A Week Unhinged

It’s Thursday again and this week has been a little up and down. I missed yesterday’s Workout Wednesday post because I ran out of time to write and load. The video is all done and ready to go, but it will have to wait until next week.

As I’ve been writing about my schedule I notice a few things that I need to work on:

  1. Timing
  2. Fluidity
  3. Fun

Let’s start with Timing. I mentioned recently that I probably should have gotten a calendar with time slots in it because I need to start ordering when I am doing things. Timing also means knowing how much time an activity will take. This blends into Fluidity. When planning my activities I need to figure out what I can do when to make things flow. So, I don’t want to be out and then need to come home before I go back out again. I used to be much better at this when my kids were smaller and had certain nap/feeding times. It was easier to map out what needed to be done when and to pack accordingly. Now, I feel like I run here and there and am constantly shuffling things to the next day.

Fluidity and Timing have had a big impact on Fun. My word of the week is PLAY and that was almost like bad permission to throw the schedule out the window….

On Tuesday I taught a pumpkin workout with medicine balls. Because I had to carry them all over the place and did 62 Sun Salutations, I skipped weight training. (permission to play and not to work out) Yesterday I ran with T and then she and the kids stayed over to play which pushed back the time I went grocery shopping and therefore made me skip posting and….because my arms were dead from Tuesday….I also skipped Sun Salutations. (too much permission to play) Today I am still feeling DOMS from Tuesday, but will be conquering my 64 Sun Salutations as soon as this post goes up. I skipped my swim today to come home to a “sick” kid (just reflux) and now I will not hit 108 SS on Thanksgiving Day.

Fluidity to me also means going with the flow of things. So, a goal has been missed, but that doesn’t mean that I’m dropping it. Part of the Sun Salutation Challenge is part of me forming the habit of a more regular yoga practice. I feel like I need to renew my commitment to yoga now that I’m not currently teaching it.

So, a few things have thrown me for a loop this week and my timing is off, but it’s only one week.

One final thing to announce…..I had applied for that full-time position and found out on Monday that I was no longer in the running. This is a good and a bad thing for me, but I’m not quite ready to talk about it in full this post. It’s probably what set me off track this week.

Tomorrow I have a few more notes on habits in the Fave Reads Friday post…all I can say for now is IRONY!

What do you do with off weeks?

How do you maintain commitment?

A special Thank You to Amanda for the TOLT space to share.

7 Things

Another Thursday; Another Habits Post…..

A lot of my habits revolve around scheduling. This is something that I need a lot of work on. I have the bad habit of putting too much on my plate. I want the good habit of managing my time wisely. I didn’t think this through before buying my new planner, but I think it will help me take a baby step in the right direction.

I wrote before about how it only has 7 lines for each day. I’m going to try to keep with only doing 7 things each day. This means that certain things have to give. For instance…..today I put only 7 things on my schedule:

  1. Teach
  2. Sun Salutations
  3. Swim
  4. Do lunch orders for school
  5. Write a habits post
  6. Attend Fall Festival
  7. T-ball game

I am currently on #5, but had to skip #3 because I didn’t put in there – make time to catch up with students that need questions answered. I have only 50 minutes between when one class ends and when I absolutely need to leave the gym to be on time to pick my youngest up from preschool. That meant that talking to students took up 15 minutes and sun salutations almost 20 minutes and then no time to change, swim, shower, get dressed, and out the door in 15 minutes. So, it got sacrificed.

Also getting sacrificed on this Thursday….grocery shopping, balancing check books, laundry, reading, and answering emails. Tomorrow I have 13 things on my list….not including things that didn’t get finished earlier this week. Saturday and Sunday each only have 2 things and hopefully that means I can “catch up” over the weekend. But I’ve already scheduled far more than 7 things for the days ahead.

I know that my time is finite. I can’t make more appear, but I can be more efficient at what I do. I am still using the Pomodoro Technique when I do a lot of things, in order to speed me up, but I think that I really should have invested in a calendar that had time blocks so that I could map out how long things would take and be more realistic with my scheduling. Hopefully 7 things in 2018 will get me closer to my goals, but only time will tell….

What is your best trick for managing your schedule?

What are the “have to’s” of your daily life?

What do you sacrifice in a time crunch?

ps – My Word of the Day….HUMBLE (so true!)

