It was a rainy and chilly Monday evening. Despite only being 5 PM, darkness had already settled itself in. These conditions, combined with it being a holiday in Japan the following day, provided enough support for the excuse to just go home. But as I put on my backpack that had the gym clothes and snacks I had already prepared, I knew I couldn’t do that. I normally go to the gym on Wednesday and Saturday mornings because I like to exercise in the morning. The gym is closed on Tuesdays. Also, once in a while, the staff does an ozone cleaning (it’s COVID-related), and this Wednesday was going to be one of those days. This requires the gym to be closed to members. Thursday I had an appointment scheduled. Friday was not an option. So that left Monday. Not the morning because the gym opens at 10 AM and that’s too close to when I have to start work. So that just left the evening.
I thought about just going in on Saturday this week, but decided against it. I had been going to the gym twice a week for the past 2 months, and I wasn’t going to let a holiday and ozone cleaning day being scheduled in the same week get in the way of that. Going to the gym is important to me, so I had to find a way to get it done. I can change up my routine and sacrifice some comfort just this once and go in the evening. Yes, even in the rain (it wasn’t heavy rain). So off to the gym I went. When I got there, I instantly felt better. Seeing a lower number on the scale this week also reinforced that my commitment was yielding results. After I left the gym, I noticed that it had stopped raining. Perhaps God wanted to see just how committed I was to showing up for myself.
This was for me. This was my time to push out everything else and: calm my mind; observe how my body responds to building strength and endurance; engage with people who look different than me but share the same goal of self-improvement. Just because it’s not for work, doesn’t mean that it should be treated as optional or a luxury. I deserve the same amount of consideration and preparation that I give to my job, if not more. The time I invest in taking care of my needs gives me even more fuel to take care of others’ needs.
Imagine if you treated someone the way you treat yourself. If that image bothers you, then that means there are one too many promises you have not kept with yourself. Don’t slack on what you need. Stop pushing it off until tomorrow. It’s time to show up for yourself.