My big year-without-drinking was a wonderful way to take on some very important life lessons. Although it was a struggle at times I learned how to handle my emotions differently, face some of my personal fears, and learned how to embrace every moment in a new (and sober) way.
This year has been very different. I have to motivate myself to try new and different things, rather than having a single goal in mind. It has definitely been a change from 2015. However, so far this year I have learned how to cross stitch, am re-learning how to play the piano, and next, I want to try a whole new challenge!
I thought about coming up with another year-long challenge that I could write about each day, but then decided to stick to something for the next few months to see how it goes. It takes anywhere from 1-3 months to form a new habit, so trying out a new and healthy way of life for a little while (rather than an entire year) will be a great exercise for me.
AND it'd give me something new to blog about! WIN-WIN!
Here are some of the ideas I have so far:
- Write in my journal every day.
Even if it's just a sentence. Record my thoughts, feelings, or memories every night.
- Limit my phone and/or social media usage.
This could be difficult with my freelance work, but I hate that I check my phone up until the moment I go to bed, and the first moment I wake up in the morning.
- Wardrobe limit.
Take out anything I haven't worn in the past year, and put it out of sight. Minimize my wardrobe to the few things I truly wear every week. See how it changes my morning routine!
- Eat only real foods at least two meals a day.
Two out of my three meals per day, I can only eat whole real foods. That means vegetables, fruits, whole grains, eggs, nuts, etc - NO cheese, NO breads, NO processed foods (except once per day - I'm only human).
- NO SUGAR.
This one scares the hell out of me, as many of my friends know that I am a sugar ADDICT. Recent discoveries I've made through documentaries, article research, and books have revealed to me how truly awful sugar is to our health. Giving up sugar would be a huge challenge for me, and also be one change that would greatly impact my current and future well being.
Yes, I understand that most of these are self-centered goals for the betterment of my personal well being or mental state. But I hope that through my own self-improvement, others will be inspired to do the same. There are certain things in life we can control, and others we cannot. I like the idea of taking something that is within my control to change, and seeing what happens.
No, I do not believe this makes me better than you. I do not believe that choosing to make a big drastic life change is right for everyone. For some reason, it works for me. I enjoy having solid guidelines, and the challenge of putting myself through something that could be uncomfortable - but could also lead to a wonderful learning experience. For you, the steps could be smaller, or maybe even bigger and more drastic. Your goals will inevitably be different from mine. But isn't that the beauty of it?
We all have the capacity to do great things, in our own way, at our own speed.
There are no rules, no clear right and wrong answers. Everyone's path in life is different, and we can impact the world in our own special way. I believe that the important thing is that we at least try. Take that first step and see where it leads, rather than deciding it's too difficult and never even trying.
When I'm an old lady, I don't want to look back and wonder about all of the things I didn't do. I want to look back and say: "I did it all. I lived the most that I could. I challenged myself. I gave my heart fully. And it was fucking amazing."
Do you have any thoughts or suggestions regarding these ideas? Why would they be a challenge for you? Do you have other ideas that you think might be even better? Let me know in the comments!