Thursday, August 21, 2014

August 21, 2014

This week has been a slog at work. I thought it was just me but I've heard comments from co-workers that the energy has just been a grind this week. Fortunately, it isn't because of co-worker conflict, it's just the sheer amount of work that is flowing through this place and we're all working very hard to get a handle on it. By the time I get home, I'm so tired that with the best will in the world, I can't seem to start an exercise routine. Good thing I have next week off. I'm going to Palm Springs the first part of the week to visit some dear friends. I'm looking forward to spending some time with them, although I'm not looking forward to the heat. I leave Saturday and return Monday.

My plan for next week is to go for a walk in the early morning; return home and eat breakfast; work out to one of my exercise DVDs then go for a swim after. Once I have my exercise routine done for the day, I plan to work on various projects throughout the week. I'm also planning on having lunch or dinner with friends, go to the beach or someplace that I haven't been before.  I plan on being relaxed but busy. I want to get some projects completed in my house so I can stop thinking about them and I want my exercise routine back.

Lots of plans in the previous paragraph. I just hope that some of them happen.

August 19, 2014

So the great re-write is still creeping along slowly. I want to CHANGE ALL THE THINGS at once but of course, that would make my head explode and I'd just have another mess to clean up.  So I've settled for changing one thing (or two, if they're small) at a time. For example, I cleaned out my frig the other day, seriously, it was so gross. Then I went grocery shopping, came home, put the food away and what do you know, I can see what I have to eat.  Huzzah! Tonight I will cook some chicken and some rice.  That usually lasts a couple of days in the frig for dinner, then each night I can just cook some veggies to go with it, quick and easy.  I also bought some smoked turkey, cheese, bread, pickles, tomatoes, avocados and horseradish mustard to make sandwiches for lunch. I can eat lunch for a week for what I spend on going out to lunch in one or two days.  Next time I go out, I will enjoy it more.  And I bought some grapes and raw almonds and have been eating those for breakfast. So my quest to eat healthier is my first major change.

My next change is to establish a regular exercise program. I need to get up and walk for 10 - 15 minutes at least twice a day while at work. I could do this in the morning and afternoon on my breaks. I was also working out every day after work, doing Insanity. And I loved it! But when my schedule changed, that went out the window and I haven't started up again.  I have to remember that I loved my workout more than I love sitting on the couch on my butt.

Monday, August 18, 2014

August 15, 2014

So the re-written script is working, so far so good, I'm still working on breaking old habits. Especially the habit of sitting in front of the TV watching stuff I'm not interested in. I need to think of how to re-write that portion so that it's more of 'Hey! Do this! Or This! Or This!' instead of saying 'Don't Do That Anymore.' I need something to fill the space. I love to read but even that's not enough to fill in the blank areas. The blank areas cause me to tense up which creates that old feeling of ennui. Definition of ennui: a feeling of listlessness and dissatisfaction arising from a lack of occupation or excitement. And ennui puts me on my butt doing nothing.

My opinion is that creativity isn't just used to create some form of art, not an original thought I know, but if I think of day to day chores as creativity instead of drudgery, it helps to combat ennui. For example, I get home from work and there's 8 billion things to do in my house. It can leave me feeling defeated before I even start. But if I look at cleaning the kitchen and putting everything away as creating a space where the energy flows, that space can be used to create good food.  If I apply that creative thought to all the spaces in my house, then my house will feel like a place where I want to create other things.  I know this worked because I cleaned up my office at work and now when I come in to work in the morning, my office is in good shape and I don't feel over-whelmed immediately.  Believe me, I have enough work to do every day, I don't need a messy space to stop me in my tracks.

Monday, August 11, 2014

August 11, 2014

I was talking with a friend about people and I said if someone was unhappy with where they are in their life, why don't they just write the script they want to live. Oh, wait...

Get up late, rush around, drive to work, arrive late, deal with ennui by telling myself I'm tired, sit on my ass all day in front of a computer, eat lunch out every day, drive home, flop on the couch, sit on my ass all night in front of the TV, eat junk for dinner, go to bed, sleep badly, get up late...

So the paragraph above is my day to day life in a nutshell. No wonder it's not working for me. It's the road-map of the life I don't want anymore. It's time to write the script of the life I want to live.  Here's my new road-map:

Get up on-time. When I do this, I have time to do my twenty minute yoga stretch in the morning. That always starts my day in a better place. And I don't have to rush around like a crazy person trying to throw myself together to get out the door.

Drive to work on-time. When I do this, I can have a much more relaxed drive to work and I'm won't already be stressed when I arrive at work. On time. And I won't have to tell myself I'm tired as an excuse for being late, feeling stressed, which puts me in a place of ennui.

Get up and move around at work. I set my Outlook reminder to pop up every 15 minutes. It says 'Get up.' And I do. Sometimes I walk around the office, sometimes I just stand up and stretch. It's too easy to sit at a computer and never move. I've been doing that for many years and by the end of the day, I'm in so much pain. By getting up every 15 minutes and stretching or moving around, I feel much better.

Eat better.  I was eating a muffin and a cup of coffee for breakfast. Carbs and caffeine, the super-woman breakfast. Now, I have a hard-boiled egg and 2 small strips of bacon. Protein and a little fat. I will add some fresh fruit to this but I'm still having coffee. And for at least a year now, I've been eating lunch out. Part of it is being lazy (I haven't been cooking at all) part of it is a desire to get out of the office.  But eating out every day means that going out to eat is nothing special, it's just another thing that I do. Plus it's expensive and fattening. Even when I eat healthy, the mega-size meals that most places serve is just too much food. So now, I'm making my lunch every day. This week, it will be sandwiches. Toasted whole-grain bread, sliced turkey, one slice of cheese, tomato, avocado, pickle and mustard with water to drink.  Tonight, I will have left-over vegan Mexican food from Sunday brunch; tomorrow, I will cook some chicken and brown rice for the week and have it for dinner every night with a different vegetable.  Easy to do and easy to eat.

Drive home. The drive home has heavier traffic. I'm practicing sitting back in my car, relaxed as I navigate my way home. I have found that I still get home in the same amount of time as when I get in a hurry and speed. I'll let others be tense and rushed.

Get home, change into my workout clothes, put on one of my dvd exercise videos and go to town. Since it's summertime and hot, I can also go for a swim after my workout. That will feel great.  Then a shower, dinner, maybe a little TV if there's something specific I want to watch.  Then bed at a decent hour.

This is my new road-map, my script to how I want my life to be. Two things I already know: if I get out of bed on time, my day will flow a lot smoother because I won't be rushed from the time I get up. And also, if for some reason I don't/can't adhere to the new map, that doesn't mean I should chuck it all and give up. It's just a slight detour. I can see it as a disaster or an adventure.  Adventures are more fun.

Friday, August 08, 2014

August 8, 2014

I went to Italy on my vacation in May and when I came back, I was having trouble fitting back into life as usual around here.  I still am although I slid back into a lot of my old habits.  The thing is, those old habits aren't working.  I find myself sitting on the couch watching TV, nothing wrong with watching TV if I'm interested in what I'm watching, but a lot of what I'm watching is time-filler. Just watching it to pass enough time to go to bed.  Not good.  The distraction from my life as is isn't working anymore and no matter how long I sit on my ass. passively watching time go by, that fact isn't going to change.  What I have found works for me is picking something to do, whether it's something fun or necessary, setting my intention to be in present time, or 'in the moment' as the saying goes, and maintaining my mental focus on the action at hand.  I have done this many times since I returned from Italy and it works for me, but still I returned to old habits. Creating new habits takes time and attention, something I need to keep in mind. I think my word for the rest of this year is Focus.

August 7, 2014

I booked a first class flight to Portland Oregon this morning to visit a long-time friend that I haven't seen in a long, long time.  I am really looking forward to seeing Judy. I met Judy on the guestbook/forum of our favorite singer, Bruno Pelletier, back in 2001. She was going to be attending one of his concerts in Montreal and had posed a question on the forum about hotels near the theater in Montreal.  I was also attending this concert and posted the name and location of the hotel I was staying at while there.  We met up at the hotel and proceeded to have a fine time together.  We've been friends ever since but I've only seen Judy three times in person in thirteen years.  I think we're gonna have a grand time together, we always have.

Something that came up today while I was booking my flight.  One of the seats I chose was on the emergency exit. On Alaska Air site, a box pops up to ask if you're willing to do it and if you're capable.  I'm both willing and capable but one of the requirements is that you do not have to have a seat-belt extension.  In the past, I have needed a seat-belt extension, but I have dropped 20-30 lbs since my highest weight. Sometimes, depending on the plane, I still have to request one.  Now I have approximately 60 days to get in the kind of shape that I do not ever have to request one again on any plane. I can do that easily.

