showing me millions of amazing things that I will never be able to afford or do on my own without the assistance of a professional seamstress or robbing a bank. 

Oh, a tutorial on how to make dainty little roses out of cut and coiled construction paper? That’s awesome! I’m sure my man hands and complete lack of scissor skills will serve me well with this project!

or

 My, my! That burnt orange cable-knit sweater is gorgeous. Let me just check the link and—Oh, it’s $298? That’s totally reasonable. 

I blame Facebook for making me feel like I have the social life of a dead moth. My newsfeed overfloweth with pictures and status updates of glitzy parties, posh weddings and exciting trips to Europe. You know what I did last Friday night? I fell asleep on the couch watching re-runs of Hoarders.

And it’s no one else’s fault but my own for letting these outside sources somehow make me feel lesser about myself. I mean, I’m the one that’s somehow taking these amazing things I’m seeing and twisting them to mean that I’m lacking something. I could easily choose to stop reading those blogs. I could delete my Pinterest account (heaven forbid). I could stop looking at the photo essays of my loved ones' exciting lives on Facebook. But I won’t. Why? Because as much as I hate that social media holds up a mirror and forces me to examine the quality of my own life, it also offers inspiration and actually gives me something to strive for.  I just need to learn to leave my self-esteem out of the equation. There’s always going to be someone out there who appears to “have it all” or, at the very least, appear to be slightly better than you. And just because someone wakes up early to do Cross Fit or whips up yummy meals with ingredients from their very own gardens doesn’t mean I’m any less successful or interesting. It's just different. Different strokes for different folks, right?

It would serve me well to remember a quote I saw, ironically, floating around Pinterest and posted earlier this year:

{Source}

^^I am so guilty of this very same thing. I’m guilty of only showing my highlight reel. Not only do I constantly compare my weaknesses to everyone’s strengths, I make it a point to not let too much of the ugly or weird reach the surface. Who wants to read about my failures? Why would I want you know to know my struggles? Why would I want you to think I’m anything less than perfect, wonderful and alluring? Well, I hope it doesn’t come to shock to you, but I’m not perfect, wonderful, or alluring. 

So, that being said, do you know what I did today? I accidentally picked a wedgie so hard I ripped a hole in my underwear.

Hand to God.

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10 comments

  1. Is it bad this post just made me WANT to get on Pinterest?

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    1. Yes! ha ha That's quite the opposite response I expected!

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  2. So...the fact that you have enough discipline to run every day made me get up off this computer chair earlier and actually do the P90X workout I was supposed to do but was putting off.

    And now I'm eating a giant plate of gluten-free high-protein pancakes. With homemade strawberry preserves. I may or may not be negating that whole workout.

    Whoops.

    I'll blame the Internet for all of the above.

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    Replies
    1. Well, I am certainly glad I can motivate in a positive way!

      Your pancakes sound super yummy!

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    2. You did! Thank you! Working out is always a positive :-)

      Oh, they were delish. I may have to have more tonight....

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    3. Do you have a recipe? I pinned a "Biggest Loser Pancake" that I have yet to try, but I am always open for yummy ideas for breakfast (or dinner)!

      Right now I am on a HUGE mixed greens salad with chick peas kick. I bought a bottle of this fat free walnut vinaigrette that I thought was putrid at first, but now I'm POURING it on salad. So yummy!

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  3. Hahaha! I can't believe you just said that!

    We've just got to bask in our own quirkiness. It's so liberating.

    I used to get insecure (and sometimes still do) but I realized that the people who cared about me and paid attention were admiring what I did right while I was busy thinking about everything I had wrong.




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    Replies
    1. I know, right? I have no shame.

      We're our own biggest critics, so I constantly feel like other people are only gawking at my imperfections. Logically, I know they're not. But when I make a mistake or do something awkward or weird, I feel like there's a giant spotlight shining on it and it totally negates anything positive I've ever done.

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  4. I struggle with this A LOT. A LOT. A LOT. I think it's important to remember that everyone feels this way. And chances are, someone is looking at you and saying, "Oh my gosh, she's so awesome. Why can't I be that awesome?" Actually that someone is me. I totally look at you and your dedication to exercise and think, "Why can't I be that awesome?"

    Oh, and related to this, my absolute favorite Eleanor Roosevelt quote of all time is "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." I find it be SO true. I can't blame that person that is an insanely good photographer or the person who manages to take a shower everyday or that person who runs 20 miles in the morning for making me feel inferior or the blogger who gets all the big giant opportunities. It's not their issue. It's mine. And that is something I'm still learning. Gosh it's hard.

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  5. Cassie, you are RIGHT on the money with your comment. I was actually going to touch on the idea that, whether I believe it or not, someone else might look at ME the same way I look at all of these other awesome women. I honestly can't imagine why people would feel that way about me because my dedication to fitness is obnoxious, if anything, but, as you just pointed out. It happens. We see ourselves so differently than how others see us.

    And yes, you are totally one of those bloggers I am referring to in my post. I read your amazing recipes and see how how positively brilliant you are with food and design and craftiness and style and am like, "I clearly fail. At life."

    You're so right. We can't blame anyone for being awesome. Nor should we ever be competitive with them. We will never be anyone but ourselves. My favorite quote of all time (along with the Eleanor Roosevelt quote you mentioned) is "The only person you should try to better than is the person you were yesterday." Powerful words, man. I need to start viewing other woman as lovely inspiration, not a never-ending checklist of things I need to be, too.

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