Resolutions Unveiled: Crafting Personal Goals While Honoring Self-Identity

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In the latest podcast episode with Laura Wood and Mishayla Beaver, we explore the fascinating world of goal setting and the cultivation of resilience, two cornerstones of personal development that resonate deeply with anyone on a self-improvement journey.

Laura and Mishayla delve into the nature of New Year’s resolutions and the ritualistic behaviors that come with them. They discuss the differences between setting goals as a marathon runner would, with precise targets and a mapped-out plan, versus taking a more scenic route where the path unfolds in its time. This comparison sets the stage for a broader conversation about the importance of aligning goals with personal identity rather than succumbing to the pressures of societal expectations.

As we venture deeper into the conversation, the topic shifts to the inevitable setbacks we face and how our mindsets can either be our greatest ally or our most significant obstacle. Mishayla shares insights on the dangers of rigid thinking and how it can sabotage our progress, while Laura emphasizes the need for self-compassion and the power of a growth mindset in building resilience. They candidly open up about their personal experiences with setbacks, providing listeners with strategies to transform these challenges into opportunities for growth.

The discussion continues by addressing how we react to setbacks, with Laura and Mishayla emphasizing the importance of self-compassion and recognizing that failures do not define our worth. They explore the psychological underpinnings of our reactions to success and failure, highlighting the need for balanced self-assessment to reinforce our capacity for success. They also touch upon the impact of external factors and the importance of adjusting expectations and strategies in the face of life’s unpredictability.

One of the most profound takeaways from this episode is the encouragement to personalize your path to success. The hosts advocate for setting goals that are meaningful to the individual, rather than following a generic blueprint. They share their experiences with diet changes and vision boards, demonstrating the significance of tailoring aspirations to one’s unique narrative.

In conclusion, the podcast episode serves as a powerful reminder that the journey to achieving personal milestones is not a one-size-fits-all process. By embracing individuality, understanding the psychological aspects of goal setting, and fostering a resilient mindset, we can craft a life that not only reflects our essence but also allows us to navigate challenges with grace and self-compassion.

Read the full transcript

Laura Host
Hello, welcome to. Why Am I Like this, the podcast for those who didn’t get enough hugs as a child? I’m Laura Wood and I’m a trauma therapist.

Michaela Host
And I’m Michaela Beaver. I’m a psychiatric nurse practitioner.

Laura Host
Michaela, why are we doing this podcast?

Michaela Host
I am so glad you asked. We want to help you understand yourself a bit better, how the things you learned about yourself and the world as a child are still effective in you today. We want to figure out why are we like this. I mean, just think about the random things that we think about. Why am I so jumpy? Why am I so anxious? Why do I take everything personally? Why are my thoughts so negative? Why do people feel like they have to fix everything all the time as we were recording this episode? It’s the time of the year that everyone is starting to reflect on the past year the good, the bad and the ugly and we’re trying to plan out what we want our next year to look like.

Laura Host
Yes, we are talking about New Year’s resolutions today, and so we’re going to try to answer the following questions Are resolutions helpful or harmful? How do our expectations of ourselves impact our success, and how do we actually change? So, mishayla, let’s start with goals. Should we be setting goals? Should goals even matter? Are they helpful, like what’s your take?

Michaela Host
That’s good, okay. So I think that there’s good and bad in everything right, there’s pros and cons, but overall I firmly believe that goals give you something to aim at. Without them, I really feel like we kind of just are floating along and just reacting to everything as we go. And in one thing I was reading, it said that people who set yearly goals are 10 times more likely to actually change their behaviors than the people who don’t make yearly goals.

Laura Host
I think that’s a crazy number. When you first shared that with me, I was really surprised because, honestly, I didn’t realize that. I thought that most of us just set resolutions and then we just give up on them and it doesn’t actually make that much of a difference, but then never really contextualized a resolution as a goal. I think goal settings feels differently to me than it does the New Jersey resolution. Setting right A resolution is almost as if you’re saying to yourself I resolved to. I mean it is. It’s exactly like that. You’re saying I resolved to do this thing. Essentially, this is who I am now, this is how I am now, forever right, and that’s really different than goal setting right. So that’s what I thought. That’s kind of how it felt for me. And so now if I’m saying, okay, a resolution is just a goal, well then that means I can change my expectations of myself and I can change the way that that sounds for me and the way that I contextualize a resolution. So goal setting for me is really more vision setting, like I really like to do, vision boards that’s how I see things. I kind of zoom way out and I don’t set necessarily like specific, granular. You know like I’m going to do this every day or whatever I sort of set like, okay, I’m going to. It’s more of a direction, like I’m going to work towards this vision overall.

