Fifty Two Weeks: Week Five

It's probably week number four that I always de-rail in this process. I even forgot to publish the post I wrote about it last week, oops. The two goals were to set goals and to keep a food journal, which is the one I always struggle with. Well, this time was no different. I made it through one blasted day of food journaling and then I stopped. I stopped everything. I mean, everything. I gave up on my 64 ounces of water, I averaged about 4,000 steps a day, and I didn't journal once.

This time, though, I'm not ready to throw in the towel. I may have failed last week, but tomorrow starts a new week. A week with no mistakes in it (yet).

And that's kind of what week five is all about: Looking at the glass half full, or developing a more optimistic view.

So, in the book, the author suggests using affirmations. I've always felt super weird looking in the mirror and saying "You got this!" to my visibly skeptical reflection. But I've decided to delve a little deeper into the power of them by researching them more and attempting to incorporate them somehow into my life throughout this week.

The second item to work on this week is making daily to do lists. I don't do this now and I honestly waste a pretty large chunk of my time. Hopefully this will help me develop a sense of structure to my days and help me to achieve more throughout this upcoming week.

May 2017 Goals

Lose 5 pounds.
Walk 3 times a week.
Try a new form of exercise. (Yoga, this month.)
Drink 64oz of water a day.
Eat at home and take my lunch to work at least 4 days this week.
Self Development
Journal at least twice a week.
Read 20 pages a day.
Watch a sermon or listen to a Christian podcast twice a week.
Create playlists for different moods.
Make "dates" with a friend twice a week.
Cook something for my parents once a week and take it to them. (Obviously...but still.)
Give one genuine compliment a day.
Go to the farmers' market and shop locally every Saturday.
Visit a church.
Find a local event coming up that I can participate in.
Empty dishwasher at the beginning of each day.
Empty sink at the end of each day.
Declutter for 15 minutes each week.
Work on my lawn every weekend.

Fifty Two Weeks: Week Three

Ah, the week I've been dreading. The third week, the week that suggest I submit myself to some type of physical activity. I shudder at my level of inactivity. I started wearing my pedometer again last week and I barely reach 4,000 steps a day. And I'm just tired after work. Let the excuses begin! I KNOW I need to implement change in this area. The issue is self discipline and requiring myself to take action. So this week, I'm going to make myself opt for the further parking space, I'm going to try to take Charley for walks and just add some activity into my life.

As far as the mental change, I'm supposed to smile more. I already do a lot of smiling, but I'm going to make a conscious effort this week to add more humor into my life, by looking at the humor tab on pinterest for a few minutes each day or watching some Graham Norton.

Fifty Two Weeks: Week Two

Week one was successful in both aspects. I maintained consistency in both my water intake and journaling! Week two should be pretty easy because I already do both of these things. Sleep is my one true love and music is my vice. I have a few issues though. I get in the bed by like 7:00 most nights, no joke. I lay there and eat and watch TV until I can't hold my head up anymore. So my goal is to stay out of the bed until 9:00 and then use it only for sleeping. I can read, listen to music (since that is my other goal), and just relax. Clear my mind for a restful night. 

Today I finally visited Faith Community Fellowship. I enjoyed it a lot. His message was different- it was more a lesson. He told what Atheists believe and then discussed how the church has sent so many people running from the faith. Our call as Christians is to be LIKE Christ and the church has, sadly, fallen so far away from that call. I'm definitely interested to hear the rest of this series. And I'm super proud that I visited a church alone. So scary for me, but I faced that anxiety and did it!

In other accomplishments, I set aside time yesterday to make a complete menu for the week and went grocery shopping today. Tonight I made BBQ Chicken Quesadillas, which were AMAZING. Excited to get in the kitchen and do more cooking this week. Yesterday I also finally took the time to breakdown all the boxes in my sun room and get them to the recycling bin. I then moved my recliner into the sun room and I've been in here the majority of today. Love it! 

Anyway, I'm not ready to meet the week but I better get there because it's quickly approaching. So here's to a week of REST and a week of MUSIC.

Fifty Two Weeks: Week One

So I'm restarting this challenge. Again.

This weeks goals are to drink more water and start journaling. I'll readily admit, I SUCK at both of these. So let's get it.

I was doing fantastically at my water intake, but at some point, I started welcoming soda and sweet tea back into my life, like the prodigal son. I hate using public restrooms (I have a shy bladder. F'reals) so this makes it hard to drink a lot of water when I work. But now I work 25 days a month, so it's not realistic to "not use the work bathroom". I have to get over it and drink my darn water.

And on keeping a journal, I've always struggled with this. I have read benefits but I have never stuck to it long enough to reap any said benefits. This time I'm using an app on my iPhone to see if that helps. Surely the ease of it will detract from my excuses, at least a little.

