Category Archives: Goals

A Quick Check-In

Happy Easter my friends!

Good things are going on in my life and I have so much I want to write about right now.  I just don’t have time right now to do any of it justice, so the more detailed posts will have to wait.  Here’s some of what has been going on:

  • My dairy-free diet, although not yet perfect, is coming along quite well and I am seeing many positive changes in my health and happiness.  I plan to continue this well beyond the four months suggested by my Dr. and will be adding other healthy eating habits as well.
  • I was spiritually fed by the recent General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  I felt like so many of the talks were given for my benefit and that I can incorporate so much from what I have learned.  I’m looking forward to re-watching and reading them over and over.
  • I’ve been able to be more active lately.  Although I still have flares from the Fibromyalgia, I’m learning how to read my body and adjust my activity to minimize the issues that arrive from the flare.  It gives me great hope for additional improvement as I continue to learn.
  • I’ve been making some strides with my personal budget management and debt reduction plan and it is SO LIBERATING!  Debt really is bondage and I’m so hopeful that I can overcome my bad decisions of the past.

and OH SO MUCH MORE.  Hopefully I’ll have some time in the near future to share more.

Have a great day!

Overwhelmed

I’ve been feeling a little overwhelmed lately. When that happens I frequently act a bit impulsively in trying to lighten my load. I know I should think things through longer and be more thoughtful about it, but I guess I just panic a bit. It is never good. I need to learn to handle things better.

In reality, I used to be really good at managing things and I think I did it for way too long to the point of burn out and now whenever my innards get a sense of things heading in that direction my absolute impulse is to bolt.

It’s been a rough day that way. But, as with every experience in life, I think I’m learning and maybe next time I’ll do better. One can hope. 😉

Personal Mission Statements

I’ve read a lot in my quest for awesome time management skills about developing a personal mission statement.  It is a tool that a lot of people with goal-oriented lives use.  While I’ve thought about it a lot, I haven’t actually made a whole-hearted attempt at getting one down in writing.  I have some vague ideas of who I want to be and what I want to accomplish, but, to be honest, it just seems like an insurmountable task to en capsulize all that I am and all that I want to be and do into a succinct statement of purpose.

Sometimes I think that part of the reason I spend so much time like a pup chasing its tail (which is what a lot of things in life feel like to me) is because I haven’t rooted out the “statement” of purpose clearly enough.

Do you have a personal mission statement?  If so, would you be willing to share it?  And share any insights you may have into the process that helped you arrive at this statement?

If not, what do you think about them?  Good idea?  Waste of time?

Priorities

February finds me reviewing my goals for the year.  I have set some “draft” goals, but wanted to “live” with them for a month or so before I put them down in stone so that I could be more realistic than I usually am when setting goals.  I have a tendency to want to do everything and then become overwhelmed and shut down.  Knowing this about myself, I’m going to do everything in my power to make sure that I set wise goals and think things through first.

I like the idea of setting one or two goals in different areas of my life.  You know–the idea of being well-rounded an all.  I was reading a favorite time management book the other night, “First Things First” by Stephen R. Covey.  I’m drawn to this book, because the phrase that is it’s title is one that has significant personal meaning to me.  I don’t recall the exact wording, but he asks what is that one thing that if you did it (or did it differently, or better, or with more passion–you get the picture) would have the most profound impact on your life.

For, dare I say it, decades now, I have felt like the one thing holding me back in my life is my weight.  It causes me more grief than I can even clearly express.  Being fat has altered how I interact with the world, how I view myself, how I view others, etc.  I do believe, however, that things like my being fat are put in our lives as a means for us learning the lessons we need to learn in order to be the person God would have us be or in order for us to be in a position to help others.  So, being fat is a blessing and a curse.  Either way, its something I’m ready to move on from.  So, my number one goal is going to be to figure out what it will take for me to overcome this obstacle and find a way to do it that will stick once and for all!

Unfortunately, I’ve felt very stuck in this area for going on three years now.  I’ve been successful before.  I “should” know what to do, and yet I still struggle.    For now, I’m just packing my gym bag every day and I’m going to go to the gym every night right after work.  Just like an appointment.  I would never just not go to work.  I need to make exercise and taking care of myself like that.  I want my actions to say “I would never just not exercise.” or “I would never just eat crap.”

It’s a work in progress.

