Test Your Limits. What does that mean to you? Working out harder than ever before? Eating a spicy dish to see how much you can handle? Pushing publish on that post you’ve written? Quitting one job and finding another? Making a relationship change? Jumping off that ledge and seeing where you land?

I’m taking baby steps to test my limits. I’m not much on resolutions and all that but….here’s what I’ve been doing…

  • I want to become a certified snowboard instructor. Why? Simply because it’s something I want to accomplish. I want to know I have a skill level that has been tested and evaluated. In order to become certified, you actually have to instruct. Go figure. I have taught a few lessons and this one…..it was incredible. Best little student who made my week. This student was amazing and awesome and definitely made me feel like I’m a track I want to be on. I’ve decided I’m going after training for Level II certification as soon as I pass Level I.
  • Recently I’ve written about having chronic headaches. I still have a headache pretty much all day and night. Bright lights – sunlight – fluorescent lighting – anything shiny – seem to aggravate whatever is going on. Therefore I wear sunglasses. Pretty much all the time. I’ve recently stopped allowing people to comment or make what I consider to be rude comments about my sunglasses. I offer no apology. If someone asks what’s up I say I’m sensitive to bright lighting. If they push I either share more or simply walk away. That may not seem like a big deal. For me – the ultimate people pleaser – it’s a HUGE limit I’m working on. I don’t owe anyone an explanation.
  • I’ve started to look for jobs within industries that are exciting to me. I may not know exactly how to perform every step of every job but I’m wiling to learn-excited to learn-about pretty much anything. I’m finding my way back to what I love best – teaching, instructing, and developing processes. I love dealing with people and fixing problems. I am good with people and delivering a solid product whether it be a snowboard lesson, a math lesson, or written words – all come down to dealing with people. It’s exciting to find out how much my cup is filled when I’ve made someone’s day a bit better.
  • I’m maintaining a better balance in the current jobs I have and love. I’ve made it a point to stop over-scheduling myself. (Okay, yes, last week before vacation I may possible have had delusions of grandeur that I could work all three jobs, see my family, clean my house, keep in touch with friends, support everyone who needs support, eat healthy foods, and take care of myself properly without sleep or free time. But hey, at least I recognize what I did to myself and I know the reasons why.)

Guess what inevitably happens when you test your limits?

Failure.

Until you try, you’ll never know. I’m learning to accept failure and learn from it. It’s time to not take each failure so brutally personally. One person simply cannot please everyone all the time. Even if you try until you make yourself crazy. Trust me, I’ve tried.

Lately I’ve stuck my head in the sand and don’t deal with things that are challenging. I use my headache or migraine (whatever the day brings) as an excuse. No more. I’m testing the limit of how much I can make myself live the life I want to live. Each and every single day.