Give yourself a pat on the back

(Don’t wait for someone else). Give yourself a pat on the back.

There’s a healthy lifestyle support community that I’m part of: Sleekgeek South Africa. The bulk of activity occurs in the Facebook group, with hundreds of discussions going on daily.

give yourself a pat on the back

The topics range; how to get avocados to ripen quicker; the uses of coconut oil; how to cook healthy meals; how to treat callouses (hint – just be proud of those!) or blisters; or where to get good advice about training shoes or physiotherapy. Those are just a few examples of the things that pop up in this thriving community. I do a fair bit of observation and I’ve noticed a worrisome common thread coming to light: the ugly face of misdirected competition.

It’s an exceptionally easy error to make; being surrounded by humans, it requires a substantial amount of self-psycho-analysis to navigate around this nasty habit successfully.


You look at someone else at the gym who is lifting more than you or doing more complex work than you.

At a park, you look at someone who is running faster or further than you.

In a restaurant, you look at someone eating something that you see as unhealthy, yet this person is in such good shape.

There can quite easily be negative thoughts that begin filling up your brain like tiny thunderclouds brewing up a moody Johannesburg rainstorm. Eventually, you might feel like you aren’t getting anywhere and may as well give up, skip your daily walk, and go look for comfort at the nearest take-away outlet or in the ice-cream tub in your freezer.

Please, don’t give up on yourself. Pause for just two minutes. It’s time to pep talk yourself; maybe even out loud… even if my neighbours or my dogs think I am insane, I find it has more effect that way!

It’s that simple – in the healthy living “game”:

You cannot, should not and must not compete with anyone except yourself.

 When looking at others and constantly comparing yourself to them, you do yourself a terrible injustice. Every person has their own story. I doubt that any person can ever understand or fully appreciate the intricacies and hardships that came across another person’s path.

The only thing that truly matters is how you compare to the state of mind and state of health of the person you were yesterday.

give yourself a pat on the back asinghlife alfriendo

It’s quite easy to lose track of just how far you’ve come. Think back; look back at your old habits, old hobbies, and old photos.

 Give yourself some credit. I’m convinced you’ll be amazed at your growth and achievement.

Now… go forth, be strong, and continue. #BeYourOwnHero

Initially published on LinkedIn

2 thoughts on “Give yourself a pat on the back

  1. Lauren says:

    So true! I sometimes get negative when girls who have just joined our box can lift heavier/jump higher/do a pull up! But then I box jump higher or a squat lower than last time and I remember I am on my own journey. 😀

    • Exactly, Lauren! We are all fighting our own demons on the path to health and fitness. Keep at it, soon you will look back and be amazed by your growth! 🙂

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