Because I think, at least for me, when I say, oh, I’m going to do this thing every day, it’s really hard for me to, I think, maintain that right, like I prefer to think directionally instead of really specific. So why are you like that? I don’t know? I think because I think I get discouraged right, we were talking about this when, if I say, oh, I’m going to do this every day, but then one day I don’t do it, okay, well, now what does that say about me?

I think this happens to people a lot. When people set goals, they are often setting it like a resolution, like I resolve to be healthy now, I’m a healthy eater, now suddenly right. And so it’s like an I statement. It’s like I am this versus I’m working towards this. And I think when people are sort of defining themselves in these really concrete ways, then they can become really discouraged when they maybe don’t do it exactly the way that they hoped they would do it or that they plan to, because things change right, like we go on road trips and we don’t have access to the healthy food that we want or whatever, right, yeah, whatever that person is trying to achieve, and then if they don’t get to do it, that time you know what do they feel like about themselves in that moment.

Michaela Host
05:21 Sure, they might feel like they’re a failure.

So I have a different like experience with that, and so I agree with you.

I can see what you’re saying as to how the new year’s resolution versus just having a goal and how that idea can impact the outcome.

But I have been running half marathon since for years now, and I’ve only recently figured out what, why I keep running and then falling off, and it’s because I don’t have something to aim at, I don’t have a goal. So if I, you know, sign up for a half marathon, I say to myself okay, here’s my plan. I know that every week, this is what I need to do to get me to that goal of being able to cross that finish line at a time that I feel good about, you know, and I’m not super strict about it. Like it’s, it is what it is, but I I know what I need to do. And then, as soon as I reach the goal, I cross the line, and then I’m thinking I need a break, I’m sore, I can take a little bit of time to relax, and then I don’t sign up for that next thing and then I stop running All together, just just totally done with it.

Laura Host
So for you it’s the opposite right. So for you you need to have that really specific thing that’s holding you accountable like every single day, whatever, whereas for me I like to keep my options open, I like to kind of feel, because I think so, and perhaps this has something to do with, maybe I have a problem with authority, or like I don’t like being told what to do, or whatever. So I like I really reject that idea of like, oh, I have to do it, like this, cause I’m like no, I don’t right.

Michaela Host
Like, yeah, I just become like without doing that thing every day.

Laura Host
That’s exactly right, and so I think people need to. Well, I think what’s important as we discuss this, what’s coming up, is that people need to figure out which of us they are. Are you, michelle, and you need to set really specific action items in order to, like, keep yourself on track, like, perhaps, like you do the math of like, okay, how many months, whatever. Or are you like me, where you need to kind of have a general view of like, what that looks like in the end, and then you can sort of feel like you’re more flexible and have more control throughout the process of like? If something comes up, then you can shift and pivot or whatever, I think, depending on which of those you really see yourself as, or whatever. Third option maybe isn’t in the room, but those expectations are going to make a difference. You know those or, I’m sorry, those sort of philosophies are going to change your expectation of yourself. I should say yeah.

Michaela Host
So what I hear you say is that we as an individual need to spend more time really introspectively trying to understand what makes us tick and what drives us. So I need structure, I need that like thing that’s going to create a little bit of like healthy anxiety that, oh, if I don’t, if I don’t accomplish this, like I’m not going to get to the next step and that will put me behind. And so, like, that little bit of healthy anxiety to drive me is what I need. And so if I you know, I’m flexible in it, like, if I run two miles this week and I don’t get to three next week, then I have to jump to four, like, so you’re kind of like, you kind of balance it out, but and I and I think that it’s important to know that you’re not being hard on yourself when you don’t reach that goal, when you don’t hit that thing that you’re supposed to hit, it’s like no, I need to.

