Tag Archives: Health

My Bullet Journal

I’ve never been able to stick to writing a journal. I couldn’t do the ‘dear diary’ thing all the kids of TV shows were doing when I grew up. I was never very good at getting my thoughts out of my head. No wonder I have trouble expressing myself. It’s one of the main reasons I decided to start a blog as I wanted to share what I was doing and how I felt about things in a creative way. I am not the type of person to write and then edit. I say what I want to and hit publish, simple.

However I have always been a huge fan of lovely notebooks and funky colourful pens. I loved being in school at a time when computers were still only used for IT classes. I still find if I need to remember something I have to write it down. So all my lovely notebooks have often just had scribbles of random projects I’ve been working on over the years. However there has been a change in the last few months as I decided to have another go at a bullet journal.

So as I embark on starting a brand new Harry Potter Moleskine beauty of a notebook I thought I would share my set up for May with you.

Lets just take a moment to appreciate the stickers that are hidden in the pocket of the notebook and that I have chosen to stick on the very first page (you know the page that is attached the cover so is not really a usable page? Yeah that one.)

I start my bullet journal with a a date and key. I keep it as simple as possible and have chosen symbols that I already use when taking notes in work. I can always add to it if I need to, but after a few months I’ve found these are the ones I use.

Next up I like to have a view of the whole month. I like to know what I’m committed to already so I can plan my time well and make sure I get enough downtime to enjoy the fun things. I use one main colour per month and the other colours will pop up as nice bursts every so often. This way I can easily see which pages belong together if I ever need to look back.

The next section I include is a gratitude journal. I’ve always had trouble keeping up with these if I’ve kept them separate to my calendar, but have found this works really well. I limit myself to a sentence at most, but some days it’s just a word or two. It’s nice to look back on, but the use I get from this is that it makes me pause for a minute and think of something I’m grateful for. I also try to put down something different each day, but don’t worry about looking back at the previous months.

The next section is my master to-do list. This is for the big stuff I need to do each month. It might include the stuff I don’t have to do regularly, or one off things, or things for later in the month I might forget about otherwise. I keep the day to day stuff in a later section and I also have an app on my phone for reminders so I’m pretty well covered.

I then move on to some trackers. First up is a mood tracker. I find this really useful to remind myself how my mood fluctuates and that all feelings are temporary. I added a simple note section to this month as found it useful to look back on when talking to my therapist about any sudden dips and the possible triggers.

The next tracker I have is a habit tracker. I have chosen to pick four each month and see how I get on. The aim is not to do each one every single day, but look at routine and relate back to my mood tracker. This month i am going back to basics on a few things to bring back some good habits and also work on one (getting up) that has been a stumbling block this last month. This is also where all the colours come out!

I think I’ve put the next section in the wrong place and will rectify that next month as it is not really a tracker and I think should be at the start of the monthly section, rather than in the middle. I’ve been doing a monthly reflections page for the last few years as it is a nice way to spend half an hour with a coffee and just look back and forwards in order to focus on the now.

The next tracker is all about the money baby. I’m working really hard on curbing some unnecessary spending habits as I want to build an emergency fund and save for holidays and other fun stuff. I’ve found since the widespread use of contactless has happened I have become lax in keeping an eye on my spending. I’ve got my spending spreadsheet, the banking apps on my phone and use Money Dash Board, but right now find backing those up by writing each expenditure down makes me think things through. I used this tactic in university and it work really well, so I’m bring it back for 2017. It’s quite time consuming, so I don’t think it’s a permanent thing, but a useful tool to pull out of the box every so often.

I then have a section to focus on my blog. I’ve scaled my blogging down in the last year and my aim is one post a week as I really enjoy it, I just don’t always make the time with my job being busy. This allows me to think and plan ahead and it works really well.

The next section is also one I find extremely useful. I used to have my therapy session and then move on to something else and was getting super frustrated with forgetting what I’d been talking about the week before. Then I saw something like this somewhere I can’t now find and made it my own. I now spend 5-10 minutes after my session just noting down a few things and then before my next session I can recap.

