Being the Happy Tortoise

1BA1F5C8-6863-4ECF-92EE-2770B0914233.jpegI started 2019 full of enthusiasm and with plenty of goals I wanted to tick off.  For the first time I did a 19 for 2019 – 19 things I wanted to accomplish.  Gretchen Rubin and Liz Craft talk about this on their Podcast Happier.  These vary from the easily achievable to the more lofty expectations I had for myself.  My 19 for 2019:

1.       Plant Onion Seeds for Competition;

2.       Find a Placement (requirement for my MA that I complete a volunteer counsellor placement);

3.       Get advice on what work will best add value to the house;

4.       Read at least 52 books;

5.       Run a race with Chicky (BFF) – surprise @cbruce!;

6.       Have a Girls’ weekend away;

7.       Go rock climbing;

8.       Find a yoga class to attend ideally once a week (whilst also restarting home practice);

9.       Buy a new practical but beautiful handbag for the weekends;

10.   Date night twice a month;

11.   Run a half marathon in under 2hours 20minutes (I amuse myself);

12.   Go to Italia (somewhere new);

13.   Get the tree pruned in our garden;

14.   Get a dog (PLEASE, for the love of GOD!);

15.   Pray every day;

16.   Aim for two blog posts a month;

17.   Complete 3 Bible Study Plans;

18.   Get our windows cleaned;

19.   Sort pictures:

a.       Hang wedding ones in frames;

b.       Complete Honeymoon album;

c.       Complete photo books for other years and one for Hen Do.

20.   BONUS – get sugar habit under control.  For me this means not having sugar every day and not craving it all.the.time on days I don’t have it.

January is a funny old month.  I found that my enthusiasm quickly faded, it’s still cold, dark and I had no money.  In addition I found out that I am getting TUPEEd over to a new employer by 1st April, having to say goodbye to my beloved team and start somewhere else in a different role.  Now, this may work out positively, but the news has still been unsettling.  In addition, I lost a very lovely client suddenly and unexpectedly and it shocked and upset me.

It meant that the Louise Parker Method Transform that I had started so promisingly at the start of the month has halted somewhat.  I was getting frustrated about this, annoyed with myself for not being more disciplined.  Our society values quick, goal orientated, fast solutions and people who achieve all the time.  Slowness, steady progress and small changes are not celebrated.

I am slower though, I struggle with changing habits.  I want to make lasting changes, more practices than one offs.  So I decided though to look at what I have done rather than what I haven’t. 

So, I may not have been completely inner circle but I have eaten better, tried out 4 new LP recipes which are now in regular rotation and got back into the habit of meal planning and prepping.

I am 15 days behind my yoga challenge for January. I could see that as a failure.  Or I could say I practiced yoga a minimum of three times a week for January which is a massive improvement on my maybe twice a month between August and December.

I haven’t found a placement, but I have sent out introductory emails, completed a CV and shortlisted places to apply to.  Steps in the right direction.

I have completed week three of Couch to 5k so that I am closer to achieving my running goals this year.  That means I have run three times a week for the last three weeks, beating my total number of runs between August and December last year and feeling all the better for it.

I have read four excellent and varied books this month and I am halfway through a fifth.

I have prayed every day, even if it has been a quick 30second thought directed to God.

We had two date nights – the theatre and Mary Poppins Returns.

When I hit publish on this blog post I will have published two blog posts in January.

So if you are like me, feeling a bit disillusioned with your goals, yourself and your “better 2019” that seemed so achievable just five weeks ago give this a go.  Play a version of Pollyanna’s Glad Game, turn it on its head, find a different point of view, focus on your have done(s) rather than your have nots.  You might be pleasantly surprised by what you have achieved and you might find it makes you feel more positive about what you can achieve in the next four weeks of February.  The tortoise won the race after all.

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