If you show up for yourself in your life, the universe will show up for you.
In talking with a friend I realized that I am the last one on my list which goes like family, friends, house, fun, creativity and me. Why am I always last? What would happen if I was first?
So I am trying being first on my list which then allows me to be more present with my friends and family....to have more energy to devote to the house...to be more centered to be creative...to be more immersed in my fun.
I thought that if I put myself first then all these other aspects that are important to me would somehow have less of me. I've always put myself last and I took whatever was left. I'm not sure why or how it came about but I recognize it now that my friend who has always held space for me said it without judgment or accusation. It just was the truth of my words in a way that I could not see them.
So as much as my friend sees me as being there for her, she, in turn, has always been there for me.
Since I have been working from home, I have been putting me first in practice, just maybe not in the space in my head that I see my importance. I journal to hold space for myself. My journal does not judge me but allows me to reread the words I've written which often changes their meaning for me. My journal is my place to plan my day, my goals my hopes, my challenges and the things I don't want to forget. It is also the place I am grateful, I record my successes, I celebrate my goals and I find pride in a day well-lived.
I am creating a sustainable routine. This post has been full of buzz words and sustainable health is going to be another one. I believe in a routine that creates an environment for yourself that nurtures and allows for future healthy growth.
Sustainable means to me:
If I get sick and miss some workouts and then I can get right back on track because a healthy body bounces back quickly.
I know how to eat for my body and I can go out to eat without sabotaging my diet.
I have a positive relationship with food.
I am working towards making muscle and creating better mobility on a total body level.
I get enough rest so that my body can recover and revitalize.
I listen to my body/mind/spirit and have downtime to meditate, contemplate or journal.
I go easy on myself on rough days.
I get back up after I am knocked down.
I smile and laugh as much as I can.
I have fun every day.
I do this for me. Not to be thin or a certain size, but to take care of myself. This is my self-care routine. This is what putting me first looks like.
Most of the things I am incorporating are things you have undoubtedly heard before here and there over the years.
Disclaimer: This is what worked for me. These things made sense and were sustainable. I can see myself using them forever and that was important to me. They may not work for you. You may not agree with them as needing to be on a sustainable list. And that is okay. Everyone has their own process. If some of them ring true, then see if they work for you. But again, this is what worked for me and some of the things that I found out when researching these points.
Push water throughout the day. The body is 60% water. It needs hydration to function. Headaches, sleeplessness, fatigue, cravings of sweets or salts, brain fog, impaired mood or brain function, digestive problems and allergies can all be symptoms of dehydration. On hot days, I make it my priority to drink more water during the day to stave off dehydration.
Have a consistent sleep routine. Sleep is when your body renews and repairs itself, it grows and heals and it allows all those muscles to rest that you use every day. It is vital to good mental and physical health.
Have a good breakfast. After a night of your body resting, my bodily functions need nourishment. This meal sets the pace of the whole day. I focus on making it full of nutrient healthy food.
Try to slow down when you eat: meals are a celebration of bringing nature into your body to nourish, heal, energize and renew it. Meals are not a race. I enjoy food; I love to experience the texture and the flavors in each meal. Chewing thoroughly before swallowing helps the entire digestion process.
I also incorporate into my meal the act of thanks from the elements of nature that formed the food, to the people who grew it, to the people who packed and processed it to the prosperity that allowed me to buy it to the family that I eat it with. This grace is an important part of my meal. Having an "attitude of gratitude" is essential to my spiritual and mental wellbeing.
Follow the 85 /15 rule. This means 85% of my food is whole and healthy and 15% is not. This means I can have a snack or junk food if I really want it as long as the rest of the day I eat healthily. I try and have one "treat" a day. Some days it is really healthy and some days it is one scoop of Ben and Jerrys'.
Eat fruits and veggies. Fruits and veggies have all those nutrients that my body needs to function and thrive. Most of them are antioxidants in their own right. Every member of the edible plant kingdom has some health benefit that contributes to your wellbeing.
Eat nuts (unless you are allergic). Nuts are one of those superfood powerhouses that provide protein, fiber and good fats. They also are filling and chock full of vitamins and minerals. Almonds, pistachios, walnuts, cashews, pecans, macadamia nuts, brazil nuts, hazelnuts and peanuts are the nuts that pack the most punch.
