Although it’s only the first week of the year, here in Australia it’s only the 3rd day of the new year, and I am doing my best so far to make the most of it. I decided this year was going to mark the beginning of regaining our balance, after three years of my husband studying, two years of my study, saving for weddings, and a house, we are finally in the position we have been working so hard to get in. Therefore, we have decided we need to find a happy medium between work, home, friends and I know I need to start checking in with myself a little more.
While there are those out there with new goals for saving money, losing weight and improving work life, I want to take a new approach to balancing my time and making some for me. I decided the best way for me to make a good start is to get organised while I’m on my Christmas holidays, to spend my last two weeks getting into a good routine and getting myself organised.
The first goal for these holidays at home (since we got home from the family holiday), is to get the house in order, while not losing my time for me. Yesterday my husband and I went around and did a surface blitz around the house, today I finally did something I’ve been meaning to do, clean up the kitchen. This sounds like an unnecessary project, but I have a horrible pantry OCD issue. I have been spending years getting my kitchen organised, and every time I feel like I’m making progress, I take a step back, I look around and feel like the pantry still looks untidy. My husband says I need to forget
about it, cupboards get untidy and I should just close the door and pretend it doesn’t exist. However, I can’t do this, I get more and more frustrated when I go to cook something and there are five things in my way, I’m knocking things over to something from the back of the pantry, and all I want to do is drop everything and sort it out. So, today this was my first accomplishment of the year. I started by trying to move my modular mates (Tupperware – containing staples), and it just went from there, I ended up sorting and rearranging half the kitchen. I’m happy with it so far, but we’ll see how long it lasts that way. The next goal is my sewing cupboard and our spare wardrobe that has become a dumping ground for a few things we weren’t sure what to do with when we moved in November. I am hoping by the end of the holidays to get through the cupboards and with some help sort out and tidy up the garage, that will take care of everything we can in this house, until we can do some renovations and additions later in the year.
With a clean and tidy house, with everything where it should be, I would like to get on top of our routine. This year we will both have different work rosters which will make it hard to coordinate things like housework and dinners, therefore I plan to get back to the old pattern. So next week I will begin planning meals; all in meals we can freeze and reheat for when we are on alternate shifts, and meals I can cook when I’m home, even it means putting his aside for another night. We need breakfast options available for him to have on the go if need be for when he has morning shifts, as I don’t eat breakfast, lunch options which can always be dinner leftovers, and this year I want to start looking at making healthy, sugar-free snacks. Speaking of dietary options, we are also in the process of cutting back our sugar content for our new sugar-free adventure with Sarah Wilson. I have been finding it hard to be prepared at the moment, but we have only been doing this for two days, so we are still learning about what we can eat and what we should avoid, while the book recommends not going cold turkey, we have been trying to avoid it where we can, with the exclusion of alcohol at the moment because I’m on holidays but I have been making better choices.
Exercise. I feel like every other person setting their own goals for the year talking about diet and exercise, but I am feeling good that we have made it back to the gym, and not just for our personal training sessions. I would like to include some outdoor activities, hiking, running or walking, in addition to yoga for my headspace, so I plan to start some home yoga tomorrow to try and prepare my flexibility and strength for a studio or gym class. I also have a plan for returning to pole dancing but the term hasn’t restarted yet, but that is on the to-do list.
The most important part of my plan is to make more time for things I enjoy, and to
be in my own headspace, take the time to slow down and relax, something I haven’t been doing for the last few years. I was talking with a friend today about how we were both planning to try and make an opportunity at least weekly to meet up with friends for social catch-ups, our plan is to be less busy, to go to work, come home, do the house things and catch up with our friends or in my instance read a book, head to yoga or go for a walk and relax. The most important part.
I feel as though I have been spending at least the last two years rushing around, living on high and constant levels of adrenaline, it’s affecting my sleep, the frequency of my headaches, my level of patience and of course my stress levels. So as usual, and in accordance with my “self-help” nature I have been taking at least the end of the day for me, to read a book and have a drink on the balcony in the summer breeze, watch a movie with hubby, pet our kitties (pets are meant to be good for our mental health), I’m taking on some breathing exercises at bedtime before I get to sleep, so alleviate the fear or getting to sleep in case I wake up with a migraine.
Take home message:
Make time for fun as well as routine, and don’t lose sight of the important things. While feeding ourselves and getting in some exercise is high on the importance list at this time of the year, we can prepare and set goals as long as we check in with ourselves from time to time.
The trick, however, is not to do all this while it’s easy like it is right now because I’m on holidays, but to maintain it, and then move it into the work routine. Make it all business as usual. They say it takes twenty-one days to form new habits, so I have to make it past the end of my holidays just to make it stick, that will be the hard part.