I need to figure out how to get back on track, though. So it’s that driving force that helps you get back on to track, to be set to keep making those positive changes. So what are some other types of goals? Or I was thinking about what some other types of goals that people might make in the new year, and so oftentimes you hear people say that they’re going to try to lose weight or they’re, they’re going to be healthy, they’re going to eat healthy, they’re going to cut sugar, they’re going to exercise, maybe they are going to quit smoking or maybe there’s some more professional goals in there of things that they want to achieve at work. So how do you people, how do these types of goals affect how they, how they are successful in reaching the goal right?

Laura Host
Yeah, like I think those are really common resolutions or goals for a year, right, I think we say like, oh, I’m going to do this thing and I’m going to just cut it off all to cold Turkey, right, Like I think I think a lot of people have a sort of perfectionism trait that comes out here where they’re saying, oh, it’s kind of all or nothing, thinking right, and I think that strategy has a high likelihood of failure simply because we’re not robotic people. Right, Like we have to understand ourselves before we can make a real change. We have to know why do I not do it already? Right, what’s going on for me that makes it hard for me to do this and kind of address those types of those internal beliefs and issues before we can say, okay, I’m going to be successful. Otherwise, we’re sort of just chasing, reacting to some arbitrary rule that we’re setting for ourselves. We’re not really changing, we’re not really making internal differences in the way that we work through the world.

Michaela Host
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. It kind of makes me think of, you know, when I treat people that struggle with binge eating disorder. And so from a medication standpoint, you know we can put people on Viband and help suppress their appetite. And you know I’m always asking hey, let’s do this in combination with psychotherapy to understand the why are we having this internal compulsive need to eat? Right? And oftentimes what I find is the people who don’t go to therapy will just overeat over the Viband or they just binge eat only at nighttime when the Viband goes away. So we’re helping combat some of the problem, but we haven’t dug down and figured out how to help you think differently about the thing that’s driving that action, that adaptation. Right, it’s an adaptation to cope with whatever is going on, and so when we’re not really investigating how to change what’s going on in your brain, that becomes really difficult.

Laura Host
Yeah, I think when we’re just focused on the behavior, right, it’s like, oh, I’m just forcing myself to do this one thing differently, but I’m kind of ignoring everything that’s going on inside of me that makes me not want to do that thing in the first place. Right, like if it were easy to do, you would have done it by now, unless you need to make some kind of meaningful internalization of that change, right, like you have to figure out, you know, like what you said, with therapy, understanding yourself, introspection is a critical part of change. We don’t do things that don’t make sense. So if I’m binge eating, I’m doing that for a reason that is supporting some aspect of my life that has a need, right, so perhaps it’s a need to avoid feelings that are uncomfortable for me. Perhaps it’s a need to find, like a distraction.

Maybe I need to, like that’s helping me emotionally in some way, right, yeah, of course. So if I just say, okay, you can do that now, well then what happens to that emotional aspect of it that isn’t now getting served? It’s not being helped. So then those emotions are going to eventually get out of control and you possibly will not be successful maintaining the change, or it could come out of, get out of control and come out in some unrelated way. You know, some other self-destructive behavior could potentially crop up in its place.

Michaela Host
Yeah, absolutely. That totally makes me think of this book that I read and I’m probably going to edit some things and butcher this a little bit but in the book, the E-myth, he talks about the. This, like might get a little dissociated on you here, right? So I have this healthy person inside of me and this unhealthy person inside of me, right? And so when I set that New Year’s resolution and I’m like I’m going to be a runner, that is who I am today and that is what I’m going to do.

So I’m getting up at 5 am, I’m going on my run, I’m, you know, doing all the things to make sure I’m planning out my steps, I’m hyper-vigilant on running, I’m thinking about it all the time. And then it there’s something that happens Like it’s raining, or I got sick, or I stepped on the scale and I gained weight instead of losing weight. And now I’m really mad at myself, I’m down on myself, I’m thinking I can’t do this. And so then we flip from that healthy person mindset to that unhealthy person mindset and we kind of revert back to our old habits where we choose to hit the side, we choose to hit the snooze button and not go out for that run or chill on the couch and watch Netflix instead of do the things that we were doing a week ago because we’re upset with ourselves or we’re frustrated that we didn’t see that result that we were looking for so quickly.

Laura Host
Yeah, we have this unhealthy part of us that’s helpful in avoiding the feeling of failure or the discouraging results. Basically, we’re going to say, well, it doesn’t matter, because I’m actually not that person anyway. I’m an unhealthy person. Who is I kidding that I was going to be the runner or whatever. We justify it. In a way, that is helping us not deal with the feelings that we have about not being able to be successful. It’s taking over to ease, like cushion that blow a little bit. Is that what you’re saying?

Michaela Host
Yeah, definitely, I could see that for sure. How do we help that person who falls off the wagon and or what could they have done differently in their mindset to not have that setback that got them off track?

Laura Host
I think this goes back to our expectations of ourselves. If we expect ourselves to be perfect, expect ourselves to never fail, expect ourselves to never miss a day, and then we don’t meet those expectations. Depending on your personality type and your internal narrative you’re going to have a conversation with yourself about that. If those words that you’re saying to yourself are, well, you’re just a loser, you couldn’t do it anyway, like who do you think you are whatever, then that failure is probably going to hurt a lot more than the person who is saying oh, that’s okay, nobody’s perfect, we’re getting off to a start. This is in the end of the world, we can just do it again tomorrow.

So it’s that flexible mindset, the fixed mindset versus the growth mindset really is what I think I’m describing here.

When we believe that rigidity is required and we have this rigid belief about our expectations and ourselves and what we’re capable of and what it means to not do it that day or not be successful or fail a little bit, then those failures become permanent or they last a lot longer or they sort of have a bigger impact than somebody who is accepting of themselves in their process and recognizing that I didn’t just wake up this morning and become a person who has these habits, I have to build them, and during that building process, I may not be perfect at it, because I’m learning it still, and so, essentially, you’re introducing this radical self-acceptance of like if I don’t do it that day, or if I eat a whole cake instead of a piece of cake, or if I don’t go for a run that day, or whatever right Like, okay, that doesn’t say anything about me. That doesn’t say anything negative about my capabilities. All that means is that I ate a cake and maybe I’m not going to do that tomorrow, right?

Michaela Host
So I think that that I mean coming from like a cognitive behavioral standpoint. It’s, I think, more recognizing that thought process was there right? Because if you can recognize that you’re having that self-destructive thinking where you’re putting yourself down and you’re basically saying I’m just lazy and I’ll never succeed, you can stop that thought and throw it away and choose to think differently. But you have to first recognize that you were there and that was what was causing you to be discouraged in the first place.

Laura Host
Right. The I guess the simplest way to say it is now negative self-talk. And I think maybe we don’t even know that we’re doing it Like. I think maybe we just sort of think that it’s just the way that we think and we don’t necessarily know that that’s the thing that we can change, because it could be our reaction, right. So that’s.

The other thing is, I’m going to let myself react, the whatever way I react, I don’t have to go with that. But that isn’t. That’s an option, right? So if my first thought in response to a failure is I’m such a loser or whatever, okay, that’s a choice, I can go there, I can go with that. Or I can say well, what else could this possibly mean? It doesn’t have to be that first one, even though that first one is typically our reaction. Sometimes we have negative thoughts, we have negative reactions to things, we get discouraged and upset. That doesn’t say anything about us either. That just means like that’s a normal reaction that you had, absolutely. So instead of going down the rabbit hole of, like, continuing that conversation with myself, I can stop and say like, okay, so this didn’t work out, that’s a huge bummer. I’m going to let that be a bummer.

Michaela Host
And then I’m going to think, okay, I can do something different next time, or tomorrow or later today, or whatever, yeah, and you couldn’t even think about it and think, okay, what was it that helped me self sabotage, right? So was it the people that I was around that really like cake? Or was it the things I bought at the store are not helpful for me to have in the house and so, like what got in the way of me making that decision? And how do I change that? How do I get around that obstacle?

Laura Host
Yeah. So I can kind of do an assessment, right, like all right, where did the wheels fall off? What, at what point did things off the rails? And then I can say I maybe won’t do that this next time. But I think I kind of always go back to like what does that say about you, right? So the success says something about you too. So it’s just as important to focus on the successful aspect of it. So if we’re debriefing and we’re saying, okay, where did I go wrong, where did I fail or mess up, and then I also wanna think about, okay, what has helped me be successful the other days that I didn’t eat the whole cake and I only had one slice, what did that look like for me? And so what does that say about me? Well, that says that I can do it that way. I can do it. I have that in me. And so I wanna make sure that I’m recognizing myself for the day that I didn’t do it just as much as I’m analyzing the day that I did.

