It’s a new year and today was my first day back to work. Traditionally, this is when I’d start my new year’s resolutions, if I’d made them. I’ve swung back and forth over the years trying to decide whether to make resolutions or not. Generally, the ones I made didn’t get kept, and then I’d feel crappy. Of course those were always about losing weight, and that didn’t happen often.
This year, I decided that I do want to set some goals. The difference this year though, is that my goals are about behaviour and not about outcomes. So no weight loss goals for me this year.
Here are my goals for 2014:
- Put myself first. Focus on doing things that make me feel good.
- Create (and follow) a debt repayment plan that has me out of debt within 3 years. Debt is a major source of stress for me, so this one is important.
Pretty simple, no? Perhaps deceptively so. In theory, goal 2 is easy, because it’s pretty concrete I believe. Probably difficult to follow, because it will make money very tight, but still, easy enough conceptually.
Goal 1 is the kicker. There are a bunch of things I think come into play here.
- I want to develop a healthy relationship with food. Right now, for me, this means two major things — eating without distractions, and choosing foods that really nourish my body, 80% of the time, with the other 20% being those special indulgences. I’m currently working on a dairy free, gluten free, sugar free diet. I had a food sensitivity analysis done before Christmas, and dairy and sugar seem to be big stressors for my body. Gluten less so, but will try eliminating all 3 items for 30 days to see how I feel.
- Figuring out a way to move my body that I enjoy. In the past, I’ve tried to force myself to attend exercise classes, which are basically torture for me. I absolutely hate the cheerleading and shouting and group stuff. So I’m not doing that anymore. I like to play sports — that’s my favourite way of moving. But playing sports every day isn’t very practical for my lifestyle — volleyball once a week is the most I can manage. I used to run, and I really liked it until I decided to make it about pace and distance and improvement. Then I got frustrated and quit because I wasn’t good at running. I’m going back to running. Without tracking distance, time, or anything else. I will run because it makes me feel good to do it. And once I get my shoulder pain under control, I will be back to lifting weights. I love the feeling of strength.
- Having fun. There are small ways of having fun for free or cheap, every day. I’ll post a list of my ideas in a future blog.
- Moving towards the life I want for myself. More on that in a future blog as well.
- Giving up things that don’t make me feel good, even if they seem like a good idea. For me, this includes weighing and measuring myself, tracking my food (other than perhaps to see if there are relationships between how I feel and what I eat) or tracking my exercise.
- Slowing down. I move through everything really quickly. And I think that makes me get frustrated and quit. Today, for example, since it was my first day back to work, I decided I would go to the gym this morning to start running again, start my new diet experiment and get my budget in order. On waking up after about 3 hours of very poor sleep, I realized I was setting myself up for failure. So I decided to work on the gluten free/dairy free part of the diet today. Sugar will come tomorrow. Running will come next week. The budget will come later this week. Slowing down is good for me. Take things one day at a time. Or one minute at a time when it’s really hard.
So there you have it. My goals for 2014. I will be rewarding myself with small treats frequently (at least weekly) for practicing these behaviours. I’ll keep updating here with how things are going.