My Chaotic Self

Imagination

I seem to do my best thinking when I am at the gym.  It must be all of those endorphins bouncing around my brain.  My body may physically spent but my mind seems to always be clear as day when I am working out.  I can be surrounded by people but feel like this is my place of seclusion where my truest and most clear thoughts swarm into my brain. Things in my life right now seem to be panning out…knock on wood.  I keep getting closer to the goals I have set forth for myself.  I started this new blog about a month ago (give or take) and as of this morning I am down 8.6 lbs. and I am unsure of how many inches (2 weeks ago it was 6 inches).  I still have a trek ahead of me to reach my weight and body goal but my determination levels are through the roof and when I progress I don’t stop until I get what I want.  I do hit walls sometimes though.  I have yet to stop comparing myself to others.  I have yet to stop assuming others think I am not good enough because of my body or my imperfections.  It is all part of the process called life…I know this but it is never simple to just switch off these thoughts and abandon them completely.  I believe that change is possible but relapse is almost inevitable.  I believe it is the relapse that strengthens us though…..it is the test that we need to prove to ourselves how strong we are.

I sometimes get these momentary images in my head….the images of wonder I like to call them.  Today while at the gym I turned on a song that ALWAYS seeps under my skin and makes me feel anything and everything all in one moment.  The song is Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol.  I have never been the person to believe that my life would be complete once I had a boyfriend or better yet a husband.  I have needed to constantly prove to myself how strong I am independently and if someone were to come into my life it would be a bonus not a completion.  I hurt on the inside though because I know that I have given up on trying to put myself out there.  I sabotage myself by assuming I am not going to be good enough for someone and I worry and worry and worry some more.  My past is still in my present and I am fully aware of it.  This morning while I trekked along on the elliptical I imagined myself in a white wedding dress with a man’s arms wrapped around my waist.  I couldn’t see his face….I didn’t need to.  We stood in the middle of the dance floor and started to dance our first dance together as a married couple and when the song began (Chasing Cars) my eyes swelled up.  I looked at him and said, “Thank you for finding me.”  It may sound silly but sometimes when you wander through life you are able to see all of the beauty (which I do) but sometimes you feel lost and you feel like you are waiting for someone but you don’t know who that person is or why you are looking/waiting for them.  I know how beautiful I am both inside and out but I hide and I do know that it will take a lot of digging for someone to find the real me….it will take someone really wanting to.  In my daydream I thanked this person because he found me in all of my chaos.  I thanked him for really seeing me as beautiful instead of drama-filled because of my intensity.

This blog was started to focus on my health journey but I feel the need to get my thoughts out into the universe….writing is my sanity and my guide to health.  Health is such a generic word with an endless amount of definitions.  I understand the difference between being alone and being lonely.  I am alone a lot and most of the time I am ok with it….I actually embrace it because I am able to collect my thoughts and feelings and dissect them as much or as little as I want to.  It is my time to understand and love me….to have that relationship with myself that I had lacked and taken for granted for far too long.  With that being said, I do sometimes feel lonely because I want to experience things and talk until the wee hours of the morning with someone and there is nothing but empty space.  This blog is my drug….it is my ticket to serenity.  Over the past few weeks I have had moments of loneliness and with loneliness comes self-doubt and the typical question of, “What is wrong with me?”  or better yet “Why not me?”  No, I don’t understand why not me but I also don’t think I am meant to.  I can’t help but think that I am here to face these challenges and find this inner strength.  I truly believe I hold a lot of power…..a lot of influence and there is nothing that can interfere with that….even if it may take time.  I question the existence of God (as most people already know) but I can’t help but feel a power of some sort that is guiding me in a particular direction and although I experience these moments of loneliness I am being challenged….I am being pushed in a particular direction to make changes and make a difference somehow or another.  I have needed to find this person (me) that has been aimlessly wandering for so long and although I still wander I wander with purpose now.

I went off the beaten path today.  I plan to regroup in the next couple of days to share some new pictures of my body and weight changes as well as measurements.  I hope everyone stays tuned in!  All of my love!!!

