Tag Archives: self improvement

On compromise and allowing for imperfection

In my quest to continue my journey to letting go and giving way to better balance, I have started to notice some signs that I may just be coming around.

By way of compromise.

I am the queen of anti-compromise. I am all for *other* people compromising, but when it comes to compromise myself, I fully admit I am kinda bad at it. (my sister Jess is likely nodding her head right now…stop nodding so hard, I know, I know!)

Some of these signs of compromise are smaller, some of them are bigger, but they are all signs that maybe, just maybe I am capable of compromise and letting go of the need for perfection and my ‘particular (aka type A like whoa…) ways.

For example…

My numbers fixation. I used to stress about how many workouts I did – my ‘me’ workouts compared to those I teach. Now? I have gotten into a good cadence of balancing those ‘me’ workouts with how many classes I teach in a week. If I teach more, I pare back, if I teach less or equivelant to my ‘norm,’ I go by feel. If I feel good, I’ll try and hit that fourth run of the week, if I am tired,  I may not. Or maybe I’ll – gasp – cut a run short. Something I NEVER would have done a year ago. I’d think about that number too much. Now I have not a clue how far I run usually, unless I know the route already (and I never usually look at the mileage on the treadmill, but go by length of time, if anything). To me, this is  huge progress. Smarter, not harder, ‘phase two’ – my evolving workouts just work for me, I have never felt better, I feel fit, I feel worked, but I don’t feel exhausted, *too* sore (in a bad way, just a good hurts-so-good way) or running on fumes. I feel like I’ve hit the balance I need, and the ‘happy place’ in my mind too. It’s not a constant battle anymore. Compromise does a body good.

Another way? I have eased up – somewhat – on my neat freak attitude. Just a little (‘cmon, this takes time, people, this is a deep seated one!). I actually – gasp – LEFT a dish in the sink overnight soaking and didn’t feel the urge to wash it. As a matter of fact, I completely forgot about it, because I was too engrossed in watching ‘Sideways’ with M (though that movie is somewhat depressing, all of the wine humor and scenery gets me every time), with a cup of tea, curled up on the couch. *That* is much more important than a dirty dish, no? Compromise makes for a less stressy mind, and home.

I’ve also tried to slow down – continually – in my quest to enjoy more each day, and stop stealing my own joy, rushing through the mundane or day to day moments, and tried to enjoy every day, not just weekends, not just when I am with M, or my sisters, or my friends. This one also takes work and concerted effort, but I think the more I focus on it, the more aware and in tune with the ‘in-between’ moments as Jeff Goins would say, I will be. Compromise – choosing battles and calming down – has made me happier day to day.

So, I guess you could say I am feeling pretty peaceful right now, I am allowing for compromise, and imperfection, and simply, just changing my way of thinking just a little, and it’s going a long way.

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On challenges and unseating comfort zones

January holds a special place in me this year, as I look back at this point last year, and looking ahead at the month (in particular) and year ahead. Challenges. Comfort zones. New beginnings.

Today is one year since I began my job and on this day last year, I was 3,000 miles away on my first day of work, completely overwhelmed by a new job, new surroundings and challenges, challenges, and more challenges. And as I look back, yeah, I am proud, yeah, I have come a long way, but ya know what else? A year in, it’s also really easy to slip into a comfort zone. Of routine. Of staying in the ‘zone and not continuing to challenge myself.

And I’m talking not just in my job or my travels, but in my workouts and my own personal challenges on bettering myself…on refinement.

So, here’s my list of things I’m aiming for…to unseat comfort zones that have already formed and combat new ones from forming…

Work. 

Given I work from home almost entirely, it’s so easy to be in my routine of emails, calls, work. all. day. long. And while that’s clearly a huge part of my job and not something I can change, per se, I can change my habit of just chugging along, workworkwork, in the same manner I always have. I want to get to know my co-workers more. I honestly only have one friend at work, and while it’s refreshing to have someone to chat with on non-work stuff that isn’t just my boss (since I consider her a quasi-friend too, same age, etc!), it feels a little isolating to just chat with my coworkers on work stuff on calls and over email. So my goal here is to make an effort to call my coworkers more often and not just ‘talk shop’ but chit-chat more. Same goes for when I am actually *in* the office. It’s so easy to slide into routine and just hammer out my work in my cube, but given I am only in the office every few months, I really should use the time wisely! So while this goal is a little scary for me, because I am naturally shy when it comes to starting conversations or making an effort to make friends, I want to break out of this a little more than I have. These are my co-workers, not scary ax murderers, for God’s sakes 😉

This leads to my second goal…embrace work travel more than I have in the recent past. As my sister embarks on her new job next week (yay!!! our jobs parallel each other yet again!!), she is facing some similar work travel in her schedule and is excited as she knows it’ll help her grow. Well, I was in her shoes a year ago and approached it similarly, so why should I allow work travel to make me dread it, fear it and try to avoid it as much as possible? Since we know the latter isn’t possible anyway, I really need to go into my next two work trips (which are next week and the last week of January) embracing work travel as it will help me grow. I need to revisit my work travel bucket list and maybe even add to it. I figure I’ll think of plenty of new things to add to that list next week when I venture out to Costa Mesa on January 9th, right?

Workouts

January will be a challenge for fitting in my workouts…based on aforementioned work trips, putting me out of commission for my weekly barre n9ne classes (5-6 per week) and run challenge (possibly, but I have a work-a-round in mind!). This is one area where embracing work travel is tough for me, because we all know working out in your own environment, with your own tools at your disposal is just plain easier. But my first goal here is to come armed with as many of the tools as I can. TurboBarre from Cathe Friedrich loaded on my iPhone, a couple of running routes mapped out if I can get up the nerve to run in the dark during the morning (though honestly, for safety’s sake, I might save these for the trips where the sun is up earlier or I can run at dusk), and some resistance bands for some ‘homegrown’ barre n9ne workouts I plan to concoct to do in my hotel room. I also might just suck up the $25/day visitor fee at 24 Hour Fitness and get my runs in there. The price will be worth it (and work compensates part of it anyway, so why not, right?).

I also plan on these simple tweaks to my current workout/training plan, generally, to keep the body guessing and not slide into too much of a routine…

do abs every day. (I know I’ve said this before, but I am gonna make it stick!)

stretch every day. (ditto to the above *hanging head in shame*)

do a little extra for the triceps. (add some extra tricep dips and overhead extensions on my ‘off’ barre n9ne days…I want killer arms and to get killer arms, one must have good triceps! my weakest area).

a few tweaks to my run challenge. I will post on this tomorrow in my weekly update!

Myself.

Two simple things. Unplug more. Read more (books). thatisall.

So, there’s my long-winded way of saying I am taking January (and 2012!) by storm. Nixing comfort zones before they start. And working on unseating the ones that I’ve unintentionally created. I know it’ll be worth it, even if I’ll feel tested and maybe even scared and intimidated, too.

What about you? Any comfort zones in your life that you’d like to unseat?