Four more days. It’s the end of an era. The end of an entire DECADE. And while there is still so much I want to accomplish, I’m feeling pretty good about where I’m at right now.
The difference between now and 10 years ago is huge.
A decade ago, I was beginning my second year of college. That semester, I changed my major to theater. I was dating an actor at the time, and I thought that could be my future. I was still living with my freshman roommate, in a bright orange-and-green inspired dorm room. We’d finally gotten a sweet corner room — the biggest in the building. I was eating freeze pops like crazy. I was watching my weight (and running on the gym treadmill SEVERAL times away). I think I was even doing Weight Watchers. I was working for the school newspaper, which I’d eventually quit, since I spent all my time there. That year, I applied to a grant and found myself in England the following summer, a paid study abroad. I remember at the time feeling like all of this was so huge. I was changing, morphing and adapting each day.
Now it is 10 years later. I’ve somehow landed a dream job in New Jersey — a state I never thought I’d call home. I’m pursuing a career in what I picked originally: writing. I am dating another writer (funny how that works) who has become my best friend (and editor) I’m still living in bright residence — though this time it’s orange and blue. My freshman roommate is still my best friend. I swapped freeze pops for fruit bars. Fitness has taken over me, especially in the last year. I’ve found so much joy through running health groups and helping others reach their goals. I eat clean. I don’t count points. I’m not writing for a paper, but I am running a literary journal with two friends. And I just got back from an all-paid trip (by me, in cash) to northern California. At this point, none of this feels very huge. But maybe it should? I continue to change, morph and adapt each day. And I’ve done quite a bit of living in three short decades.
It’s funny the memories conjured up by relieving the past 10 years. And it’s ironic to see that, in many ways, I am doing the very same things I was doing at 20 — just a bit different. It’s in that adaptation where I find the real changes have taken root. At 20, I was nervous and anxious and wasn’t ever quite confident in myself. Today, I face those same fears and struggles. I have to actively work hard to not fret or feel guilty or think negative thoughts. But that is the key — working actively. Because of this, such feelings rarely overtake me. They are merely thoughts that pass through as I’m going through my day. I am no longer plagued by crippling anxiety that lasts for days. In many ways, this makes me feel like adulthood isn’t that bad.
I am ready for the next decade. I anticipate that it may be the most life-changing decade to date. The 20s was up and down. I look forward to riding a more even-keel wave in the 30s.
Here’s to 30!
We’ve been thinking a lot about where we want to focus our energy when it comes to healthy living. We don’t just want to focus on cleaning up our diets and moving our bodies. We want something more. That’s where the wellness challenge comes into play.
For our next online accountability group, we’ll be focusing and talking through total wellness. This will be hosted via a private Facebook group, where we will post daily. We will be your leaders, support, and coachs (and students, too). We’re hoping to get a group together that is looking to focus on some positive and spread some light into this world in whatever small way we can: that starts with us.
The challenge will run for 21 days, September 8 – 28. Challenge commitments follow. (Keep in mind, this is a challenge. Don’t think you have to perfect or concur all of these right away. The goal will be to achieve each of them).
* Workout at least 20 minutes a day, 6 days a week. I challenge those that exercise regularly to up this and push yourself. Being a Beachbody coach, we can help you decide what workout to tackle that will work best for you.
*Eat clean, properly portioned meals. We will post resources to let you know what this means.
*Choose one small positive habit to tackle each day/week. This could be as simple as “I will tell a friend I appreciate them” or “Send someone a thank you text”.
*Choose one small negative habit to eliminate each day/week. This could be as simple as “I will eliminate negative thoughts about my body”. “I won’t compare myself to other people.”
If you’d like to join us, comment below with your email address or message us on Facebook. I can’t wait to get this started.
I have to eat a lot throughout the day to stay full. I try to pack everything I will need so I don’t spend extra cash. This also keeps me from buying chips or candy out of the vending machine. People make comments at work all the time about how much I eat. Meh, who cares.
Up first: Fage Total Plain Greek Yogurt. I use to be a loyal Chobani fan, and I still LOVE their pineapple and coconut but didn’t want the extra sugar on a daily basis. I like the creaminess of the 2% and can eat this plain with just a dash of honey (and cinnamon if I am feeling really crazy).
Green Tea. If I feel hungry, sometimes I will try a cup of this first. If I am still hungry I eat, but a lot of the time walking to grab tea is enough of a distraction from the boredom that I was actually feeling. And its full of antioxidants!
Hummus is a treat for me. I buy the family size to save per portion, and put it in my own container so I watch the portion size. Hummus is a great snack, but I’ve been known to finish the whole container in 2 sittings with some Pita Chips. That is a ridiculous amount of calories and sodium. This way, I am stuck with a healthy portion and bring veggies for dipping.
Kind Bars: I always have 2 or 3 of these in my bag. When I’m in a meeting (or out with friends) I have a quick and healthy option to hold me until the next meal time. These have a good amount of protein and are very low in sodium. That’s hard to find with most “bars”. What are some of your favorite snacks?
For the past 8 days, this was my home.
Unsurprisingly, it was easy to settle in there. My days in Northern California were spent with intention. The goal? Seamlessly unplug. Soak in my surroundings. Experience something new and different. Spend quality time with M.
It’s hard to put this into words, but something has changed since I’ve returned to the east coast. I read about these kind of transformations in the guest book where we stayed. Other people tried to verbalize this, too. You just feel different after staying in the hamlet of Petrolia, California. In that place, you realize how peaceful life can be … and how some things just really don’t matter.
Like the phone. Or Facebook. Or incessantly checking your email. When you are stripped of those things, you start to remember what it’s like to really live. How the world sounds when you’re reading a book. What your mind considers during the silence. The ease of going to bed each night totally exhausted from a day well spent.
When you travel these windy, dirt roads, you have a deeper appreciation for the past. How long it took people to travel before there were automobiles. What untouched acres of land look like. How completely isolated you can feel … while being more connected to the earth than ever before.
I told M that it would be easy to just pack up your things and move to this place. Live the way you were intended to exist. The real challenge is happening now. How can I take what I felt and learned in this little village and apply it to my everyday here? Is there a way for me to achieve the same kind of peace in my daily life?
This is the goal now — to figure out what really matters to me and spend time doing that (and only that). To not burden myself with tasks that are meaningless. To give my time and attention to the things that bring me the post joy. And to be good to this earth. After all, it is the only one we’ve got.
Here’s to many more posts exploring these themes. For now, I feel uplifted, renewed and ready to start better living my life with passion.
Getting rid of cable is something I never even thought about doing. I always had TV growing up. I was allowed to have one in my room starting in 8th grade (of course it was purchased with my babysitting money).
With things being so crazy lately, I’ve barely watched it. A few weeks ago the thought occurred to me, “For this to be worth it, I really need to start watching more TV”. My next thought was the most important: That sounds like a TERRIBLE life goal.
I was spending about $145 total. I figured if I could cut this by $100, I’d have some extra cash and more time to read/workout/fit things in/feel better about my choices in general.
I love a good binge-a-thon on a great show as much as the next person, but I finally took the plunge. I purchased Apple TV and so far I’m really happy with it. I can watch Netflix and other networks that come pre-loaded. Lots of channels also have free access to their shows on their websites. I really haven’t missed it so far. To summarize, if you’re thinking about ditching cable:
You just have to be OK with not watching anything live.
You’ll save some cash to spend on other things.
You don’t realize how much time you are spending on it til you ditch it.
It’s another way to disconnect.
It’s something to consider anyway!