Posted in Blog, Blogging, Diane, Fun, Health, Inspiration, Journal, Life, Love, Philosophy, random thoughts, Thoughts, Writing | 2 Comments

How Far Will You Go to Be “Beautiful”?

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It has been a hot minute since I have thrown my thoughts out into cyber space.  I have been up to my eyeballs in new job stuff and working an abundance of hours and spending as much time at the gym as I can get in that when I do have a little bit of free time I am just spent….both physically and mentally.  I am not complaining though….I work best when I am constantly on the move and challenged in some way or another.  As much as I whine that I need down time, when I do finally get it I act like I have ants in my pants.  I am usually not one to just relax and be completely lazy (ok well once in a while I might give in but rarely am I at complete ease).

Anyhooooo, the other day I was at the gym and after doing my hour on the elliptical I decided to do an extra 25 minutes on the stationary bike.  I sat down and not long after this woman took the bike next to me.  I glanced at her knowing I had seen her there a few other times.  This woman had the worst facial plastic surgery I had ever seen and a boob job that was entirely too big for her frame.  Ok, before anyone flies off the handle, I am not throwing out insults to the world of plastic surgery, I just couldn’t get the image of this woman’s face out of my head and the reasoning behind her choice to do such drastic altering to her face and body.  I wondered if she was pleased with the results because in complete honesty, as an outsider, she was not pleasant to look at (I apologize for being so blunt but it is true).  She, literally, looked made out of plastic.  There was nothing natural about her and I could not even guess her age.  If I had to I would wager to guess that her and I were not too far off in age….I am 34.  All of the procedures aged her terribly.

My telling you this kind of goes off the beaten path of what I normally discuss (weight, health, etc.) but I just couldn’t get it out of my head.  I spent a lifetime loathing my body and my imperfect teeth and my nose that seemed just a little too big but never did I desire to go under the knife for the simple “fix”.  I understand plastic surgery to an extent.  I understand a woman with very small breasts getting modest implants but I do not understand the woman that has a body very suitable for her frame that goes and gets implants that make her look as if she has basketballs glued to her chest.  I am not insulting…I am just trying to understand what makes that appealing?  Why go to SUCH an extreme?

I wish that more women had a different perspective on beauty.  I wish women (including myself from time to time) could just strip down and see how beautiful they are….even with imperfections.  My mother always assumed I had a “type” when it came to men but never was that the case.  I have dated very attractive guys and very “average” guys.  What appeals to me most is the beauty within them….the ability to connect in a world that rarely allows that to happen.  We live in a world full of brainwashing whether we choose to believe it or not.  Every image we see  on the computer screen or the television screen impacts us and we have to put in effort to not let those images define or control us….we must be our own individual and live in a manner that feels most natural to us.  Yes, this can be hard as hell to do, but in the end it is 100% worth it!

I am asking you to read this entry with an open mind and stop yourself from making assumptions about my way of thinking or living.  I understand the need and want to look good.  If you want to rock an amazing dress and 5 inch heels and feel sexy then by all means do it.  What I am saying is to not let just your physical-self define you….don’t let everyone else define you…..do not let society define you…do not let magazine covers define what a woman should look like.  I tell you this because you are beautiful and I will guarantee that going to an extreme to meet some “beauty” requirement will not fix what is going on with your emotional self….it will not be the answer you were looking for.  Beauty is so much deeper than so many girls and women know.  What is on the surface is so superficial in comparison to what anyone has on the inside….the true person that they are.  We all have been one a certain journey and it is that journey that makes us beautiful….not the clothes we wear or the number on a scale.  I truly believe that what women (and people in general) need is to have a moment to learn and feel what they are MOST comfortable with….find what does define them.  We live in a society of sheep that move in herds because the media and our peers and even our families are telling us that is how we have to live and how we have to look while we live that life.  I started this blog over a year ago because I learned that writing is what makes me beautiful….it is the most honest me.  I have found my happiness and I refuse to ever let it go again….or allow anyone to be a puppeteer and control my happiness or my anything for that matter.  I have chosen to change my body in a manner that is natural….through healthier eating and exercise.  I could take the easy route and get fat sucked out of every part of my body that I hate but I KNOW that the feeling of accomplishment would not even compare to reaching my goal on my own.  I guess I wrote this entry to remind women (yes, I guess I am focusing on women) that everyone’s goal should be to be healthy but never will you hear me say “I want to be skinny” because first off that is just not going to happen and secondly being healthy has much better rewards.

