Thursday, January 20, 2011

Be Here Now

Gretchen Rubin recently posted a list of questions she encounters a lot when she talks to people about happiness on her blog.  I found that several of them resonated with me:

  • How do I balance what makes me happy now with what will make me happy in the long term?
  • Should I make myself do something I don’t want to do? And how do I make myself do something that I want to do (but for some reason, am not doing)?
  • Do I expect too much? Too little?
  • If I try to be positive and enthusiastic, does that make me insincere?
  • When should I accept myself, and when should I expect more from myself?
  • What if I not only want you to do something, but I want you to want to do it? And to do it without me asking you to do it?

Notice the striking resemblance to my Should-ing post a few days ago?

Some things are challenging because I’ve never really done them.  For example, I played sports in high school, but I never did formal workouts in a gym.  On a team, you’re accountable to your coach and teammates, you need to do well because it’s fun to win and the better you are the more playing time you’ll get.  I’ve never had the sense of accomplishment from losing a significant amount of weight or the satisfaction of working my ass off in the gym for three months and having an amazing beach body for the summer.  I’ve never stuck with a gym routine long enough to see noticeable results.  The only drive for me to do it is the potential positives like having more energy or being more toned.  These are such elusive goals that I can’t seem to find motivation to work towards them day in and day out.

I feel like I’m moving away from cumulative goals and spending my time focusing almost exclusively on my current month’s goals.  I’m still staying away from things that I have told myself I can’t have such as fast food, I’ve made significant cut backs on sugar and I cook far more often.  I had some ambitious goals in the first three months and haven’t been able to maintain them long term.  I seem to have reset my happiness project with the beginning of the new year.  My ability to multi task my goals… fail.  It’s a bit overwhelming to try and work out five times a week, walk 10,000 steps a day, eat breakfast, eat only healthy home cooked meals, wake up earlier, look cute, stretch daily, do affirmations daily, always be nice, don’t nag, give proofs of love, be a fantastic friend, go out of your way attend social events, read about all of these things, spend countless hours on computer tutorials, draw, read for pleasure and find clever ways keep track of your progress and blog about it.

I do feel some guilt over how many of my resolutions have fallen off, but not guilty enough to force myself to do them.  I need to re-evaluate.  Some things, like attitude and relationship month have made me more aware of myself and my behaviors.  The ability to snap myself out of, or at least acknowledge my mood and not allow myself to wallow has been helpful.  Perhaps that awareness is enough.  I think some goals, like fitness, I should try again in the summer.  The cold, dark, short days of winter give me too many excuses to avoid walking, getting up earlier and leaving the house period.  Maybe I’m just not ready to commit to working out as much as I would need to in order to see changes.

I’m more excited about my current and future months goals.  I plan on spending more of my energy on them and not wasting energy feeling guilty about failed resolutions.

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