Mario Villalobos

Successful Limits

For the past few weeks, as I’ve been doing more and more, I’ve been sleeping less and less because I’m still waking up at 5 AM every morning. I’ve been wanting to sleep in, but my desire to stay on schedule and show up to do my work is stronger than my desire to stay in my warm bed longer than I have to. I love what I’m doing, and I want to be awake to do as much of it as possible, but at the same time, I feel like I should give myself some sort of break every once in a while.

When I first started this blog, I gave myself strict limits on what I could and couldn’t do so I can focus on bettering myself as much as possible. I made huge mistakes that I hated myself for, and all I wanted to do was get away from that person and toward someone else. I’m definitely not the same person I was when I made those mistakes, but instead of relaxing those limits I set on my self, I’ve added to and increased those limits. I don’t know if I can function as productively and as focused as I am today without limits.

I am afraid of falling back to my old ways. Even if I don’t consciously think about it on a daily basis, every now and then, whenever I’m at the grocery store or whenever I’m feeling lonely or for some other reason, I think about relaxing and doing something I’ve been depriving myself of. That fear exists, and I don’t know what to do with it. I don’t think I’m being hard on myself, even though that’s what it may sound like. I’m thriving with these self-imposed limits, and I love everything I’m doing.

The challenge that I’m having is not caring what other people think. Other than those who read this blog, nobody I know knows what I do every day, and I’m afraid they might find me boring if they find out. I’ve been especially thinking about this as I’ve slowly built up a few friendships at work. I’ve told a few people a rough sketch of what I do after work, and I’m always afraid of revealing more for fear of being seen as boring. That fear is real and strong and very, very stupid.

No matter what anyone else thinks, I’m not boring. I’m focused. I’m showing up every day and doing my job. Every limit I’ve imposed on myself has been imposed for a reason, and I’m thriving because of them. I’m a writer who writes thousands of words a day now. I’m in the best shape of my life, and I’m only getting better every day. I started reading Don Quixote this week, and soon, I’m going to read more fiction from authors I’ve never read before all in an effort to be a better writer. In the end, that’s all I want to be.

By giving myself limits, I’ve been able to focus myself on the essentials, and I’m living the best life I’ve ever lived in my life. It’s hard, and I don’t get as much sleep as I used to, but I’m happy and loving every minute of every day I’m alive. That, to me, is a sign of success.