Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Get motivated!

I have been working mandatory overtime since the beginning of the year, and last week my overtime hours were increased from 10 hours/month to 10 hours/week. Coinciding with that, I upped my gym membership from 2 days/week to 3 days/week. Needless to say, I’m exhausted … but trying to remain positive.

Yesterday, I was so tired and grumpy that the last thing I wanted to do after work was work out. The siren call of my couch was overwhelming. My work schedule has been interfering with my sleep schedule and my eating schedule – so help me if I’m going to let it mess with my fitness schedule, too!

So yesterday afternoon I decided I needed to psyche myself up for the gym. Here’s what I came up with:

  •      I get to rock my new galaxy tank top. (I was going to take a photo of me wearing the shirt, but by the time I remembered, I was all sweaty and un-pretty. So you get the stock photo instead).

  •      I get to see all my FIT friends. You know, I never thought I would enjoy working out in a group, but these guys make it so much fun! Not to mention the encouragement, accountability, and sense of community. Did I mention how much I love Fun Intelligent Training?

  •  I get to eat a banana after my workout, and the carbs don’t count toward my daily allotted 100g!

  •     Going to the gym is certainly better than working late.

In case you’re wondering, yes, I went to the gym yesterday. Then came home, ate dinner, and promptly fell asleep on the couch. I might need to come up with a new list to get me through tomorrow’s Bootcamp class

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

My Wellness Plan

I attended a class at my chiropractor's office last night about staying well. Basically,  being disease-free and pain-free doesn't necessarily mean that one is healthy. I've known this, but for some reason, last night I really took it to heart. I do try to eat healthy, exercise, reduce my stress, etc., but Dr. Jenna really put it into perspective for me last night. Overall health can be summed up in a DREAM: Diet, Rest, Exercise, Adjustments (of course, coming from a chiropractor!), and Mental Health. And each one comes with its own break-down of how to achieve it. 

So, I decided to make myself a sort of inspirational poster, which turned into My Wellness Plan. It encompasses how I plan to achieve a healthy me by way of each DREAM point. Many of these things I'm already doing, some of them I could improve upon, and some, like "Be a zebra!" are new. (If you're wondering about the zebra thing, it's from a book called Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers by Robert M. Sapolsky). 

I'm going to hang one up at work, and one beside my desk at home as a constant reminder that health and wellness is more than just not being sick - it's living the DREAM!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Rainy Days

Actual rain clouds, as opposed to the figurative ones I mentioned in my last post, are much more difficult to push away. And, try as I might not to let the rain affect my mood, it's been difficult this week. We're going on a full week of nothing but cloudy and rainy days here in central NH.

I don't really have much to say, other than I'm in a bit of a funk. I'm reaching for positives here, but what I've come up with is that this funk is different than those I've come up against in the past in that I recognize that I'm in a funk, I've identified the reason for it, and I'm fighting it. I may be struggling, but I'm fighting my damndest. And that counts for something!

I've recently learned that ...

So        ...         let's dance, D&A!

Friday, May 3, 2013

The Ripple Effect

Oh my goodness, it's been almost a month since I posted!

The reason is a good one, though. Don't worry, I'm not giving up already - quite the opposite, actually! One of my goals with the Positivity Initiative has been to fill my free time with enriching activities. When an opportunity presents itself to do something I enjoy, now I immediately accept (as long as I have enough time to plan for it, and it fits into my schedule, of course!), rather than allowing myself to talk myself out of it. I tend to overthink myself into not doing fun things, for reasons as ridiculous as I won't have time to watch tv tonight if I do that. Really? How pathetic is that?

What I've been up to the last few weeks that's been keeping me from blogging:
  • I joined a gym!

 Not just any gym, but Fun Intelligent Training in Concord, NH! I signed up for 2 classes a week (Bootcamp, Barbell Bootcamp, or Kickboxing), and I haven't missed a class since I started on April 9th. I even like it! Although I thought I was going to die at first, now I feel great, both physically and mentally!