YIKES!

I had great ambitions to do some fantastical personal budgeting in the month of January.  Well….let’s just say that I didn’t and leave it at that.  I did, however, take a serious look at my expenditures for January at the end of the month and I was alarmed, although not altogether surprised, about how much money I spent on nothing.

Nothing isn’t exactly the most accurate description, but lets just say that I had to catch my breath when I realized that i had spend almost double (yes 2x) the amount that I had budgeted (and very generously budgeted I might add) for things like groceries, eating out, entertainment, etc.

My response to such a discovery has been to set a much less generous (but still completely doable) budget for February.  In an attempt to really stick to my guns, I withdrew this amount and will be paying for all said incidentals with cash.  And….when the cash is gone, I am D.O.N.E.

So far….well, I’m a little scared for the last week-a-half of the month but completely convinced that I can prove to myself that this can be done.

Wish me luck!

Happy Thanksgiving!

My heart is full as I think about all of the many blessings in my life.  This past week has been one of reflection.  I learned that a good friend has a brain tumor.  She is so positive and full of faith.  I’m grateful for her example and pray for things to go well for her as she faces this challenge.  I also learned of the death (self-inflicted) of another acquaintance.  We hadn’t spoken in a while but the last time we did her struggle was evident and I’m so sad that circumstances brought her to the place where that became her reality.  My heart aches for her loved ones and I will miss her bright smile and enthusiasm.

Life isn’t easy.  As I’ve thought about these two situations, I can’t help but think about the fleeting nature of this earthly life.  We just never know how many tomorrows there will be or what kind of challenges will face us.  My only conclusion is that I need to live my life with more purpose.  I want to make every today the best that it can be.  I don’t want to find myself at the end of my life, be it next week (let’s hope not) or 50 years from now, regretting wasted time.

Of course, wasted time will be defined differently by each of us based on our priorities, goals, etc.  I never consider time spent with my family or friends to be wasted, although there are times when I could frame that time in a way that better serves us.  And I guess that is what it basically boils down to–am I using my resources (time, money, knowledge, food, my physical body, by spiritual nature, etc.) in a way that really serves the life I want.

On a separate but somewhat related note:  I do not eat in a way that is likely to help me reach my weight loss/health/fitness goals.  I really have some food issues that are fairly deep seeded.  But mainly….I just really like it.  Thanksgiving is my favorite of holidays.  I’m already salivating over my brother’s pumpkin pie, and the chocolate pudding dessert my mom makes, and dressing, and creamy whipped potatoes in the same bite as succulent dark turkey (you see the problem to which I refer?).  Well, as a counter measure I have agreed to photograph every thing (yes, every single thing) that I eat or drink (except for water) that I consume between Thursday and Sunday.  So….look forward to some fairly boring, but really tasty looking (albeit small portioned 🙂 ) photos of everything I put in my gullet.  🙂  Have a great holiday!

Challenges and Rewards

Are you goal setters? I try to be. Throughout all my years of trying to lose weight, I’ve used setting goals, joining competition, etc. as a way to help myself be accountable–a way to keep my desired outcome in the forefront of my mind.  I like a good challenge.

I’ve decided not to wait for January 1 to set a New Years resolution.  Beginning today I commit to exercising 6 days a week, improving my eating habits, and putting my health first on my list of priorities.  I know it will be a work in progress, but my intent is to see marked improvement weekly.

Because I tend to do better when I have something I’m striving for, I’ve decided to set up a reward for myself.  Yes, I know.  Getting healthy is reward enough, but on those days when I really want to eat a whole pumpkin pie or when the fibromyalgia is raging and I’m so exhausted that getting out of bed is a chore, I need something extraneous to get me through.  Normally I would just set a goal of something like “I want to lose 4 pounds a week.”  I’ve decided that setting a specific weekly goal is probably not in my best interest.  I know from previous attempts that counting calories and knowing how many I burn usually can accurately predict what my weekly outcome will be….if I look at it over time.  However, I have proven time and time again that a 16 pound weight loss over 4 weeks will not present itself as 4 pounds per week—even if that is what all of the number say.  Week one might be 8 pounds with week 2 being only 1 and so on.  So….I’m leaving those numbers to do what they may.  While I may have a goal of losing 60 pounds over the next 90 days I will measure my success in the following ways:

  1. Did I log my food and stay within the 1500 calorie range?
  2. Did I drink my Shakeology?
  3. Did I do my scheduled Turbo Fire exercise?
  4. Did I get adequate sleep?
  5. Did I interact with my accountability group on facebook?
  6. Was I kind to myself?

