Life is busy. Put it in perspective.
This is what matters. It matters that you exercise most days of your life. It matters that said exercise is frequently of an intensity that makes you question if it’s perhaps too much. It also matters that some days of the week you perform weight-bearing activities. That matters a lot.
It matters that you enjoy all this exercise, so it also matters that you try different things, never stopping until you land on one or two or three activities that make your heart pound and your brain zing! And it matters that you care. Care enough about yourself that you want to seek out these sorts of activities, think enough of yourself to do them. But, it also matters that you don’t think only of yourself. It must matter to you that you are around a long time for your children, and you must care that you won’t burden them by being sick all the time from things you could prevent right now by caring more about yourself. It is selfish to do otherwise.
Further, it matters that you are kind to others. That you treat people, all people, as you hope they might treat you. This includes servers and bank tellers and car salesmen and cashiers. Even telemarketers, though I admit that one is tough. This matters because being kind makes you feel better, makes you healthier, and makes your presence in the lives of others better, too.
It matters that you enjoy what you do every day, so you will wake with inspiration and the desire to do well by yourself on this and every day. It matters that you have friends to talk to, especially if you don’t love what you do each day, so they might help you find out what it is you really want to be doing. So, it matters that you remain social to some extent, no matter how much of a homebody you are at heart. A strong network of people in your life really, really matters.
What doesn’t matter? That you missed a day of exercise because a friend invited you out for dinner last-minute. That you gained back 2 of the 15 pounds you lost. That you didn’t sleep so well last night. That you had a piece of birthday cake at lunchtime, and a little dessert at dinner, too. What does matter is that you know enough—in your heart and your mind—to know that you will lose those 2 pounds again if you care about yourself, and that tonight you will sleep better, and that tomorrow there won’t be a birthday party, so you won’t encounter cake at 3pm again.
What really matters is that you count daily successes rather than failures, and that you count the off-diet bites of chocolate cake toward working on a friendship rather than toward the tilt of the scale. It matters that you know this, but more importantly, it matters that you believe it, too.