It’s true…I don’t have it all figured out. I don’t always have my shit together!
I’m a work in progress, as is my simple lifestyle.
Thank you Kelly Exeter for this great writing prompt. It was an invitation I couldn’t refuse.
Your piece 5 ways I currently don’t have my shit together struck a chord with me.
I loved your honesty and when I looked at my own habits of late and realised I had some fessing up to do.
Trying to follow my blogging dreams while holding down a corporate job with a long commute means I’ve been cutting a few corners of late.
I write about how I’ve turned my life around by simplifying and slowing my lifestyle only to then turn it all upside down again by trying to do too much. Is it hypocritical of me to think I could try and help others make the same positive changes? Maybe…
But you know what? I can help others and myself too.
Firstly, by admitting that simplifying and slowing down is a process.
It’s not a destination.
It's an ongoing choice to live with intention each day. Some weeks life wins. Others I do. Click To Tweet
I’m guessing you don’t want perfection, you want tried & tested strategies.
So here is how I’m failing at my lifestyle right now, and what I’m going to do about it.
#1 – lack of physical activity
After listening to Kelly & Carly on Straight & Curly’s podcast called 10,000 steps I felt keenly aware of my lack of movement and deeply shamed. I’ve been treating my body like an abandoned building not a temple. I looked at the Apple health app, guessing that it might have been unofficially tracking my steps. I’ve been averaging an underwhelming 2,900 steps per day.
Every work day I have a calendar appointment at 11am labelled ‘walk’ and every day I’ve been ignoring it. On the weekends I’m supposed to do a daily bike ride, and it seems like a raft of reasons get in the way, even though I love riding.
I’m not going to buy at wearable activity tracker like they were talking about. As my Husband pointed it, it will likely go the way of my Wii fit, great in theory…plus we’ve put ourselves on a tight budget while saving for something we agreed upon.
Anyway…I will no longer ignore my appointment with myself for those walks and rides.
Tackle that first, then stack some more activities once I’ve nailed that regularly. Making too many changes at once doesn’t set me up for success and I’ve got 4 more below!
#2 – not eating properly
I’ve got a slew of food intolerances and I need to watch what I eat carefully, but I don’t always toe the line. I am generally pretty strict with what I eat in order to cut down on the discomfort when I eat things I shouldn’t, but lately I have been bad.
I’ve been sneaking a bit of wheat, I have been raiding the lollies at work, eating lots of low nutrient gluten free carbs, I even bought desserts (contraband, eek!) into the house.
I’m paying for it too. My skin is terrible…think wrinkles and pimples at the same time…the horror! My arthritis hurts more and my thyroid is giving me grief.
I’m breaking up with sugar again starting June. I’ve had great success with cutting sugar before: clearer skin, reduced joint pain, less autoimmune flare ups, bonus weight loss, better mood and some other unmentionables.
#3 – playing with screens too late
I try and do something each day on the blog or for the blog, like social media, or learning about design etc. This means when I get home from a long day at work looking at screens I go look at screens some more!
I am fully aware of the effect of blue light on the brain and the body’s circadian rhythms. I used the f.lux app on my Windows pc for ages until Apple brought in the same functionality in their last iOS update. Then it was like ‘yay for cuddling with the iPad’ in bed!
However, it isn’t just the blue light that is the issue. My biggest problem is my overactive brain that I can’t shut down. So stimulating it with ideas and research etc. just before bed is a bad idea. Although last week, I did come up with a fabulous activity for a course I’m writing at 2am.
Also starting June, no screens after 8pm, regardless of what time I get home from work. So that means books! Oh…or actually quality time with Hubby.
I’m setting myself a book reading goal to see how many (old school paper style) books I can read each month too. Usually it’s zero. I’ll be stoked if I get just 2 under my belt. Once I’ve read more of the books on my bookshelf, I can minimise them by giving them away. De-cluttering for the bonus stack!
#4 – not writing often enough
I’m not writing daily and I’m not posting often enough. I get writing fatigue sometimes because my day job involves writing. My writing style at work is similar to how I write for my blog, just the content differs. I do enjoy the writing, what mostly slows me down is my persistent desire for perfection, which I wrote about here.
I need to remind myself that there is room for my voice. My need to write is driven by my desire to be helpful. We all have different perspectives and the simple living blogosphere is not saturated yet!
Time to get back into the morning pages and artists dates, as laid out in Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. I’ll be grabbing pen and paper and writing 3 pages long hand each day. Oh look, less screen time!
I already have to get up at 5.20am M-Th, so full disclosure, I will write my pages at night on those days. I’ve found the technique still useful if I use it before I sit down to write an actual blog post. Clears the cobwebs and slays the internal critic.
#5 – slacking off with the house and garden
Hubby is a wonderful support. He has shorter hours and a short commute so he ends up doing the cooking and cleaning during the week. He encourages me to work on the blog as he knows it’s my passion. Anyway, he can’t do it all and shouldn’t have to. I remind myself that marriage is a partnership and I am a lucky girl!
Also I like to garden and I’ve haven’t been doing much. It’s soothing. The poor hedge out the front needs a trim and to be treated for scale. I haven’t put a winter crop in the veggie patch either.
I’ll add an hour of gardening to my weekly schedule, by default that adds to my movement levels. Add 15 minutes of housework each day, it better than the nothing I do now during the week and I’ve found the extra time simply by taking it out of screen time. Bonus!
Far out…I really don’t have my shit together!
Changes need to happen. Wish me luck!
Feel free to send some tips my way and cheer me on to make these changes.
From my heart to yours,