The Importance of Habits for Obligers

I hope that this Thursday HABITS UPDATE will become a regular thing in my life and for the blog. It’s necessary for me to have a regular posting schedule for my writing and for myself. And currently I’m undertaking the project of improving my habits.

Today I’m also linking up with Amanda at Running With Spoons as I have been doing on and off for the last couple of years. She does this great Think Out Loud Thursday round-up that always gives me new things to read. I’ve found a lot of great new blogs to follow through there and I’ve enjoyed having some of her readers stop by and comment from time to time. It gives me fresh eyes as to what people will click on and read.

But HABITS UPDATES are going to be strictly for me. A post that I need to write each week to keep myself accountable to the changes I am trying to make….serious changes in my fitness and scheduling. Habits are important for Obligers because we have this sense of duty in life….to serve. In yoga we talk about our duty in life as our Dharma and as a yogi, a mother, a wife, a teacher, etc….I serve a lot of other people.

Rubin wrote in Better Than Before (and recently on her blog) about Obliger Rebellion…..when those of us who live to serve reach our limit. This HABITS UPDATE will also make me accountable to myself and giving myself time to do what I want to do so that I don’t reach the point of Obliger Rebellion.

So, how am I doing so far?

Well, this week I’ve been pretty good about checking off things on my to-do list. I am using my planner on the regular and committing to doing the things that I put on there. I am committed to putting things on the list that I want to do as well as things I need to do and not prioritizing needs over wants all of the time. Some of my wants are also needs.

I want to run twice a week with T; but I also need to run to keep my body in good health, clear my mind, and socialize with another adult. I want to read and write on the blog. I want to have a clean house. I want to see my kids have fun at  t-ball. These wants all make me happy and happiness is something I really need in my life.

I also thrive on schedules. I am a planner and a finisher. I love to see things ticked off my list. I’m sure my students appreciate this too because it means that I’m taking care of things they need from me and planning classes that have a purpose. I’m sure that my kids appreciate that I don’t miss their events and that I make time for play dates. I’m sure that my husband appreciates that I have scheduled a time to shop and pay bills so that our house is mostly in order and we’re not always ordering out.

Scheduling is a big thing for me to be successful in my habits….it’s the reason that I’ve already ordered my new planner and have birthdates, anniversaries, and school schedules (through spring) in their….waiting to be used. But my new planner presents a few new challenges to me.

First is that there are only 7 spaces (if I squeeze) on each day. Currently I have 10 spaces for each day and often write double items on lines. This is a habit I want to break and hope that my new planner helps me to finally start saying NO to overbooking and over obligating myself.

The second “problem” is that I have to decide if I’m continuing my Word of the Day as a “daily” thing in this planner. There’s a perfect spot for me to write a word for the week, but not enough space for daily inclusion….it would take up one of my 7 lines. So, I have to decide about this habit. I haven’t been doing it for long enough for it to be noticed as absent in the near future, but by the time I hit January I would have had quite the streak of WOD that it might feel empty without it. One way I can trade off on this is to start doing a weekly word in November….things that I will consider as it comes closer (marathoner).

The thing I’m happiest about at this point with the habits is that I haven’t chosen drastic changes that set myself up for failure. I feel confident in keeping this going and I am looking forward to updating you again next week!

How does scheduling affect your ability to keep a habit?

A Bedtime and Other Treats for Myself

Accountability is the fourth thing that Rubin writes about when talking about ways to make habits successful. I already know that accountability is a big thing for me. I run better with T and more often when I have paid for a race. I finish projects if someone else is counting on them. I clean my house when guests are coming over. I need someone to hold me accountable!

In some ways my planner can be an accountability tool for me. As a chronic Under-Buyer it doesn’t surprise me that I have had the same planner for two years. I re-purposed it and reused it as different kind of planner for this year. I’m a finisher and the new format allowed me to use all of the pages remaining in the book. So, today I forced myself to do something different as part of my plan for small steps in a new direction. I bought a new planner for 2018.

This would normally happen at the last minute or after 2018 had already started. Why? Because I like to research everything about an item and then weigh the pros and cons and then consider whether I really need the item and finally…..still put off buying it. However, today I looked at a few things. Decided quickly what I needed. And purchased it without hesitation. I’m super excited that it will be here on Monday!

