I recently attended a national conference for about 1500 motivational speakers. And while I consider myself to be a very casual "jeans and cotton shirts" kind of person in my "off" time, at this conference it's Fashion City for most of the women, most of the time – myself included. In fact, my roommate brought a "Wardrobe Chart" with photos of which outfits she was wearing on which days, a.m. & p.m. with "alternate" ensembles in case she changed her mind. Oh, this is a fashion lover's dream event.
And of COURSE, with each outfit, you must have the appropriate shoe. So I had a BLAST shopping for shoes. And yes, I've had surgery on both my feet two separate times. I made some hideous shoe choices when I was younger – which means at this time in my life the best shoe for my foot is a size 9 Nike athletic shoe. Well, try wearing those with a hot little short skirt or a sequined top. Not pretty. Not pretty at all.
So right before I left town I purchased this brand new pair of shoes and took them with me. They were amazing hot pink numbers and they went perfectly with my outfit. And I did pull them out of the box and put them on the second evening of the conference. And I walked around my hotel room, talking to my feet. Begging them, really, to just hang with me for the night. I made promises that I knew I couldn't keep – like I wouldn't stand and talk to people. I promised that if the music started playing I wouldn't dance, and I'd walk back to my room at the end of the night bare-footed. And the entire time that I walked around testing out my shoes, my feet hurt. And they talked back to me. "Oh girl. Don't do it. This is NOT a good idea. You WILL hurt yourself. Take these torture traps OFF!!!"
And then something wonderful happened. I thought about how I would feel at the END of the evening. Not at that moment when my feet were okay – but later after having walked the long trek to the conference area. And when I let my mind go there – I could actually feel the pain and discomfort. And I remembered the times before when I had done this and how long it took me to recover. How my feet throbbed and kept me awake at night. And I took the shoes off and put them back in the box. I thanked them for the little walk-about the room and I said good-bye. I made the wiser, less sexy choice to go with the shoes that didn't hurt.
Here's what I concluded. I'm the "steward" of my body. I'm all I've got. No one's going to take care of me or force me to make the choices that SUPPORT my well-being. So if it's up to me, then I choose ease and comfort over pain and fashion.
What about you? Is there some little thing that you do or don't do that you know doesn't support YOUR well-being but you rationalize it and pretend it's "not so bad?" Well, trust me. It may not be bad at 20 or 30 or even 40 or 50, but it WILL catch up to you one day. My suggestion is that you walk out that "little" discomfort or annoyance and see what it might be like later later in life when it has been compounded into a bonified issue. That might be just enough to make you put your shoes back in the box.