I may sound repetitive and redundant and I do not care because I know there are women (actually women and men and young girls and boys) that need to hear these words because no one else is saying it to them.  I was a young girl that loathed her body from as young as I can even remember and at 34 years old I am over that….I am done with the struggle and the exhaustion of worrying about how I am perceived.  I have flaws and imperfections and it is those things that make me human and if I am going to be judged based on those things then it is the other person’s character that is questionable…not mine.  I share these words in hopes for young girls and women to reread them when they need this reminder….to see themselves in a light that is defined by no one else.  I shared the images above and below to allow you to define what you think is beautiful….I would be surprised to hear anyone say the after picture.  We have these bodies that are our temples and they should be treated with the utmost respect because that is where we live (and trust me sometimes I disrespect my body).  To alter our bodies so drastically for the sake of “beauty” and “fame” should never be an option and in my opinion this “epidemic” needs to end!

michaela-romanini-plastic-surgery-before-and-after

janice-dickinson-before-after-plastic-surgery

joan-van-ark-plastic-surgery-before-and-after

shauna-sand-plastic-surgery-before-and-after

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Just a Few Things to Ponder…

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Some Things to Ponder…

I have made progress!  I have pushed myself…even when I wanted to just lie in bed all day.  I measured myself on January 22nd and since the scale doesn’t move much for me I decided to measure myself today to see if the work I had been doing was paying off at all.  Well, after the unveiling of the numbers I have lost 6 inches in a matter of 11 days (probably more since I had started the journey even before that).  The hard work is paying off and I feel great….not only physically but mentally and to be honest I prefer the mental health benefits over the physical health benefits by far.  This journey thus far has shown me what I am capable of and the drive I have within me.  I, of course, still have more changes to be made (eliminating a lot of processed food—even if it is Lean Cuisine 😉 but in this moment I would like to bask in my achievement.  I want to tell my readers that their struggle does not need to be a struggle but instead a challenge.  I mean who doesn’t love a good challenge?  Who doesn’t love reaching a goal that we never thought was possible?

I have heard a quote by Kate Moss over and over again and she said at one time, “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.”  These 7 little words disgust me.  Young girls will stand in the mirror dissecting every inch of their body and long to be thin without knowing that it is far more important to be healthy…plus Kate Moss has been known to put some white powder up her nose (and yes there is photographic proof) from time to time…is this really someone we should be listening to?  Sorry, she may be a nice person and maybe she has obtained a healthier lifestyle now but those 7 little words have been engraved in the minds of not thousands but millions of women all over the world and those 7 little words have caused women so much pain and suffering caused by anorexia, bulimia and mental anguish due to the hatred of their own bodies.  I am a curvy woman.  I am 5’8 and the lowest weight I ever got to was 137lbs and I still had curves and heavier thighs.  I have been a yo yo on the scale since I was a pre-teen (or I guess the modern day term is tween).  When I was 137 lbs (I was 20 years old) I was starving and I still looked in the mirror and was unsatisfied.  My father never told me until recently that during that time he was worried about me because I was starting to look sunken in the face and chest bone.  I never saw that though….I would never be thin enough.  I am 34 years old now and for the first time I am at peace with my body.  I do not LOVE my body but I am ok with the imperfections that I know I will carry with me through life.  I now know that my body does not define me….it is simply my home that needs to be nourished properly….so I am able to live a long life and accomplish all of those other things that DO define me.  I posed these questions to myself and I wanted to pose them to my readers…especially those that are going through the same struggles (I am going to submit them in an upcoming entry—I wanted to give my friends on this journey the chance to think about these things).  I think it is important to see the “problem” for what it is and see what you are truly feeling before you make any changes.  We can say we are going to change but if our heart isn’t in it then those are simply just words.

