I love planning things. I love goals. I love calendars, and schedules, and thinking through all of the steps I would need to complete in order to achieve my ideal lifestyle.
What usually happens is that I see the big picture that I want to achieve, and then try to do it all at once. Of course, it becomes too much, even when I have an entire summer break, and I get discouraged and slowly but surely fall back into my old routines, forgetting my amazing plans.
Obviously, this isn’t a very good technique then, is it? 🙂 It’s so interesting, because I used to be incredibly disciplined – when I was a teenager actually. Isn’t that so backwards? At one time I was a vegetarian who exercised diligently 3-4x a week (cardio and yoga separately) weighed about 130 pounds, didn’t drink, didn’t smoke, meditated *daily*, got enough sleep, and didn’t even have facebook. This was between the ages of 16 and 22. Crazy, right? I’m not saying I want a more restrictive lifestyle, I’m just saying I used to have the willpower to say “no” or “sure, I want to do that now, but it’s not worth it because ______ is my belief, or goal.” I used to believe that it was worth it to stick to these activities because, overall it would improve my quality of life, and unlike now, I actually lived that way.
So what happened? Indulgence, I guess. I started with – well, wouldn’t it feel good to just relax instead? And in many ways I think I needed to let up a little. My social life was seriously lacking. It’s just unsettling how much a little bit of extra relaxation has turned to complete lack of motivation. The fact that I work 50-60 hours a week during the school year doesn’t help much either, but that’s not an excuse for living a lifestyle I’m not proud of, that doesn’t energize me.
I’m going to do something my therapist affectionately calls, a “throw-up” list. 🙂 You’re about to see all of my lifestyle change goals, in no particular order. Feel free to skip this – it’s likely to be pretty boring.
Lose 15 pounds, exercise 3-4 times a week, daily activity that is the “foundation” for my daily experience – be it yoga, meditation, or walking to work – learn Hungarian at an advanced conversational level – this isn’t totally random, my husband is Hungarian and as you know, I feel at home in Hungary – 7 hours of sleep, stick to my monthly budget, spend more active time with my dog, walk or bike to work – never drive, drink wine or liquor – avoid beer, be myself 100% of the time, – avoid obsessively reading other people’s body language and modifying my behavior accordingly – journal, learn new things, plan meals – make grocery lists and vague weekly menus, take care of my appearance – clothes, make-up, hygiene (not obsessively), routinely clean my house, classroom and car so that the mess doesn’t become overwhelming, travel often and sometimes completely on my own, choose the right way, not the shortcut, help others whenever I can, write, build-up my “chosen family” support system and depend on my family less, and I think I could keep going, but I won’t. 🙂
Between school ending and leaving for this vacation, I focused on working out about 20 minutes a day, eating better using MyFitnessPal as a guide, and following a simple cleaning routine. Even though I’m now on vacation, I want to keep moving forward, but I will have a different focus. (It would be wasteful to pass up tasty desserts and food that are unique to Hungary!)
So, for this week, I will focus on these 5 points. Let me know if you think I’m still overdoing it. Moderation is something I struggle with!
1. 20 minutes of cardio.
2. Brief yoga or meditation
3. Almost daily journaling or blogging
4. A few minutes of organizing
5. Careful with what I eat (i.e. snacking less, drinking wine or liquor rather than beer)
I love this one: