I don't have much to say tonight except I just want to talk about kindness, to myself and others.
I was pretty broken up about my choices the other day. But they made me get up at 5:00 this morning and go to a hot yoga class. That's definitely not something I would normally do. But I looked at my schedule for the day and realized if I wanted to go to yoga, which I very much did, that was my best opportunity. And I don't want to feel that disappointment in myself again. Which is why I am also sitting here writing right this minute.
I am coming in to this project with a lot of shit in my heart that I am not thrilled with, a lot of pain I wish I could just let go of. While it seems to be moving out more slowly than I would like, at least it's moving.
So right now, I am just here, keeping a promise to myself, not sure what or how I feel, and making the choice to be ok with that.
Grand Lake, Colorado
I went super nova.
That's probably an exaggeration, but only by a little. Regular nova?
I know that we are all our own worst critics but i want it to be made clear, I am not ashamed or embarrassed nor do I feel like a failure. Skipping 2 days of writing just makes me.....disappointed. I am disappointed in myself. Partially it has to do with the reason, I feel like I might be too old to go out drinking too late and be a worthless pile of nothing for an entire day afterward.
But it's really more that I could have still written SOMETHING. Literally any thing, and I would have kept the promise I made to myself, as well as my 5's of 6 of readers. But I made a conscious choice not to, I was already so disappointed in my decisions, I just piled on and piled on.
In case you are wondering, it turns out none of those decisions improved my disposition, nor alleviated the disappointment. Go figure.
And I genuinely considered just quitting this whole crazy thing. After all, how can I write every day for a year if days 8 and 9 were skipped out of sheer lunacy.
Well the answer is that I can't. I can't get those 2 days back. But I don't want to quit, and if this time next year those 2 days make all the difference, well then I guess they were meant to happen that way. If they don't, which I have a sneaking suspicion will be the case, maybe I'll look back and laugh or be a little kinder to myself than I am being at this current moment.
That's the dream.
If you didn't grow up hearing these words every Saturday afternoon as a child and subsequently lived by the credo as an adult, there's a good chance we won't connect on much.
Keep reading, though just in case.
These 3 little words have been the bane of my existence and simultaneously my savior from a perpetual piling on of monumental amounts of shame and guilt a top my head, for as long as I can remember.
The real key to its destructive nature is that it presumes a 'diet' is not only immanent, but it is the only solution. It is doubly destructive because just those 3 little words have the incredible power to justify sooooooo many poor decisions and self-destructive choices.
But its not just 'the diet'. This phrase has basically become the blanket with which I cover all of my misdeeds, laziness, lack of motivation, boredom, fear, and sometimes just blatant self destruction. Diet is now synonymous with exercise, productivity, organization, motivation, self esteem.....you name it, if I don't want to do it right that moment, it starts Monday.
'I know I'll be sick as a dog for 2 days, but I will go ahead and eat half of this pizza because it looks freaking delicious and diet starts Monday.'
'I know if I skip yoga and start drinking at 11, I probably wont get to yoga at all, and I'll probably just waste the whole day at that point, and then I will feel like hammered sh*t tomorrow, and will probably skip yoga again so no one smells the champagne oozing out of my pores and I'll eat a gigantic breakfast burrito to help absorb the alcohol...........but diet starts Monday.'
I could go on, but I imagine you get the point. And if you don't, then you might want to stop reading because, yeah, we really probably won't connect on anything.
That being said, diet starts Monday has also been a beacon for hope and a constant drive for self-improvement as well.
I will be honest and let you know, i just recently saw that silver lining. I've looked at this damn mindset as a curse my entire life until I looked really, reallly, reeeeeeeally hard to find something good out of it. And by recently, I mean tonight.
After closer examination I realized that as much as I beat myself up over at, at least I still believe I can be a better version of myself. I still have hope that, while it may not be today, one day I will keep the commitments to myself and sit with the uncomfortable and feel like I am making zero progress, maybe wasting my time and persevere anyway. And in the meantime, I was giving myself permission to not be perfect, cutting myself some slack for what I considered failure in that moment, giving myself some kindness and some space.
The distance between the two is a really freaking thin line, I can tell you that. Being kind to yourself and removing accountability for your actions, beating yourself up and pushing yourself to be the person you want to be........oh such a very thin line. Almost invisible. Some might say quite blurry.
And I realized all of this in my Yin yoga class. Literally tonight,
This was my first full Yin, usually I do vin-yin. But my friend told me how amazing and relaxing it was and she thoroughly enjoyed it. I had a busy day and was feeling a little bloated and icky for the cardio that came with Buti, so I decided to give something new a try.
