“Our visions begin with our desires.” – Audre Lorde
Yes, I am awesome! I have been rockin’ my goals this week! (For a closer look at February and March’s goals, look here. For a complete list of all my current goals, look here.) Today, thank you very much, is SEVEN DAYS without cigarettes!! WOO HOO!! If that was the only thing I accomplished this week, I would be proud. Nicotine is a powerful drug. At my husband’s suggestion, I have ordered myself a $30 reward (an out of print children’s book I’ve been wanting in my library). In the last week I have eaten more chocolate and smoked more marijuana than I have in a long time. That oral fixation really takes a toll on me. Hand to mouth, hand to mouth. Must consume, consume, consume . . . This is something that I’ve often contemplated – this need from without. Why am I not content from within? What makes me constantly search for things outside of myself to bring me happiness?
I have noticed that many of my addictions revolve around making me feel better about wasting time. Cigarettes and procrastination go hand-in-hand: I’ll do that chore, as soon as I have a cigarette. I’ll start that task, just let me have a cigarette first. Marijuana (which I admit that I am addicted to) makes me feel better about wasting time. If I feel lazy and happy (and so does my husband) then what is wrong with doing nothing? Sometimes even things like alcohol (which I rarely drink) or cocaine (which has often been a temptation for me in the past) are really just distractions from the fact that I could be doing something more valuable with my time. Like Conor Oberst sings in the song below, “What was normal in the evening, by the morning seems insane.”
Why is it that if I sit down and list things that make me happy – activities that I wish I had time for – then when I do have free time it isn’t those activities I choose? Is that habit? Addiction? Unworthiness? Misinterpretation? Anxiety? I find that I am always preoccupied with time and how long things are going to take. Yesterday on my day off I wanted to walk the dog, do the laundry, finish a work assignment, and play a new video game. I spent a couple of hours in the morning on the video game and the whole time I kept checking the clock, calculating how long the other chores were going to take. It’s my
day week off!! Why can’t I relax?? These are the kinds of thoughts I’ve been having; quitting smoking forces me to take a closer look at my motivations.
But wait, there’s more! I have also done awesome on the self-care routines this week. I have completed a full skin care routine at least once every day, and twice on all the days I wore makeup. My blackheads are quickly disappearing. I have brushed my teeth twice per day more often than not, and at least once every day even if I didn’t leave the house. I think I only flossed and rinsed once, but that’s still far above and beyond normal. The crazy part is – I love it. I so enjoy my skin feeling soft and my teeth feeling clean. It seems to me that a huge percentage of whatever is preventing me from these new habits – is mental. It’s all in my head.
There are some things I was not so successful at this week – but notice that I did not choose to focus on them first. I am proud of my accomplishments, and know that there is still work to be done. The planning time every day has not come into place yet. The research I did on habit trackers was interesting, but I have not yet found something that I feel is perfect for me . . . so that’s still in the works. I did not officially practice getting up to the alarm, but I’m improving in this area (see below). I have not been drinking much water during my time off so far, but I have quit wake-up caffeine! I have not had coffee within 3 hours of waking up all week long. The past 3 or 4 days I haven’t had any coffee beverages at all (just diet cola and occasional tea)!
As far as the alarm goes, this morning my husband and I did not set an alarm at all and woke up at 6 am anyway. However, the problem is that we still stayed in bed until 7, just as we would have if we had been hitting snooze. That’s what I really wanted to practice for – to get right out of bed . . . Granted things have not gone as planned. My husband was sick all weekend and stayed home Monday, so I didn’t do things exactly as I’d intended originally (meaning, I did not practice on Monday and Tuesday). I still have time to practice this week and it’s a great start that I’m already waking up naturally at 6am, I just need to work on actually getting up!
Overall, my December goals are pretty cemented in now. January has one goal that still needs a little work: drinking water. (In fact, I’m thinking of upping my blog posts to twice per week considering my progress takes up a whole post and I want to also be able to have other posts as well.) February/March are well on their way with just a little more tweaking needed in the flossing and getting out of bed departments. That is all, as I said before, AWESOME!!! I am incredibly proud to be able to report in with positive results for the first time in over a month.
“I can’t go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.”
- Alice in Wonderland
* Note: I would like to say that I am not some huge Bright Eyes fan who only posts their songs : ). I have a HUGE taste in music, which you will see at some point. I love old school funk and soul, underground hip-hop, and most rock varieties (lately there’s an emphasis on indie). My favorite two bands are probably Modest Mouse and Neutral Milk Hotel which, yes, I know are somewhat similar to Bright Eyes . . . but my most listened to track in iTunes is Arrested Development’s “People Everyday” and my cell phone ringtone is “Get Up Offa That Thing” by James Brown. Just to give you an idea. Anyway, the reason Bright Eyes has come up twice already is because I listened to one of their albums last month for the first time in years and really enjoyed it, so it’s in the queue right now, but later it will be other things. Just so you know.