I came across this from blogger Ali Edwards.
What do you do with your one little word?
You live with it. You invite it into you life. You let it speak to you. You might even follow where it leads. There are so many possibilities. (quoted from Ali Edwards)
I like the idea and so far (this week) it’s helped me to get back on track. My OLW is…
I need to change my lifestyle, my habits, my mind, body and soul and when I’ve found myself struggling to get up and go for a walk or jump on the exercise bike instead of crawling back underneath the duvet I’ve said (aloud to myself) Change, when I’ve found myself reaching for that bottle of wine I said it to myself, when I felt like buying junk food instead of eating the lunch I had with me I said it. So far it’s working as a mantra to stop myself from slipping back into my usual bad habit. 2014, my year, my word. Change.
What’s your word?
If you’re coming across this post and wondering what it’s all about take a look back through my previous posts and #1 will explain everything.
The full list of 365 Thought Provoking Questions To Ask Yourself is here.
As we head rapidly towards the end of 2013, the beginning of 2014 and the inevitable New Years Day hangover I thought it might be about time I got on with at least one or two of the projects that I’ve started but never finished. I started this back in 2012. It was supposed to be a question a day for a year but I’m a little behind (if only that was true of my body *sigh*) so now it’s just a list of questions that I’ll answer for myself when I feel like it.
That’s going to be my attitude in 2014. When I feel like it! Not in a ‘couldn’t care less, no goals, no objectives, attitude’ sort of way but I have always put pressure on myself to achieve too much too quickly or to try to do everything everyone else needs me to do for them and the end result is always the same. I finish nothing, I stress myself out, I feel like a failure and therefore I am. No More! This year will be the year of saying No! This year will be the year of if it’s not important then it doesn’t matter if it doesn’t get done. My life will not suffer if I don’t answer a question every day. I will not burn in hell if I don’t take a photograph every day and if I eat one (or two) too many calories, or have a glass of wine on a weekday it is not the end of my lifestyle change, just as long as it doesn’t become the norm.
Q6. What do you wish you spent more time doing five years ago?
It’s a cliche but I wish I’d spent more time being active. Being healthy isn’t just about what you eat but about what you do. I wish I’d walked more, spent less time in the car, more time out with my camera. Less time stuck indoors in front of a computer and more time outdoors. I find it hard to motivate myself to go for a walk but once I’m out there I love it and I feel much better afterwards. No more wishing, 2014 is the year of walking.
Well, it’s been a while since I blogged, nearly 4 months, I have neglected my blog. Mind you, it’s not just my blog I’ve neglected
- Healthy eating
- My relationships (Man/friends/myself
- My Sanity
- My workload…..
The list goes on. I don’t know how to break this cycle of procrastination then guilt then procrastination because I feel guilty so instead I just carry on and wash all that guilt down with a liberal dose of red wine.
There is a big, big birthday coming up early next year. One of those birthdays that makes you look back and reflect on life, where you are, what you’ve achieved, the people in your life, the relationships you have (and the ones’s you have lost) and when you’ve done with the looking back and working out what you still want/need to do then the reality of how little time you (may) have left to do it really hits you.
Then I panic, I feel guilty that I haven’t done more by now, that I have wasted too much of my life, too much time and money on things (and people) that didn’t matter and were pointless and destructive. The reality of an old age without savings, our own home, financial security or any real plan of where we will be or how we might get there overwhelms me and I find myself unable to do anything so I procrastinate, make useless lists, write a bolt post, sort something out, tidy up – drink!
It’s also a birthday that’s likely to bring on now, or in the near future, a whole raft of unwelcome hormones, hot flushes and the like, maybe they are already there lurking and destroying what little focus and tolerance I had in me, who knows?
I will, as usual, start 2014 on a diet. There’s no point in pretending I’m going to do anything about my weight this side of the new year – there are way too many excuses to eat and drink between now and January 1st. I did ok for a while but it all went to pot in the last four months and although I haven’t put it all back on I’ve done plenty of damage.
I need some order in my life, I need to sort my head out, because I’m not sure where it is at the moment, it’s in a bad place with dark thoughts and filled with anger and frustration bouncing around in all directions with no focus and no aim and until I fix that I can’t hope to fix anything else.
I’ll try to blog a little more before the end of this year and I hope that future posts might feel more positive.
I’ve never been big on self help, inspirational, fluffy websites but I like this one. I get the updates sent to my inbox and every now and then one of them really strikes a chord. This one did. 25 Excuses You Need To Drop To Be Happy. I know the only person that ever really holds me back is me and I’ve been working really hard on that over the last few years. I’m still a work in progress and I hope that will always be the case, we should all keep growing, learning and evolving but I’m sure I’m not alone in making excuses for my shortfalls in the past. No. 1,2,9,10 and 12 stood out for me. Have a read – what’s your excuse?