  • Dan and I took an Indian cuisine cooking lesson.

  • Dan and I rode our bicycles to a friend's house for a Magic the Gathering nerd-fest.

  • I made this:

         And this:

  • I planted flowers for Earth Day, and they're starting to sprout!

  • I joined a ShapeUp team at work.
  • I threw a cocktail party. And turned 30!


It's amazing how having a more positive outlook in general has opened me up to more and more opportunities to enjoy life. It's like a ripple effect - because I'm full of positive energy, I have more physical energy to do the things I enjoy. I'm more motivated to get fit, eat healthier, work on my personal life goals, even communicate more effectively. I'm just happier!

Don't get me wrong - life isn't all of a sudden full of sunshine and rainbows. But the sunshiny days are more and more frequent now-a-days. There are far fewer rainy days, just an occasional passing shower. And when it does start to rain, it's easier to push those rain clouds away and allow the sun to shine back through.

Monday, April 8, 2013

The Plan

     Ok, so now what? What's the plan?

     Put simply, B+ !

     I have committed to taking on the very daunting challenge of altering my mindset so that I am 
     better equipped to kick D&A's ass! As I mentioned in my last post, I am already feeling a huge 
     difference - in my perspective, in my attitude, even in my energy levels. 

     This is the basic outline of THE PLAN:

1.   Replace negative thoughts with positive ones. I have a tendency of seeing the worst in every situation. And I definitely suffer from PMS - Poor Me Syndrome. So what I've been doing is that any time I have a negative thought, I try to list positive attributes about the situation instead, in order to reverse my mindset.

2.   Be mindful. Enjoy every moment to its fullest possible extent. I even relatively enjoyed the dental procedure I had done today because I focused on the goofy conversations the hygienist and I were having rather than on the ouch factor.

3.   Breathe deeply, often. This goes hand-in-hand with #1. When I see the negativity storm clouds rolling in, I take a deep breath and put a positive spin on the situation. Deep breathing gives me a few seconds to relax and stretch, clear my mind, and reverse my mindset. It also releases endorphins and minimizes stress, which helps with #1 and #2.

Just by doing these 3 things for the past 5 days, I already feel like a different person. Which is 
why what happened yesterday nearly derailed my positivity train. Yesterday morning when I 
woke up, I was energetic and ready to enjoy the day. I reveled in some me time with my coffee 
and a book, then had a delicious and healthy breakfast with my husband.

Late in the morning/early afternoon, I started feeling uneasy and slightly nauseous. And all I 
wanted to do was sleep. This is a common symptom of my anxiety, so I was discouraged, thinking 
that I was slipping into an anxiety-ridden day of being a non-functional couch blob, too 
overwhelmed by life to do anything. It's sometimes difficult to differentiate between anxiety and 
being physically ill, since my anxiety often manifests itself in physical symptoms. Was I coming 
down with something? Or maybe I didn't sleep well the night before and was physically tired? Or 
was I justifying allowing myself to be overcome by my anxiety? Tough call.

I consciously chose to take a nap. This decision could have had one of two outcomes - either I 
would sleep for an hour and wake up refreshed, ready to take on the world ... or transform into 
the aforementioned sniveling couch blob. And guess what? I woke up after about an hour, did 
four loads of laundry and pre-cooked tonight's dinner. No blob here! 

I guess THE PLAN is working. And I couldn't be more invigorated and excited to continue!

Friday, April 5, 2013


Self-Discovery à Self-Loathing à Self-Ownership

I’ve been doing a lot of self-discovery recently. As is the case with self-discovery, when you allow yourself to go there, you don’t always like what you find. And, rather than facing the things I discovered about myself that I don’t like, I allowed them to consume me.

This process of self-discovery, which quickly led to self-loathing, played a big part in my decision to take ownership of my depression and anxiety and actually put in the effort to defeat it, rather than expecting my “magic” little pill to do all the work for me.

