Fueling the Fire

Sometimes I get a sense that people believe that dissatisfaction is a cultivated evil; sown only from the seeds of unjust social expectations.  And while I do believe it’s true that we don’t owe anybody anything, and all we have to live up to is what we decide; I don’t believe that having dissatisfactions or insecurities about things you wish to improve is altogether an unhealthy thing as it seems is popularly believed.

Everyone has things that they want to improve. Justifying, excusing or trying to lend false confidence to yourself isn’t going to help anything. “Don’t worry about it” is something that people say, but seldom do. We can either attempt to convince ourselves we’re wrong about feeling the need to make personal changes or we can use those feelings constructively. We’ll not be RSVP’ing to the Pity Party and let us tell you why…

As “Mad Men” fans, we naturally tuned in to the season premier this past Sunday night. There was a quote that resonated with us…

Dissatisfaction is a symptom of ambition. It’s the coal that fuels the fire.

We cannot look at the pressure we put on ourselves (from whatever the original source) as necessarily cruel or portray it as unjust. If we weren’t achievers by nature we wouldn’t be bucking conventional wisdom and seeking our own ideal at the expense of convenience in the first place. Paleo is absolutely a way to reach health and body composition goals. All that’s left is to decide is what/whose standards you want to live up to and what its worth to you to get there. Nobody HAS time, they make time. It can not only be done effectively, but also efficiently. Making excuses or dodging the pressure you’re putting on yourself will only keep you where you are. Even if you’re in a great place – complacency is dangerous.

I’m in no way advocating cruelty as motivation, but maybe some of the societal pressure we take in, rationalize, and apply to ourselves is something that we honestly believe would be an appropriate change for us. Evaluating the way we look, act, and are received is simply part of being on Earth. The point I’m trying to make is that I believe it can be perfectly normal to take what society thinks is “good” +  what you think is “good”; mesh it together to figure out what you want and is necessary, and go for it. It is truly a blessing and a curse. You’re constantly proud of the progress you’ve made and where you’re at, but slightly dissatisfied all the while thinking there’s more. Once you reach a goal you want to set a new one, etc…you know what I’m talking about. Let’s call it “healthfully dissatisfied”. Temporary satisfaction can usually be found when you know you have done all you can do and will continue to do so. And we believe dissatisfaction and insecurity lies where you know you haven’t.

Dissatisfaction fuels the fire and excuses put it out. Nobody is perfect and unless you’re not interested in progress, I believe pressure is just a part of the equation. If dissatisfaction is coal and ambition is fire, what would you get if you added pressure and some time to work on it? Hint.

6 thoughts on “Fueling the Fire

  1. mdw Reply

    Ok, ok, ok…… but actually you need graphite to make diamonds

  2. Anna C Reply

    Great post! That pretty well describes how I feel, not just about health/diet, but basically every area of my life. I’m always pushing to get better. I’ve wondered if my constant discontent was a bad thing, so reading this was really encouraging to me.

    I blogged about the topic, and quoted this post in my post. With full credit, of course. :) Thanks for the inspiration.
    http://momma-onamission.blogspot.com/2012/05/healthy-discontent.html

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