Ever feel like something is holding you back from happiness?
You aren’t sure why, but every so often you find yourself saying “no” when you really want to say “yes.” You turn down critical opportunities that you know you should be grabbing with both arms. You pretend not to notice how your most cherished dreams are languishing on the sidelines.
Over the years, perhaps without your conscious knowledge, you have adopted some serious self-limiting beliefs that have secretly sabotaged your best efforts of personal growth. If you pay close attention to your self-talk, these beliefs will reveal themselves in the form of excuses. What you need to do is catch yourself in the act and replace these excuses with positive alternatives.
Hello. Remember me?
I haven’t been around for a while, well not here anyway, not on my blog, and not on Weight Watchers or to the gym or sticking to any of my good intentions. Nothing new there then.
Well, maybe just a little new. The reasons for my absence are different this time, or at least some of them are. I’ve been having fun! The same old problems are still lurking, stress, procrastination, being overwhelmed by work, life and never seeming to quite get the whole time-management juggling act quite right but there’s also been fun. This is an important development because over the last ten years it’s seemed like there hasn’t been nearly enough of it. Don’t misunderstand, I’m not miserable, I have a lovely man, a (mainly) happy home life, and great friends but we (the man and I) have retreated a bit over the last few years. We’ve settled into a life, (no, let’s be honest – a rut) of work, come home, eat, watch TV go to bed, more often than not hours apart from each other, my old friend insomnia still likes to visit regularly.
We talk about moving every year. Lets go back to a City, or at least near to a City, or at least somewhere that has public transport, a pub we can walk to, life, culture, art, live music, a little chaos and most importantly our friends. My closest friends are a scattered bunch, all over the UK and more recently to other countries so it’s a been a bit of a binge then a drought. When we get together the distance mean we always have to stay over, which is great. We spend weekends together which inevitably, no matter what else is planned, means eating and drinking, usually too much. Then we go for weeks, over the winter it can feel like months, before we socialise with anyone again. The remoteness of our home in relation to friends, transport and venues means we have to plan ahead, over the five years we’ve lived here we’ve missed the simple pleasure of an unplanned catch up, the text/twitter/phone call early evening to see if we fancy a drink, the early evening walk to the pub, the last minute invites. It’s all too easy to get home from work and open a bottle of wine, unwind and kick back and once we do that it’s taxi or nothing because we’re too far from the village to walk, there’s no bus and we can’t drive because we’ve had a drink so we stay in, and drink more.
We talked about moving last year but couldn’t decide where. I lived in London for many years and still miss it a little and it was a thought that played on my mind – go back? The question was go back to what? Most of the friends I had in London have moved away although in a City it’s always easier to meet new people and make new friends just by virtue of the fact that there are more people to get to know. The biggest problem with London was the cost, after a disasterous foray into running a business with two (now ex) friends a few years ago the equity from the sale of my old flat in London was long since gone, eaten up in buying an existing business and then trying, [unsuccessfully] to keep it afloat we’re stuck in the no deposit (but could afford the mortgage) trap of renting until we can work out how to raise a deposit or win the lottery and the rental prices in London are stupid at the moment. The other problem was a small matter of neither of us having jobs in London and although I might have got away with it as my job is field based he would have had to move to London then commute back to Hampshire until he could find a new position and no matter which way round you do that journey the cost is prohibitive.
So we decided to stay. We decided to stay and to give ourselves a kick up the backside and get out and do things, make the most of living in a beautiful rural area and get out at weekends and start enjoying a social life again. It worked. Over the last few months we’ve had a great time, nothing flash, no jetsetting, we’ve visited our friends more, we’ve gone on road trips, walked, taken photographs, even managed to get out of the country together for a week, which is only the second time we’ve done that since we’ve been together, and it’s been great. We’ve both, finally, come back to life and are happier than we’ve been for a long time, hell I even ran (well jogged) the Race For Life – me jogging!
I’ve had a few weeks now of letting loose, a holiday with him, a weekend away without him, a well overdue girlie catch up weekend planned and lots of nice food and nice wine and it’s taken a toll on my weight loss so now it’s time to get back on track but without getting back in a rut.
The hardest challenge is trying to eat healthily and drink less without feeling like I’m missing out and in the past in order to stay in control of my weight I’ve avoided eating out so I’m not tempted by all the indulgent treats on the menu and then stayed in been miserable and drank instead! Somewhere there has to be that elusive Happy Medium.
I’m starting out with a couple of small goals this week to get back into the swing of things. I need to find a balance between enjoying life and changing my lifestyle. I know it’s there somewhere.
So this weeks objectives…
1. No alcohol from Monday to Friday.
2. Go to the gym twice.
That’s it. No mountains to climb just a track to get back on and find my way again.
Catch up soon.