So my goal for week one is to consume 64 ounces of water daily and journal for 10 minutes every other day. 

Essential Verses | March

Essential Verses | February

What verses are you seeing differently this month?

Essential Verses | January

 I've decided to pick a verse to focus on each week this year and at the end of each month, to share those verses with you. Sometimes you have read a verse a thousand times, but one day, something just clicks and you see it all differently. That's why I want to make it a point to really meditate on a verse each week.

These are some verses that stood out to me during my Bible study in January.
What verses were your eyes opened to this month?

21 Days of Prayer and Fasting // Week One

One of my biggest goals for 2017 is to step up my prayer life. Prayer is a vital part of a Christian's life, and I gotta admit, I've been slacking. I've been going to Highlands off and on for over a year now and have heard some amazing things about 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting, but I haven't participated, until this year. I really felt the urge to give up something for 21 days and to use this new found free time advancing in my walk with Christ. 

So, from January 8th-28th, I will be doing what is called a "soul fast". I'm not going to be fasting from any food item, but if that's what you feel called to do, do it! Personally, I'm giving up Facebook and Netflix.

Over the last few weeks, I've been feeling convicted about the amount of time I waste on Facebook and watching TV. I meaninglessly scroll through my FB feed multiple times daily. Don't get me wrong; social media has it's place. It brings people together and can be a great way to keep in touch, especially for our family and friends who are far away. But when does it become a hindrance? I think we can each search our own hearts on this issue, but to me, it becomes a problem when I start using it to: compare, "stalk", brag, argue with strangers on different subjects (yep), and distract. 

As far as Netflix, it's pretty much a huge time waster in general. I enjoy watching TV and movies just as much, if not more, than everyone I know. TV and movies are generally very appealing to us because they distract us from our everyday normalcy and our problems. But keep in mind, television feeds our minds with all kinds of useless information, two of which are untrue expectations of love and relationships and a total absence of morals. 

 Both of these things have been weighing heavy on me, so I'm going to do without them for a total of 21 days and then slowly bring them back, if I feel the need to do so. 

What is one thing in your own life you could do without?

Beaming with Positivity

Do you know what can be a real wet blanket on a good day? When someone radiates negativity. Nothing brings my mood down faster than a complainer or a pessimist, someone who sees only the empty half of the glass.
Sure, it's hard and sometimes downright impossible to see the good in everything. I'm not suggesting you be blind to the world or it's problems. But here's the thing; the way the world sees us is based a lot on our attitude, so as a follower of Christ, it's very important we exude life and joy. Here's a few ways we can be a little more positive!

1. Stop complaining. This is a hard one and I struggle with this sooo much. As a teenager, a guy told me "I've never met someone who complains as much as you." Ouch! That was a wake-up call. Who wants to hang out with that girl? What an easy question to answer: nobody. Be more mindful of your words. You don't like this song? Ok, understood, but you don't have to tell someone who does enjoy it. Hate your job? Maybe instead of telling everybody about how much it sucks, look for something else.
“What you're supposed to do when you don't like a thing is change it. If you can't change it, change the way you think about it. Don't complain.” -Maya Angelou

January Goals

Who doesn't love the hope for change a new year brings? As usual, I set a lot of resolutions but I'm going to try breaking them up into smaller, more attainable goals monthly. Here's what I'm working on in January.

faith...Go to church every Sunday; Participate in 21 days of Prayer and Fasting. I really want to focus on my prayer life this month.
finances...Stick to my credit card payoff plan suggested by and save $200.
self...Be more positive. Do a random act of kindness.
to read...Read 2 books; 1 fiction and 1 nonfiction.
to cook...I really want to make some homemade potato soup and try a different chicken salad recipe.
health and fitness...No sodas for the entirety of the month. Go to the gym twice a week.
relationships...Be more encouraging.
home...Find a cleaning schedule that works for me. Decide on a color for the dining room and start purchasing painting supplies.

What are your plans and goals for 2017?

Currently | January 2017

I haven't posted a currently post in a while, but I really want to get back into the habit! So for all of you who cannot function without knowing what I'm enjoying, here we go.

anxiously awaiting...As much as I hate to admit this, I'm ready for some warmer weather. These cold, dreary, short days are becoming pretty depressing.
enjoying...The excitement/hope for change that escorts a new year.
feeling...Stuffy, due to allergies, and cold. Due to sleet.
wanting...A long, hot bath.
watching...I'll Have What Phil's Having on Netflix.
reading...Chasing Elephants by Brent Crowe and Organized Simplicity by Tsh Oxenreider

What things are you enjoying this month?