Finding the Groove and Keeping It Going

Monday, February 25, 2013

As you may have noticed, I'd fallen away from updating for awhile. I seem to go in these cycles. For awhile, I was updating my blog, Sanity's Overrated, every day. I was just on top of it all. I even had daily challenges that I was giving myself and it kept me motivated. But it meant that I wasn't updating here as often. I was keeping on top of things, though, and that was what was important.

Then I fell away from everything for about two weeks. It started when I found out that my aunt passed away. She was my mom's oldest sister, and her best friend. It hit me hardest because I couldn't be there with my family to say good-bye. So I took a little break. And then the break stretched on. I couldn't bring myself to update anything. I couldn't bring myself to exercise, or pay attention to what I ate. I skipped a therapy appointment. I was in the midst of full-on depression. And I was having a hard time slipping back out of it.

Honestly, I'm still having a hard time slipping out of it. I'd had all these grand plans for today that I couldn't force myself to do. I was going to tackle one of my "big projects" - the things that need to be dived into, cleaned and reorganized. I wasn't sure which one yet, but I knew I was going to do one of them. It had become my Monday Challenge. And I knew it would be good for me.

But when this morning came, I couldn't. I debated working on my craft shelf, right in the dining room. But the task seemed to monumental. And if that was too much, then the linen closet and the front closet would definitely be too much. Those places are disasters! So I sat in front of the computer and thought, "If I'm not going to tackle a big project, I should do an update to my blog." But again, I didn't know where to start. Nothing seemed to grab me. And the more I sat in front of the computer, the more in a funk I got, disappointed in myself and depressed because I wasn't making myself do the things that I'd told myself I was going to do.

I did manage to get 3 loads of laundry done, but there's a part of my mind that's saying, "It's not enough." That I should have done more. But I'm trying hard to shut that part up. There's the other part of me that's saying, "You know, it wasn't just the laundry. You also did your Leslie Sansone 1 mile walk. And you snuggled with Pete. Those are good things." I'm just not always good at listening to that part.

I know what needs to happen. I need to get back into my Planning schedule. For awhile, I was sitting down on Sunday morning and writing out a weekly plan for myself. The musts along with the wants. I put the FlyLady Cleaning Challenges into it. I put my Daily Challenges in it. I figured out a menu plan and wrote it out for the week. I wasn't managing to finish everything on my list, but I did get a lot of the things there done. And I was keeping track of it on WeekPlan as well, which was a great thing for me. But when I went away from my blog after my aunt passed away, I went away from that as well.

So I need to get back into that. Maybe tonight, that's what I'll do. Rich is teaching, so I'll have time to myself to figure out what the rest of my week is going to look like. I need to make sure I don't over extend myself. That I don't set myself up for failure by scheduling too much. I need to be realistic about what I can do and what I can't. Because if I'm not realistic, then I will fail and it will help feed into my depression. And that isn't good for me in the least. Hell, it's not good for anyone.

So now it's time to remind myself of some very important facts. Facts that I need to know in order to keep my groove groovin'.

1. Do something. It doesn't have to be everything that you've planned. But getting one thing finished means that you'll have one more thing completed than you did before.

2. Give yourself permission to take time off. Not every day. Not all day. But a little bit of "me" time, or a little time to focus inward instead of outward does more for you than trying to force your way through things that aren't coming.

3. Plan. Even if you don't follow the plan exactly, having one helps you realize where to start and where you want to go. Sometimes, it's just getting on the path and making those first steps are all you need to get going.

4. It doesn't have to be perfect. The house. The way you exercise. The food you make. The projects you do. Perfection is a flawed idea and you're setting yourself up for disappointment when you try for perfect. You have permission to say that something is good enough.

5. You aren't in this alone. You have friends, family, loved ones, all of whom are there for you whenever you need them. You can call them, write them, message them, talk to them. They may not know exactly what you're going through, but they still want to be there for you none-the-less. They make the world more bearable.

6. Don't overextend yourself. It doesn't all need to be done today. You don't need to do an hour of exercise every single day (especially in the beginning). You don't need to clean the whole house at one time. You don't need to blog every single day, or write every single day, or be social every single day. Find what you have time for that day and then make happen what you can. Because tomorrow is another day and you've got time then to take care of things as well.

7. Take baby steps. Because you can do this. You can lose the weight you need to lose by working at it one day at a time. No one expects you to run marathons tomorrow, so start with walking a mile. You can keep your house clean one day at a time. You already know that it's easier when you do a little each day. Keep up with that. Make it habit rather than something you need to consciously focus on. It'll come. As long as you take small steps, you can achieve your goals.

8. You are your own worst enemy. You are the only one putting so many expectations on yourself. You are the only one who thinks things need to be done a certain way, right now. If you ask your friends, your loved ones, what they think about getting X, Y or Z done, they won't expect as much of you as you do of yourself. When you feel stressed, these are the people that you need to go to. They will tell you if you're asking too much of yourself. And remember, you love and trust them for a reason. They're smart people.

9. You've come so far already. NEVER forget that. 5 years ago, you weighed 274 pounds. Now you weigh 230. 44 pounds is a lot of weight to have lost in 5 years. Is it everything you want to lose? No. But you've done a lot already. A year ago, you were in danger of being kicked out of your apartment because you couldn't keep it clean. Now, you don't have to worry if someone from the apartment is coming over because, even if it's not perfect, it's still a lot better than it had been. And you've been keeping it that way for a year. You have come so very far and you can go as far as you want.

10. Tomorrow is a new day. This is one of the most important things that you can remember. Because it doesn't matter what happened today, for good or for ill. What matters is that you can try again tomorrow. It's a clean slate and you are the one that will write on it. You can do it.

I will find my groove again. I will get back on top of things. I will take things one day at a time, taking baby steps until I can start running to where I want to be. I can. I will. Because I know that I have it in me.
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