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Posts Tagged ‘Wheel of Balance’

Have you ever had one of those days where every little thing going on in your life rolls up together and creates a tidal wave of anxiety? I woke up drowning in that tidal wave. I woke up thinking that there was a possibility this time that I just wouldn’t get everything done. I might not be able to crank out my paper and presentation, I might not be able to finish this CI group project, I might not even be able to understand how. I might not be the best at what I do in my job anymore. I might not even want to be at my job anymore. I just kept sinking deeper and deeper.
 
I walked into work and my best friend/coworker V asked to go for a walk. On that walk she talked about possibly switching departments leaving our team understaffed. Pulled under deeper.
 
As I sat at my desk, drowning, I got this email from Blondie (my best friend from home). She read between the lines of my email response to her in the morning and the start of her email was “Life is NOT that serious!” She literally walked through point by point of the worst case scenarios: So what if I fail? So what if I don’t graduate? (I take one more class and graduate in two months?) What if this job isn’t for me anymore? (I get a new job – I’m only 25!)
 
She reminded me that even though she knew I wasn’t going to fail – all of those worst case scenarios aren’t that bad. She reminded me that a lot of the pressure I feel is pressure from myself. And the best part? A reminder that I have her support and friendship through it all.
 
Then J sent an email out about how everyone needed to take a break from homework to get drinks tomorrow night because we all miss each other and need some quality girl time.
 
Then B sent a text about how he was listening to an interview with Megyn Kelly and that she and I were so alike it was creepy. (Super intelligent, well-spoken, politically savvy, beautiful woman? I’ll take that comparison!)
 
Then V put a bag of cheetos and reeses pieces on my desk and gave me a big long hug.
 
I will be OK. Maybe this tidal wave will keep trying to take me under. But I have the best support system fighting to keep me afloat.
 
Oh, and I have already done two 5k’s and a spin class this week. Jillian tomorrow morning and I am ahead of my weekly exercise goals.
 
In becelisa‘s motivating words, tonight I’m choosing strength over weakness.
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It’s always easier to hop out of bed on Tuesday mornings. You know why? It’s Biggest Loser night! I can’t help it, I am addicted to that show. This season especially, I just love every one of them. Their commitment, passion, and hard work is totally paying off. I love seeing the transformations!
 
I think I was asleep before 11pm last night which I’m really happy about. I did my 5k+ after work (10 minute warm-up on the elliptical, and about 3.26 on the treadmill) and it felt great! I have said it so many times before but my spirit after I exercise (throughout the day but more specially the hours after) is in it’s best place. My head feels clear and my excitement and optimistic nature feels stronger. If only I could figure out a way to get myself out of bed to exercise in the morning. I think my Jillian short-term goal for my wheel of balance will be a good start.
 
I was thinking today about a conversation I had with my friends J and A at the library on Sunday. I’m a little stressed with the amount of work I have before “graduation” (before I officially become a MASTER) and the lack of time (since my more than full-time job takes precedence and seems to be eating up all my brain cells) and the fact that I have a 10pg paper due at midnight tonight, research & analyzing due by midnight for my other class, a final 15pg paper and presentation for Tuesday, a 30 minute recorded presentation and business summary for later that week – all amongst classes after work for the next few days.
 
A said something along the lines of, “you can do it, you’ll get it done”.  And my response was, “Yes I’ll get it done, I don’t have a choice!” And we kind of laughed since we hate when people say things like that, “you’ll be ok” or “you’ll get it done”, etc but it made us all think. We clearly don’t allow any choice that involves failure. We get it done because we believe there isn’t any other option. But some people wouldn’t get it done. Some people would turn the assignments in late, or not turn it in at all and maybe not even complete a master’s program. It’s interesting that all three of us felt the same way. Our work ethic doesn’t allow for failure. I’d really like to figure out a way to replicate this attitude towards every other aspect of my life.
 
Last thought of the morning. B. Yesterday morning he sent an email with days/times to potentially go rock climbing and asking if we could sign up for that 10k I mentioned in yesterday’s post. We’re set to go climbing next Wednesday. I’m so excited to try out this new activity!
 
I think I’ll have to save my thoughts on all of this hang-out time with B for another post. All I want to say is that right now, I’m happy and I’m stable with him. I just want to take it one day at a time. I don’t want to think about the past and I definitely don’t want to worry about (or worse attempt to control) the future. One day at time.

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So the first Life Balance Wheel area I am going to really focus on is Exercise. It’s a perfect section to start with on Boston’s Marathon Monday. Sadly I don’t have off of work (I wish I did though because I love watching races and always get so emotional!) but none the less gets me excited. To get started on this section:
 
What can I do personally to improve things?
         Write up short-term and long-term goals.
 
