14 September 2014

Time for a reset

One of the things I realized over the past 4 days is that I have been letting life toss me around. I have not been taking control. I have been reacting instead of being proactive. As a result, things are a bit of a mess. If you could see the desk I'm working on right now, you would see the outward manifestation of that mess. The desk is 6' long and I barely have room for my keyboard. The other manifestations of that mess is my weight, my lack of workouts, my last minute assignments, etc. No More!!!! I'm hitting the reset button and I'm starting over.

One of the really important thing I learned at the residency is that the writing of the dissertation is a long, arduous process. It can take a year or two if you are diligent and focused. I know that organization is not my strong suit and I know that I want to finish this dissertation quicker than anyone ever. But in order to do that I need to be uber organizer and not doing things at the last minute. So, today is resent day. We will be going to Costco for some food, I will stock up on salad makings there. I'm going to get the assignments that are due today, done, and start organizing for next weeks assignments. I need to look at my school agenda to see what is coming up there. And I need to clean and organize this desk. I also need to set aside time, everyday, to work on things. As much as I like saving it all for the weekend, that is just not a good model to follow. So I need to work on things every night for a bit. At least an hour. I need to develop that habit sooner rather than later.

Okay, lots to think about, lots to consider, lots to do. I'm going to get moving on the assignments due today and begin to get my life back in order.

12 September 2014

Sometimes you just need a break to see things clearly

The last 6-8 weeks have been a real whirlwind. It has been one thing after another and I have been feeling like I just can't keep up with myself. This weekend (since Wednesday) I have been on the Big Island for my Ph.D. program. I have tried to be good, but it just hasn't worked out as planned. I have been sitting in classes for the vast majority of the day every day. Eating hasn't been horrible but it hasn't been great either. It's just all been too much. The good part is that by getting away I have become a little clearer about what I want. I have gotten reenergized about my dissertation and am feeling good about this process again. I have also come to the conclusion that I need to Crossfit and get my eating under control. I get back home on Saturday night and Crossfit starts on Sunday. Time to get this health thing back on track. But I'm feeling good about it. Feeling good about a lot of things. Sometimes you really need to get away to see everything more clearly.

06 September 2014

Good Intentions

Well, all my planning and analyzing last weekend went right out the window. I have the neighbor from hell. Things have been quiet lately with them, but last weekend it started up again. The problem with the situation is that, not only can I not think rationally when they are involved, I want to tell them so bad to just F*CK OFF!!!!! It is hard to hold my tongue. Luckily we have a third neighbor who provides a voice of reason. The other thing is, I have a tendency, when faced with a fight or flight choice, to fight. That is just my first natural reaction. And so when something comes up with them, my first instinct is to fight. Luckily I resist that temptation because quite frankly they are not worth my time and energy. Also, knowing what complete as*holes they are, it would escalate into something you end up seeing on TV. So I just try to ignore them as much as possible. I'm seriously beginning to pray that they find someplace better to live. I'm going to put my prayer energy into a situation arising for them that they just cannot pass up and they end up moving. But, there is a problem with that too. In that relationship, she apparently makes all the decisions and she appears to have trouble making a decision. When they first moved in they had a slight drainage problem in the driveway. Rather than try and fix it, she debated for almost a year about suing the seller. In Hawaii you have two years and she was dragging it out because she could not decide what to do. They ended up fixing it and its been fine ever since. But that was a long, drawn out, painful process. So apparently she has real problems making large decisions. Over a year ago, I saw three different solar companies come to their place. They still don't have solar. I've also seen alarm companies and other various companies. They don't have any of that stuff. So even if a situation presented itself that was amazing and awesome - which is what I'm praying for - I'm not sure she would act on it. That is an attitude that is very typical with local people though. They have to investigate things to death before they can make a decision. When I worked at the lab, I had the same issue with one of the bosses. Wow, and my last boss made decisions with absolutely no input at all. I guess finding out a reasonable amount of information and making an informed decision is harder than I thought. All of these people were born and raised here. Either they take forever and gather way more information than necessary, or they make snap, knee jerk decisions. I once heard a quote, which I can't find, that said, good decisions can be made 90% of the time with 75% of the information. Which is absolutely true. You can have all of the information, if you take the time to gather all the information, the information begins to change. And you can't just go off half cocked, making decisions with little information. But if you get 75% of the information, you can make a reasonable, informed decision 90% of the time. I feel sorry for those that need to continually gather information before making a decision. How much of their life is wasted deciding things. Ugh!!! Okay, this post is not about people and their poor decision making abilities. I am praying that a situation presents itself to my neighbors that is so fantastic they cannot pass it up and they move. That is what I'm praying for right now. We are not staying here forever. We will be moving to the mainland in a few years, but I would like them to find a nicer place now. I'm so kind aren't I.