The challenge now lies in figuring out which of these things I am willing to accept about myself, and which will undergo a makeover. 

Some examples:

1.      I am virtually incapable of “going with the flow.” In my world, the “flow” must be going in a particular direction at a constant speed, and there must be buoys placed precisely equidistant from each other for the entire length of the river.


Solution: Rather than getting upset with myself because I have anxiety every time I try to do things off the cuff, I choose to accept the fact that I am a planner. No way around it. When the mood strikes to be spontaneous (as it very rarely, but occasionally does), don’t second guess it, just do it! And enjoy it!

2.      I’m a quitter. I don’t “love a challenge.” I want life, and every task within it, to be easy. And when it gets too hard, I throw a tantrum. Then I give up.


Solution: I’m starting here, fighting for my own happiness. If I can do this, I can do anything. On the flip side, I am also a very stubborn person – I just need to apply my stubbornness in the right way. When it gets tough, I will not give up. If I feel the urge to give up, I will lean on my wonderfully supportive husband who has been prodding me toward this for some time now.

3.      I never relax. I am always stressed. Even if my body is relaxed, my mind is always on the go.


Solution: I am on the hunt for relaxation techniques that work for me. So far, I have found that going tanning a few times a week not only gives me the Vitamin D boost my body has been craving since the onset of this horrendous season called winter, but also forces me to be still for those 10 minutes. While in the tanning bed, I make a conscious effort to meditate rather than allow my brain to remind me of everything little thing I need to do between now and the end of the year in the precise moment I am without a pen.

4.      I am insecure.


Solution: This is a tough one. I’m hoping, with all the positive changes I am making in my life, that self-confidence and self-assuredness will come with the package that will be the new positive me. If not, I’ll have to re-evaluate.

I’m already starting to have a more positive can-do attitude, just after writing all of this down and focusing on what’s ahead rather than the rut I’ve been in. I'm excited to meet the new me! I know there is much work ahead of me, but it’s not as overwhelming as it once was. Probably because I have a PLAN! (See #1 above).

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The First Step

Just yesterday, at almost 30 years of age, I came to a very unsettling realization. I am a Negative Nancy. I’ve actually said these words: “B+ - it’s not only my blood type, it’s my motto!” How cheesy can I be? And dead wrong.

I suffer from Depression and Anxiety – just gonna get it out there. And I’ve come to realize that’s exactly the problem. Not that I have D&A, but that I “suffer” from it. It’s a disease, it’s out of my control, blah blah blah. For years now, I’ve been blaming my negative attitude and my lackluster lifestyle on D&A.

This all hit me like a slap in the tear-streaked face last night, when my husband defeatedly uttered these words to me: “I am a happy person. When you’re unhappy, I’m unhappy. You’ve been unhappy more and more often recently, and it’s making me unhappy. Your D&A is affecting me, too, and I can’t take it anymore. I don’t know how to help you.” Ouch.

I’m going to say this only once because I absolutely hate admitting this – He’s right.

Starting this blog is my way of telling him, and the world, and myself really, that I’m finally willing to make a change. For years, I thought that since I take a pill every day, I’d whipped my D&A into submission, when in reality, I just didn’t want to face how it was affecting my quality of life. No, how I was letting it affect my quality of life.

I can’t... It’s too hard... I’ll just lie here and eat ice cream and wait for the pain to go away. This doesn’t work. It’s time to try something new. A challenge. The big ‘ole scary unknown awaits.

This is the first step on my journey to Positivity Town, where I’d like to plant new roots and grow me a mature, independent, happy version of myself to replace this withering shell of a person.

Will anyone read this? I don’t know. It doesn’t matter, really. Mostly, this is meant to be therapeutic for me, as well as to document this tremendous life change I am committing to embarking upon with the final click of this post. And here we go!

Deep breath. Not just to brace myself, but for the clarity and the endorphin release I’m gonna need for this.

Yes, I can do this!