My new planner from amberlotus.com

And I like the statement on the front. It’s something that I need to keep reminding myself because I sometimes find I’m too worried about the details and not enjoying the moment. So, that brings me to the Foundations and how I’m starting to figure out the habits for me with small steps.

Here’s the plan:

  1. Use my planner….scheduling and accountability will help me track progress better than the less tangible ways I was working through the Happiness Project.
  2. Give myself the gift of sleep by promising to go to bed no later than 1130pm on any night…..including tonight. This will guarantee at least 6 hours of sleep each night (a minimum number for most adults). I’m also going to try to remember to just go to bed when I feel like I’m falling asleep on the living room floor instead of allowing myself to sleep for awhile there and then have to try to re-fall asleep in the bed.
  3. Give myself the power to move. Rubin writes about “Act the way you want to feel” and how she makes herself move because moving makes her feel better. I do give myself permission too often to rest. So, instead I’m going to give myself the power to move. I am scheduling something each day to do to be active. It doesn’t have to be a serious workout, but generally saying I will be “Active” doesn’t always work for me. I need a more concrete plan to stay accountable.
  4. Keep fueling my body. I have mostly given up eating a lot of things that I feel were not fueling the lifestyle I wanted to have. However, I am still a firm believer in mindfulness and listening to your body. I think this also goes to Rubin’s rule of “Act the way you want to feel”. Last night I had a delicious salad for dinner. It was a meatless night for dinner and I had chosen to make salad with lettuces, spinach, pear, almonds, red quinoa, garlic croutons, shredded Cabot Vermont cheddar (a small amount), and Brianna’s Champagne dressing. It was HEAVENLY! I felt so full of energy after I ate it and full and satisfied. I slept well and woke up easily. I went through the first part of my day very alert…..but the muffin I ate for breakfast caught up with me and the Red Robin for lunch slowed me down. I am being more mindful of what is fueling me and what is draining me and I’m choosing the former more and more. Eliminating animal products is not for everyone, but it is for me, for now.

So, that’s my list for now. I’m not tackling unclutter yet. I’m also not done with the book, nor have I defined specific habits of mine that I want to change. But, baby steps….start with the foundation…..start now.

Where would you start?

Join me in naming a foundation to focus on and share it with the group in the comments below.

National Drink A Beer Day!

Yesterday was my birthday and today I’m writing more about Rubin’s Better Than Before book….specifically about scheduling. I’ve written a lot of posts about being an Obliger and this particular part of the book hit me hard as an Obliger. I realize, and fully admit, that I’m terrible at keeping to a schedule that I set for myself. This is probably why a lot of my behavior change strategies do not work….they’re not tied to others.

Originally I was going to write my post yesterday about all of the things I found on NationalDayCalendar.com. However, now I feel like that fits better here. Yesterday was my birthday, but it was also National Women’s Health & Fitness Day. Thank goodness I went for my walk/run with T! This month is Self-Improvement Month (go figure), Whole Grains Month (eating quinoa for dinner), and Mushroom Month (HAHAHAHAHA! I’m allergic!). This week is Active Aging Week (whatever that means) and Health Info Tech Week (I’m not tech savvy).

I wish I had one of those calendars that told me of all the special days without me having to look it up. I also wish that I had someone to schedule me so that I was more accountable to someone else when I failed to do something. Scheduling goes hand in hand with tracking for me. And so, I am going to think about how to best schedule the four foundations and how to track them so that I can be more on top of being me. I have a lot of little things that I want to do….incrementally (see small steps). Look for that list tomorrow.

But for now, today is National Drink a Beer Day and I will celebrate my first full day at 37 by observing this holiday on my “calendar“!

How do you schedule your time?

Do you follow what you put on the calendar?

More scheduling for yourself or others in your life?

Thanks Amanda for a space to share!

Meditation Monday #21 – Not Ready for Santosha

Santosha is one of the Niyamas (observances) in yoga. It really means being content with our lives as they are in this moment. This contentment asks us to play on other aspects of our yoga practice, but for me, today, I am not ready for Santosha.

Why?

Although the 8 Limb Path of Raja Yoga is not a step by step path in which you master one element before you move on, there is something that I do need to do before I can move on to contentment. That is to deal more thoroughly with the first of the Niyamas – Saucha (cleanliness). Continue reading “Meditation Monday #21 – Not Ready for Santosha”