Trees

thoughts on the new year

Filed under: Uncategorized — Orna @ 9:21 pm
Our campsite at Denali State Park. The Mountain is behind the clouds.

Our campsite at Denali State Park. The Mountain is behind the clouds.

At the beginning of 2016, my wise friend Dr. Samantha Brody published an article about New Year’s resolutions, why they don’t work and what to do instead.

.

That struck me as a great idea, so I tried it out. And you know what? The results have been pretty great, and I want to tell you about them.

.

But first, take a minute to read her article now. Seriously. I’ll wait.

.

So, as you now know, I didn’t make a resolution. What I did instead was stumble upon an idea that became a mantra: indulge positive impulses.

.

For instance: I’ve just made a meal and there’s a dirty pot in the sink. I think, hey, it would just take a sec to clean that pot. And then I think, yeah, but my food is going to get cold. I’ll do it later.

.

You know that line of thinking doesn’t end well.

.

So I did the dishes when it occurred to me I should. Because cleaning one pot really isn’t a big deal. It’s just a few seconds. If I clean it while I bitch about stupid mantras that make me do dishes before I eat, the pot is clean before I’ve even gotten a good whine going. And getting that done means cleaning my dish after dinner is easier, because there’s nothing cluttering up the sink. And that has made me more likely to cook, since I don’t have to do a boatload of dishes before getting started. And once I started to trust that I wasn’t going to have the hurdle of a boatload of dishes, I started cooking things that might use more than one pot. (I even made a recipe out of a cookbook — but it took nearly 12 months to do so.)

.

On New Year’s Day, my rockstar friend Dr. Tyna Moore created a Facebook group, Dr. Tyna’s 30-Day Squat Challenge. The idea was to do squats daily for 30 days, and have a group to support the effort. She does it with heavy weights, because as I said, she’s a rockstar. I’m more the couch potato type, so I counted things like grabbing a jar from a low cabinet (with good squat form, of course). I counted doing just five while getting dressed in the morning. On her birthday, I made a tiny little iPhone video of me squatting, moving in and out of the frame. Because I love her. Because I could.

.

But as with the dishes, it started to morph. I started adding squats intentionally when picking things up off the floor. I bought a 30-pound kettle bell and squatted while holding it. I started swinging the kettle bell in my bedroom. I went to a class to make sure I could swing the bell without hurting myself. I mentioned this to my friend Jeannie, who recommended a local kettle-bell gym. I’m now a semi regular there; the owner knows me by name. I’ve done two robust hikes (one gaining 3,000 feet in elevation over the course of 3 miles — and back down) and can dead lift nearly 100 pounds.

.

My life is still my life. I’m no gym rat. I’m no clean freak (there are dirty dishes in the sink right now). I don’t always feed myself as well as I should. I watch too much teevee on the iThing. But I have made some pretty significant changes that were totally unexpected. And I did it without beating myself up. I did it by letting the quiet voice be heard, the voice that wants to live well.

.

It’s still a few days to the New Year, and there are plenty of things on my mind. But I’m going to refresh my mantra for 2017, keeping up with the steps I’ve taken this year and adding some attention to thoughtful communication — in the sense of both reading and writing. So hopefully you’ll be hearing more from me. And hopefully what I’m learning will help and inspire you.

.

.

At the top of Alaska's Exit Glacier — 3 miles in, 3,000 feet up. I did it!

At the top of Alaska’s Exit Glacier — 3 miles in, 3,000 feet up. I did it!

No Comments »

Leave a comment

Address: 4921 NE 28th Ave. Portland, OR 97221 Phone: 503.335.9479 Taproot Hosting Site Design: Chipboard Creative | © Copyright 2014 Celilo Health