Apologies for the late post! On Tuesday I had a visitor and ended up with a day of intense emotion so I forgot to actually hit post. When I realized that I had missed it I decided it was for the best as I could actually further flesh out my mantra. So, I’m sidestepping just a little bit here and instead of posting my partially finished mantra, I would like to talk about some of the things I’ve been doing in my life towards my goals.
I have spent the last couple of years working on my mental health – something that can be a number of posts by itself and so I shan’t get into it fully right now. I talk with a psychologist monthly, a psychiatrist yearly, and my general practitioner regularly. I journal when I remember to and have been working on changing my mindset so I am less hard and more loving towards myself, and more positive about everyday things. It’s a good start but I’m not where I’d like to be as of yet.
Prior to that, I began to really focus on attempting to deal with my body pain as it had gotten worse after childbirth. I am still in daily pain from fibromyalgia but I have figured out how to mostly manage my symptoms throughout the year. This could take yet another post or four.
My house is usually chaotic and I don’t just mean the run around of having four people with active lives. I mean inside my home. I have always struggled with keeping things organized in my home – my computer, work places, lockers, etc have always been a different story.
Here is an example of what my cleaning may look like: I have laundry on the go and need to make dinner, but my dishwasher is broken and no one likes to do dishes, so I need to wash them before I can cook, but someone forgot to scrape their plate. When I go to scrape it I realize the garbage is full, so I have to take it out to the rubbish bin. On the way to the rubbish bin I notice that the deck needs to be swept, so I quickly take care of that on the way back. But my kid interrupts me because they want help getting art supplies out. On the way out of the office I can smell the cat litter, I haven’t cleared it yet, so I do that and and get reminded that I was getting art supplies. I help my kid set them up and the bell dings on the dryer. I pull out the clothes and quickly run them to my bedroom thinking I’ll put them away soon, I need to make dinner. After washing my hands and heading back to the kitchen I remember that I didn’t get the dishes done yet and start a sink full of water. More food needs to be thrown out, but I forgot to replace the bag, better go get it. As I walk into the pantry I find that someone decided to have a snack and left a mess every where, time to clean that up. But I forgot about the running water and now the sink is over flowing, I quickly turn off the water and grab a towel to clean it up. Now the kids want my attention again. I haven’t started dinner and I am started to feel stressed. The entire day goes like this, things get half done, moved around, etc.
Its frustrating, my house feels like a stressful revolving mess that I can hardly keep up with, especially while being in pain. I have attempted to follow Fly Lady’s plan in the past but find that I get so much junk mail that it becomes a chore looking up what I need to do for minimal cleaning for the week. Something has got to change right?
So, I’ve made a plan. I will use fly lady’s advice but plan on only looking at her weekly sneak peak. I’ve been doing one load of laundry completely every day, as well as one load of dishes daily. Everything else can wait until I have the energy, strength or time. My therapist has told me that I am one of the busiest people he knows, instead of burning the candle on both ends I’m burning it on four. By having a bare minimum set that I need to do each day I can turn the cleaning into a a habit that won’t burn me out and has me less stressed because I can see the progress, even if others cannot.
The thing I really want to talk about today is that I am branching out this year and want not only my mind but my body to be healthy as well. I know that a lot of our body’s health comes from our nutrition and food intake so I plan to focus a lot on food.
In November I purchased a weekly meal plan calendar while at work. I only schedule dinners and special bulk baking/soup batches currently but may branch out to breakfast and lunches as well in the future – there is enough room. On the right-hand side, it has a place to write a shopping list which I use to write down the ingredients we’ll need for the next week’s plan as well as lunch foods that the family requests. It’s a bit of a pain having to sit down and come up with the meals for the next week but it makes preparing meals so much easier. I no longer hum and haw about what to make. And if something comes up I can grab a meal from a different day in the week make it instead and come back to what I was planning to make later as I know I’ll have all the ingredients. I’m also finding it makes a lot less wasted food in our house as we are no longer running to the store guessing what we need and may want to eat for the upcoming couple of weeks.
December while at work I ran into one of my highschool teachers, who I have kept up with here and there throughout the years since I graduated. She has been on a journey to help people understand the benefits of whole food and growing your own food for almost the same amount of time that I’ve been out of school. I’d heard about the tower gardens from her before but wasn’t really interested at the time. But there was something different this time – I was open to learning more. It turns out that she sells not only the towers but also these supplements that help bridge the gap between healthy eating and what you actually consume. I checked out her website and found that there are over 40 scientific studies by reputable universities and hospitals on these products and the benefits of them.
I made the decision at this point to join the company myself, even after trying to research the negatives of the products and company. These are NSF certified, gmo-free, organic, vegan products that seemed like they could actually help my family. The price scared me a bit, but by joining the company I was able to get refunded some of that amount. I figured worst case scenario I’d be a bit healthier, best case scenario I could actually help other and earn a little extra cash while doing so. A win-win in my mind.
I decided to get my family the tower garden. I really wanted to be able to grow plants throughout the winter that my family could eat. This tower is amazing!! It uses 98% less water and 90% less space than a traditional garden, it yeilds 30% more crops, 3 times faster. The food is nutritious, my kids are learning more about gardening and the grow lights make me feel more uplifted during the day. I also decided to get some shakes, and a trio of capsuls (veg, fruit and berries) for myself. The company has a family healthy starts program which meant I was able to get these vegetable and fruit gummies for my kids for free. By doing this I was actually able to earn my first promotion (just for getting products I was going to get anyway) which included a bonus. A bonus I used to treat my family and put towards my financial goals.
I spent the first month a bit sceptical about how these were going to help us. Yes, I read some of the studies but theory versus putting something into action is quite different usually. We started with half of the recommended servings, this way both my kids and my husband and I could all get some of the benefits. After two weeks I was starting to see definite differences. My six year old daughter who hates eating fruits and veggies was occasionally asking to eat fresh food as snacks, all four of us were pooping more regularily and I felt like I had more energy throughout the day.
Since then I have been attending zoom seminars on health, for example, yesterday evening I attended one hosted by Alisa Herriman who has been a nutritionist for over seventeen years and has been voted best nutritionalist in Canada seven times. She specializes in cancer treatment and prevention but had a talk about how nutrition impacts mental health. She speaks quickly and I found that I could hardly keep up as I attempted to write my notes out from listening, but I gained so much knowledge. Like, did you know that fish don’t actually make Omegas? Instead they eat it and are highly processed to make those supplement pills you get at the store. It takes four pounds of processed fish to make one ounce of omega! Or how about the fact that people who have depression, schizophrenia, ADHD or learning disabilities often have low essential fatty acids in their diet?
I intend to learn more about how nutrition helps the body, and to use that information to better my family. It was never something I was really inspired to learn about before but truly believe that by changing the way we eat and the nutrition that wee receive I will be able to help my family be better, do better and live our best lives.
Okay, this post has gotten way longer than I expected. I’ll make an update on how all this is going in the future. Take care everyone, and drink some water 🙂