What can I ask others to do?
          Support me and hopefully sometimes join me! 
 
How will I know that things have improved – what will I feel, see and hear that is different and better?
         I think I will feel healthier and stronger. I think my mind will feel more at ease and my emotions a little more balanced. I think I’ll also feel such a sense of accomplishment, pride, and success when completing my goals!
 
How much do I really want to achieve more satisfaction with this particular area?
          I really do want to achieve more satisfaction in this area. I think that it’ll have a ripple effect on so many other aspects of my life.
 
While I exercise now  I need to have a more consistent exercise routine. I’d also really like to have some goals for my upcoming races (B asked if I’d sign up for this 10k race we did the past two years in September) plus smaller goals like exercise in the morning etc. Here is what I am holding myself accountable for:
 
Immediate “weekly” goals:
1. Do one weekly Spin class
2. Do my Jillian Michael’s DVD Friday mornings before work. (= PAIN)
3. Do one 5k run each week (even if it means with walking breaks).
 
Long term goals:
1. Run the Marine Corp Honor 5k in under 30 minutes (May 8th, 2010)
2. Run the Lawyer’s Have a Heart 5k in under 29 minutes (June 17th, 2010)
3. Run the Lone Gull 10k in under an hour (September 19, 2010)
 
I’m so excited!
 
On a slightly separate note, this past Friday I went with a friend to see “The Joneses”. While it won’t win any awards I thought the concept was really interesting. It did a great job of showing the ripple effect of marketing material “things” among teens to adults and the after effects. It made me realize how easily anyone can fall into wanting to keep up with the “Joneses” and to believe that by doing so, you’ll be so happy in that lifestyle too. There is just so much more meaning to life than all of that. The Joneses are such a facade. Made me that much more excited about making my life more meaningful!

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OK thoughts are little more positive right now. (I am glad I wrote the earlier post. It was honest and it’s how I feel – even if it is slightly exaggerated as I’m super tired and pms*ing.)
 
Anyway, I have an idea! So Life Coaches sometimes use something called the Life Balance Wheel (see image below). I am challenging myself to focus on each aspect of the wheel for a couple week period so that I can start finding a better balance among the various aspects of my life as well as increasing satisfaction in all of these areas. I think if I have more balanced and fulfilled life among all of these that a dip in one wouldn’t be so crushing.
 
 
 
I need to make these tangible and SMART goals otherwise it’ll end up like a vague Operation ME that in theory sounded great but easily got lost. As I focus on each section I’ll come up with a list of short-term/continuous goals. So here’s how I’d currently rate myself on the wheel. A 1 is completely dissatisfied and 10 is fully satisfied.
 
Health: 4
     To start, I need to make my annual doctor checkup, and well past due dentist appt & eye doctor appt.
Exercise: 6
      I am at my lowest weight (5’7 and about 135lbs) but I would like to lose another few pounds and tone up. I’d love to feel as strong and healthy everyday as I did that day after my spin class. I’d love to run my upcoming 5k’s in 28 minutes or under.
Relationships: 5
      I think this encompasses three different sections. Family, Friends and “Other” (bf/lover?) I think this will be one of the hardest and one of the last categories I tackle because I think I need to focus on me in order to be able to give to others.
Home Environment: 3
     I love my own place. But it’s a complete disaster. It’s messy, disorganized and is in desperate need of serious cleaning and permanent organization set up. I need to make this place my sanctuary again.
Play: 6
  While I allow myself a lot of play time I’d love to find a hobby or a passion.
Money: 5
   I’m finally almost 100% out of debt! (Well, depending on how much my car and attending showers, bachelorettes and weddings set me back). But I need to be smarter with my money and come up with a better financial plan to start saving.
Work: 5
    I’ve been in a really non-productive state at work. This HAS to change. My lack of productivity is causing me to become paranoid and to not feel valued.
Life Purpose: 2
   Ahh, I don’t know how to tackle this one. I’m going to have to do some research…
Spirituality: 2
    I truly believe in God but I haven’t given myself the chance for this connection. Maybe that means going to church maybe it means meditating or connecting in nature or maybe it even means reading Joel Osteen books. Something tells me that if I work on this one the rewards will be magnificent.
Self Esteem: 5
   My hope is that with focusing on some of the other components, exercise, play, spirituality, etc that this will raise on its own. I think seeing a therapist (which is hopefully planned to start in mid-May) will also help this one. I also think that in this case if I try to push out of my comfort zone my self-esteem will go up too.
 
This is scary to see. All of these areas are lower than I want. And out of balance. Alright, I’m excited for my journey!
 
First section up is EXERCISE. STAY TUNED!

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