And you guys, I hated it. I hated the poses. I hated holding the poses. I hated that I hadn't changed from my anticipating Buti clothes so I was cold. I hated how there was nothing to do but be uncomfortable and instead of feeling like I was moving deeper in to it, I kept coming out because I was soooooo uncomfortable. Not in pain. Just uncomfortable. I hated how very very bored I was. I hated how I perceived the cadence of the teacher's voice.......it just bugged me. I hated how much I sucked at it.
That's when it hit me. I was miserable because I sucked at something I had never done before and more importantly, all the elements of which I had put off excelling at because of how uncomfortable they make me.
In other words, I have avoided learning how to control my body, and my mind, because both are freaking hard. Both take commitment to yourself and your goals. And both rarely yield immediate results. ANd i am kind of an immediate results kind of girl.
As with most things that come to you in dark quiet places when your body and your heart are open and vulnerable, the flood gates just swwooooooooooooosshhhhhhh, opened right up. I thought about this blog and how I had probably really set myself up for failure with such a commitment. I haven't written much more then little blurbs for a couple of websites in, I wanna say the last 10 years, outside of my unfinished chapters/posts/speeches/webinars, and all the sudden I have committed to writing every single day? And posting it? What the actual eff was I thinking?
Not only that, I have taken on kind of a hefty commitment to myself with absolutely zero guarantee of any kind of outcome, any real goal, or a single thing for motivation other than promising me I would do it. Just so on day 365 I can say 'well done, self, you finished....now what?' I am kind of known for being the person who always wants to celebrate literally anything and when I went through my coaching program I was so excited to discover that this favorite part of myself was supported with my training. The value in celebration for your accomplishments as well as designating 'prizes' for yourself at the achievement of each step is off the charts. And yet here I am, with no sign posts on this road, not even a whiff of celebration to speak of.
So in my 37 minute supine twist (I may be exaggerating, but that's what it felt like), I realized something. Two things.
1. I don't believe I will actually finish this project.
That's really not surprising, its pretty simple psychology that if you have a long history of letting yourself down, you are more likely to believe you will let yourself down than not. The awareness was not shocking, but it was grounding.
2. I am already bored, wondering where the hell this is all going and why I don't feel like a totally different person after the first week.
That one really doesn't require much more explanation. Boredom is kind of the wrong word because I am not even close to bored with the writing. I am loving the writing. I am bored with the project because it hasn't yielded immediate results.
But when I stop and think, I have noticed changes. I suffered through a class tonight, hell bent on never going again, until i realized why and now i can't wait to go back and work on controlling my mind. This weekend I may not have made long winded posts on this blog about, at this point may just be utter nonsense, but I chose to still keep my commitment to myself. Instead of completely blowing it off and/or beating myself up, I decided since I designed this, it can look any way I would like. Using one of the many tools at my disposal, Instagram, I chose to share the moments as I was experiencing them with friends and family, full of joy and presence.
And that felt good. Like, really good.
So I don't have a picture I took today. 20 minutes before I was leaving for Yoga, I tried to do a flat lay that 'represented' what I had accomplished today and it was lame and it felt forced and stupid and just bluch.
Instead, I am sharing a photo I took this fall.
I have a thousands pictures of this tree in our back yard because it's colors are just breathtaking when it changes. I just take picture after picture, trying to capture how it makes me feel......I never seem to be able to achieve that. But I love that this picture captures a Colorado fall on the lake....see if you can spot the home depot bucket I was using for weeds when I just had to stop and take pictures!! (I honestly didn't know that was in the shot until just this second #photography goals)
And I will be working on trying to find just the right celebration for WHEN I finish this crazy project.
Here's to a brand new week, all new awareness, kindness to ourselves, and being uncomfortable.
The very last minutes of sunset tonight
This is kind of a shameful confession but I am incredibly sore from yoga yesterday. It's pretty pathetic sounding, I get that. So it may go without saying that 5:45 am hot yoga did not happen this morning. But I shall say it anyway. I bailed.
Slightly in my defense, Dave woke up around 2:30 am and kept me up flipping through Netflix for what felt like 5 hours to find the perfect nature show to put him back to sleep. If he had just searched David Attenborough right off the bat, it could have saved him a lot of marital conflict. I'm kind of a heinous crank when woken up in the middle of the night by the sound of a clicking remote. But I digress....
I felt kind of ridiculous for bailing because I definitely didn't go back to sleep after the alarm went off. All the sudden my head was filled with, if I wasn't doing yoga now, when would I do it and how I was going to now schedule the rest of my day.
