My only resolution for 2013 has been to Take Care Of Me. Take Care Of Me is a life philosophy more than it is a selfish hobby. When I’m happy, I’m my best self. It’s that simple. So why not devote more time to being genuinely happy?
January is done and with one month behind me, I felt an update was in order. Here’s my take on how the first month of Take Care Of Me went.
Lesson Learned #1: Make it work – One of the best things I did this past month was to identify the ways I set myself up for both failure and success. For example, I’m amazing at prepping work week lunches and dinners and eating super healthy during the week but then somehow the weekend becomes a food free for all. So, we tackled that issue. Along with our Whole Foods Experiment, this month came conscious weekend meal planning. Yes, it involved some meals out (more conscious/health choices here too) but it also involved a lot more meals made at home. Another thing that makes me feel super successful is spending time on the weekend to set up my week’s worth of blog entries. This is huge for me. If blog entries for the week aren’t lined up on the weekend I will make all kinds of excuses why I need to be at home to finish them, and then fart around at home instead of working on them. It’s a crappy excuse and makes me feel like a failure. Last week I was able to go to a craft class, have dinner with friends, go to the gym, get my annual cleaning at the dentist, and go to a BC hockey game, all after work and without hesitation. That felt super good. The other thing I experimented with this month was going to the gym before work. It definitely involves a lot of pre-planning, scheduling, and packing up everything I need for the day but it’s been so beneficial to me. I feel so accomplished all before 8AM! It’s definitely something I plan to continue doing.
Lesson Learned #2: Make lists – For me, list making is essential to prioritizing and getting things done. I make them on my phone (I love the Reminders and Evernote apps), on paper, on post its, on the back of junk mail – you name it. Making lists isn’t just about being productive it’s also about writing down what is important to me. Whether it’s a book I want to read, recipe I want to try, or blog I want to look up, being reminded to take the time to keep my eyes open in the world also makes me happy.
Lesson Learned #3: Find a silver lining – Finding a silver lining is all about making the best of the crap you are obligated to do. I would love to not have to work, eat healthy, commute, or work out everyday but these are life essentials that can’t be avoided. Why not make them a little bit better by finding the good in them? This month my silver linings were using my juicer, watching Arrested Development on the elliptical, listening to podcasts on the train (bless you, How Was Your Week With Julie Klausner), and keeping my office clean.
Lesson Learned #4: Learn to let it go – Sometimes when I have an eat day I chalk my whole month up as one giant screw up and let it totally derail me. I have been working really hard on not letting that kind of thinking trap me. I recognize that sometimes I need a break, I eat a turkey club with 10 slices of bacon and a ton of mayo, and I move on. Letting go, in general, also means staying in the present moment. For example, not thinking about work when I’m at home, not thinking about all the things I need to do after work during the day, or forgetting about a tough conversation or awkward social encounter.
January Conclusions: This month I have been the happiest, healthiest, and least stressed I have been in probably 6 months. I have lost, and maintained, 8 lbs. during the month of January. I feel like my finances are in a good place and we already filed our taxes. I have spent way more time with my girlfriends and that is huge for me.
I find that the more I genuinely feel good – good eating, restful sleep, using my time wisely, keeping my to do list and inbox in check, spending time with people I really care about – I am much less preoccupied with my shortcomings and how much better I might feel if I were skinnier, smarter, faster, more productive.
So, 2013 has been pretty good so far. Stay tuned!