Michaela Host
Right, and we are so, yeah, and we’re so inclined to maximize and minimize. You know, we wanna ignore the fact that we did so well all of these other days and we wanna focus on the one day that we failed. Quote, unquote you know, that we’re not allowed to be human.

Laura Host
Yeah, and we hold ourselves to this high account and expect ourselves to sort of never give in to a temptation or never just be too tired to like sustain this new activity that we’re trying to incorporate into our life. You know, especially because we’re not just doing this new goal thing, that’s not like the only thing that matters in our life right now. We have our whole rest of our lives that we’re bringing into the new year as long, you know, along with this new thing. And so we have to recognize that this new thing is gonna take time and space and it’s not happening in a vacuum. So if I stubbed my toe, you know my alarm didn’t go off on time, or I forgot to set it, and you know, and then I lost my keys, you know, and I hit crazy traffic and like. So it’s like all of these things happened to me that day.

I might, by the time I get home, be kind of maxed out, right. My capacity is gone, I don’t have the space and time to invest in doing the thing that I planned on doing, which was like to make a healthy meal, and instead I might actually just cook a frozen pizza, right, and that doesn’t mean that, like, I just suck at life. It’s just, you can only do so much. We have a limited amount of energy and resources internally to be able to sustain change, and so I think that’s one thing that we don’t account for often is the sort of emotional and energy overhead that stuff takes. You know, we kind of think about, oh, like timing, we do the dollars and the hours and the math works, and then we sort of say, well, I should have been able to do it. You know, I had all this time or whatever. But it’s like, well, we’re not accounting for the energy expenditure, we’re not accounting for the emotional overhead, like those pieces matter. We have to work those in.

Michaela Host
Yeah, you can’t plan out and be aware of all the things that are going to happen in every single day, and so, yeah, that’s a really good point. I like that.

Laura Host
So we know that resolutions now. Well, now I know that setting a resolution is not necessarily a bad thing, cause I think I went into this conversation thinking like I don’t know how I felt about that, but now I’m thinking of it more as like it’s an actual goal. It’s not necessarily like a resolve to like become a whole different person tomorrow, so a resolution goal is helpful. I’m more likely to change if I set that, and I need to have an understanding of myself, realistic expectations about myself and like really tailor my plan towards like my personality style right. I can’t just like do the thing that somebody else did because they did it and they’re the expert. Well, I might not be them, I can’t do it like them. I need to do it like me. And so maybe I need to find an expert who I align with more than the other expert who somebody else aligns with more. I might not compare myself to everybody else’s journey.

Michaela Host
Yeah, that’s good. I think those are some really, really good points Finding a team or a person that you can do it with, but that you’re not maybe comparing your journey with their journey, because it’s gonna look different, cause you’re each starting from your own separate space and you have your own experiences and your own struggles that you’re gonna have to overcome, depending on what your family of origin did and the knowledge that you have and the things that you’ve been able to accomplish. All of those things are gonna make an impact on how easy it is for you to achieve that thing, and they may be really good at achieving that thing or faster at achieving it, but you’re gonna do it, and you’re gonna do it in your own time, in your own space. And so being aware that you can only compare it to the past versions of yourself and saying that like, okay, I’ve tried this in the past and I didn’t get it as far as I got this time, so I’m doing better than I did before, or I’ve done it before and I can do it again, you know, and kind of looking at it from that aspect, and I think that when you’re looking at what goal you’re gonna choose, what thing you’re going to be like the people I guess, pick words for the year so that can be the focus of what they’re doing, so whatever that looks like.

So if you’re picking health, you know or you know you wanna get really specific about what it is that you’re looking for. So if you wanna pick health because that’s an easy one that a lot of people wanna do I think you have to be specific about what specific goals get you. What does that look like for you? What do you want? What is being healthy in the end look like? And that might be. You know, I’m eating more fruits and vegetables and I’m drinking more water, and people who are starting at the very beginning, they don’t have very healthy habits. They’re gonna have. There’s a lot more change that you can make. That is going to get you closer to your goal.