Then comes the biggest section – the day to day bullet journal. This is where I note down anything I want to each day. I haven’t set myself a limit and just let myself free flow and go based on what I need each day, which means some days have 2 lines and others take up a page. I take a look in the morning to note down anything I need to do and then return in the evening to check those things off and note my thoughts/feelings/questions about the day. Like I said at the start I keep it simple and make it work for me.

The one thing I have found that the bullet journal doesn’t work for me with is random thoughts or working through things to make decision. So I also have to have a separate notebook to do this. I find this work for me as it also means I can use my phone notes section for random thoughts and not feel it must be transferred to the bullet journal.

There is loads of inspiration out there on what a bullet journal could do for you, but don’t be afraid to make it your own. I cannot be arsed with an index as I know I won’t keep it up to date, therefore I also don’t need to number the pages! I’m breaking the rules, but who cares, I don’t have enough fucks to give for that kind of thing.

Changing things up

I’ve been thinking a lot in recent weeks about what I want and how I can get there. I’ve grown over the last few years and it feels good and there are still things I want to change. I’ve come to see this isn’t a bad thing. Just because I want to make changes to how I live my life doesn’t mean I’m doing anything bad at the moment, rather it’s about growing and changing to fit that growth.

The first thing I want to work on is moving away from diets. I’ve tried WW so many times now and always struggled to make it work. I’ve read multiple books, listened to many podcasts, and visited multiple websites, but it’s all the same. I’m rebelling against being told what to do. In reality I want to change my relationship with food. I know I use food as a drug to cope with my emotions. I want to change that to make food nourishment to support my life.

This is a huge shift for me. It’s not going to be easy, but I am determined to find what is right for me and work hard to get to a different place. I want that place to evolve. It’s not about the destination, but about the journey. I want to create a love for food that lets me explore it and places while I travel. Guilt Free!

So I’ve got some new research to do on intuitive eating, self-care, mindfulness, and body positivity. I’ve got a few leads to follow from some of my favourite blogs. Maybe we all reach this place at some time on a weight loss journey. I want to lose weight still, but in a more natural way than restricting what I eat all the time. I have some work to do on binge eating behaviour so I’ll be looking back at all the CBT I did a couple of years ago. I’ve also been through my social media and removed things that no longer fit with where I am – another way of evolving.

It feels good getting this out. It’s hard to talk to people about as everyone is in different places. Most people automatically jump to suggesting diets and fitness, but that’s not what I need. I need to spend time on myself to understand myself and the changes I want to make. It’s funny how people react when you do say ‘oh no, I’m not going to follow a diet’, it ranges from incredulous to disbelief. I’m using it to make me laugh. No one know me better than myself!

I have a plan. I need to do research. I need to keep it simple. I need to trust and believe in myself.

I can do this.

100 Reasons

I have been looking at why I sabotage myself. Looking at why in times of overwhelming emotions I turn to food. But more importantly why I want to change that. I’ve been inspired by Sarah McGee and created a list of 100 Reasons to remind myself why I want to make the changes I do. These are to help me with Project lifestyle.

So here are my 100 Reasons:

