Saturday, March 15, 2014

Spring Cleaning: Self Edition

Even though the weather can't really make up its mind what it wants to do, it's only a few days until the official start of spring. That time of year when we clean out all the cobwebs from our winter hibernation and start anew. Sometimes I need more than just a literal clean-out when spring rolls around; I need a life clear-out. With all the snow days I've had from work, I've missed a lot of work and not getting to do the things I thought I would get done this season. With trying to get in all the little silly things I wanted to do this winter, trying to make up for all the pay I missed whilst snowed in at home, and just dealing with lots of people's craziness has left me in sort of an exhaustive funk. I don't want this to sound like some sort of rant, because I am thankful for everything I have, but to be honest, at the moment I'm just not very happy. Maybe it's because the weather hasn't been cooperating, maybe because I don't have any sort of fun summer plans to look forward to, maybe I'm just becoming a big whiner, but I'm feeling like I'm stuck in a rut. I feel like I accomplished nothing over the past few months. I exercised a lot and lost nothing, I got the awesome sewing machine and have barely had the motivation to turn it on, I've gotten no enjoyment and have gotten frustrated with all the crafty projects I thought would be really fun. It sucks when you feel like you're wheels are spinning and taking you absolutely nowhere and it's time to make a change. Now, instead of wallowing in my own staleness, I'm trying to be proactive and do some new things to get myself back in the swing of life. Here are some of the things that I'm trying to get myself feeling better again!

1. Falling in Love With Food Again
Photo: Pinterest
Now, I never stopped loving ice cream, but that's not the kind of food I'm talking about. I have relied on convenience foods for the past year or so and they are not doing my body and self esteem any favors. I remember when I first started delving into the world of healthy eating, it was so exciting reading about all this new stuff and new ways to try these foods. After a while, it became and every day thing and it really lost it's excitement and I went back to all those bad things that ruined me before. I want to find the fun in making new things like I did before and try new ways of making healthy foods delicious. You keep relationships exciting by doing new things, so why not have the same approach when it comes to food? Pinterest is helping me out a lot, especially MindBodyGreen, which has some really amazing looking recipes that are great for you!

2. Planning Fun Escapes and Financial Planning
Last summer, I was truly spoiled by all the places I got to go and see. It was probably the best summer of my life and I actually got to live my dreams which is something I don't think a lot of people get to do. I always feel a bit whiny when I get upset that I have no place fun to go because many people never get to travel at all because of various reasons. My own reasons are definitely financial, and I have a hard time saving the little money I have because I feel as though it can be spent on other things (necessary and unnecessary). It can be a bitch being the type of person that just likes stuff, because if I just sucked it up and saved, I could probably fund lots of little trips on my own. Even if my sometimes bad spending habits inhibit me from doing some of the things I want, I can still make some fun plans and learn more about the places I want to go. So far, I have about 3 trips totally planned out (flights, hotels, food, sights, local customs, you name it) and it gives me a good perspective on what I need to save in order to go to these places. I planned the entire trip to Hawaii and it was a good lesson, because it showed me just how much planning goes into creating a fun experience for yourself and others. I had always relied on other to plan and I would just be along for the ride. Planning trips is pretty fun now, and a good motivation to put away some pennies and get down to business.

3. Just Keep Moving
Photo: Pinterest
I try really hard to exercise a lot. I think it's one of the best things you can do to keep your body in good, working condition for as long as it will allow you. I also get frustrated because I'm in the gym 4-5 times a week and I don't see the changes I feel I should have by now. What I don't like to admit to myself is that sometimes I eat for two even though I'm not currently sperminated and I use food as some sort of reward for when bad things happen. Getting snowed in tomorrow? I should make cookies because I won't have anything else to do. Too tired to make a healthy dinner? The burrito the size of a baby should suffice. It's all excuses, and when I give in, the pounds just pack on like crazy. I just can't eat like some of my forever-thin friends can and I have to keep telling myself I'll always be "the fat one" if I don't get this "pointless food rewards" system out of my mind. Losing weight is such an overwhelming task;the last time I really lost a lot it took over my whole life, which is what it's supposed to do. It's a lifestyle and fit people look the way they do because they live the fit-person lifestyle. It may not be full of pizza, ice cream with magic shell, or nutella covered everything, but they don't feel bad changing out in the locker room or trying on bathing suits at Target. What I'm trying to do is not beat myself up, but keep my gym activity up and augmenting my diet back to what it should be. Like #1 up there, I need to get my diet in check in order to get where I want to be!

4. Just Appreciate Life, Dammit!
Photo: JP Benante c/o flickr

It's so easy to be cynical and cranky when things don't work out the way you've planned. Sometimes I look around my apartment at all the things I wanted to do, all the little projects I started and left undone and I just want to get out of there as fast as I can and clear my head. It's not really a bad thing! Everyone should get outside and forget about everything: forget about your spouse/partner, forget about your job, forget about your bills, forget about your parents, forget about your own shortcomings, and just be alone with yourself. It may sound like a bunch of hippy dippy bullshit, but I cannot stay sane without a little me time. I spend all week talking to patients in person and on the phone and sometimes they're not very pleasant. Then, I'm around people when I'm at home too; worrying about things they may want or what I should be doing. And on the weekends I spend Saturdays doing laundry at my parents house and Sunday at home or out with the boyfriend all day. It's not that I don't want these people around me, I love them! But, Emily needs some space sometimes. Usually, after periods of time where I'm by myself, I come to appreciate all those people around me who make my life what it is and appreciate the fact that they want to even be around me!

Well, that was a long one. Call it a rant, call it a clean-out of all the frustrations and sorrows I've packed in over the winter, but it sure feels better to get things off my chest. If the weather is nice where you are, get out and enjoy it. Summer is getting closer and I can't wait! I can feel my cold heart melting just at the thought of it! Happy weekend!

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