But as you get closer to your goal, it becomes harder because there’s more things you have to change and those things that you’re changing get harder to do, and so you have to kind of look at that, be consistent, be specific about what you want and, if you’re a goal setter or a vision board person, plan that out in your way. That’s something that I didn’t really consider. I’m thinking everybody needs to be like me and put those goals, baby, because you know if you’re not planning out what half marathon or what 5K you’re doing, you’re gonna. You know you’re never gonna make it. But that’s not true. You know you can have that thing in the background of where you’re going and you can look at it and kind of maybe be that person that makes those incremental steps, though yeah, yeah, I think I like this plan so far.

Laura Host
Okay. So how do we actually change our behavior? How do we actually change the way that we move through the world? I think little things, small steps, right, like bringing other people in.

But I like what you said, like it’s hard when you’re a part of a group, right, it’s easy in that group to say, oh well, they’re seeing so much more success than me, what’s wrong with me?

But I think a way, a kind of a trick in my mind that I use to avoid that is like to kind of remembering, like I don’t know anything about that person’s experience, like I don’t know what that person’s inner life is like, I don’t know what other areas of their life is suffering, I don’t know anything about their internal experience, and so for me to just look at them and assign them this like pretend success or like say, oh, this person’s doing so much better than me.

I can’t possibly know that, right. So I really have no idea what I’m talking about. So the only thing I can know is what’s happening for me and accept that I can learn from other people, I can be motivated by other people and I don’t have to be sort of comparing myself to them and shaming myself about being different than them, because there’s so many more areas of that person’s life that are happening that I’m not paying attention to, but I do think it is good to surround yourself with people that are successful at the same thing, because you can mirror some of their healthy habits.

Michaela Host
And, as long as you’re being realistic about like, if I’m hanging out with somebody that’s running marathons, I’m not running marathons, that’s not where I’m at, I can’t compare my success to their success because it’s totally different. But they’re going to have really good healthy habits that I can start looking at and mirroring if they make sense for my life or they can be motivating to me because they have already succeeded at the thing.

Laura Host
So I think that’s a really important point is surrounding yourself with people who are interested in your success too, right?

So I know that one thing that makes really it makes it really hard to achieve goals within families is the other people in your life may not be supportive of your journey, right.

So I see that all the time as I’m talking with clients and kind of helping them improve their own feelings of wellness, and then their families are like not necessarily being supportive of that, and that’s really really difficult.

And so sometimes we do have to change the people that we surround ourselves with, the people we spend the most time, with the way we interact with those people, right, the what we internalize from those people, and so adding in people who are supportive of your success can be really helpful when perhaps you’re on this journey within a family, but you’re on this journey kind of on your own, and so it could make it a little bit easier to have to bring in new people, bring more people in, not to say like your family’s not okay, it’s just that you’re gonna need additional support, and so you can find that elsewhere.

So you are like-minded and having a support center that is gonna help you stay accountable and that is going to let you be discouraged when you’re discouraged and process that with you and sort of understand what you’re going through. On a level like I think we need to be seen right and that’s a big part of our change. If we’re trying to make change but we don’t feel seen and validated and sort of like, that makes it really hard to celebrate that change and it makes it hard to stick to that change.

Michaela Host
Yeah, absolutely. That’s a really good point being validated, someone saying, wow, that’s amazing what you’re accomplishing and I bet that that’s really hard at times you know, and keep going, you’re doing a good job, instead of being like she’s doing that thing again, she’s making the healthy food and I don’t want any of that right.

Laura Host
Right. When people are not excited about your progress, that can feel really uncomfortable, that can feel upsetting For your kids.

Michaela Host
Yeah, oh my goodness, mothers out there trying to make a healthy meal and their kids are not happy about it.

Laura Host
They are so mad yeah.

I remember. So I dabbled in being vegan once. This was a few years ago and I was just kind of like messing around, you know, seeing what it was like. So I started buying some of the tofu-based meat substitutes, whatever, and I would cook them like perhaps like a Beyond Burger or something like that right, and present it as if it were real meat. And my kids not all of them, knew noticed immediately, which I thought was kind of funny. But once one of them did, the whole thing was over, oh yeah.