1)      What is your goal?

2)      Is that goal realistic? (Don’t answer quickly, think about this question)

3)      If that goal is realistic, how do you plan on reaching it?

4)      What has set you back in the past?  Why have you “failed” (for lack of a better word)?

5)      What scares you?

6)      Do you believe you can do it?  Why or why not?

7)      What are your weaknesses?  What do you struggle with then trying to lose weight/get healthy?

8)      Do you love yourself?  Why or why not?

9)      In your opinion, what does it mean to be beautiful?

10)  Do you have a strong support system?  If not, why?

I posed all of these questions because I think they all tie into the way we see ourselves.  When we answer these questions with brutal honesty we are able to see how we view ourselves…and sometimes that view can be a really ugly one.  I know every person on this earth has beauty within them (with some it is hidden behind ugly behaviors).  Until I came to grips with how I really saw myself I was unable to make any changes….I was living in a box wrapped with chains.  No one should have to confine themselves because they hate the way they look.  With that being said, the media and societal pressure to look a certain way does not make it easy for many to hold their heads high with confidence.  I guess I am old-fashioned in ways and I don’t understand how society has turned so superficial….how a person’s looks have become more important than their depth.  I guess that is why I am here.  I am not only reaching my hand out to any and all of those people that need words of encouragement or support but I am also reminding myself that what I look like will never hold a candle to who I am!

Posted in Blog, Blogging, Diane, Fun, Health, Inspiration, Journal, Life, Love, Philosophy, random thoughts, Thoughts, Writing | 6 Comments

Day 365 Question 365

courage

Day 365 Question 365:

What have the last 365 days taught/shown you?

I made it!  I started a challenge one day without a strong belief that I would reach the intended goal.  I was going through a rough time and needed something to occupy my time and I thought that once I started to feel better that I would just abandon the project.  Little did I know that this blog would completely change my life.  I  will not stop here.  I will never stop writing.  I will just challenge myself in different ways with different timelines.

So, what has this writing journey taught me?  This past year has allowed me to see me….completely stripped and vulnerable  This journey has taught me that perfection is simply a word not a reality.  It is ok to march to the beat of my own drummer and be the artist I have been dying to be inside…no matter what the critics say.  I have learned that my feelings and thoughts are my own and as much as people want to say I am crazy or abnormal….I am not….I am simply me.  I have learned to accept the madness that goes on in my head and actually use it to my advantage.  I have learned that I know longer want to conform to meet the needs of others.  Through this journey I spent many moments in tears because I reflected on a me that I was sometimes not proud of….or just didn’t like.  This blog allowed me to be honest with myself and as soon as the words were out there I felt a sigh of relief….and my readers helped so much with their kind words and support.

For the last 365 days I have spent an incredible amount of my time with my nose buried in books and my eyes glued to documentaries and to everything that would further my knowledge about the giant world outside of my tiny corner.  By furthering my knowledge I deepened my compassion and empathy and I learned that my life is truly beautiful.  I felt such sadness for those in the world that are unable to experience beauty and happiness because their living conditions don’t allow that.  I have spoken a great deal on behalf of women because through learning I have taken pride in my gender and I ache for more women to take the power they deserve.  I have seen the media focus on appearance and I have seen young girls alter their bodies just to fit a trend….I offered my words to hopefully show these girls and women that no matter how little or how much makeup they put on their face they are beautiful because beauty radiates from the inside out.  This past year I finally learned that I am beautiful….when I truly felt that I cried because I had been waiting my whole life to truly believe and feel it.  If I could spend my time talking to young girls and showing them the beauty that I see I would.

I cannot wait to go back and reread my thoughts…to relive my feelings….to see my growth.  How often do we get to do that?  We take pictures to capture moments but I have a 365 page document that will allow me to see what was important to me every single day for a whole year.  That is what makes me feel so glad that I did not abandon this project.  I have learned that it is ok to not live by a specific path….if you want to wander then wander.  We need to fall sometimes so we are able to prove to ourselves the strength we have within us.  We need to hurt in order to understand what it feels like to feel all of the good and to appreciate all that we have been given.

