I’m starting to believe that what was initially conceived as a silly and somewhat indulgent idea, my De-Frumpiness Project, is evolving into something deeper and more significant. When you start to pay attention to yourself every day, there’s a lot to notice. Last month I indulged in lipstick. This month I’m trying to keep my finger and toe nails pretty and healthy– although maybe not as colorful as I’d initially anticipated going into this challenge– nail polish is just too vulnerable to my lifestyle.
But, there are other little things that are going on too. I’m straightening my hair every now and then. I’m wearing my heels at work more often. I’m managing to at least wear my kids’ Square 1 art pendants. And I’m finally completely and totally fed up with the abuse I’ve heaped on my body the past couple of years courtesy of overindulging on food and completely abandoning some sort of exercise.
A lot of people tell me I’m being silly, that I look really great. And I truly appreciate the compliments, I do. But. I feel like crap. I’m not sleeping properly. I have total energy lapses throughout the day. I’m extremely impatient and irritable too many times. And I’m often fighting off the blues one way or another. You can’t convince me the 20 pounds I have gained in the past two and a half years have nothing to do with any of that.
In the past few days, I have read two really well-written and interesting pieces. The first was the New York Times article, How Companies Learn Your Secrets. I know it seems completely unrelated to what I’m talking about, but it turns out the article is written by Charles Duhigg who has a new book coming out next Tuesday called, The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business. And it turns out the reason companies are able to figure out so much information about us is because we are predictable– creatures of habit.
The article is more fascinating than creepy. I thought it was packed to the gills with some really interesting information and yes, I’m intrigued by Duhigg’s upcoming book.
And then yesterday, the next dot to be connected for me came on Google+ (Are you on there yet? It’s amazing). An article from the Harvard Business review was shared on my stream, Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time. I can relate to every single guy featured in that piece. I took the audit and scored perfectly in the “Full-fledged energy management crisis” section. Of the four categories– Body, Emotions, Mind, and Spirit the hardest hit was Body, but not by much.
And you know what stuck out to me once again? Habits. There were habits everywhere– bad ones that needed to stop and good ones that needed to be created. The two pieces go together exceptionally well.
I hate thinking of myself as a creature of habit. I like to think I’m spontaneous and unpredictable, in a good way. But when I step back and look at myself, I see I am a creature of habit but there are too many bad ones and not enough good ones. And I am spontaneous and unpredictable, but not always in a good way.
Yesterday, it dawned on me that it was Fat Tuesday and today Christians everywhere begin observing Lent. In my Catholic upbringing, this meant sacrificing something for 40 days. And in way, I’m going to go ahead and do just that but I’m not really doing it out of reverence or anything like that. I’m doing it because I need a kick in the (bigger, plushier) booty.
I got up this morning at 5 and worked out on the Wii Fit Plus. I actually upgraded to this from the old school Wii Fit for the purpose of this project. I would like to do some form of exercise for 30 minutes every single day. It doesn’t have to be all out insanity where I tear my muscles to smithereens and then let them recover. I’m not into that. Some days, it’ll be yoga. Some days it’ll be dancing to the Just Sweat mode on Just Dance 3. Other days, it’ll be checking out a new routine on the Wii Fit Plus. After ten days, I’m going to reward myself– either with a new exercise Wii game or a new exercise DVD so I keep it fresh.
I’d also like to get more sleep and eat better, but those are sort of lurker goals right now. I’m happy with this direction I’m moving in. I feel empowered. I go through these phases in my life where I truly feel like my life is in my hands and I am at the wheel and I can get to where I want to go. And it’s not just the physical aspects of my life I feel good about. Everything is behaving properly right now. My money is doing what it’s supposed to. I am enjoying my children and my boyfriend. School continues (no test grade back yet, boo). Work has been flowing beautifully, like a well-navigated ship. So I’m enjoying the ride and taking advantage of the strength as long as I can.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve reached the end of my Ultradian rhythm.