January 2015 Review

Well, like leaves in the wind, my January goals were flying, dipping and soaring all over the place, but the last week or so has seen the new year dust settle a little, as I’ve started to develop a routine. I have to admit, however, that my initial plan pretty much bit it (the dust, that is) and a new plan is spawning in its wake.

As I’m really tired and need to mentally prepare to play responsible parent tomorrow as my only child starts his first day at school, I will provide a quick January update for those playing at home.

Study: Had initially pledged to revise 20min per day. That didn’t happen, however, I have a weekly meet up with a friend where we manage a lazy hour or two of quick revision. Will up the ante on this one for Feb.

Exercise: Thanks to my bestie who bought me the Tapout XT 90 day workout program, I’ve been killing it in these stakes, and enjoying it in the process! I’m a bit new to home workouts, always preferring the gym or the like, but when I got my head past the idea that to my family I must sound like a hippo locked in a crate during mating season (what?), I am counting this one a success. The program involves MMA stylised light resistance/cardio training with a LOT of plyometrics, and I basically haven’t been able to walk properly for a week. I’ve also lost about 3kg (of fat, hopefully) since the start of the year, as well as having done 40% of my workouts early in the morning, so that’s a win. As an added incentive, I went out and bought a pack of 2 DEXA body scans for myself and my bestie each, to monitor our progress. Serious stuff happening in this space. Have also pulled out my old racquets and am in the process of looking for a tennis coach whose schedule fits with mine.

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Other health: The meditation I’d planned on starting died after 4 days. I will re-instigate this later on down the track once the rest of my day is sorted. I know people say it’s so important, and I do agree, but I am just so damn impatient. Water intake has been fair to good – I always have a bottle with me and will at the very least take in about 1.5L in a day.

Reading: I originally planned to – as a minimum – read a chapter a day, just to get through the bajillion books I have sitting here (bajillion and four, as of Friday. 4 classics for $15 at QBD? Don’t mind if I do). However, I forgot how addictive it is when you have a good one in your hands, and as a result have finished Jane Eyre and Flowers for Algernon this month (both fantastic reads. Do it). Currently reading Rafael Nadal’s autobiography, which I picked up on a whim when I caught his dark eyes flirting with me from the library bookshelf. Ahh, Rafa ❤ Te quiero!

So that’s it. We’re one twelfth of the way through the year already. How have all of your plans faced up to 2015 so far?

Photo of Rafa sourced from http://images.latinpost.com/data/images/full/31137/spanish-tennis-star-rafael-nadal.jpg?w=600

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“You have to laugh at yourself….wait! Not too much!”

Self deprecating humour is something that can be used to help or to hinder, depending on how and with whom you use it. I consider myself a connoisseur (thank you, spell check). In fact, I would even venture further and say that two conversational tools have carried me through the awkward social interactions which plagued my adult life – self deprecation and flattery (always sincere of course).

If you were to ask what I considered most important to me, I would blush and hang my head before mumbling a response, because my answer, as a 30 year old, I would say is fickle and fills me with hot shame. What is this terrible thing? I don’t even want to write it…I want everyone to like me. Oh! The shame! I realise many people would say they desire the same, though are able to get over it for the most part, but myself? I struggle to get over knowing that I’ve offended or displeased someone and retreat into myself like an armadillo, face to face with a…well, whatever is tough enough to chew through an armadillo….the general populous in my case.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m working through it, but it is a much reviled trait of mine, carried over from my formidable years (and I’m pretty sure many of you, especially the women unfortunately, might know what I’m talking about). The thing is, while working on my whole ‘Who gives a f**k?’ attitude (yeah you’re intimidated, go on, admit it), I never gave any thought to the self deprecating style of humour I had adopted and still indulge on a very regular basis. Not until I noticed something recently. During a conversation, I made some joke about myself (probably about being stupid or fat or ugly, who knows, roll a dice) and in my hilarity actually took a moment to take in my conversational partner’s face….and I don’t think I was being as funny as I thought I was. And it hit me. This is not witty. This is a problem.

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Many see self deprecation as a rod to fish for compliments but cross my heart, this is not an intention of mine (well, certainly not in the last 4 years or so). I honestly believe the things I say and think that others must be thinking it too, so I try to make them more comfortable by acknowledging the things they must be noticing. It sounds ridiculous out loud, but have to ask… Have you been guilty of this too? If so, then stop! The way we see ourselves often sets the tone for how others see and value us. We cannot hope to garner any kind of respect if we cannot respect ourselves. Ooops! I forgot to insert a cliché alert at the beginning of the sentence there, but hey, don’t those clichés just love to creep up on us? It’s not like we don’t understand these ‘rules’…it’s just in the application that we struggle….speaking for myself anyway.

So this is the new self improvement side project – tone down on the self deprecation and use it solely as a tool to make people more comfortable during times of need. Do not use it at work (unless I become big kahuna and need to put the underlings on side), at uni, or in general conversation (unless they’re really close friends). This will tie in nicely with the ongoing ‘learn to accept a compliment graciously’ project which I’ve been practising. If we can all learn to do this, we’ll be self confident super heroes in no time. Though now I think I’m going to have to pull out the joke book – I have a rep to maintain…

Ross pic courtesy of http://static.fjcdn.com/pictures/That+s+not+funny+me+when+someone+makes+a+joke+about_8da1a3_4104722.jpg