I was feeling a bit sluggish when 2012 came to a close. I gained a few pounds in December since we went to New York and celebrated our anniversary. Even though I had been going to bed at 10:00 p.m. nearly every night and was exercising, I wanted to be healthier and more vital in 2013. In an effort to keep my wellness top of mind, I picked “vitality” to be the one little word to guide me through 2013.
About a week into January I got sick with a sinus infection that was so bad it affected my asthma and required two courses of antibiotics. I barely exercised that month, which means that when I got back on the elliptical rider and the reformer, it felt as if I were a newbie working out for the very first time. If I had made a resolution to workout more, then perhaps I would’ve given up. However, one little word is like a marathon. I couldn’t give up since that was my word of the year. hit the reset button on February 1st, once I was completely better, and renewed my quest for vitality.
I began meditating in late March as a way of trying to achieve a greater sense of overall vitality. I started out by listening to a 10 minute podcast from a program called Headspace, on my iPhone. Initially, it was challenging to carve out 10 minutes in my day for this purpose so I was meditating before bedtime, which meant I’d often fall asleep during the meditation. I rescheduled my meditation for earlier in the day and began to have more energy and found a greater sense of calm.
Every day I listen to a 20 minute podcast, which helps me reset my body and my mind. As a mother of a toddler, I have found I have more energy for keeping up with my daughter since I started meditating. Furthermore, I have more patience for dealing with the inevitable mood swings and the constant testing that go along with having a toddler too. My meditation time is something I closely guard and value as part of my daily life.
My husband reminds me (often) that I need to make myself a priority. He plays with Isabelle or takes her out on the weekends so I can make time for exercising and meditating while Isabelle is awake. (That enables me to use her nap times to do work.) In fact, if he comes home from work and finds out I was unable to carve out the time to do either one of those during the day, he takes over so I can take care of myself. Having his support certainly makes it easier to achieve greater well-being.
If I’m lucky (and I mean really lucky), Isabelle will nap for three hours in the afternoon. That means I have three hours to meditate (25 minutes), workout (60 minutes), and get work done (95 minutes). That doesn’t leave a lot of time for work, which means I often spend the evenings, after she goes to bed, writing and working on presentations. Since I’m still in bed by 10:00 p.m. (and up by 6:00 a.m.), I often have to have someone watch Isabelle so I can get work done before presentations and consulting engagements. While hiring an occasional babysitter isn’t ideal, I have to balance my day times in order to stay true to myself on my quest towards vitality. However, I know I’m a better mother, wife, daughter, and friend when I am well-rested, take care of my brain, and treat my body well. Therefore, this is the path I’m sticking with for the remainder of this calendar year.
As for the rest of 2013, I’m going to try to drink more water and reduce the amount of chocolate I eat. (NOTE: Reduce, not eliminate!) Also, I’ve been in the process of cutting back on the amount of caffeine I consume. I’m still going to work on that for the remainder of the year.
What one little word are you living by this year? How is your word helping you stay on track with your goals or do you need to reset and give yourself another chance to live by your word this year?