Readers note: I have an obscene amount of hair and therefore use shampoo of the dry persuasion much more often than the suddsy kind. I try to schedule every element of my life around when will I absolutely HAVE to wash my hair next and how much time can I spend time on the initial 'do' to maximize its longevity. I'm not exactly what you would call a heavy sweater, so I can easily get away with doing a vin-yin or an all levels flow and not wash my hair after. However a hot yoga or a buti, completely out off the question.
Dave thinks I am kind of disgusting. But then again, he doesn't have much hair to speak of and knows not of my plight.
The fact that my studio has limited class availability right now, I am guessing due to people vacationing for the holiday, also effects my options.
I am dead sober tonight so I will be getting to my point quicker than I did yesterday...you're welcome.
I decided, because I am so very very sore, and my hair is verging on the HAVE to point, that I would instead do my yoga practice at home tonight instead of trudging back in to town and going to the studio. I have watched Yoga with Adriene several times in my past 'commitment to yoga' lives and I really enjoy her. A quick peruse of her library revealed a 45 minute deep stretch practice that sounded perfect for my sad little ab 'muscles' and my oh so sore hip flexors. Perfect.
And you guys, I discovered something that I never would have realized otherwise. Turns out, I have little to no internal drive. Or perhaps I have much too much internal monologue. Either way, it's less than ideal.
Man my mind was freaking everywhere, except what was happening on my mat. I was think about the spaghetti sauce I should have started warming up before I started yoga. At a particularly deep hip stretch I was thinking about how no one else would know if I stopped now, and hey I gave it the ole college try. When I was doing some particularly excruciating figure 4 leg lifts (sore little ab muscles, remember), I was noticing the incredible colors of the sunset that was happening outside my window and was thinking I should stop and take a picture, it would be perfect for the blog tonight. Which of course led me to, crap, what am I going to write about tonight.
I considered talking about how someone accused me of being a domesticated housewife yesterday, and that led to my fingernails going from a nice neutral peach to a gun metal gray that looked as bad ass as I anticipated with my black leather jacket I decided had to be worn when it was 65 degrees outside.....but that pretty much sums up what I would have said and I decided I would save my propensity for senseless rebellion for another day.
Back to yoga. Shockingly, I persevered, mostly because of that new thing I'm doing where I keep commitments to myself.
And that's why I chose to go ahead and take the sunset picture, when I finished the practice, the very last light of the day. It is definitely different than what I would have photographed if I had quit, but I not only got to feel great about finishing, but it just means I got to capture that particular moment, that specific version of the skyline.
I also had the opportunity to draw my awareness back to something I know to be so very important in life, which is a tribe. I'll be honest, I am not exactly what you call a social butterfly at yoga, I think mostly because it takes me so inside myself. I haven't exactly made a slew of close friends. But being there with my co-practicers, all of them excelling and struggling in their own unique ways, is so incredibly supportive. Not to mention the awesome instructors, all of whom I have taken different things from that have really helped me continue to get better.
I can tell you that at almost every class I have thought of quitting at least once, but I never have. I am surrounded by support and, I am now aware is an even more important element for me personally, accountability. It's a safe space and I am sure no one would judge me if I got up and quit, but when the 80 something next to me is rocking her humble warrior, I choose to fight through the fire racing up my thighs and finish the flow. I feel like maybe its just the right amount of shame.
I think I will continue to practice at home when I need to, in fact tomorrow I believe it will be necessary as well because of the schedule. I have seen (on Pinterest, obviously) yoga spaces that are separate and special and sanctuary-like, I may look in to trying to achieve something like that if I can. But I have a new found appreciation for this group of strangers I am growing next to, and a renewed energy to honor myself by making my growth a priority.
I spent the entirety of today doing things I absolutely loathe.
I guess, to be fair, I should say that the bookends of the day were pretty good. I began the day getting pretty much all of my vision board for 2019 put together. This is not only exciting because I want some pretty awesome things for the year, but also it's the first vision board I've ever actually completed (and please note, dozens were started) because I stopped over thinking it. Even with my new commitment to myself I still had to have the internal monologue that went more or less like:
"But are you sure this is reeeeeally what you want?"
"I mean no, I guess I'm not sure I want this more than something else I don't know about, but it would be pretty effing cool to achieve"
"Yeah but, what if you focus all of your energy on this and something else cooler comes in to your world"
"Well then I guess I will just have to switch them out, won't I? Piss off now, I'm busy"
Slightly aggressive internal monologue aside, the achievement of the project along with the freaking rad things that are in store for me this year sent me in to my day on a serious high, ready to take on the world.
