Last week I was working on the Happiness Project resolution to “get more exercise.” I did get “more” exercise… though I didn’t quite manage to get to the gym on Thursday, I did go on Wednesday and Friday. This week is going to make it difficult to get to the gym more often, but I am going to go to my yoga class on Friday.
This week, I’m working on the Happiness Challenge resolution of the week: Tackle a Nagging Task. I’ve got three nagging tasks I want to work on this week: Lily’s sweater, my closet, and my grading at school. Getting these things done will require me to be more proactive about using my time wisely… which will hopefully also play into my resolutions to “get more sleep,” and “get more exercise.” Here goes…
Week 2 was marginally better than Week 1. It was BUSY beyond belief, but I was able to stick to a schedule for the most part, and that felt good. I bought a box of scones, which motivated me to get up and out of bed every morning in order to eat one. It’s not the healthiest breakfast in the world… but at 270 calories it’s a heck of a lot better than the Starbucks scone (490 calories) I was buying almost everyday. I can only fight so many battles at a time.
Last week, I was excited to hear two of my favorite authors speak. On Wednesday I saw Gretchen Rubin of http://www.happiness-project.com speak at the Brookline Booksmith. Her book, The Happiness Project is on my to-read list this year, and along with many other readers of her blog, I’ve embarked on my own Happiness Project. I started out trying to do this on my own, but in the end, I think I’ll be more successful if I follow her suggestions. At least for now. So I’m a couple of weeks behind, but since I’ve already worked on “getting more sleep,” I’m going to jump into “get more exercise” this week. Here’s where the other author comes in. On Friday, I got to hear Elizabeth Gilbert speak. She’s amazing, and said a lot of really interesting (and funny) things, but the thing that was most applicable to my own life was her goal of doing something physical with her body everyday. I think that is a helpful way to look at exercise, and I am going to try to incorporate that philosophy into my own life, especially in the spring when it is a little easier! This week, I am going to try to “get more exercise” by going to the gym on Wednesday and Thursday and hitting up my favorite yoga class on Friday.
This week is going to be busy, I’ve got choir practice, voting, dinner plans, my sister’s birthday, and lots on the to-do list on top of this being my observation week, but hopefully I’ve made a plan I can stick to.
School started… parent-teacher conferences happened… and I made a quick exit off the resolution bandwagon. Does that mean my resolutions were worthless? I don’t think so… and I don’t think it even means that I can’t be successful at keeping them. It just means that last week was impossible.
Still, there were some small successes. I ended last week by dragging myself to the Friday yoga class that I love to go to but never seem to make. I did not want to go. I wanted to go home, curl up in bed ostensibly with a book but more than likely with 15 minutes of TV before I conked out. Since the rest of the week had been such a failure though, and since I desperately need to start making the most of my gym membership, I went. And I felt so good afterwards! My back, which had tightened up from a week of stress and cold weather loosened and just that made the trip worth it. On Saturday, I planned out a week’s worth of healthy meals and managed to bring the grocery list to church so that I could actually purchase the requisite food.
And then Monday hit… I started the day by reading a bit of the Sunday paper over breakfast. What a nice way to start the day! However, midway through the day my good intentions had fallen by the wayside. Still… there’s another day tomorrow!
I’m refreshing my resolutions for the month of January. (I know, I know, it’s only day 3!) Anyway, I’m finding the ones I’ve got too broad… I need specifics. So, January…
1. Get up earlier (the ultimate goal of the “get up earlier” resolution is to start going to the gym a few mornings a week. That’s February’s goal… I figured we could start simply in January).
2. Go to bed earlier.
3. Take my multivitamin.
4. Make a weekly plan. Reevaluate daily.
5. Make a weekly meal plan. Before the weekend. Don’t forget dinner.
6. Update the blog at least twice a week. Ideally I’d do this daily… but let’s face it, there are all too many days when I come home and collapse into bed. One can’t be too ambitious.
If I’ve learned anything in this new year it is that if I want to accomplish anything, I need to have a list. Not a computer list, but a physical paper-pencil list that can follow me around. Already, I can’t figure out what I am supposed to be doing today!
I woke up late today, which was okay because I am enjoying my last two days of vacation. While it’s going to make the next few days more difficult, I am grateful for time to wake up without an alarm. That part of the morning routine can start on Monday. I think what is going to be most difficult about establishing my morning routine is that if I want to enjoy relaxing weekday mornings, I really shouldn’t sleep in past 6:30 on the weekends. Equally difficult will be committing to a regular bedtime. It seems crazy, at the age of 26, to go to bed at 9:30. It feels like I am missing something, and maybe I am, but if it makes waking up in the morning easier, I’m willing to commit. While there are some things in my schedule that will genuinely make this hard (community group until 9) or impossible (choir until 9:30), I am going to do my best to make it work… even if it means giving up watching my favorite TV shows “live.”
My goals for today are pretty simple. I took my daily multi-vitamin (I’m 1/2 on this one…), and am drawing out my morning routine so that my time is more relaxed. This morning, I made two smoothies for Monday and Tuesday morning and stuck them in the freezer. Tonight, I want to pack my bag for work on Monday (it’s no fun to do that Sunday night)! It’s snowing outside, so I think that I won’t venture out, I’m going to enjoy a lazy day in bed with a book (or 2, or 3).
Well… I didn’t quite manage to live healthfully today thanks to a little too much Christmas candy, but I did manage to live happily and mindfully. It was a lazy day, spent mostly inside thanks to some snowy weather. Still, I managed to get some good work done on my cousin’s sweater, and I was able to do some reading which I always enjoy. Beyond that… I just began dreaming of June. It’s so much easier to live happily, healthfully, and mindfully when you have all day, every day free to do it!
After spending a lovely New Year’s Eve in N.H. continuing my tradition with Amanda, I spent the first day of 2010 doing an awful lot of shopping! I bought some stuff that I’m excited about, some things that will help me with my three goals of the year including: a gym bag (health), smoothie containers (health), the book “The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (mindful/happy). I also got to help my sister shop for college.
When I finally returned home around 5:30, the very last thing I wanted to do was to finish the umpteen things on my to-do list… especially since they were school related. Since it was my plan though, and I’m trying to live mindfully, I got to work. I’ve spent the last four or so hours writing lesson plans and thank-you notes. I’m planning on using the momentum I’ve gained to tackle the small amount of grading that I brought home with me before I head to bed, but even now I have to admit to feeling so much better about the year to come!