Tuesday, August 3, 2021

The Body Lotion Dilemma

This might sound like TMI, but I'm trying to set the scene here, so bear with me. I had just come out of the shower after a long, sweaty day being outside. I dried myself with a towel, and for a split second, I had a dilemma in front of me - Do I or do I not put on body lotion? It's not a problem only 1 out of 100,000 people face, but this was the first time that I looked at this question with a different mindset. 

What is the purpose of using body lotion? For some, it's medical - their skin is extensively dry, and have to put cream on it after exposing it to something like a hot, drying shower.  For others, it's purely a part of their self-care routine. They take a shower or a bath, do their skincare, and put on a creamy, citrus-smelling body lotion in order to feel pampered to the max. Either way, putting on body lotion is beneficial. It can be beneficial for the skin, or it can be beneficial for the mind. The bottom line is that body lotion = doing something for you. Just like drinking water. Or working out. Are you seeing where I'm going with this? 

Now that I've posed this metaphor of the body lotion being something you proactively choose to do for yourself, why am I, time after time, not putting on the damn body lotion?! It's definitely not because I don't have body lotion in my house - heck, I have three just sitting there, collecting dust. Well, my friends, it's this little thing called a habit. And not just any habit, but a bad habit. I know that I might not be necessarily hurting myself by not putting on the lotion, but it goes far beyond that. It all goes back to a bad habit that I've purposefully (but not necessarily consciously) set up for myself in order to self-sabotage. 

I find myself thinking about this a lot, actually. I see what areas in my life are lacking. I recognize what needs to be improved, what needs to be worked on, and what needs to be completely cut out. Yet, I still do the same sh*t, over and over again. Bad habits might not seem like bad habits at first. They just feel like something that you "don't have time for", or you're "too tired for". So, I guess this makes bad habits nonexistent habits as well. 

I mentioned drinking water and working out. Those two things sound like perfectly reasonable habits to have in your life. Drinking water nourishes your body, it provides a multitude of health benefits and clears the mind. The absolute same can be said with working out. Yet, I drink an absurdly low amount of water every day, and I haven't exercised in months. Now that I'm typing it out I actually understand how inherently bad this is. And would you look, there is no reasonable explanation as to why I refuse to drink 2-3L of water each day, or why I can't put aside at least 30 minutes for some light exercising. The only explanation I can give, that sounds just as bad as it sounds reasonable is the aforementioned self-sabotage. 

I know I'm not a special snowflake when it comes to this topic. In fact, I'm 100% positive everyone can pinpoint at least one thing in their lives they consciously decide to overlook, to not do, to avoid, whose main purpose is to benefit you. For some, it might be spending less time on social media, or cutting out sugar, or even putting your clothes not on a chair, but in the closet where they belong. No matter how minuscule in importance it might appear, if it's affecting you negatively and you're doing nothing about it - you're self-sabotaging. 

So, what is there to do? Well, the first step is to acknowledge what you're doing. Give your mind a few seconds, minutes, even hours, to process the why's and how's. Then, just do something about it. Yep, it's actually that simple. Baby steps are steps nonetheless, and just like with anything in life, you can't be excellent in everything from the very first try. You'll fail, your designated clothes chair might pile up again, but true growth is seen in acknowledging that this is something you're avoiding getting resolved, and you HAVE to at least try to create order out of that mess. Figuratively and metaphorically. 

So, if you'll excuse me. I have body lotion to put on :) 

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