  1. To live for as long as I can

  2. To not waste time worrying about how my weight stops me doing things

  3. To have fun

  4. To be full of confidence

  5. To be happy

  6. To love myself no matter what

  7. To be able to sign up for any event knowing I could do it

  8. To enjoy competing

  9. To be faster at swimming

  10. To be faster at running

  11. To enjoy cycling

  12. To not waste money on rubbish food

  13. Because it feels good

  14. For the post workout high

  15. To be fit for life

  16. To buy clothes in any shop I want

  17. To feel comfortable in all my clothes

  18. To be know as active

  19. To wear pretty things

  20. To not worry about taking up too much space

  21. To be able to climb mountains

  22. To have more energy

  23. To sleep better

  24. To not sweat as much

  25. To fit the normal blood pressure monitor sleeve

  26. To stop my legs rubbing together (hence always wearing trousers)

  27. To never have to worry about a ‘maximum’ weight limit

  28. To be able to go horse riding

  29. To feel strong (physically and mentally)

  30. To set new goals and achieve them

  31. To push my limits and find new ones

  32. To be taken more seriously professionally

  33. To not always be thinking about the next meal

  34. To inspire others

  35. To inspire myself

  36. To be considered healthy

  37. To show others what I am capable of

  38. To prove myself wrong

  39. To feel sexy occasionally

  40. Because I love how treating my body well feels

  41. Because I only have one body

  42. Because I deserve love

  43. To keep setting PB’s

  44. To beat depression

  45. To be able to buy knee high boots that fit

  46. To be able to wear those knee high boots over skinny jeans

  47. Because each workout is a therapy session

  48. Because I don’t want to waste time being lazy

  49. To stop beating myself up

  50. To be a better person

  51. To smile more and more

  52. To be able to hold a conversation while running with my club

  53. To run with the main group of runners at club

  54. To keep up with the top swimming lane and take the lead

  55. I want to live everyday

  56. To be able to says ‘I’ve done that’ when someone asks

  57. To go hiking and enjoy every step, rather than count every step

  58. To develop a helpful relationship with food that supports my life

  59. To not worry if I’ll fit a high viz jacket while at work

  60. To take part in events and not worry about being lifted up by others

  61. To not have trousers cut me in half when I sit at my desk

  62. To fit shirts and other tops with sleeves that aren’t stretchy

  63. To wear dresses to work

  64. To wear dresses on nights out

  65. To last longer in high heels

  66. To not worry about injury

  67. To learn as I go and be like a sponge of knowledge

  68. To feel like I belong anywhere I want to be

  69. To appreciate my down time

  70. To be able to do Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred level 3

  71. To be considered healthy by my doctor

  72. To not worry about my blood pressure (although my doctor said was excellent in Jan 14)

  73. To be able to hold yoga positions for longer and lower

  74. To be able to bend forward when I’m sat with my legs straight out in front

  75. To not hurt my knees when helping out at swimming

  76. To do unassisted versions of exercises I currently do

  77. To live the life I want to live

  78. To not let my weight limit me

  79. To be like the people I admire

  80. To learn new things about myself

  81. To continue being adventurous and willing to try things

  82. To cultivate and maintain relationships

  83. To not be afraid to ask for help

  84. To big myself up among my peers

  85. To love every type of weather

  86. To not be self conscious about my body (especially in a wetsuit)

  87. To have clearer skin and be able to not wear makeup

  88. To create a self disciplined and focus self

  89. To be myself

  90. To make changes to myself because I already love myself

  91. To seek out new opportunities, rather than wait for them to happen

  92. To smash my 4000m meter swim session goal

  93. To feel good in running tights rather than a fat blob

  94. To be able to race, rather than know I’ll be beaten

  95. To be a triathlete

  96. To cycle to work regularly

  97. To dance more

  98. To laugh at myself

  99. To go paddle boarding more often

  100. To kick arse in anything I do (including my own arse!)

Project Lifestyle Purple Cover

Following Through

I’ve been slacking for a while. With my blog, my depression, my life. Okay I’m exaggerating, but it does feel like it sometimes. I know I need to work hard to get the things I want, but for some reason I just expect things to happen lately – without work – and I know really that is not how life works.

I’ve always worked my hardest to do well and succeed at the things I want. I was lucky to have amazing parents who let me try and do things I wanted. I’be never been the best at anything, but I have the determination to try things out. But there is a down side – I often don’t follow things through.

This is what I feel I’m doing at the moment. I’m not following through on my plans or goals. I set them, plan them out, then just expect them to happen. But that is not how it works. I’m sure we all wish it was sometimes, but it’s a rare occasion when it does.

I also think I’ve been taking on too much and this does not make it easier to follow everything through. I need to take some time to really think about what I want and focus on those things properly. If that means I have to put things on hold indefinitely I need to do it. I read this article about giving things up and at the time it didn’t make sense, but this weekend it really does. I keep getting stressed about all the things I don’t have time to do, when really I need to be honest and say I don’t want to do them right now. I am doing other things and could always come back to somethings at a later time.

My focuses at the moment are:

  • Training for my half marathon
  • Getting over depression – CBT and getting of medication
  • Health, diet and weight loss
  • Developing at work
  • Enjoying life

These are small things. Trying to do anything more is too much right now. All of them take work to achieve and progress so I need to give them what they need and deserve in order to be successful for me. I want to enjoy my life and take time out of developing to just be me. I feel I’m missed my twenties and don’t want that to happen as I get closer to my thirties.