If I can make it through the next 90 days honestly feeling like I could answer that I did my very best to do those things listed above, I’ve arranged a little reward for myself. 🙂 Exciting!

I’m not sure if any of you know that I LOVE piano music.  I could listen to Jim Brickman, David Nevue, George Winston, John Schmidt, and Paul Cardall all day, every day.  There is just something about listening to piano music that soothes my soul and reminds me that there is God and beauty in everything.

Well, Jim Brickman is coming to Logan in February—a few weeks after the end of my 90 day goal.  I was going to purchase a couple of tickets and invite a friend when it struck me..this should be my reward.  So, instead of purchasing two, lower cost tickets, I purchased a box seat.  Just one.  And….If I meet my goals, I will take myself to a fabulous concert.  If I don’t, I will be giving that ticket away.  Hopefully someone else out there won’t mind going to a concert alone (although that won’t really be necessary as I will be going to that concert—because I’m totally going to rock these goals).

As a side note, how ironic is it that I will be going to a concert titled “An evening of romance” all by myself?  It sort of makes me smile. 🙂  I don’t really mind going to things like concerts or movies or out to eat alone.  I also think it is a bit symbolic.  It has been a really long time since I’ve allowed myself to entertain thoughts of dating or being in a relationship.  I think that my weight has been one of those things I’ve used to protect myself from repeating mistakes and bad choices in that arena.  I mean, I’m not really going to mess things up, get in abusive relationships, or choose the wrong guy if I never date, right?  And I’m so much less likely to date if I make myself as unattractive as possible, right? (100’s of posts I don’t really want to write lurking in here).  However, I’ve decided it’s time to get over myself and open up to the possibility of ….. more.  Perhaps this will be just the stepping stone to get me moving in that direction.

Inspiration

I want to introduce you to the blog of a woman from my gym.  She is just starting out on a path to better health and is blogging her efforts.  She is brave for sharing her struggles. And, I think the folks at the gym are awesome for helping and encouraging her.  I’ve never met a better bunch of fitness professionals and I know my experience has always been that they are so sincerely interested in the members well-being.  I have benefited from it many times over.

One of the great things that has come to me by blogging my own efforts to lose weight and get healthy is having the support of my friends and family.  Those I know in person as well as those I’ve met here on line have made such a difference for me.  I hope you take a moment to stop by and cheer her on!

I don’t know her in person yet, although I think we may have had a conversation in the locker room this morning about swim wear.  If that was this lady she is charming and sweet.  I look forward to getting to know her better.

Good luck my new friend!

R.E.S.P.E.C.T.

Find out what it means to me….(lalalalala…you know I always have a song in my head 🙂 ).

I don’t even recall what got me thinking about this lately, but my mind keeps wandering back to thoughts about the tie between what we value (or purport to value) and how we utilize our related resources.   Perhaps it came from recently viewing the movie “In Time” (which I highly recommend—I saw it ten days ago and I still find myself thinking about it).  In the movie, people stopped aging at 25 and their currency was time. They were paid for their work in time (actual hours that appeared in a digital clock in their arm).  They paid for their life’s necessities with time. If they ran out of time—they died.  How they used their time and making sure they always had enough time was life or death.  There was a great disparity between those who had a lot of time and those who lived day to day. (I have to admit it also got me thinking about our actual currency and the difference in our current society between those who have and those who have not and the pathway for improving ones position or squandering ones resources—but that is a different post for a different day.)

Time is our one great equalizer.  Everyone gets the same 24 hours in their day.  We can’t bank it.  We can’t give it to someone else. We can’t borrow it.  It is ours and it is fleeting.  Which turned my thoughts to whether or not I appreciate the time I’m given and if how I use that time shows the appropriate respect to both the time I have available and the things I want to accomplish—the person I want to be.

How we choose to spend our time is a great indicator of what and who we value in our lives.  Am I giving the proper respect via my use of time and resources to those things and people that matter most to me?  I say that my faith and relationship with God is my most high priority, but do I give it the proper respect via the time that I dedicate to prayer, learning, and service?   When was the last time that regular consistent fervent prayer was really a part of my daily life? Do I study the word of God regularly? Do I serve in my church callings and my fellowmen with happiness or do I murmur?

