Hi Cyber. I just wanted to let you know that I’ve been thinking about your anxiety, feeling like you’re not enough, or that your torn between conflicting goals.
Just an idea here. Maybe think about how your progress is going in other parts of your life? I know you’ve been trying to finish school, be in a position to start a career that is fulfilling to you. Those are big things. I know for me, sometimes if I’m stressed about something that is not in my control, I can put that negative emotion onto something else. I’ll find tasks to fret over instead of fretting over the really hard stuff. Maybe, maybe you’re putting emotion on lifting and body image stuff when it’s related to other things in your life. Maybe.
Also, I like what others said about staying away from instagram, or even looking at video of talented PLers. Take a step away from that and see if you begin to feel better, have more perspective. I would not make any major decisions until you feel more like yourself. Some people have issues with pride, which is about comparison where we put ourselves above others. Putting ourselves down, is the other side of that coin. Putting ourselves below others is still about comparisons. It’s looking sideways. And it’s discouraging.
Really, this is just a hobby for most of us. You may decide to see if you like competing in PLing. If train for a few meets, see if you enjoy it, before you decide to mess with your hormones. Honestly, I think the tendency toward control or perfectionism related to our bodies can go into either appearance or demands related to performance. Neither of those things are likely to pay any dividends in terms of you being a better wife and partner, quality friend, daughter of God trying to be kind to other people, studies and career and financial independence.
That doesn’t mean that you couldn’t work on either aesthetic or strength goals while you do other things and have FUN doing it. But, if it’s not bringing you joy, enriching your life, then maybe the balance of lifting to other things in your life needs adjusting first.
This is maybe easy for me to say. Lifting is just a hobby for me. I have no hope of being one of the best. And even as a hobby, it can be pretty selfish. Many have lost relationships or even a marriage over their lifting hobby. I can get my priorities out of balance. With PLing, maybe, maybe I could achieve some minor master’s level glory that nobody would care about but myself. I don’t have an instagram and am bored after about 5 minutes of looking at the selfies of strangers posing in their yoga pants. They have no impact on our real life. There is no imaginary competition going on between you and strangers on the web. You’re WAY stronger, and more curvy than the average muscle chick on instagram anyway, and That’s COOL!! Own that. I know you know this, but it’s good to be reminded. How other women on the internet look has nothing to do with you and your marriage, life, friendships, or successes in anything else. It’s been quoted here recently, but “Comparison if the thief of joy.” T. Roosevelt.
Best to you!