In other news, the issue I was having with my co-worker has been resolved.  Their panties were finally un-knotted, the snit gotten over and we are working well together again.  Having been promoted, I can now make strides to getting things organized around as my new boss is open to suggestions and we are finally starting to use some of the databases around as they were meant to be used.  Currently, the only thing digital around here is the file we're moving; everything, EVERYTHING, else is manual.  Find the file, move the file, track the file.  All manual because nobody wanted to pull the trigger on actually using the database we have. TPTB are always getting feedback about what we need to do our jobs from people who don't actually do our jobs, and then go spend money on stuff we don't need.  Dudes! Just update the database we have and let us use it the way it's supposed to be used. It will solve the majority of the issues around here.  Finally, somebody listened. Hallelujah!

Friday, July 11, 2014

July 10, 2014

Well, so far today, I have worked my butt off.  And went out for Thai food for lunch.  And made the decision that I was going to stop complaining about my co-worker as it's doing more damage to me than to them. And I'm feeling pretty good about that decision.

Wow! I just got a promotion and a raise.  I had been talking to my boss about how I needed to be more involved in aspects of the department that I haven't really had time to learn.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

July 9, 2014

Okay, well, I guess I decided to take a few days off from here.  I didn't even think about writing. Here are some of the things I did while away:

Laundry (a never-ending chore).
Dishes (another never-ending chore).
I read a lot.
I played video games.
I re-potted my 20+ year old philodendron. Seriously, I bought that sucker when I lived in my first apartment after I moved here and I had it for a few years before I moved to where I'm currently living. I lived in the first place from November 1989 to November 1995. I cannot believe that plant is still alive, although I think it may be on it's last leaves.
I put all those re-organized cameras and cords away (finally).
I had a bunch of fruit I'd bought days earlier at the farmer's market, too much for me to able to eat before it went bad, so I juiced it all.  It was interesting that after two days of adding a couple of glasses of fresh made juice to my daily food how much more energy I had and how good I felt. Even having a glass of juice before leaving for work has altered my coffee habit.  Granted, I usually only drink two cups of coffee per day but in the last couple of days, I now just have one cup.  It wasn't deliberate on my part because I love coffee, I just never went for the second cup. Now I have a bunch more fruits and veggies to juice in the frig when I get home tonight.
I went to see Ghost the musical. It's based on the movie starring Patrick Swayze, Whoopi Goldberg and Demi Moore. It was an interesting experience because this musical is a West End production and the lyrics and music were written by Dave Stewart of Eurythmics fame. That means it doesn't have that 'Broadway' musical sound, which I liked because I'm not a fan of Broadway musicals or the Broadway style of singing. Just not my thing. This production, at the Pantages, suffered a great deal from the vocals.  Harsh words for a musical but here's the issue. There are four lead roles: Molly, Sam, Carl and Oda Mae Brown. Three of the four vocalists did not have the vocal power required for these roles. At certain points, I literally could not hear them over either the chorus or the orchestra or both.  It could also be the audio isn't balanced right. I've had this issue with a number of musicals I've seen at various theaters. Anyway, I thought there was a decent musical there, just not the production I saw.

Friday, July 04, 2014

July 3, 2014

Once more into the breach, as they say.  I'm feeling better about the situation with my co-worker. I realized that this person has a habit of non-communication about work flow changes and then likes to throw people under the bus. The thing is, they are often wrong about what they are stating as fact.  I have been corrected by them in meetings in front of a lot of people and since I'm not sure if they are correct or not, I double check my info after the meetings.  Turns out I'm right in a lot of cases.  Since this makes me realize that I'm not stupid or ill-informed, and this person is simply doing what they do, I can now move on.  A lesson I keep needing to learn over and over again.  Onward!

I was just looking at my notebook and realized that I have forgotten to focus. Since I came back from vacation, I have found that my old patterns of just sitting in front of the TV or computer randomly watching anything as a distraction wasn't working anymore. Believe me, I tried to slip back into that but it really wasn't working.  So what I tried and what has been missing from these last few days is focus.  I couldn't veg in front of the TV but in order to create other things to do, I needed to focus on that particular thing.  I was doing that and it worked.  I've been forgetting to focus on what I want to do. Focus on one thing until I'm satisfied with the outcome.  Then move on to the next thing and focus on that.  A good reminder.

So here's some things to focus on tonight, one at a time:

1. Put away odds and ends that go with the cords and cameras, etc.
2. Do my workout - cardio & kettle bell.
3. Cook dinner.
4. Vacuum.

5. Get replacement value for Mom's sterling silverware.
6. Find receipts for expenses to be reimbursed.
7. Pay rent and utility bills.
Update: long, long meeting at work, took up way too much of the afternoon. I worked late then came home and basically passed out.