Yesterday I mentioned watching a TED women talk on time management. Another thing that came out of it was how do we find the time. She mentioned that it’s not necessarily that we don’t have the time but that our priorities are wrong. She gave an example of a woman who had a burst boiler and managed to find 7 hours over a week or so for various repairmen to come and fix the problem. However if she was asked to find those 7 hours for something else it’s most probably the woman would have said she’d never be able to fit that into her life. It’s a case of re-prioritising.
We then did an exercise on what we want over the next 12 months in our personal life, work life and with relationships and then talked it out with a colleague as to what is stopping us. I’m stuck with my weight loss. I’m doing the same walking, I’m eating the same things that helped me lose the initial 18lbs but for the last few weeks I’m going up and down by 2lbs and feel like I’m running in circles. I want to make some changes but being brutally honest I haven’t.
I haven’t found the time to look through cookbooks for some fresh ideas despite reviewing a few on my sister blog. I haven’t changed my exercise routine. I have 3 series (seasons) worth of those 5 minute exercise routines saved on my sky + (like a Tivo) that I tell myself I haven’t got time to do. Yes I tell myself I don’t have 5 minutes to exercise! And this talk brought home just how much I’m lying to myself and how I’ve stopped prioritising my health and well-being again.
I need to walk 9346 steps per day for the rest of the month to beat last months final amount. Health professionals recommend 10k steps per day. Last night I’d got to 6500-ish and decided it was enough as the day was over. It was 6pm! I had 4 more hours until bedtime, maybe more. I was prioritising TV and reading over my health so I got my trainers on and walked around my estate. I finished the day on 11200 steps; nearly double my earlier amount. And I was still home again by 6.45. It’s been an interesting little wake up call.
Wow I’ve managed 100 blogs in a row. That’s quite the milestone and 100 days into my 365 daily blog challenge. I’ve been thinking about a review of the last 100 days and any changes I can spot. I spoke yesterday about a lot of them.
When I started I worried about what I’d be able to write and if I could keep it up. By focusing on me and the changes I want to see I’ve found the content comes easy. I was worried I’d have an over reliance on memes when I got stuck but I don’t think I’ve done that very often.
I’ve been able through daily writing to really look at my behaviours and see the changes I want to make and actually do them. I think there’s also a level of honesty in the blogs that wouldn’t be there if I had simply kept a journal. It’s easy to lie to yourself but less so when someone else is to read your notes whether that is 5 people or 5000. You never know who may have similar issues or looking for similar answers. So by lying you’d not just be fooling yourself but others too. It’s not always been pleasant to see my negatives in black and white but it has helped to start the process of change.
I’ve also learnt to see the big picture. For example I’ve lost maybe 2lbs this month after last months excellent start. Past life me would have seen that and given up, probably eating several of those giant share bags of chocolate whilst doing so. Yet looking back over the daily blogs I can see my foot steps are going to be higher this month than last month even with 3 less days. I’m still chocolate and fizzy pop free. I’ve had some amazing feedback at work. I started my Flirtology and conversations. 2lbs is disappointing but looking at the big picture I’ve achieved an awful lot over the last 3 months and seeing it written down stops my negative thinking.
I’m looking to the next 100 days. I’ve had a chat with my manager today so there’s lots of development action to happen. I’ve got more conversations to have with people. I’ve more sugar to avoid and steps to walk and I really should get my act together and do some proper exercise. Plus I want to challenge myself by going to some new places. I’m quite excited to see what changes occur this time
The title of this blog came about after a question was raised in one of my FB groups: What was your biggest achievement in February?
For me it was simply surviving. February has the anniversary of 4 deaths. It’s also the time when 3 years ago my debt problems were at their worst, my house was falling down around my ears and I nearly lost it. It’s also the time a few years ago when my health was at its worst causing me to give up a job I loved.
So the month usually hits me hard. Last year I had to move my annual leave forward as I needed some me time to deal with everything. Up until the end of last year my normal method of dealing with anything was to eat. Big share bags of sweets to myself every day, pizzas, cake and so much more. I ate away pain
This year I tried to brace myself for the moods swings and I pretty much managed it. I found support from my management line that I’ve not had in many years. I have my friends and family to talk to.
I had a few biscuits. I had a weird urge for some Tunnocks teacakes (marshmallowy biscuits). I also had a pizza and some fish and chips. I did spend a lot of money on food but I still haven’t bought any chocolate or fizzy drinks so while I still have things to work on I didn’t resort to many of my emotional eating foods.
I kept up to my footsteps, I practised my conversations and visibility. I’ve practised mindful eating and I tried to get my sunshine in whenever the weather was good. I’m really proud of myself for not falling onto the worst of my bad habits.
I’m looking forward to March. I’ve only one death anniversary (at the end) but spring is on the way and I have my new habits to continue. I’ve proven to myself I don’t need my negative behaviours now and that I can deal with whatever stresses me positively.
