I have a confession: I cheated.

The first step towards recovery is acknowledging your failure or weakness. I have a confession: I cheated. 

The worst thing about cheating is whenever someone cheats, he or she may not acknowledge the probable cause or the “why” of the situation. Well, I am about to do just that.

I cheated on myself.

As you may know, I started a new role back in March with Syngenta as a Seed Advisor Manager (abbreviated SAM), and a few weeks later, I also started training for a bodybuilding competition. At the time, I figured I could easily handle to large life changes happening at the same time. I was wrong. It is challenging, mentally draining and above all, demotivating. I pushed myself too hard in both work and training and am now paying the consequences.
Weihl Farms
View of Weihl Farms in Perrysburg, Ohio from the pasture.
One week ago. Just a bum look.
Over Memorial Day weekend, I went home to Ohio to see family and friends. This was the first time going home since Christmas. Yes, I know. I am crazy. I should have gone back home before now. At the time, I didn’t see the need. Now, I do. To have life balance, you cannot work all the time. It is not healthy. Some might argue “I enjoy my work and am passionate about it”. So am I! But, you know what? I have other priorities and life passions that I need to prioritize sometimes. I had not been doing that. I have concluded this as the cause of my cheating.
I planned a meeting with my Seed Advisors the week after Memorial Day. The focus of the meeting was to share updates on planting progress, agronomic updates, discuss tactics on how to continue relationship building through summer and talk about programs and business settlement details that will play a great importance in the coming weeks. We held the meeting on Thursday and I collaborated with some other Syngenta employees to split the talking points. The meeting was fine and my Seed Advisors expressed they had some takeaways. However, I think it sucked. 
chocolate chip Oreo stuffed cookies
The evil chocolate chip Oreo stuffed cookies.
I was not as prepared as I should have been and overall, it seemed like a mediocre sales meeting. I cheated on myself. I did not prepare like I should have and part of that was because I went home the weekend before the meeting. My thoughts and emotions were in disarray. I did not have my head in the game.
That same day, I had a setback in my training progress. I baked chocolate chip Oreo stuffed cookies for my customers. When I got home after the meeting, I was feeling sorry for myself. What did I do? Ate three cookies. At the time, they tasted good and helped me jump an emotional hurdle. However, the sugar high fell quickly. That evening, I was not just mentally disappointed in myself, but my stomach was upset from my earlier weakness. I cheated on myself again. 

What I learned from my failure.

Healthy FoodIn both the perceived failed sales meeting and breaking my training protocol, I cheated on myself. However, I was not the only one who suffered. I cheated on my family and friends at home, my sales team, my customers and my bodybuilding coach. Why? Emotional overload and human weakness. I am human. Even though I wish to be a superhero in action and appearance, I am not invincible. Can you relate? 
By acknowledging where I failed, I am can pick myself up and improve for next time. It is now June and there is a lot of stuff to plan and prepare for work in the next few months. I am also 11 weeks out from my competition. Time sure flies! Now, I must value my time more wisely than ever, in both respects. 
Don’t let obstacles or failures get the best of you. Learn from them and move forward. As humans, that is all we can do. Do you have other perspectives on cheating and overcoming challenges and hard times? How can you share your experiences so others can learn too?
Please share input by commenting. Let’s hold one another accountable and help us as humans acknowledge our cheats, analyze them and move forward as superheroes. 
Note: feel free to add me on SnapChat and see some funny mirror selfies like the one below.
Username: carolinescues
Be a superhero. Even with funny faces and SnapChat captions.

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