I work with a bunch of over-achieving perfectionists, myself included.
After lunch-time yoga class earlier this week, one of my colleagues commented that her and another colleague were admiring one of my yoga postures enviously during class. They both felt that whilst they were really working hard, sweating to their best, and just feeling satisfied with how far they had stretched their bodies, they simultaneously looked over and saw their colleague (me) in a more advanced, contortionistic pose. ‘You bitch’, I was told enviously in good humour.
I could empathise. It’s not fair that anyone should work so hard, look over and see that there was some other skinny bitch showing off her latest moves in multi-coloured Lycra. And as my colleagues viewed my ability as something just out of reach, it made me think about how we are so often dissatisfied with ourselves, particularly with our bodies and we often forget what we have already achieved in life. Now, for those girls to make it to a lunch time yoga class during a busy work day is no mean feat. Especially for the mums in the group – juggling so much at home and at work, there is often not the time to give ourselves a break. When you want nothing more to sit and vege out over your meal at lunch time, or worse still, perhaps you have to plough through at your desk, we drag ourselves off to the gym at lunch to do something ‘good’ for ourselves, do what we ‘should’ be doing.
So why is that when we do choose something as healthy as yoga as our ‘break’ time that we still can’t even give ourselves the chance to enjoy that without wishing we could do more, and achieve more?
The comment from my colleague made me laugh somewhat ironically. Why? No, not because I am the bitch who can do everything. Sure, I have plenty of natural ability, but sometimes people forget how long I’ve practiced yoga (at times 5-6 days a week for several years), and once upon a time I even worked in the industry. So really, there’s nothing here to brag about. Practice makes perfect and that’s all there is to it. No, what made me laugh was that whilst those girls were beating themselves up over their less glamorous postures, I was busy lost in my own thoughts, remembering a time when 5, 6, 7 years ago I was so much ‘better’ and could do so much more than I can now. Simply feeling as though I couldn’t do enough and failing to see what I already had right in front of me. Feeling exactly as my work mates felt! But thankfully only fleetingly – because as I was fortunate to be promptly served a humble reminder by my lovely colleague that so often when we achieve or have access to great things, we sometimes fail to acknowledge what we already have before we rush to move on and start desiring more.
It’s like the guy waiting for the L90 at the bus stop staring at the bomb of a car he wish he could afford. And the guy driving the bomb wishing he owned the new Mercedes he sees in the dealer’s yard. Sometimes we forget what we already have – which very often in our society is so much – and in failing to see that no matter what we already have, we are so easily enticed into wanting more.
So in the theme of appreciation of what you already have, this humble tomato salad may be the perfect accompaniment to lots of other dishes but it is also a stand out winner on it’s own. If you want to couple it up, it goes nicely with our nourishing pregnancy omelette and it really doesn’t need to achieve much more than that. And please, let’s all give ourselves a break, stop wanting more for just a moment – and appreciate that what we already have really is enough.
- 1 punnet baby/cherry tomatoes
- ¼ red onion, finely diced
- splash of good balsamic vinegar
- 5 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
- olive oil
Quite simply, roast the tomatoes whole in a splash of olive oil, balsamic vinegar and sprinkle some salt on top – we used a coarse celtic sea salt and didn’t bother grinding it up. Roast in 180˚C hot oven for about 50-55 minutes or until the tomato skins start to shrivel up. Transfer to a small bowl and toss with basil and red onion. Add a touch more oil or vinegar if you please and serve atop some fresh bread, or along with some other sides at a party.
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