In my quest to lead a healthier lifestyle and find my inner slim I often wonder how much where I live plays in my eating habits. This photo essay by Time Magazine is a fascinating insight into what the world eats.Maybe I should follow this up sometime with a photograph of everything our little household eats and drinks for a week?
I’m sure I’m not alone in struggling to give up smoking as much as I struggle to lose weight.
I was a late starter, I didn’t have my first cigarette until I was in my late twenties but it didn’t take long to get a grip on me. I’ve given up in the past, not that long ago I managed over two years without smoking then stupidly I thought I might be able to be a ‘social smoker’ and had a couple over an evening with friends at the pub.
For me being a social smoker is akin to being a social alcoholic. I can’t have one, once I do I’m back on it again very quickly. I gave up at the beginning of this year and then cracked again a couple of months ago so I’m battling my nicotine demons yet again. If I’m being honest I don’t really like smoking. I don’t like the way it makes me smell, I don’t like the bad breath that inevitably comes with it or the overdose on polo mints to hide it and I definitely don’t like the cost. However it does suppress my appetite. When I’m smoking I don’t feel as hungry and it’s easy to replace the times I might be tempted to snack with a smoke instead.
Consequently when I decide to stop smoking I replace the times I would smoke with a snack and the weight piles on so am I strong enough to do both at the same time or should I concentrate on losing weight then hope that I’ll be determined enough not to put it back on again that I’ll be more disciplined with my eating habits and not revert to food as a nicotine substitute?
It’s hard. I’ve gone three days without a cigarette now and already I’ve drink more this week than I have in a long time. Not to the level I used to but I’ve had three bottles of wine this week which has put me way over my weekly total. I haven’t tracked for the last two days because I know I’ve gone over and I can’t focus on very much beyond not having a cigarette. Drinking also stops me from caving into tobacco in as much as I live in the middle of nowhere, it’s impossible to walk to the shops so if there’s not tobacco in the house and I have a couple of drinks I can’t drive and go and get any.
It’s Weigh In day tomorrow and at best I hope to have STS but being realistic I’m expecting a (hopefully small) gain. If I’ve gained it will be the first time since I started WW again 13 weeks ago so it’s not the end of the world. A new working week and a new WW week starts tomorrow so if I can get my focus back on tracking and sticking to the plan without giving in to cigarettes and get through next week then I know I will have cracked both.
This is going to be a very long week – wish me luck.
If you’re coming across this post and wondering what it’s all about take a look back through my previous posts and #1 will explain everything.
365 Thought Provoking Questions To Ask Yourself, Q4. The full list is here.
5. What life lesson did you learn the hard way?
I’ve been thinking about this one for a while. There are so, so many things I’ve learned the hard way in life. I am often my own worst enemy and have a tendency towards self-destructiveness that even now I struggle to overcome.
Probably the most important lesson learned (and still learning) the hard way is not to procrastinate. I don’t know why I do it, it’s not because I’m lazy, when I’m focused on a task nothing gets in my way and I will work hard to achieve what I need no matter what, or how long, it takes but unless I’m under pressure I can’t seem to get myself motivated to start. Consequently I put myself under pressure by leaving so many things to the last minute then having to work twice as hard to catch up and reach deadlines.
In a lot of ways I feel like I’m scared of success. If I have nothing left to struggle with then what am I going to do with myself? I get incredibly passionate about things when I’m feeling stressed or pressured and that drives me to achieve but when things are nice and happy and easy I just drift and get nowhere. Before I know it I’ve drifted so much that I’m under pressure again and the cycle starts over.
If I relate this to being overweight I’ve almost got to where I want to be so many times, usually about a stone away from feeling confident about my looks then I give up and start drinking too much again and eating all the wrong things and before I know it I’m beating myself up because I’ve put the weight back on again and so a new battle begins.
Sometimes I wonder if this a subconscious fear that if I can’t hide behind being fat then I will have to face up to all the other issues I need to deal with. What if I lose all the weight I need to lose and it doesn’t magically transform my life and it isn’t the solution to all the other things that I’ve felt were missing over the years, love, lots of friends, career success, financial security?
In reality I know I already have all of those things, I’ve been with my fiancé for over 6 years now, I have more than enough, really great, friends and I’m finally starting to get a grip on a career path that I love, but I still doubt my own ability. Even when other people tell me how good I am I wonder if they really mean it, are they just being nice? Are they patronising the fat kid? Are they just saying it because they don’t want to be rude?
There’s still that nagging doubt somewhere in the background that makes me think I might not be good enough, sometimes it’s easier not to try than it is to face failure. So the only way to overcome is to just get on with it. I need to push myself harder than I’ve ever done before to stick to the plan and be happy in my own skin, to get myself organised in both work and day to day life so I’m on top of all the things that need to be done and to Eat Those Frogs (click on the link it’ll all make sense).
Lesson over, lesson learned, maybe?