Archive | January, 2015

Strange Addictions

19 Jan

Starting last week LP and I decided we were going to do our own roomy challenge to get our health goals going and find motivation in each other. I have done health challenges before and they have definitely helped as it would seem I thrive on competition. This time around, we customized our own instead of finding some squat/plank/arm/etc. challenge off the interwebs or completing a DVD series meant to kick your butt. I have done both and although entertaining and masochistically enjoyable, this time we were both looking for something a little different.

The basics areas follows: we each picked a few goals, made sticker charts, and are competing to see who can have the most days completed. I am aiming to get more active so I am earning stickers based on active days. Anything from yoga, a little jog, or even just completing my FitBit step goal on particularly busy days earns me a sticker, I just want to get my butt off the couch and moving around in the world. I added a bonus element to my goals by giving up Netflix and Hulu, really tv in general, unless it is a social activity, for the four weeks we are doing the challenge or until I have earned 25 stickers.

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It is nice seeing the chart start filling up and the first week went swimmingly (as first weeks often do). There were a few little things we both promised to do together as well. Surprisingly the things I thought would be difficult are not, and the things I thought would be easy aren’t that easy.

First, we both gave up edible weaknesses. Mine as of late has been the pounds of chocolate laying around the house since before Christmas. I gorged myself on the remnants and it has been incredibly simply to avoid temptation since. That will probably change, but for now I am glad to be standing firm.

The second thing we omitted was alcohol. This one has posed more of a difficulty, but I expected it to. It is not a healthy coping skill, but one none the less and especially on hard days I like to end the day with a glass in my hand.

The final item we gave up was the scale. Personally my goal was not to change the number this machine showed me every morning necessarily, but change the way I behaved, what I focused on. This relinquishment, however, has been astonishingly difficult to live without.

Which got me to thinking about addiction and self image. Every morning I run through the same routine. I wake up. I relieve my bladder. I wash my hands. I step on the scale. Often what it tells me is a gauge to how my day will proceed. If it has barely altered then more or less I move on and forget. If it has decreased I am elated and the first thing I put on is a smile. If the number went up by a significant amount on the other hand, I get discouraged and angry. I think back to what I ingested the last couple days and beat up my psyche for being so weak and lazy. You would think I would stop doing it, or at least limit my usage, but no, every morning I feel off if I don’t check in with the little white box.

It is not a thing I would have considered an addiction until this challenge. Until forcing myself to stop looking. It is seriously the only thing I have considered altering the terms around. I negotiate with myself that maybe just once a week is ok, or a least at the halfway mark. It is ridiculous! I am eating well, I am exercising, and feel good, and yet it feels incomplete without knowing what the scale is going to tell me. I am infuriated with myself. Out of all the things I have considered being negative habits in my life, I would have never listed this among them, and I wonder how it could have escaped my notice.

I could go into a rant here about societal lessons that are ingrained into us, but I won’t. I am sure you have heard it all before.

I just wonder what else is there under the surface I have been hiding from myself. What have you been hiding in your own subconscious?

2015 Book Challenge

5 Jan

 

 

 

 

Like my last post, I have some ideas of books to read that touch on this list, but if anyone has any great ideas (preferably ones that knock off more than one category) I would love some input!

Also, I am going to try to update the list as I fill it in (Bold is unread, Regular is read).

 

A book with more than 500 pages (Triangles,Jan)

A classic romance (Little Women,Sept)

A book that became a movie (The Maze Runner,Feb)

A book published this year (The Girl on the Train)

A book with a number in the title (Ready Player One,June)*

A book written by someone under 30 (Grace’s Guide,July)

A book with non-human characters (The Silver Siren,Jan)

A funny book (Grace’s Guide,July)

A book by a female author (The Silver Siren,Jan)*

A mystery or thriller (Lost,July)*

A book with a one word title (Triangles,Jan)*

A book of short stories (The Tales of Beedle the Bard,Aug)

A book set in a different country (How I Live Now,April)*

A nonfiction book (Bossypants,April)*

A popular author’s first book (Carrie)

A book from an author you love that you haven’t read yet (An Abundance of Katherines,Jan)*

A book a friend recommended (Last Night I Sang to the Monster,April)*

A Pulitzer Prize winner book (Beloved)

A book based on a true story (Beloved)

A book at the bottom of your to read list (Triangles,Jan)*

A book your mom loves (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

A book that scares you (Carrie)

A book more than 100 years old (Little Women,Sept)

A book based entirely on its cover (Mercury,April)

A book you were supposed to read in school but didn’t (Catcher in the Rye)

A memoir (Bossypants,April)*

A book you can finish in a day (Mercury,April)*

A book with antonyms in the title (The Death Cure,Feb)*

A book set somewhere you have always wanted to visit (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

A book that came out the year you were born (Beloved)

A book with bad reviews (Catcher in the Rye)

A trilogy (The Maze Runner Series,Feb)

A book from your childhood (Little Women,Sept)

A book with a love triangle (The Silver Siren,Jan)*

A book set in the future (The Maze Runner,Feb)*

A book set in high school (Last Night I Sang to the Monster,April)*

A book with a color in the title (The Silver Siren,Jan)

A book that made you cry (Apollyon,March)

A book with magic (The Silver Siren,Jan)*

A graphic novel (Mercury,April)

A book by an author you have never read before (The Maze Runner,Feb)*

A book you own but have never read (An Abundance of Katherines,Jan)*

A book that takes place in your hometown (The Crucible)

A book that was originally written in a different language (The Stranger, May)*

A book set during Christmas (Little Women,Sept)

A book written by an author with your same initials (How I Live Now,April)

A play (The Crucible)

A banned book (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

A book based on or turned into a tv show (Orange is the New Black,April)

A book you started but never finished (Catcher in the Rye)

This Year…

1 Jan

I will break one bad habit.

I will reach one of my fitness goals.

I will learn a new skill.

I will do a good deed.

I will visit a new place.

I will read a difficult book.

I will write something important.

I will apply for Graduate School.

I will try a new food.

I will do something good for someone who cannot say thank you.

I will take an important risk.

I will post at least two blogs a month.

 

I have ideas on accomplishing some of these, but thoughts and suggestions are welcome for ideas.