Ok, bear with me here – the title seems incredibly negative, but I promise that it’s going to make sense as you read on, and has a positive outcome. Positive and honest is what it’s all about over here!
I think it’s pretty easy to focus on the things you do well, things you enjoy and have mastered. BUT, what about the things you’re not so great at? How much attention do you give them? Do you think that by paying more attention to them, and working on them, might make you a stronger person in the long run?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, for a variety of reasons. A little context is needed here – Kyle and I are busy people (and I’m not just saying that). When we factor in our own training time to the variety of jobs we both hold, we’re not left with much free time throughout the week. Most of that free time is then taken up by “life” stuff; all the necessary fun things such as groceries, cooking, laundry, cleaning, time with the dogs… sleep? While we love every minute of what we’re doing, and I’m in no way complaining about our life being so busy (it would be boring otherwise), I started to realize a few things I enjoy / should be doing had fallen off my radar.
So, here we have it – Things I’m Bad At. I wanted to think of all the things I had let slip and focus on turning them around for better life balance. Obviously we can’t make more time in a day, but we can opt to use some of our free time in different ways (even if that means the kitchen floor has some extra crumbs on it – that’s why we have dogs anyhow). So, here we go!
1. Relax. This is both a mental and physical factor. Last week Kyle and I decided to take Saturday off of ALL work to just be together and relax, and it was amazing. BUT – I never turned my brain off. I was constantly thinking of things I “should” have been doing, and feeling guilty for wasting time. The day off was totally needed as we hadn’t made time to do that in months. I shouldn’t have felt guilty for it! We both need to embrace the idea of down time and be ok with turning things off for a bit. To do: designate at least two days per month as a day OFF from all work tasks.
2. Reading for fun. Ever since I can remember, I’ve always been a huge book nerd. I always had multiple books on the go and would read constantly – I even tried to read at the dinner table but my mom wouldn’t allow it. Lately, my personal reading has fallen wayyyy off my radar and I found myself actively missing it. I found a stack of books I bought and never cracked open, and am determined to work my way through them. To do: take at least 15 minutes each evening before bed to read (for fun, not research).
3. Stretching. Training is easy and the highlight of my day. I like doing cardio. I teach my classes each week no problem. But stretching? What’s that?? I know how beneficial it is, and I definitely know that I physically NEED to do it, yet I never make the time. The past two weeks I’ve made a conscious effort to stretch after training (most days), and after cardio (always). It feels so much better physically, and I enjoy the downtime mentally as well. To do: Continue (and add) stretching for 5-10 minutes after training and cardio – either at the gym or at home.
4. Personal hygiene. Ok, that sounds terrible… and maybe it is pretty bad, but either way I’m going to fess up to it (honesty, right?) I mentioned in a previous blog that I’m not always the best for showering after training in my rush to get to work (thank you baby wipes!). But, another factor is that I rarely (ok, never) take my make-up off before going to bed – the cardinal sin for all women as my mom says. The nights that I shower / wash my face always make for a better morning, so why don’t I just do it all the time? To do: Take the 4 minutes to wash my face (and take better care of my skin in general) as soon as I get home for the evening. Leaving it until bedtime is a recipe for failure, so we’ll just be smart and do it as early as possible. #antiaging
5. Connect with friends. A lot of my closest friends live far away, and we stay in touch through email only (we all share a hatred for phone calls, a cornerstone in our friendship LOL). It’s so easy to lose sight of this and suddenly it’s been months since we’ve been in touch – and that’s NOT ok. The positive here is that regardless of how much time passes, once we get in touch again, it’s like things are status quo – no blame or hard feelings about the silence, a sign of true friendship! Another added bonus is that it’s amazing to get emails from them all and learn about what’s happening again. An email from one of my friends last week put me in such a great mood for days! To do: Connect with one friend each week, and never let more than three weeks pass without emailing them again – notes will be made in my agenda to help track this one.
Ok, that’s a pretty good starting point and covers the major issues I’ve been thinking of. So, what are the things YOU’RE bad at? Stop and think about them honestly then come up with ways to flip them around. Without figuring out an action plan to change it, you’ll just keep doing them.
Remember, it’s not always a negative thing to point out the things you’re bad at. Addressing these items can help you feel better physically and mentally in the long run, making you a stronger, more well-rounded person!