Sunday, January 31, 2010

Lifestyle Changes

“The miracle isn’t that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start.” -John Bingham

I've been slightly MIA because life has, once again, taken over. I'm having long days at work, then followed by play rehearsal 3 nights a week and trying to be somewhat social during this gloomy month. I love the south, it's home and it's beautiful but it always needs some help during the months of January & February. It's gloomy, it's damp, and this year it's cold. I love the cold but I like it to be accompanied by scenic snowfalls and sunny afternoons. We're just cold enough to be uncomfortable but without powdery playgrounds. We've had more threats of snow this year than any previous year I can remember but no dice.

As time moves on, February will bring more sunshine and the days are already getting longer but January is always such a hard month to find emotional motivation and strength. Hence, why I never start any New Year resolutions until after I manage to make it through this month. So today is the last day of the month and I have changes in my life to make. Starting with a healthier lifestyle - anyting, and I mean anything, bad for me must go. People included. Negative influences and "friends" who make me feel bad about myself will no longer be allowed to influence me. I will look for the beauty within myself and others for inspiration, motivation and satisfaction.

I will continued to work towards my goal of extended, international travel to experience more of the world and other cultures. To obtain this goal, I must continue to live frugally, fulfill my previous obligations, save diligently and complete the work upon my house. All of these are obtainable goals and I am slowly making progress. Recently, I watched Seabiscuit and during his recovery and that of his horse, Red the jockey, repeats the saying, "brick by brick, my son, brick by brick" about the building of Rome. His voice rings through my head as I save, "penny by penny". It will happen, in good time.

Part of my changes need to be physical... I need to eat better, sleep better, and exercise more. I do better when I'm on a schedule yet I rebel from setting up one. It's hard for me to start but tomorrow morning, I'll wake to go to the gym and commit to a hour workout even if it kills me. I have done enough damage to my physical self and I'm not wasting more money on the same clothing in a larger size. Twice a week, I'm going to attend a yoga class which I know I will enjoy. In addition to that, I'm going to start swimming - I swam in high schoool and I've always enjoyed it as exercise plus I'm acutally good at it which makes it easier. I've got a pool membership (have since last summer) so I'll add that to my workout schedule when I can - have to work out the details on that one still.

It feels good to write it down... It's the beginning of change and I need someting to change (as I've mentioned here before) so now I'm making it happen. And, brick by brick, all of it will change.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Whoa, Nellie!

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." — Ferris Bueller

And so, it's the middle of January - life has sped up significantly and I'm scrambling to keep up with it. The month (and my life) are flying by... I'm 30 and I'm not certain who I am, or what I want, or how to make it happen for me. All of these and more are daily questions - maybe this is what getting old is like because I don't remember being 'concerned' about these issues five or even ten years ago. I need to remember to step back, take stock and then move forward - not stand still while constantly questioning...

Today is supposed to be a holiday but I live/work in one of those jobs which doesn't "DO" holidays so I'm sitting at my desk this morning - looking for another job... Not really but not entirely untrue either. I've mentioned it before, I'm not entirely comfortable in my skin here, and I just had a weekend of solitude to prove it to me again. My life here, it isn't what I want it to be and I'm not certain how to make it something I want...

I subscribe to an job openings email list which is a dream from another point in my life... I guess it's my one way of keeping my finger in the water, knowing what other options are out there. A job is on the list which is VERY appealing to me today and I'm tempted to apply... There are 80 million questions running through my head currently about how I'd make it work but the sensible part of me is telling myself, apply & see what happens, then figure out the details if I get the position. And I think I'm going to. I've never been afraid of life and that's how I can best describe my feelings currently - fear. Not going to give into that...

