What to do when failure rears its ugly head


So much for the month of May is the month of swimming.

How often have I been swimming this month? Never. Nada. Zip. Denmarque, null points.

Well, there’s a couple of ways I could go about it. The first and most obvious one is to beat myself up about it: feel terribly guilty / ashamed / upset I didn’t get close to going swimming this month. It’s not a frame of mind that I find productive; there’s really nothing I can do about my not swimming this month.

Or I can try and redouble my efforts: I can make crazy promises to myself that in the month of June, I will do double the amount of swimming that I was going to do in May. There, that’ll fix it — or will it?

No. I’ll be setting myself up for even more failure. And as I’m already in a somewhat discouraged state of mind, adding harsh if not impossible demands is not going to help either.

Sometimes, life just gets in the way. In this case, it’s been a tricky month for my depression. I don’t want to get out of the house, I don’t want to talk to anyone, I sure as fvck don’t want to try a whole new uncomfortable experience like a swimming lesson.

So I’m starting with the basics. I’ve booked myself in for one (count them: one) free trial swimming lesson, at a pool close to home that is convenient to get to (it’s on the same train line — no waiting for buses for this little black duck). And I’m making no further commitments than that. If I feel like swimming again, I will; I can always pay for another lesson. The lesson is in June (May got crazy busy), but I’m letting that one go.

The key I’ve decided is to be gentle with myself. It’s not like I’m training to swim the English Channel in a few weeks; a little bit of delay will be okay. And I’ll get to swimming next month.

I refuse to beat myself up anymore.

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