Numbers have the power to change your life. Randomly picking 7 correctly can make you a millionaire overnight. Your credit score can qualify you for a loan to get that dream house. Numbers are something we go harder for, lose sleep over, celebrate, countdown, compare-you name it.
Some numbers have controlled a large part of my life. I’ve been called FAT since childhood. I think the earliest time I can remember was fourth grade. So that’s a little over 25 years of being told, by other people, that I need to lose weight. Over 9,000 days, 21,600 hours, 1,296,000 minutes of not feeling good enough in my skin. 25+ years of my happiness being dependent upon the number I saw on the scale or on my jeans. 25+ years of other people projecting their opinions onto me. 25+ years of obsessing over something that did not add any value to my life.
It hit me hard how much time and energy I wasted putting myself down for my weight and falsely associating success or worthiness with a number. Society, peers, yourself even, may try to make you feel that if you don’t have X amount of money in the bank, drive a car that costs $$$, or wear a size 2, that your value decreases. While, numbers obviously have value your inherent value cannot be quantified.
It’s easy to say that you want to get married by age 25 or buy a house by age 30, but what if you don’t. Does this mean you failed? That it will never happen for you? Of course the answer is no, but we get caught up in our own timelines and not realizing the things we are wanting and desiring come exactly when we are supposed to get it.
People often say, I wish I had known something sooner or had I learned this a long time ago I would be in a better place. A friend said recently “You learn what you are supposed to learn at the time you are supposed to learn it.” And that is so true. Being 100% committed to the fact that your dreams are possible and by putting them on a deadline or basing your happiness on getting your hearts’ desire at a certain age is counter-productive. In the same way, I have been basing my self-esteem on a dress size.
Just as there are positive and negative numbers we can choose to either place positive and negative connotation on numbers. I’m actively shifting my focus to keep track of the positive and count the everyday victories, blessings, and moments of joy. Those are the numbers worth tracking or obsessing over.
Affirmations have become a daily ritual and the negative self-talk is diminishing. Instead of counting calories, I’m celebrating the number of steps I took in a day. I used to fret over my limited budget, but now I find contentment in working on my budget spreadsheet and paying bills on and ahead of time. I don’t have all the answers but I’m glad I’m realizing that numbers don’t have to rule my life.
What number(s) have you been allowing to rule your life?
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Domonique is a creative, multi-passionate educator, writer, and artist. She loves a good DIY project and can be found perusing the aisles in a craft store near you. Instagram:@designingdomonique