Monday, January 11, 2010

Travel Update

The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth." - Anonymous

As far as an update on my travel plans, I've got little progress to report. As I mentioned before, I have some other financial obligations to take care of as well as work on my house to complete. So far, I have almost $100 designated to my travel fund... not much I know but I started at the beginning of the holiday season and I went out a lot and went out of town for NYE. But enough with the excuses, that's where I am, cash wise. Not a big dent in the original goal of $3000. But the hardest part is getting started so I've at least got that done. {Insert After School special cheers here}

Other than continuing to read other's adventures and daydream about my own, I've got nothing. Strike that, I did have a conversation with a property owner on my street about renting out her house, she hasn't had any trouble having renters and good ones at that. I forgot to ask what she charges but I'll ask her the next time. So that's a definite possibility for my house.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Magic Words

"Get around people who have something of value to share with you. Their impact will continue to have a significant effect on your life long they have departed." - Jim Rohn

There's something to be said about surrounding yourself with people who inspire and motivate you. Everytime I have a reunion with my college girlfriends, I leave feeling rejuvenated, motivated, and ambitious for whatever is coming next in my life. They are inspiring and accomplished women who real and supportive of my dreams. It's something I miss in my everyday life and I'm openly seeking... can you put out a want ad for challenging and stimulating girlfriends? Without seeming like a weirdo?

So I try to surround myself with motivated and interesting women, a little more difficult when you live in Mayberry... but slowly and surely, I'm meeting new people and making friends. And I appreciate it when they share their challenges and inspirations. Here's one passed along from an artist I really admore called "The Magic Moment" from Paul Coelho's Blog... hopefully it will touch you the way it got me.

We have to take risks. We can only truly understand the miracle of life when we let the unexpected manifest itself.
Every day – together with the sun – God gives us a moment in which it is possible to change everything that makes us unhappy.
Every day we try to pretend that we don’t realize that moment, that it doesn’t exist, that today is just the same as yesterday and will be the same as tomorrow. But if you pay attention, you can discover the magic instant.It may be hiding at the moment when we put the key in the door in the morning, in the silence right after dinner, in the thousand and one things that all seem the same to us.
This moment exists – a moment when all the strength of the stars passes through us and lets us work miracles.
Happiness is at times a blessing – but usually it’s a conquest. The magic instant helps us to change, drives us forward to seek our dreams. We shall suffer and go through quite a few difficult moments and face many a disappointment – but this is all transitory and inevitable, and eventually we shall feel proud of the marks left behind by the obstacles. In the future we will be able to look back with pride and faith.
Poor are those who are afraid of running risks. Because maybe they are never disappointed, never disillusioned, never suffer like those who have a dream to pursue. But when they look back – for we always look back – they will hear their heart saying: “What did you do with the miracles that God sowed for your days? What did you do with the talent that your Master entrusted to you? You buried it deep in a grave because you were afraid to lose it.
So this is your inheritance: the certainty that you have wasted your life.”Poor are those who hear these words. For then they will believe in miracles, but the magic instants of life will have already passed.

in “By the river Piedra I sat down and wept”

Monday, January 4, 2010

One Word: BOLD

"Whatever you do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius and power and magic in it." - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

Like everyone else around this time of year, I'm taking a good look at the past year, what I liked, what I didn't, and what I'd like to change in the upcoming year. I've been tossing around different ideas in my head for this entry, about renewal and rebirth, change and resolutions. Everything was either too cheesy or too trite... or read like an article rejected from Reader's Digest. I just wasn't able to make it work.

Then, Shutter Sister's announced their One Word Project for this next year and I began to think about what word would represent what I wanted my behavior for the next year. I ran through a bunch of rejects there too: change, hope, promise, etc.

And then I began to think about my BIG IDEA and what reactions I might get: crazy, irresponsbile, typical, gutsy, avoidance, etc. Being me, I chose to focus on the positive reactions: gutsy, independent, courageous, etc and pick from those ideas a word which would represent the energy I feel with my idea as well as the strength it will take for me to remain confident in my plan/decision to move forward with this goal. As I tweeted a couple of days ago:

Actually my word for 2010 is BOLD as in BE BOLD. Setting forth to accomplish great things after this day football & laziness! from web

and then:

BOLD #onelittleword - for me to be bold in my choices, confident in my decision of living the my life for me, not for the approval of others from web

So there it is, my choice for 2010 in terms of reaching my goal of living nomadically after this year. Bold in my choices, bold in my actions, bold in my self-confidence to live the life I want, not the one scripted for me, and definitely not the one I'm caught up in. Next, the plan for living boldly in 2010. Because as I said on New Year's Day:

2010's going to be my year! from web