There is tremendous freedom in caring a little bit less about what people think of you.
This morning I ran 20 minutes on an elliptical trainer. A few weeks ago, running for 60 seconds felt like a near impossibility. Then 90 seconds felt hard, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 8 minutes and now 20 minutes. They were all challenging until they weren’t.
I know it’s only 20 minutes and it’s only on an elliptical, and maybe that’s not as a sexy as a 5K or an ultramarathon. But to me, today, it feels super sexy.
I was going to wait to write about my running progress until I ran a 5K, and then I remembered this wonderful quote, “Big sexy dreams are only accomplished one tiny, very unsexy step at a time.”
A few of my many unsexy steps
- Gasping for air during a 3 minute run.
- Including the theme song from Rocky on my running list today.
- Accidentally throwing my planner down the trash chute and then retrieving it from the dumpster.
- Eating spinach for breakfast every morning.
- Emailing an ultra-marathoner to celebrate my 8 minute run.
- Bringing my own salad dressing out to dinner.
- Jumping off the treadmill without my phone, with the earbuds still attached.
- Laughing out loud in the dressing room when I had to buy a smaller pair of pants.
- Pitching bad ideas that I thought were brilliant.
- Developing good ideas and losing interest.
- Falling asleep at 8pm.
- Writing about my unsexy moments.
What aren’t you doing because you don’t think people will approve?
Do you want to go back to school, but wonder if people think you are wasting time and money?
Do you want to learn a new language, but think you will sound silly practicing?
Do you want to start a blog, but think no one will care what you have to say? (help for that coming next week!)
Do you want to eat healthier, but know your friends and family will think you are boring?
Do you want to try something new and different but are afraid people will think you can’t stick with anything.
Do you want to give away all of your stuff to discover what you what you really want, but are worried that your friends will think you are crazy?
Do you want to try a ballet class even though people might think you are too old to start?
Do you want to create a capsule wardrobe, but are afraid people will notice and think you are weird?
Do you want to live in a new country, quit your job, start a microbusiness, become a vegan, go to a new church, write a book, or run a marathon even though you can’t run around the block today?
What do you want?
It’s yours if you want it, no matter what anyone thinks, if you are willing to be unsexy at least 100 times a day.
Being unsexy means that you …
- can laugh at yourself
- will try things that people tell you are impossible
- will try things that you think are impossible
- ask for help and know that admitting weakness is a sign of strength
- will care less about what people think
- understand that you are fully responsible for the highs and lows
- can stop trying to prove your worth
If we are driven by what other people think about us, we are frozen in a shell we create to give other people a better view. We can never be who we really are, who we want to be, or even do what we want to do. Instead we keep saying the right things, wearing the right shoes, and owning the right stuff.
It is possible to care about how other people feel without yielding to what they think. We need to stop selling a version of ourselves for more approval and start being who we are.
Give yourself permission to be unsexy, uncool, silly, confused, weird, daring and always curious.
It’s time to be you. What’s sexier than that?