Move as much as you can. When I was chained to my desk, moving was hard. I would swivel and twist in my chair to give my core a workout. I would hold my feet off the ground to engage my core. I would do whatever I could to move a bit even though I was sitting for hours on end. Belly circles are another thing I would do that no one could tell I was doing. There was always something I could do.
Now that I'm not chained to my desk, it is relatively easy to get up every hour and do something. I can do chores in between work and I've made time to work out. But I understand, in this case, not everyone can do that.
I know this can be hard. It is always hard for me. That is why I am going for a sustainable process. I want to create changes that you can keep doing that allow you to reach your goals within the limits of your lifestyle. Sometimes that can be as easy as parking farther away from the supermarket or setting a timer that gets you up every hour during the day.
Don't forget doing chores is moving. On laundry days I am amazed by the number of steps I get. There is a lot of movement in cooking or doing dishes. Don't sell yourself short, those chores really add up to creating a healthy lifestyle.
My DH wanted to walk more. The only way to do that was before work when he has the energy and drive and time. So at 6 am we walk and catch Pokemon and talk. It has become easier to get up and get going over time. I really wanted to do it for him and then I realized that wow! this is really great for me too. I get so many steps and time with him and I am out in nature watching the world wake up.
I get that just going to the mailbox can be a walk. I was there once and I remember that feeling of if I can just take those steps...if I can just do this one thing then maybe I could take more steps and create a healthy life for myself. I have always had the support of my friends and family and that has been huge for me.
Do things that bring you joy. I am always doing things that bring me the most joy. Laughter is so healthy. It lowers stress levels, strengthens your immune system, diminishes pain and boots your mood. Just smiling can activate those healthy properties in your body.
So this time, it is not about a number on a scale. I'm not focused on that. If I create a healthy lifestyle and diet then those numbers will reflect that. I'm not worried about what I want to look like in the end because there is no end. I am focused on feeling good in my own skin, feeling healthy in my own body and feeling happy in my process.
Week 2 of Tracking Back Basement challenge
I feel like I have reached a good pace with this goal. I am moving and or cleaning things daily. As you can see the stuff on the doorway table, and the table itself, has been moved. Bins have been achieved and are starting to be filled with bagged yarn.
This week is all about moving the yarn on the left side of the room and cleaning the hanging drawers that the mouse lived in. This is the part that I am afraid of...how much yarn has been destroyed?
Fear and doubts are a big hurdle I always have to overcome. So I made this little mantra that ties into my light cleansing mantra I say each day.
I release fear and doubt and transform them into wisdom and light. I am the light.
I memorized this quite easily and have been chanting it throughout the day to quell those doubtful daemons that pull at my soul. Each time I chant those words I feel a little more at peace with my inner self.
Wisdom helps me to see that this week's task may be filled with uncertainty but it is also filled with discovery. Why focus on the bad that could happen? I very well may discover some amazing yarns that I forgot I had. Really, that is quite likely.
So, I feel at this point it might be important to talk about the hantavirus. Certain mice can carry a virus that affects the pulmonary system in humans. It is found in urine and mouse droppings which can disintegrate and become airborne when they are disturbed. The virus can live in droppings and urine for up to a week at normal room temperatures found in the house, in direct sunlight the virus degrades at a faster rate.
It is a horrible illness. Infection may occur up to six weeks before symptoms become apparent. Initial flu-like symptoms from hantavirus infection can include fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and stomach upset. Respiratory symptoms occur later and may progress to pneumonia that requires that patients be on a breathing tube in the intensive care unit, to secondary bacterial infections, and to multi-organ failure.
I am pretty sure that my mouse visit happened in the spring and during that time I already disturbed everything when I freaked out, so if I was going to get infected it would have happened. But, I am still using a mask, wearing gloves and not vacuuming just to be safe. I am spraying the droppings with disinfectant and mopping them up after five minutes just to be cautious.
This takes time, but I feel that it is important to dispose of the mouse waste products responsibly.
Sorry, no knitting progress. But I have found plenty of new yarn to play with!