I do love my self help books and in Be Happy by Rebecca Ray she mentions Joy; creating joy, spreading joy, sharing joy. So in honour of that today I am going to do a list of all the wonderful things that have happened this week:
It started off bad as I’m still going through that up and down mood swing from death anniversaries however it’s wonderful to know you have the support of your team leader when being a ‘mardy arse’
I’m still asking questions of strangers and it’s turning into some amazing conversations. I actually think having the intention to talk to people has possibly changed my body language because people I think are also approaching me more too
I practised ‘visibility’. I stood up in front of my full team meeting to offer feedback on a team building exercise. Normally I leave these things to others so I’m not noticed. AND I went and stood at the head of the table to do it rather than read off some notes. MY senior-est manager also singled me out for praise on handling a difficult piece of work and I was given a £25 voucher in reward of that.
I had good conversations with team mates; sharing stories and thoughts I normally keep to myself or my closest friends
I have really stepped up with my walking this week, beating my target every day
I had an impromptu trip to the park to enjoy some (cold but) wonderful sunshine.
I put out to the universe I’d like an abundance of money and have so far this week found 29p. I probably should be more specific next time….
My acts of kindness was to go with my friend to the hospital for an MRI scan and giving a small child my duck food at the local park to feed the birds with
Four of my too small work shirts now fit
I don’t think that’s bad for 6 days (I’m starting from Monday). The power of positive thinking brings wonderful results 🙂
Today I went to say ‘hi’ to a colleague who I haven’t seen for a few weeks. Last month her mum died so I just wanted to see if she was ok. And we got talking, as you do. Funny how you can spend time with people and think you know them but then you reveal something of yourself and discover a whole new raft of personal information.
We started with what she was doing at the minute (EU regulations, very dull) moved onto historical dramas and then back to work where she mentioned thinking about trying for promotion. In the spirit of flirtology and having conversations with people I mentioned my development course. She gave me some interesting advice on my short term plans. As she is the grade above me it was good to get a different perspective.
But then I mentioned my degree. I kind of talk about this without talking about it much. By that I put a few bits on Facebook when it’s assignment time but otherwise don’t say too much. Apart from this blog and to maybe 2 people I’ve never mentioned the post graduation adult eduction plan. But she’s a nice woman to chat to and I found myself saying these things out loud.
Amazingly she has already followed this plan! We’re similar in age and while I started this journey at 39 she was probably about 30 however the principal was the same. An older adult looking at changing her career goals and then working towards the one I’ve chosen. For her, she did it part time alongside the civil service job and after a while she realised she couldn’t afford to leave the main job and after some curriculum changes she decided that was the one to let go.
But as we discussed, better to have the go, learn from it and decide if it is what you really want than get to retirement and have regrets. She had some good ideas for how to pursue my post-grad qualifications and the best routes for it. I even got some advice on the best uni’s to look at.
It’s funny how just a little question to pass the time can open up your whole world. I now have someone who understands my study woes as a working adult and the idea of having to work 2 part time jobs as study which is what I should expect in 2020.
So score another in the win box for flirtology and asking a question. Nope she wasn’t a stranger but engaging in a conversation rather than simply walking past has made all the difference to my day and left me feeling the motivation to keep going.
I’ve mentioned what an up and down week it’s been but we end it with two positives that make me see the big picture and a reason for continuing my journey.
I was craving carbs and sugary treats so badly last week. I gave in and had a pizza on the Wednesday and has some biscuits on Thursday. Yesterday I got up off my but and got in around 11,000 steps. Standing on the scales this morning and I’ve actually lost 1lb taking my total to 1 stone 1lb (15lbs). This is significant as every time I’ve done an official diet I’ve lost between 10-12 lbs on average then given up and either put the weight on or gained it back plus more. The none diet has brought about better results!
So what to take away from this? I can have the occasional treat when I feel like I need it. I do’t have to beat myself up about it or feel guilty as it may actually be doing me some good. It’s all in the moderation. I’m back on the plan that is working and getting my sugars naturally from fruit.
The second positive outcome is my skin. Up until recently I had terrible panda eyes. The skin around my eyes is quite thin and dark. Looking online for explanations and solutions I was told it’s my age and the only way to combat this is with tubs of expensive creams. I can’t afford that.
However the 44 days without caffeine, carbonated drinks seems to have done the same job! My eyes still aren’t perfect and the fact that skin thins as we age is probably true but there’s a definite lightening and I no longer look like I’m surviving on 2 hours sleep per night. And not once did I need to buy an expensive jar of chemicals.
I do wonder now though how far down the google search the information on how diet can affect your skin has been pushed by big pharma companies that just want to make money? Maybe one day I’ll do a bit of research on that but for now I’m happy that I’m noticing more than baggy clothes 🙂