So one of the kids noticed kind of right away and was like I’m gonna need you to stop feeding me fake meat, like you need to stop doing this. We know what you’re doing, it’s not okay, I’m not real meat. And so they called me out big time. But we have to be okay with that, like okay, so good for me, not for you. You don’t have to do it and my kids are not.

I guess if you have like a five year old or something, you’re a little bit more in control of what they eat. But my kids are adults now. Like this, I don’t have that choice. I can’t make that choice for them. So they have the right to not do what I’m trying to do and that doesn’t mean that what I’m trying to do is wrong. Right, that doesn’t make me weird or different or bad. I’m just doing something different and I think that’s really important just not making everything mean something. Right, it doesn’t have to mean anything, that this is something that, whatever somebody said or does, somebody doesn’t like it or it didn’t work out the way I wanted.

Michaela Host
Yeah, you’re not a bad cook, because they don’t want to fake me right.

Laura Host
Right, and I’m not weird, or you know, I hear this a lot. This happens a lot with trauma, especially in families, is when you are different than your family, or you feel like you’re different from your family, and so a lot of times we sort of tell ourselves that being different means there’s something wrong with us, right, right. And so when we so that kind of goes back to our expectation of ourself. My expectation is that I’m going to, like, fit in, or I’m going to be understood by everyone, or I’m going to be right, like I’m going to be sort of accepted and on the same page, and that’s just not realistic and that’s not necessary, right, because being different doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you, yeah, when we.

Michaela Host
I think that, as like moms now, I think we are so much more aware that like that comparison of children is not helpful, right, but I don’t. I do think that when we were growing up that wasn’t as well known, right. Sure, if you’re, if one kid did something really well, they’re like why aren’t you more like Johnny, you know? And so that is maybe a contributing factor to us as adults feeling like we should be like everybody else.

Laura Host
Absolutely. I mean, I think the rules we learned about ourselves and the world as children just continue to replay over and over, right until we give ourselves permission to just exist as adults and autonomous people who have the capacity to change and have the choice and have the control, and that it doesn’t say anything about us, right? I hear adults talk about getting in trouble all the time, and I’m always. My response is adults, don’t get in trouble, you can be accountable. Adults are accountable. They’re not getting in trouble. Right? It’s not the same as when you’re a kid and you sneak sweets after you know when you weren’t supposed to. You’re not going to ground it. You know what I mean? You’re an adult. If you sneak sweets, then that’s your choice.

Michaela Host
You’re going to have a consequence of grown up, the natural consequences of sneaking sweets, and it’s all on you to make that choice or not, make that choice Exactly.

Laura Host
Yeah, you’re accountable to that, your choice, right? Because if you snuck the sweets and now you didn’t meet your fitness goal or whatever, right, that’s your deal. You have to deal with that. And so I think when we reframe some of those things, we reframe our expectations and sort of define them for ourselves, based on our actual lives and our actual values and our actual belief systems, not the ones that we were told or created for us. We’re developing a sense of ourself outside of the context of the one that was provided for us by our parents and our family and our culture and our upbringing. We’re basically saying I am this because I know this about me, because I choose this about me, because I believe in this, and that is how we really make change. Right, we define our own rules based on our own sense of ourself, because when we do that, then we feel better, we have more capacity and we’re nicer to ourselves.

Michaela Host
Which is so important.

Laura Host
So important Because I don’t know anybody who responds really well to people like putting them down. That includes putting yourself down right. Telling somebody that they’re a dumb failure is certainly not going to motivate them to be better. It’s just unhelpful on every level. So we have to think about that when we think about how we’re treating ourselves too.

Michaela Host
Yeah, I like that. Yeah, Well, it sounds like we have a really really good plan for and it’s of different perspectives on setting goals, so I’m super excited about that, yes, this was fun, thank you.

Laura Host
I feel like I learned a lot. I’m going to make my vision board ready to go into 2024.

Michaela Host
Yeah, same, my goal setting is there.

Laura Host
Done, done and done Well. Thank you for listening to. Why Am I Like this? And if you like our show, please leave us a rating and review on your favorite podcast platform. Follow the show, share it with your friends. And this episode was written and produced by me, Laura Wood and Michaela Beaver, and our theme song is Making Ends Meet by Thick as Thieves, and a special thanks to Benavieri Counseling and Active Healing Psychiatric Services for sponsoring our show.


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