Life scares me, but I want it to be an adventure. Everyday in some way. Whether that’s writing my blog, running a new route, sailing with my sister, reconnecting with people, or just taking time to enjoy the quiet.

A bit of a random post, but I just wanted to get my thoughts out. Time to catch up on some book and coffee posts I’ve neglected 🙂

I Can See Clearly Now…

I’ve had laser eye surgery!

I’ve been a bit quiet over the last few weeks as its been a bit up and down. But this last weekend I’ve not been allowed to look at screens to let my eyes heal.

On Friday I went to stay with my sister to have my eyes lasered so I would not longer need glasses. It’s great! Now, although before, during and right after were not so fun.

It was not an easy decision to make to get this done as it is so bloody expensive. I talked it over with my sister and parents and then took some time to decide while looking at my finances. However weighing it up with buying glasses for the next fifteen to twenty years it about evens out money wise. Therefore it really came down to my lifestyle and the fact I didn’t want to deal with contact lenses. Training for my triathlon while wearing glasses was a pain. They kept steaming up and I was afraid I was going to break them. That did it for me really. I knew I would enjoy things a lot more if I didn’t have to wear glasses for seeing into the distance. So I decided to go for it. Before I could actually get it done I had to take into account I’m not allowed to swim for up to a month and also no vigorous exercises, where sweat could run into my eyes for at least a week, maybe two. So I had to decide when would be convenient.

So Friday was the day. I had done my triathlon and the next gala is not until July. Also I’ve not got any running events until mid June, but with breaking my toe and needing another week or so for it to heal means running isn’t an issue.

I went down to my sisters and she drove me to Optical Express in Bristol.i had to have a few of the eye tests again to make sure nothing had changed since the initial assessment. Nothing had changed so it was just a case of waiting for my time and filling out an updated medical form. This is when I got nervous. I had done quite well leading up until that point and as it drew very close the nerves started to kick in. However everyone I saw that day were great and friendly and explained every thing. They also didn’t drag things out, which for me was great as it didn’t give me time to think too much.

So the actual surgery was over super quick. They take you in the room, out drops in your eyes and lay you down between two lasers so they can swing you between the two.it took less than 4 minutes an eye and honestly I didn’t notice the lasers at all! They do one to create the flap and then use the other to reshape the eye then put the flap back into place. They do that on both eyes and then put more drops in. I could feel a bit of pressure and smell a bit of burning but that was it. They put something in my eyes to stop me blinking, but I couldn’t feel it at all.

My worries were about staying still and not blinking, but they kept telling me to relax and look at the lights, so that is what I did. One person told me to think of my favourite song and sing it twice, but in the moment I couldn’t, so kept saying to myself look at the light.

It was disorientating after. I didn’t want to blink or move my eyes on their own, so I was moving my head to look at things. Also things were very hazy, not blurry, but also though there was fog everywhere. They then took me through the eye drops I have to use for a week after and then let me go home right away. My sister drove, while I kept my eyes shut. They recommended I went to bed straight away for a few hours, so I did (any excuse for an afternoon nap). I put on an audiobook and tried to sleep. This was the worst part as the pain started to kick in and my eyes wouldn’t stop watering. I couldn’t get comfortable at this point either. They gave me goggles to wear, but as my eyes were watering I kept my sunglasses on. The pain did ease and I did sleep for a bit. In the evening my eyes were still hazy, but mailing felt like I had a lash stuck in them, which went away when I put new drops in.

The next morning things were way better. I could see clearly, but was sensitive to light. I had to head back to Optical Express for a day after check up. I kept reading things I wouldn’t have been able to without my glasses before. I also kept looking at things in the distance and realising they were clear now. The checkup went well and I was given the all clear to drive, just to be careful at night with the lights. I had a good day, just felt like my eyes dried out a few times, but that’s what the drops are for. I have to go back next week for another checkup, then a again in month.

Today I realised how much I am glad I had it done. I was driving around today and doing things normally, and I wasn’t squinting at all. My eyes still dry out, but that is normal. I also feel like my eyes get tired and heavy, but again this is normal.

I can’t wait to get running a nod swimming again and take in what I can see. I want to enjoy what I do and I think seeing it clearly will help this a lot 🙂

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