And thank goodness for that. Because next was my first yoga class in quite awhile. Coming off a long hiatus, coupled with some serious Texas hospitality (and by that I mean an excess of freaking delicious, fattening food and wonderful amazing cocktails) and 2 days of trucker food (and by that I mean gas station sandwiches and whichever fast food is walking distance from the only hotel in town that has truck parking), I was wisely dreading my first day back.
I almost talked myself out of going 4 times before I left the house (cause, you know, I had the vision board to work on...and my coffee hadn't yet been savored to an adequate level). I made Alexa tell me when I need to get my no-longer-a-yoga booty up off my chair and leave the house. And I am not even kidding you, I sat in to the parking lot of the studio and almost talked myself in to just switching to a later class....you know, cause the husband has his play off whatever draft thing tonight so it makes waaaaaaay more sense. But I recognized right then and there that I would find a similar excuse later that evening because there weren't any classes claiming they were perfect fit for the excuse maker who'd lost most of the muscle tone they'd gained before the holiday (and speaking of gained....) so no matter what I signed up for, it was going to kick my ass.
And it did.
Next I went to meet the husband at a job we are doing for friends. When he left this morning it was so sweet..."oh you should really come to the job when you're done with yoga, say hi, see me for a minute blah sweet blah" I'm no monster, I could never turn down such a request.
He's clever, that one.
I found out when I got there that the underlying motive was for me to go get cash out of the ATM to pay our help. I'm sure the rest was true also, but again, day of loathsome tasks.
I genuinely don't know why I hate this task so much. Could be because my Jeep is too tall and my arms are too short, so I have to half hang out of the window with the door open, windowsill all up in the armpit. Could be because he always needs a minimum of 4 times, sometimes more, the max you can pull with one transaction. And it never fails, as soon as I put the card in for the first transaction, a car pulls up in the line behind me. And then I'm that guy. Well, girl. Lady. Woman. Regardless
And I know what you're thinking. Just go withdraw from inside. All I can say about that is that I'm not on the account, but more so is that I have texted Dave multiple times asking what is taking him so long when he's withdrawing cash from the bank thinking something terrible must have happened because he has been gone a ridiculous amount of time.....it's and imperfect system either way.
So I come back to the job, hand full of cash and a heart filled with pride from being so helpful (and only the tiniest bit of resentment) and he tells me that since he didn't sign the title for the truck we bought (the reason for the aforementioned trucker food), I couldn't go to the clerk and recorder as I had planned. But hey, since I was in town, why didn't I just scoot on over to discount tire and get my tire sensor checked out, since it had been flashing at me for over a month, maybe shimmy on down to the car wash like he'd been asking me to do for maybe as long, and tap tap tap right over to get the oil changed.
I don't know if this is upbringing or sheer laziness, but I positively loathe car chores. In my mind, aside from filtering through the hodge-podge pile of bizarre crap I manage to accumulate within my vehicle, I believe deep down in my core that any other aspect of car maintenance is a man's work. I've tried countless times too explain this to Dave, but he has yet to acquiesce to my petulance
Regardless. I scooted, I shimmied, and I tap tap tapped. Almost entirely so I wouldn't have to hear about it again until it snows, or the next 3000 miles, which ever comes first.
So by now, its 1:15.....in the afternoon. On one hand I'm all "yeah Thursday morning, I just made you my bitch!" On the other hand I'm thinking, yeesh, I've already done so much today. Can we call it good?!?!
Nope. I'm a reborn rock star, duh. Even if every moment isn't necessarily 'productive" (ie self care or creativity) it damn well had better be intentional and moving toward something I want......curse you vision board.
So while this is definitely not moving me toward my yoga body (cough booty cough), nor do I believe it will get me closer to being the kind of photographer I aspire to, or that glorious Burberry trench coat I covet, I walked in my house and realized that we had been talking about taking down the Christmas stuff since.....well, Christmas.
Again....not sure why I DREAD taking down the Christmas decorations. And I wish I could say it was sadness, that I hated the spirit of the season leaving and how magical and beautiful it all is....but that's not it. I actually kind of hate putting them up in the first place. A. Its a lot of work, for about 30 days of enjoyment. B.......no pretty much its just A. It's a lot of work, it's a lot of build up, and then it's just...over. Then it's more work.
I am making meatloaf.
I say it again. Meatloaf.
Dave has been asking for meatloaf since we got married. Why, I can't fathom. My mother, and she will openly admit to this, spent years making her meatloaf closer and closer to the consistency of cat food so my dad would stop asking her to make it. When that woman has a goal, she flat achieves it.
It should be noted, as I am writing this, I checked the 'dish' 15 minutes before it was supposed to be done and its burnt to a crispy fry. I think I'll serve it as if this what I intended it to taste like. Fingers crossed guys.
