The Daily Habit

LiftI thought I would write a quick update on what I am working on. I have a number of habits I am trying to build daily. I track them on the Lift app. Here’s a summary:

Eat Protein (1g/1lb): Recently I wrote a lot about how I am eating, (see: Food and Happiness) and that continues to go well. I have good days and bad days, of course. There are also times where I *think* I’ve hit my goal, but did such a lousy job tracking that I am not sure! Overall though, this is still working great. My weight is holding steady, I feel great and I never feel like I am dieting. The only new thing I am noticing is that my body doesn’t seem to like me to eat late anymore. I never used to think that mattered. I ate when I had time, so if that meant dinner at 9PM, then that’s when I ate. I’m starting to find that I feel better if I eat earlier in the day. If it is late and I haven’t had dinner, go with a light snack rather than a large meal.

Exercise: I’m still trying to find my winter groove. I’d like to do more, but for now I am content with whatever 15 minutes I can get, whether that is 15 minutes of shoveling snow or 10 minutes of shoveling, 4 minutes extra of dog walking and a few Kegels! I’m sure I’ll find my rhythm – I’m just trying to let that happen naturally instead of forcing it like I usually do.

Leave for Work On Time: Confession time: I am frequently late for work. Not a huge amount, just a few minutes here and there. I’m salaried, and I always make up the time by working through lunches or staying late, but I hate that feeling of walking in, knowing I am running behind. Especially now that the roads are covered in ice and snow, I am trying to ensure I always leave the house with extra minute to spare. The hardest part is distractions; not with fun things like reading a book or catching up on a game of Words With Friends, nope, those are never a problem. My problem is doing little “good” things that will only take a minute – emptying the dishwasher, throwing in a load of laundry, tidying the kitchen, and so on. One of those isn’t a problem, doing all of them is. So, I have a couple of strategies to help:

Making My Lunch the Day Before: This goal hits three areas: it helps me get out the door a little quicker in the morning, get my protein for the day, and it helps me save me money. When I do it regularly, I love it. I use up the food in my house, I have a great meal every day, and I spend less. Obviously this is more of a weekday thing than a weekend issue, but even on the weekends I am trying to think ahead.

Set Out My Outfit for the Next Day: Similar to the goal above, it’s helping me with my time in the morning and it’s saving me money. If I have time the night before to set something out, I can be a bit more creative with what I already have. I don’t need new clothes, I just need to figure out new ways of wearing them. It’s easier to plan that at night than when I’m in a rush in the morning.

Meditate: Like exercise, my meditation habit got derailed for a bit. I am trying to get back to it. In November, I was walking on my lunch hour and then sitting in my car for a while, but now it we’re having highs of 11 degrees. Yesterday I tried taking part of my lunch hour in the conference room. It worked okay and it was a nice place to sit quietly, but I kept worrying that someone was going to walk in. I might have to go back to meditating more at night before bed, but I’ll really miss those quiet minutes in the middle of a crazy work day.

Saving Money: I’ve mentioned that I am starting to budget again. Mostly I am just tracking figures, but the goal is to put together a reasonable plan for my spending. I have a ton of things I want to do, and many of them require money. Saving as much as I can is a good thing.

Sleep at Least 8 Hours: Another hit or miss habit for me. I love it when I can do it though. The last week had been pretty good, hopefully I can keep the streak going. I am a happier, healthier person when I get a good night’s rest.

Unclutter: As usual for me, I started removing clutter by jumping in with both feet. I was sorting out closets and cleaning out cupboards… and then I became exhausted. Lately, I am happy if I clean up the kitchen counters or tidy the vanity where I do my makeup in the morning. I have to say though, even a little bit of cleaning makes a difference. Just taking the recycling out makes my kitchen feel better, so even though I am not getting everything done that I wanted, what I am doing is making a difference.

So that’s it. That’s all the stuff I am working on. It sounds like a lot, but really it amounts to taking care of myself. All of these things are either related to my physical health, or my mental health. I’m just trying to feel better, about my finances, my job, and my home.

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