For the past month I’ve been making some subtle changes in my life. Abraham would say I’ve been getting ready to be ready.
What does this look like? For me, it’s about getting up early enough to have a couple of hours “ME” time before work. It’s about simple habits like making my bed every morning and washing my dishes every day. It’s about beginning to develop new habits that will enrich my life and position me in a place where I can easily evolve into the next stage I have planned for myself. It’s about subtly changing course in a gradual way over time so I easily fall into a bigger long-term change.
So, what have I been doing exactly?
I’ve been using an app on my phone called Coach.me to track new habits. I started using it a month ago. Essentially my phone will push a reminder at various times of the day to remind me to do various things. After I’ve completed the task I check it off in the app and I can write a note if needed. I’ve kept all my habits private, so nobody can see them, but a lot of people have the same things they’re trying to do so there is a public discussion thread on each habit that is monitored by at least one professional coach. People post questions, seek motivation, share success, and so on. A calendar keeps track of all the days I do things, my streaks, and overall amount of days. I can also view my notes. I am using the free version, but for those who really want to go all in, there’s a paid version and you can work one on one with a coach.
In the beginning I had a ton of tasks, but I’ve since narrowed it down to the ones that I feel are the most beneficial for me to nurture right now. They are:
- Walk (at least 10 minutes so my Fitbit picks it up and registers it)
- Wake up early (for me, this is any time before 8 am)
- Sleep by midnight (I’ve got the reminder set to go off at 9 pm to remind me I need to start winding down)
- Meditate (whether it’s only a 3 minute guided morning meditation in bed or an hour long deep meditation at bedtime or anything throughout the day, if I make any effort at all to meditate I check it off my list)
- Call Mom/Dad (I had gotten away from speaking to my parents every day, so now I check in)
- Make bed (it might seem like a no-brainer, but it’s never been a priority for me, yet, I think it puts a good start to the day)
- Weigh in (oh the good, the bad, and the downright ugly … whether I’m making an effort or not I’m trying to face the reality)
- Take vitamins (the reminder goes off around noon, lunchtime. Right now I’m taking B12 and D3)
- Read (this can and most often does include audio books)
The list may evolve to include more if/ when all of these things become a natural part of my daily routine. It’s interesting to look back even just after a month and see how many days I’ve completed something or how many days I’ve skipped.
For meditation I’m using an app called Aura to help me with guided meditations and moments of mindfulness. It wasn’t free, but there was a deal on the first year because of Covid-19 … and I think there may even be a free membership right now because of the pandemic, but I paid for a year. If I’m still using it in a year’s time, then I’ll renew, and if not, well it was an inexpensive experiment. Although, because I paid something for it I do feel more motivated to use it. I’ve reached Level 15 so far. I enjoy listening to the stories, parables with meaning. I’ve used the app to help me calm down when I’ve been really frustrated, anxious or sad. The gurus are from all over the world and I love listening to the accents.
This morning I have noticed a new feature on my Fitbit app to track mindfulness as well. I have Fitbit premium, another paid subscription service. The premium was free for a few months in the early days of the pandemic and I was enjoying doing some of the challenges. But I wear my Fitbit religiously, even when I’m a major couch potato, because it tracks other things like sleep and heart rate. Lately, I’ve been a total couch potato. They’ve also added something called Health Metrics this week. Anyway, with the premium membership I now have access to a bunch of guided meditation videos and things which will be tracked. I will try it.
I’ve also been listening to Deep Meditation for Healing at bedtime at least a few nights each week. I’ve read Anita Moorjani’s “Dying to be Me” in Kindle format and I am also listening to the audiobook. I feel a kinship to her, due to my own near death experiences, which I have likely written about before and I won’t get into today.
So I’ve been practising meditation and listening to books. One book I’ve just completed is called “Bright Line Eating“. My BFF has been on her own BLE journey for about a year now and it’s been incredible for her. I hadn’t really been paying that much attention, nowhere near ready to embark on any kind of journey myself. But as summer wound down and the cooler autumn temperatures moved in I found myself feeling that urge again to get back on track and take control, so I decided to give the book a read. And now I’m getting ready to give it a try, to do things I’ve not done before like keep an actual physical pen to paper food journal. I’ve tracked food before, but always using an app or website tracking tool, and always to track calories or nutrients. This is not that. I ordered a food journal specifically to leave in the kitchen and do this. It should arrive today. I’ve also purchased a digital kitchen scale to replace my manual one and I’m going to weigh everything I put in my mouth, just like she suggests. I’m kind of excited about this because it’s completely in line with my Whole food plant-based way of eating. In fact, the author is mostly WFPB herself. The BLE lifestyle seems to be the most inclusive one for all ways of eating (meat, gluten free, vegan, keto, whatever you’re doing) that I’ve ever seen, which is exciting. I am committing to try it for at least 14 days, and then whether I continue or whether I transition into a less regimented WFPB way of eating that helped me lose close to 70 pounds in 2017 and had me feeling very happy and well, I will be several pounds lighter and fully back on track.
I’m committed though, to giving it all I’ve got. I ordered a couple of other journals too, which she suggests is an important part of the plan. My gratitude journal and five-year journal will also arrive today.
So, I am getting ready to be ready … to embrace the happy healthy me!
Drinking: cold black coffee I made at 445 am when I got up
Listening To: CBC World Report
Hair: thickening so much more quickly than lengthening