I end this journey to start a new one.  I believe that new beginnings happen as often as we want them to.  This journey has been magical and to my readers, my family, and my friends both new and old thank you…from the  bottom of my heart thank you.  I have not walked this journey alone….you have all been with me to pick me up at the moments that you knew I needed it.  You have shown me that kindness exists all over the world and comes in all ages, races and genders.  You have made me break out of my shell and stop living in fear….and even when I do feel fear that there is not a thing wrong with that.

For my next journey I hope to capture an even bigger audience.  I will focus on health both mentally and physically and I strive for my words to make an impact on girls, boys, men and women of all ages from all over the world.  I am going to add a Donate Plugin and ask for you my readers to support this project and support my goal to have my work being published….there is nothing I want more than to have my words available for any and all to read and hopefully change their lives (of course in a positive way).  Please stay tuned because I will not be gone for long.  I send so much love to all of you for everything….you have made me the luckiest girl in the world.  Onto the next journey I go…

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Posted in Blog, Blogging, Diane, Fun, Health, Inspiration, Journal, Life, Love, Philosophy, random thoughts, Thoughts, Writing | 15 Comments

Day 364 Question 364

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Day 364 Question 364:

What qualities do the people I admire share?

I have been so indecisive about what to write about today.  Tomorrow is my final day of thee 365 day challenge and it seems unreal.  I have met so many people throughout this past year (a lot have been virtual but I still consider them friends).  There is a lot of ugliness that we see in this world we live in but I also believe there is this kindness that tends to go unnoticed.  Through this journey I have had complete strangers offer their support and their encouragement without asking for anything in return.  That is the type of human goodness that needs to be publicized but I guess that the media doesn’t think that is where the money is.

I admire a lot of people and most probably would not even know it.  I don’t feel confident in vocal word when it comes to expressing my feelings….not the same way I do in written word.  The qualities I find most admirable are selflessness and goodness that comes with such ease.  I met someone yesterday and we spent almost 2 hours talking (about anything and everything) and the conversation flowed with such ease.  The whole time I was talking to him I was admiring his convictions and his ability to express himself so naturally.  He had a confidence without even a pinch of arrogance.  I have no idea what his thought process is but the way he conveyed his thoughts and his feelings was so admirable.  It seemed easy for him (and I don’t know if that is true or not).

I admire people that are able to see outside of just black and white.  I admire those that fight for a cause but don’t tell others that they are wrong.  I believe it is these people that I strive to mimic (and thus far have been quite successful).  It is easy to tell people that they are wrong when we don’t agree with their viewpoint but it is more admirable to absorb their viewpoint and remember that two lives are not the same….we have never walked a single day in anyone else’s shoes.  In my opinion, there is not a set answer to anything….how can there be?  I admire those with convictions and beliefs systems….people that don’t force those on others but instead offer their knowledge to them….and ask for the same in return.  We live in a world that focuses so much on right and wrong when we don’t truly know the root of either….we don’t know who the definitive person is that has decided something to be right or wrong and why that is so.

I admire people that try their hardest to see all perspectives without immediately settling on one.  I admire people that know that everything in life is a choice….and those people choose happiness as
much and as often as possible.  I admire people that never want to stop learning.  I admire people that strive not to judge others….knowing that they know only a very little about their lives.  I admire people that make up their own definitions and march to the beat of their own drummer.  I admire those that express through art…in any form.  I admire those that have fallen so far down they could barely see the surface but still chose to rise above….knowing that it was going to be hard and painful.  I admire those that practice compassion and empathy without even realizing they are doing it.

To those people that have crossed my path this past year I want you to know that you have changed me.  You have guided me and you have mentored me when I needed it most.  A thank you does not seem sufficient enough.  After this project is complete I do plan to move onto another (and still put this one together in book form to hopefully publish) and I hope you walk with me through that journey as well.  Your support and your encouragement has allowed me to see that even through all of the madness in this world that there really is so much goodness.  To you I give one million thank you’s and far beyond that!!