30 August 2014


Last night I sat here and did some prepping for the classes I'm taking. I have three classes, two of which will require significant amounts of time. Up until this point I have been skating by with minimum effort. I could do that because I am fairly intelligent and can follow directions. These classes however, and the dissertation I have looming in my future, will take a lot more work. This will require a lot more discipline. I need to figure out some routine that will work for me. That is what this post is about. I need to figure out what my priorities are, what needs to be done to allow those priorities to be first and foremost, and how to live my life around that. I do have to leave for Crossfit in a little bit, so this post will be an ongoing one.

Let's start with my priorities. They are, in no particular order:

  • Crossfit
  • Schoolwork
  • Teaching
  • Walking the dogs
  • Relaxing
  • Eating right
  • Sleep

That is all I can think of at the moment. So let's examine these one by one and see if I can make them work.

Crossfit. The only real time that works for me is the 5 am class. If I do that class I need to get to bed by 8:30 pm, I also need to keep my diet on track. I need to eat right and eat regularly. That will not only keep my energy up, but help me feel better. So Crossfit requires food and sleep. Okay.

Schoolwork. Up until this point, I have been ignoring it and cramming it all in on weekends. That has worked okay until recently. The real problem with that is that my entire weekend is spent either working on schoolwork or thinking about it. That is no fun at all. To make it more manageable, I would like to work on it one hour a night. If I do one hour a night, this will accomplish many things. First, I will be able to prep for assignments so that I will be ready to write them on the weekends. Second, by knowing what needs to be done, I can be thinking about it even when I'm not thinking about it. This is how I work best. Figure out what needs to be done, then stew on it for a bit. This will also allow me to keep on top of discussions and not post everything on one day. I'm pretty sure that looks bad. In order to devote one hour a night to this, I will need to stop lying on the couch playing games on my phone at night. I do that almost every night after dinner. It's fine if there is nothing to do, but if I plan on getting this one hour in, that has to go. I can still watch TV, in fact having the TV on while I work tends to help me work better. So games will be relegated to late evenings when all work is done. So far, so good.

Okay, back from Crossfit and ready to tackle this problem. One thing I thought of while killing myself at Crossfit, is that I need to not let lazy get me. I usually come home from Crossfit, shower, eat, and then laze around for an hour or so. I need to not do that or I need to plan for that. I'm not really relaxing when all I can think about is the things I have to do. So if I'm going to be lazy for a bit, just plan for it and then really relax. Also, I need to set limits. If I have a small project that needs to be done, tell myself I can take a break when it's done. Or if I have a large project, tell myself I will work for an hour on it and set a timer. That does a couple of things. I know there is an end in sight, that I will not be sitting there all day. I know that I only have X amount of time and therefore it can not be wasted. This should also reduce distractions. If I think of something that needs to be done, write it down, and do it when the time/project is over.

Teaching. This is finally starting to fall into place. I'm adjusting to being back in school, to the schedule and to the classes. First, I need to utilize my free time in school productively. I don't have a lot of free time, but I do have some and I need to maximize that time. I generally have some time before and after school and I usually have one period a day free. Those must be productively utilized. Also, I should devote some time during the weekend to either grading or lesson plans. Ultimately I would like to have the entire week planned out for all classes so that I can just move on autopilot during the week. Nothing I hate worse than having 20 minutes and trying to come up with something to do. I don't have to devote a whole day, just a couple of hours to get organized and have a weeks plan in place.

Walking the dogs. That is just going to be an appointment I have every day. At 4:30 - 6:00 pm I walk the dogs. End of story. No questions asked. No matter how tired I am, or how much I have to do. Starting today, that will be a standing appointment. I have to remind myself how much I love walking the dogs, and I really do. It is generally quiet and peaceful and a nice way to transition from the fast pace of work to the relaxing evening. I can not look at it as a chore, because it's not. I do it because I love my dogs. So that will just be a standing thing.

Relaxing. I don't do that enough, because I constantly am thinking about what I need to be doing. So that stops this weekend. I will plan when I'm doing things and I will plan some relaxing time. Relaxing is just as important as getting things done.

Eating Right. This is so incredibly important. If I eat right, all the other things will fall into place fairly easily. If I don't eat right, I will struggle with every other aspect of my life. So I need to make this a priority. I need to spend some time on the weekends prepping and planning for the week of food. It is critical and needs to be planned into my schedule.

