Monday Already??

Wow.  The weekend went fast. 

Before I get into stuff, go check out the cooking blog.  I just posted a dinner recipe for quinoa, shrimp and sun-dried tomatoes.  YUM. 

I’ve been fighting a virus all weekend, so although I did get a few things done, mostly I laid around and watched way too much TV. 

I’ve been thinking about stuff while I was laying on the couch, though.  For instance, where is the line between “baby steps” and “half-assing it?”  Really.  At what point do I move from making small, sustainable changes into just phoning it in?  And conversely, where do I move from making small, sustainable changes, to making totally unrealistic ones that are just too big to make all at once?  I mean, ok, if I never exercised, and I suddenly decided to start doing an hour EVERY DAY without fail, that might be a big change.  But what if I’ve done an hour every day before, but done it sporadically?  Does dropping back to 100 crunches and the 100-push-up challenge mean I’m phoning it in?  What if I’m trying (as I currently am) to get enough sleep (again)?  What if getting 7 or 8 hours a night means either going to bed at 8 or sleeping in until 5 or 6 in the morning?  And if I’m not used to going to bed at 8 (it’s already 8:30 as I write this), does working on dialing back my bedtime to an ungodly-early hour mean I’m not phoning it in?  I’m slightly confoozled. 

Whatever.  This week, I’ll keep working on the Beck book, and I’m also going to work on:
Getting 7-8 hours of sleep every night,  no exceptions.
Drinking 80 oz. of water a day.
Daily crunches and pushups.  (100 crunches and the 100-push-up challenge, over in the sidebar.)

I think the next thing will be to add cardio (back) in, but for now I’ve GOT to get some damn sleep.

Also, I was reading the part in the Beck book about eating slowly and mindfully.  What I said before about feeling even MORE deprived when I give food my WHOLE attention still stands, but I also realized something else.  The main reason that I eat quickly, the main reason that I’ve done so for so many meals that it’s become my dominant paradigm (ooo, look, a 50-cent word!), is because I’m CONSTANTLY thinking about the next thing on my To-Do list.  I have a To-Do list that’s about 5 miles long at any given time, and I always think that I have to get everything on it done RIGHT NOW RIGHT NOW or YESTERDAY at the LATEST.  I live my life like that, and failing to slow down and eat is just another incarnation of that mentality.

But I was thinking about it, and I realized that the reason I eat quickly is because I’ve got so much other stuff to DO, but then, after I’ve eaten, I still feel anxious and rushed instead of like I’ve had a break.  When I sit down and SLOW down, it slows my whole day down, but in a good way, like meditation (which I’ve also convinced myself I don’t have time for lately, but let’s not talk about that right now, ok?).  And I’m realizing that if I’m really THAT busy (I’m not) and THAT stressed (I am), that I need to seriously re-prioritize some things.  First and foremost is that my self needs to stop taking a back seat to EVERYTHING ELSE.  I can’t put myself last or I’ll burn out.

There’s a concept espoused in the church that I go to called “giving from the overflow.”  It’s the idea that when you need healing, when you need replenishment and rejuvenation, you TAKE IT.  You do what you need to do in order to fill yourself back up.  And you fill up until your “cup runneth over.”  And THEN, and ONLY then, when you’re so full of life and love and energy and happiness that you can’t contain it anymore, THEN you give back.  THEN you take on extra projects.  THEN you do favors for friends, pick up the slack at work, etc.  And you’re literally giving from that overflow that is coming from your cup, because you’re just TOO FULL to contain it anymore. 

At the moment, my cup is empty, but I keep taking on projects.  And the more projects I take on, the more I forget that OTHER things have to come off my list.  It’s more important that I fill out law school applications than it is that I vaccuum twice a week, and it’s more important to cook healthy meals in advance than it is to hang new shelving in my room.  Some stuff has to come off the list so that I can take care of myself.  The more projects I take on, the more water drains out of my cup – and at the moment, there’s nothing there to drain, so I’m basically living in a deficit.  My cup is empty, and I’m out on the streetcorner selling lemonade, trying to be all things to all people for all projects.

So tonight I dragged out my lists.  I need to remember to differentiate between what is Important, and what is Urgent.  Sometimes things are both, but more often they’re only one or the other.  And things that are Urgent but not Important can wait.  Nine times out of ten, they aren’t really all that Urgent at all, except in my head. 

And we all know the kind of Crazy that lives in my head.

So tomorrow I’ll work on slowing down.  Or rather, on slooooooowwwwiiiiiiing doooowwwwnnnnnnn.  (Hee.  That was fun to write, actually.)  (Yeah, I know.  I’m a nerd.)  (No, really, I know.  Shut up.)  And I’ll work on remembering that in the end, it’s not really about the food.  It’s about going through life at a breakneck speed, when if I’d just SLOW DOWN, a lot of my anxiety and stress would resolve itself. 

And after reading all that, I think that crunches and push-ups and water and sleep is probably not half-assing it.  Not at the moment, anyway.

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4 responses to “Monday Already??

  1. I know it is so trite (and I dont do it enough with my food as I tend to snarf or the child will eat it from my plate 🙂 you really need to eat as though youre in prison around here…) but my making my focusing BEING PRESENT it has really really slowed down my living.
    Im the first to admit I get less finished in a day. in an afternoon.
    but Im also far more calm so, in a way, I CARE FAR LESS!

  2. Wish I had some words of wisdom for you. (Well, I probably do, but they seem to have found an escape route out of my brain….. not all that difficult, really, when you think about it – all that vacant space in there. But I digress…)

    All these projects and things that you mention that are keeping you so busy and stressing you so badly – are they REALLY important? Or are they a way for you to focus on external things in order to stop you from doing what you actually should be doing?
    Err…. that may not have made sense. How do you determine importance? In my wise older years (some would say dotage, but don’t listen to them!) I have learned, finally, to ask myself “Is this going to matter in 5 years?” If the answer is yes, then of course it is important, but if the answer is “no, I won’t even REMEMBER this in 5 years”, then it gets put to the bottom of the list. I do this with everything (especially housework, hehehe) and it works for me.

    Of course, this was probably not the least bit helpful, and if that is the case, then kindly ignore this comment and you will automatically be returned to regular broadcasting.

  3. Yeah, Miz, I’ve had that experience, too. That’s kind of where I’m trying to get back to at the moment. I just always forget that it’s easier to STAY there than it is to GET there, and I fall off the wagon.

    BL, actually that helps a lot. I’ve used that question in the past, and it TOTALLY helps, but I’d forgotten about it. And as for using the external to avoid the internal . . . yeah, I definitely do that to a certain extent. I think right now it’s also the case that I’ve gotten myself into such a state that my “how important is this” guage is a broken. Suddenly EVERYTHING seems important, even if I know it really shouldn’t be. Hazards of getting in over my head, I guess.

  4. I have many things I need to do, and I get overwhelmed and often don’t do anything. If I can get myself logical about it, I can get some things done effectively, so I usually go that route when frustrated, it’s very useful, but surprisingly irritating. Kinda like giving up bingeing, it’s a great thing to not do anymore, but giving it up still left a sour taste in my mouth, something taken away, left empty. I like yoga for stress, besides the physical calmness I get out of good stretching, it really helps my stress level. I still don’t do it enough, I could move it up on my priority list, but I only like a few of the classes on this side of the bay.

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