Posted in Blog, Blogging, Diane, Fun, Health, Inspiration, Journal, Life, Love, Philosophy, random thoughts, Thoughts, Writing | 2 Comments

Day 363 Question 363

Habit

Day 363 Question 363:

What bad habits do you really want to break?  How are you going to break them?

As humans it is natural for us to start certain habits.  Sometimes these habits are good and sometimes not so much.  Over the years I have picked up some great habits.  I have lost a good bit of weight and incorporated healthier foods into my diet and I have made exercise a pretty regular part of my routine.  I have read and read and read some more.  With good comes bad though.  Over time (actually a lot of time) I have picked up some very bad habits.  I always speak of the importance of balance in life and it seems that for every good habit I pick up I bring out a bad one.  I think I ignored the bad ones for a long time and I just don’t want to do that anymore.

I decided that for my next blog project I wanted to document the remainder of my weight loss journey.  By doing so I have to face the facts…even as much as it makes me cringe.  I have an extremely unhealthy view of eating and food altogether.  I can control my eating physically but my mind constantly thinks about food….it is embarrassing but it seems like everything in my life revolves around food.  It seems to be a comfort….the thing that brings people together….a common bond.  Food is my drug.  It has altered by thinking and I have realized that I am addicted to thinking about food.  I have made it a habit to eat something far too late at night.  I seem to not have any willpower when it comes to saying no to eating out or boxing up half of my food when it first arrives at the table.  I KNOW all of the information about proper eating habits and reading my body to know when it is full but I have not followed through.  I KNOW I need to retrain my brain just like I would with any other addiction.  I have made the excuses for long enough…I MUST break that habit.  It sounds crazy but when I feel a tad bit hungry at night I have a strange anxiety that I will have some sort of panic attack or physical illness if I don’t fulfill that tiny craving.  I do not let my body just be a little hungry.  It seems that the harder I try to occupy my time or redirect my attention the more I think about food.  I don’t believe in myself and my willpower enough to be as successful as I know I can be.  A motivated as I can be when it comes to working out….I find myself to be quite lazy when it comes to practicing proper nutrition.  I have made these abundant changes to find a place of inner peace and my anxiety has decreased greatly in many areas of my life but within this area I must take the time….it is NOW OR NEVER!!  That is why I have chosen to document the progress regularly so I am able to see where I am struggling and push myself a little bit farther every single week.

I stay up far too late most nights which makes me drag all day long and even though I work out I know I could be doing better if I just closed the computer and just closed off the world and allowed myself the rest I know I need.  So, if you haven’t figured it out I have the bad habits of staying up way beyond when I should and not being able to disconnect from the outside world….god forbid I miss something on the Internet.  I was listening to the radio the other day and the radio personality said that a study was done (I can’t remember where) that has shown Internet and technology use can have the same addictive qualities as drugs such as cocaine or heroin.  I gave up drinking completely over two years ago and even though there are times randomly that I crave a glass of wine I know I will be fine without it.  I, however, have wasted far too many hours on Facebook and other silly websites that are of absolutely no value.  I am sure I will log a lot of hours online this next year but I want to shift my focus from social media and keeping up with everyone else’s lives to learning…about everything I possibly can.  I want to take this health journey very seriously and soak up as much knowledge about the body and mind as I can.  I have learned through a lifetime of experience that if you do not have a healthy body then you will not have a healthy mind.  That is a VERY hard thing to come to terms with and time is not slowing down at all.  My age hit me suddenly and yes I realize I am still young but it is also now or never to find my healthiest place….I cannot keep putting it off.