I say I want to get out of debt, but do I really show my hard-earned money the proper respect by how I choose to use it?  Do I sometimes (or often) spend without thinking about my long-term plan and showing respect to this valuable resource?  Am I more interested in immediate gratification or in the big picture?

I’m basically obsessed with losing weight and improving my health.  Is this reflected by how I utilize the time available to me? Do I respect this amazing body that God has given me by feeding it healthy nutritious food or do I drown it repeatedly in diet Mountain Dew and other less healthful foods?  Do I get adequate sleep? Do visit the dentist as often as I should? Do I exercise appropriately in relation to how much I value a healthy body?

I value my personal relationships. I think I do a bit better in this area than in most, but am I really doing the best that I can?  Would I be further ahead to, on occasion, turn the T.V. off and go visit someone I love?  Do I know more about what is going on with Castle or the people on Survivor than I do about my brother, or my niece, or my friend?

Do I nurture those talents that I know I have been blessed with, or do I squander this precious gift either by wasting my time or doubting my abilities? Doubt and fear often cause me to be tentative and let time slip away while I’m questioning my abilities.

These are just some things that I have been thinking about lately.  If I were to give myself a grade on how well I do with showing the appropriate respect to the things I value and to the time that I am given, I would have to say that I’m well below average.  Too much T.V.  Not enough planning-which allows me and my time/money/resources to be influenced by and shift with the tide, the wind and anyone with a stronger agenda/plan in place.

But, that is the one great thing about time.  Once it is spent, there are no refunds—but if you haven’t used it yet, you can change your plan and utilize it better.  Luckily we don’t get additional time based on how well we have used our previous time. We do get to start fresh everyday with a new 24 hours.  Money’s a little tougher, but with time and commitment the mistakes can be corrected.

Does my use of time/money/resources reflect what I value? Am I using them in a way that helps me be the best version of myself?  If not, am I willing to change it? How can I best show respect for those things I value?

I’ll be thinking about this a lot.  If you have any insights I would love to hear them.

Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time.  Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.” ~M. Scott Peck

Perspective

My thoughts today have been lingering on perspective.  Is the way I see myself how I really am?  I live alone.  I have a lot of friends who love me and an amazing family.  I spend time with them frequently, but I do spend a good deal of time alone.  And even when I’m not alone, I’m talking to myself in my head as if I were (we all do it–I’m just bravely admitting it for all to read) ;).

I spend a lot (not all, but a lot) of that time making a running list of what I don’t like–how I don’t feel well, comparing my weaknesses to other people’s strength, sometimes feeling sorry for myself, how I can improve, how I can learn from my failures (keeping the focus mainly on the failure).

Every summer, my nieces spend a long weekend with me.  We watch chick flicks and make cookies and sometimes go to a play.  We bring all of my mattresses into the living room and have a giant slumber party.  It is SO MUCH FUN!  I love spending time with those girls.  I hate to see the weekend end.  I hate to take them home.  I believe part of the reason I love it so much is that I can totally feel their unconditional love and acceptance of me.  By the end of our time together I’m giving very little thought to my weight or how I compare to Jane Doe down the street.   Their love for me and how they perceive me is reflected back at me so strongly that I become, even for a just a few days, that reflection.

This past week I spent a full day with my youngest brother and his family and then the next day my other three brothers came to help me with a project at my house (totally have before and after pictures to share in a later post–AWESOME).  My brother that lives near by brought his sons and his wife popped in from time to time.  I so enjoyed sharing some time with them.  As the weekend progressed and I interacted with them, I had the same feeling that I do when I spend time with the girls.  These people see me in such a better light than I see myself.  I believe that they rarely look at me and see a fat person.  They see their sister–a spunky, silly, smart, likeable person who wins at the gross out game, has a good sense of humor, is politically savvy, etc.–and it changes, if only for a little while, my own perception of myself.

And so what is my point?  I’m not really sure how to express it.  I’m just feeling like I want to feel like that all of the time–not just when I spend a concentrated period of time with those who know me well.  And that will mean working on that inner dialog that I have with myself every single second of every day.

So many of my supposed flaws are simply a flaw in my perspective and my perspective is something that I can change.