Monday, July 26, 2010

Running The Numbers: The Sixth Sense

Sometimes I just need to be distracted from eating, thinking, ruminating, obsessing on whatever is bring me down. That being said, the distraction shouldn't be destructive - first, do no harm. I don't want to turn to food if I'm obsessing and I don't want to turn to excessive shopping to distract myself from over-eating. I don't want to acquire "stuff", so recreation shopping isn't an answer - it creates clutter AND reduces your finances. We all need financial freedom and power in our lives. There are, however, ways to spend a little something on an item that is actually useful, so I've included those here. Here is The Sixth Sense:

51. Create a vision board. While I don't have a vision board, I do have a "book of me". It's just a hardbound journal that I've created ala Sarah Ban Breathnach's Something More: Excavating Your Authentic Self. I journal in this book, I paste pictures that I cut out from magazines. I paste mementos. It's an "old school" scrapbook - like I used to keep in junior high. No Cricut was harmed in the making of this vision book. Really, it's just a fancy tin in which to store ego biscuits in case I need them later.

52. Sweep outside. Sweep your porch, your stoop, the common hallway outside your apartment. Get out and do a bit of "sprucing up the place", even if it's not "yours". A little good for the common good.

53. Plant marigolds. Or whatever blooming annual that works in your part of the country. Zinnias, marigolds, begonias, sweet potato vines - doesn't matter. Just add a little color to your life.

54. Take Photos. Go out and try to take "artistic" photographs, suitable for framing. Most of us have digital cameras these days. Poke around on the internet for an photograph you like and go see if you can recreate the look. Have it printed and frame it. Look at you, you're an artist!

55. Repot or divide the plants you have. Either increase your own inventory, or give to friends and neighbors. Most people are happy to receive such gifts.

56. Buy a new pot for that houseplant. It might be time to move it out of the black plastic container it came in. Get creative - many things can become charming containers for plants if you are handy with a drill. And if you are not handy with a drill, get one and start practicing. Power tools are easy enough to use. It just takes practice.

57. Reconfigure your clothes. I tend to fall into ruts re: this goes with that. I never think about pairing this with that other thing. Spend an afternoon with your clothes thinking about them in different groupings. Refer to an online color wheel for what goes, contrasts, blends, is close enough - if you aren't sure. BTW: Red shoes go with everything!

58. Handle your recycling.

59. Update your "To Buy" List. In order to keep recreational shopping and impulse buying to a minimum - I keep a list of "to buys" - it's in the same little notebook where this list resides. It goes with me all the time. By putting something on the list, I've given it some thought and also permission to buy it if I run across it. I am a long-time buyer's remorse sufferer and this helps with that. Plus, I want to be thoughtful about how I spend my money and acquire stuff. I don't want to fritter away financial freedom/power on gee-gaws. Again with finding the right balance. Right now my list contains: a floor lamp capable of providing decent reading light, another running skirt in black, a pair of comfortable but chic shoes, and a bottle cage for Clementine "Cha-Cha" Peddleford.

60. Go to a zoo/aquarium/nature center. It's hard to think about peanut butter when you are watching gazelles!

I was talking to someone about my "list" the other day when I realized I hadn't finished posting it. Again with that pesky old attention span.

Had a wonderful, wonderful weekend. Had dinner and a good catch-up with some friends on Friday night. These are an amazing group of women and we all met via the internet about nine years ago. It's interesting to see how much we've all changed and grown in the last near-decade. Ended up with just the salad from Pei-Wei - it's a huge portion.

Saturday morning the kids came over for a bike ride and that was wonderful. We ended up going to The Movie Tavern afterward to see Despicable Me and having breakfast/lunch there. I had the fruit and cheese tray, which was quite nice.

I did have a tough time recovering from the ride. We rode, at what for me, was a pretty fast pace and it just took it out of me. The kids left and I took a nap for a couple of hours. Even then, I was just wiped out. Went up to Bick's and proceeded to hold down one of the recliners for the rest of the evening.

Sunday we finally got around to doing some actual planning/making reservations for the Colorado trip coming up. Should be fun! We are taking a rafting trip and were instructed to wear swim gear. I cannot imagine anything more "uncomfortable" than sitting around in my swimsuit with seven other strangers, so at Bick's suggestion, I went to the Wal-Mart and got myself some mens' swim trunks. I think I'll be much happier.

Lastly, thanks for the good wishes on the milestone. I am unsure if it's a sustainable weight for me. Right now, I am in the perfect storm for weight loss and it's unrealistic of me to think that I have this/my food issues "solved". That sort of thinking/arrogance has led me to folly in the past. This number on the scale is just that, a number. It was a number achieved because 1. I live alone and am in complete control of what comes through these doors. 2. I live alone and so I can cook whatever I want, how ever I want. 3. I am in a "honeymoon" phase with cycling and so I am willfully and cheerfully and enthusiastically riding at every opportunity - and that "pink fluffy cloud" is probably unsustainable. I would like to maintain somewhere in this neighborhood, and so we'll see how that goes.

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Visualize your future.



  1. All great ideas. I had a vision board once and someone made fun of it. My self esteem was low enough that I destroyed it. Of course, now I sincerely regret that. I like your notebook idea.

    I think the longer you do maintain this weight the easier it will be to continue. It just has to become your comfort zone first.

  2. I was going to ask where the first 50 items from this list were and then you said this was the finish of it. How did I miss it? I'll be searching for them!

    I love the vision board...I've heard of similar things called by different names. I love that you have yours OFF the computer. I have a couple of friends who do all that kind of stuff on the machine and it just wouldn't be visceral enough for me.

    I love your term "sustainable weight". How I hope to find that place for myself. I have no doubt it's possible.

  3. Fabulous ideas. My new fledgling career takes all my time these days. Fill your life with things you love and the obsessing stops. So, I've discovered. :D And, then you don't need to fill yourself with other things.

  4. Excellent suggestions for distractions that don't leave you worse off! Especially all the ones that would help you connect to nature!
    Your weekend sounds amazing (and exhausting!), and so does the planned Colorado trip. I have several pairs of men's swimming shorts and se them for training as well as getting wet. They're really comfortable and a lot less embarrassing!

  5. First of all, I just love your list that keeps growing. Every idea is a great one. The one I chose today from your list is the journaling, old school style. I like that. :)

    Congratualtions on 120 pounds lost. Wow! I had no idea. Somehow in my head I thought you were never really heavy. I though maybe in the 180 range, but no where near 120 pounds overweight. That's an amazing accomplishment. But you're right, you are so much more than that number on the scale.

    I too love bike riding and plan to get one in before the day is over. Just trying to get the house back in order today after my husband was a bachelor for nine days. I don't know how he can't see the dirt, but he seems to have gone blind (!).

  6. Daisy Bell (my bike) says that
    the bottle cage is a great idea!

    I like what MPax said. fill your life...with things you love...and the obsessing stops!

    Hugs all around today!

  7. love the lists as well.
    and adore my vision board but lately Ive found Im tending toward a vision little notebook, too.

    its tiny and stolen, errr, borrowed from a goodie bag my daughter received at a birthday party and FAR more portable than my huuuuge hung-in-office official VB at home.

    whatever works huh?


We'll try this for a while.