Moving away from the topic of health….because I think I have driven the point straight into the ground and even deeper than that.  This past year I somewhat went into seclusion.  I made and broke plans far too many times than s even remotely acceptable.  I started allowing myself to become this hermit and I am unsure of why but that needs to stop right here right now.  There are 24 workable hours in a day and I need to stop living thinking about the next minute and thinking about when I am going to crawl into my bed at night (I love my bed far too much…haha).  I am young and I need to start living like I am young.  I will never meet new people or a potential love interest (hahaha what a cheesy expression) if I don’t get out there….stop thinking about being in the comfort of my own home.  And I need to stop saying yes to everyone just to avoid them being pissed at me.  The worst habit I have is saying yes to plans when I know that I either have something else going on or will more than likely break those plans last minute.  I am unsure why I worry so much about people being pissed at me for being honest (maybe I am suppressing something).

While writing this I realized that it is never pleasant to see your flaws and your downfalls.  I am not proud of certain things in my life and I know they need to be fixed and I have spent too much time avoiding them….well actually…just not being honest about them.  While writing about my food obsession and thought processes I cringed because I find it to be embarrassing…but I also know that nothing is going to change if I don’t start being honest about it.  I need to ask for encouragement and ask for help.  I know it is me doing it and I will have to focus on my willpower and personal strength but I am going to ask for guidance when I feel like I am slipping….I even may ask for a swift kick in the ass and some harsh words if I think that is what I need.

Posted in Blog, Blogging, Diane, Fun, Health, Inspiration, Journal, Life, Love, Philosophy, random thoughts, Thoughts, Writing | 7 Comments

Day 362 Question 362

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Day 362 Question 362:

 What comes next?

 Yes, I realize this question is vague.  This blog project has only 3 more days left and everyone keeps asking me if I am going to continue.  The thought has crossed my mind but I am unsure of where my writing will take me exactly.  I have accomplished a big goal that I never thought I would and now is the time to set up another challenge for myself.  I thought about going back and starting over answering all of the same questions once the year was over to see how much I have changed and how much I have remained the same.  I don’t think that is the route I am going to take though.  I want to do it but I want to give myself more time than just one year to reintroduce myself to all of these questions.  I want to take the time to re-read everything I have written to reflect on my life over the past 365 and in a way re-live the journey.

I jokingly told my boss this morning that I have had an ongoing homework assignment for the past year.  I say that but I have loved every minute of starting and almost finishing this project.  I discovered how much I really do love writing and how I never want to abandon it for long periods of time again.  It is my form of therapy.  I think the route I am going to take for my next writing adventure is the journey toward the rest of my weight loss.  I will probably write weekly as opposed to daily (or maybe more than weekly if the urge comes).  My mind thinks nonstop about my body and my weight and my eating habits and how much exercise I am getting…or not getting.  I will admit completely that it is my mental state that is very unhealthy when it comes to health, eating right and exercising.  I obsess day in and day out over food or about what exercise I need to do or whether or not I am getting enough exercise or why the weight isn’t coming off or how to gain more motivation.  I honestly don’t know how to live a healthy life without obsessing….and yes I know how messed up that is.  I know what my downfalls are and those downfalls bother me and I even have a hard time talking about them.  I know I need to rewire my brain in order to be healthy.  I am a late night eater and although I know how bad that is for me I still do it.  I eat too late and I think about food nonstop without even truly knowing whether or not I am really hungry.

So, I think for my next project I will document everything…especially my thoughts.  I want to be completely honest in a public venue because I need help and I need to see for myself everything I am thinking and know that I need to change.  I have lost quite a bit of weight and I know beauty comes in all shapes and sizes but I am not comfortable in my own skin right now and I know I won’t be until I get down to my goal weight.  So, I am thinking for my next project I will document EVERYTHING…my weight, my measurements, my eating habits, my binges, my obsessive thoughts, my questions, my goals….EVERYTHING!!!  I need help and I am not afraid to ask for it from my readers because I know some have gone through the same struggles (and may want to join me on this journey) and others have mastered a healthy lifestyle and may be able to provide advice and words of encouragement (because Lord knows I need it).  I know that when I am eating healthier and exercising regularly I feel better but sometimes I just fall into a slump.  I believe that if I hold myself accountable by documenting everything then I will HAVE to stop making excuses…..and will get the tough love that I need.  Any suggestions for content or strategies are more than welcome….actually they are encouraged! :0)

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