Mom, you're my hero.
The other bookend, in case you were wondering, is writing this post and enjoying a good wine (Not good like expensive. Good like tasty. For future reference, whenever I say good wine, I always mean good tasty. It's never good expensive) Oddly enough, or maybe not oddly at all, but after putting the first post 'out there', I have already started to look forward to writing and started looking around for what I am going to write for the day.
So if you are still reading this, I want you to know, I am acutely aware that this is probably an obscenely long blog post. I haven't actually researched the amount of words you should use, or not use as it were, to keep your blog readers engaged. Nor do I know how many words are in this particular post. But I have a sneaking suspicion that I have exceeded it and it's too many. By a metric fork ton. And not only that, I bet you're also wondering what the eff my point is, other than kind of being a whiner.
I get that. I was wondering what it was too as I was writing.
So if I have to have a point, and it seems I do, only because I am writing to myself, is that one day doing a bunch of crap you really, really, reeeeaaaalllllllllyyy, don't want to do can be empowering. It made me feel productive and accomplished, in a menial task kind of way. It paved the way for more enjoyable and satisfying tasks tomorrow because all of this bull has been taken off my plate. (Minus the meatloaf decision. That may haunt me for quite some time) I don't know, I just feel satisfied, not deeply, but in a day to day kind of way, and ready to take on the world tomorrow.
And speaking of tomorrow, the goal is the 5:45 hot yoga class....not because I care to be hard core but because the next class is at 9 and I need to get done sooner rather than 9.
But don't be surprised if it ends up being the 6PM
My Christmas un-decoration chaos
This is a blog about nothing. It is not, however, without purpose.
This blog has 3 objectives. First is to provide a platform for me to write every day. Second is to provide a platform to post pictures every day. The third is to make a commitment to myself and to see it through to the end.
If you were actually reading this, there is a good chance you've stopped by now because, wow does that sounds boring, and lets be honest, incredibly self indulgent. I couldn't agree with you more. But I'm still going to do it.
I have been coaching clients for close to 2 years now, and have been a certified coach for, well, actually only a couple of months, but that may be another story for another day when I am desperately seeking a topic. But the point is that all the 'experts' say that an online presence of some kind is crucial for success in this business, and probably most businesses these days. So I've been 'about' to start a blog, or get serious about Instagram or start a Facebook page for my business for 2 years. (Full disclosure, I think I actually do have a business FB page floating around out there somewhere....no idea whats on it or how to access it)
So if you're anything like me, when you do something like get certified to be a life coach, or go to a Tony Robbins seminar, or binge listen to Ester Hicks on YouTube , or read Big Magic and Eat,Pray, Love back to back, you start to see all of your life's glorious possibilities in front of you. Everything is fresh and shiny and new and achievable. And everything just makes sense. Yes, I was created uniquely and perfectly and have no need to be ashamed or keep myself small. Yes, I am fully capable of getting everything I want in this world. Duh. Yes, everything is always working out for me. Of course, my thoughts have power and the more I think about my dreams and visualize them, the more rapidly they will appear. Obvi.
You leave feeling spectacular and ready to take on the world. And then you have to actually walk your talk. You have to actually believe you are worthy of good things and have value. You have to actually not be afraid of what people might think of you or how they might respond to what you're putting out there. There is probably a slew of other insecurities that caused me to curl up and hide, but those are probably the two most effective. I wrote unfinished blog post (or chapter or seminar or sales pitch or whatever I decided that day was what I needed to do instead) after unfinished post and they just sat there, gathering cyber dust because I was too much of a chicken shit (sorry mom) to put them out in to the world. And some of them I actually liked and thought might really connect with people. But I could never find the 'right' niche or the 'right' target audience or the 'right' anything. Not to mention the idea of committing to some online persona, creating myself as a brand, having to stick with it, and having to be consistent with posing and updating. Cause, you know, that's what 'they' say you have to do. So I did nothing.
Which brings us to right here and right now. This blog may be the worst thing that ever shows up on the internet.....though I will say that is probably pretty unlikely.....there's some gnarly stuff out there. Or it could be awesome. But it will definitely be something. I am committing to myself, and to whomever might read this, that I will write every day for 1 year. And I will post at least 1 picture with every post. I have no other goal, no other objective, except to see what writing and taking pictures every day, and having accountability to that, will do. I'm also on this new thing, thanks to the ravishing Rachel Hollis, about not breaking promises I make to myself, starting here and now. (Side note, if you haven't already figured it out, I definitely watched Julie and Julia right before the new year.)
Day 1 on the books, and away we goooooooooooooooooooooo!
The eagle that nests across the lake