Sleep. This is even more important than eating right. If I don't get enough sleep, absolutely nothing else will work as it's supposed to. Sleep is key and I think it is an area where I have been falling down. Lately, I stay up to 9:30 - 10:00 on weeknights. I never stay up that late. Never. So starting this week, I'm going to bed at 8:30. That means starting to get ready at 8 pm. If I can get the Crossfit, schoolwork, teaching, walking the dogs, relaxing, and eating right in order, I may be able to ease up on this. But for now I need more sleep and I've just got to do it.

None of this is hard, it is just a matter of giving it thought and planning. While I need to make a plan and stick to it, I also need to remember to be flexible. Things change and I need to roll with the punches. Okay, I've given myself a whole lot to work on but, since I've been here for an hour, I'm going to take a break and relax for a while.

29 August 2014

Time to catch up

My classes ended last week and new classes start on Tuesday. Since all the information is online, I try to organize information in files so that I don't have to go online every time I want to check something. I have tried printing things out and keeping a binder. That doesn't work. I have created notebooks in OneNote. That doesn't work. I have created folders on OneDrive. That kind of worked. That probably worked better than anything else. I guess I'll go back to that. I also need to keep track of the dates, so I'll mark them all on my desk calendar now. Decisions, decisions, decisions......

This week has been okay. Not great, but better. Food has been so-so. I'm working on eating regularly and that definitely helps things. I'm also not completely exhausted when I get home. I'm still tired, but able to stay awake until bed time. There was no exercise this week, but I'm okay with that. I have to get back into the routine of working out. I'm thinking I'll go to bed earlier for a little bit until I adjust to the 5 am workouts.

That's about it. We are 4 weeks into school and things are finally starting to settle down and develop a routine. Yea!! That's all I feel like writing for now. Hopefully I'll write more over this weekend.

23 August 2014

It is a new day

That is one really good thing about this life. There is always a chance to start over. Today is that day for me. It all starts anew today. My plan for today is as follows:

Banana with almond butter before Crossfit
Paper writing
Vacuum house
Walk dogs
Party this evening

Tomorrow, wash, rinse, repeat.

I have a few things that need to get done this weekend, so I will work on them today. Tonight is a surprise party for a friend, so that should be fun. Oh yeah, need to buy a present. That's about it. Hopefully it will be warm so I can spend some time in the pool. Also, need to do a little cleaning around here, this desk is a disaster. Other than that, just taking it easy.

So one step at a time.

22 August 2014

Time to rein all things in

The nightmare that was my last job is now officially over. I got my first paycheck at my new job. This is my first paycheck in 3 months. It felt good to be able to sit and pay my bills. I have gotten behind on one and I need to catch up. What I have decided to do though is put myself on a money diet. For the next few months I am not spending anything except what I absolutely have to. We have plenty of money, we make plenty of money, we just spend too freely. Once before I completely turned it around. I turned it around enough to buy this house. I can do it again and I am going to. The financial goals are to get the three credit cards paid off - that should not take long - get my car paid off, and start putting an extra payment towards the mortgage. It is all possible, I just need to stop the indiscriminate spending. I see something and I buy it. Enough. The only money I'm allowed to spend is for Crossfit every month. That is it.

In other news. I have got to get control of myself. My eating, though not horrible except at night, is just too sporadic. I don't eat breakfast. I eat at 10am. I don't eat until 3 pm. This has got to stop. I have got to get a routine around eating and I have got to stick to it. I need to figure out when I am going to eat, and that switches everyday, and then just stick to it whether I am hungry or not. I don't eat at lunch, then by 2:30 I am so hungry I can't see straight so I eat. Then I'm not hungry for dinner. It's a terrible, terrible cycle. I have got to break it and I have got to do it this week. That will be my goal this weekend, to come up with a plan.

I also have to get my butt back to Crossfit. I was just plain old lazy this week. I did not go to Crossfit and I did not walk the dogs. All. Week. Tomorrow that changes. Tomorrow morning will be Crossfit and the dogs in the afternoon. Same for Sunday. And Monday for that matter. I remember when I started at the lab, my feet hurt for weeks. Going from basically sedentary to on your feet all day takes a couple of weeks to adjust to. I have had 3 weeks to adjust to school and I'm over the feeling. Time to just suck it up and move on.

I know that I have said this for the last few weeks, but those weeks were brutal. I would come home exhausted with feet that hurt so bad I could hardly walk. That was part of the reason I took it easy on myself this week. I wanted to get over that feeling and I knew this was week number 3 and it should be passing now. So this weekend I am going to really look things over. When can I eat? What can I eat, because many times I am grabbing food as I run. I need to keep it simple, but tasty so that I will eat it. Planning, planning, planning....that's what it's all about this weekend.....