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Autumn Woods

Mindfulness and Eating Elephants One Bite at a Time

I’m not sure what is going on with me right now. I’m thinking that whatever is going on with me is related to my feeling stressed out about the studying that I’ll have to try to squeeze into my schedule because of some of the upcoming competencies that I have along with this cold that I’m still getting over. I’m not right in the middle of my cold, but my sinuses are still a little congested and is still causing me some discomfort. I’m even stressing out about whether or not to attend the high school reunion tomorrow since it will cut away a bit of my study time and I never know who will be there with another cold virus ready to get me sick all over again, don’t mind my paranoia it’s ever-present.

If I do go tomorrow I might not stay too long so that it doesn’t cut into my time and energy too much, also I may not dress up too much since I usually feel more at ease in more casual attire.

Anyhow, to the gist of this entry. I thoroughly dislike being underproductive and I feel that there are sources of this greater than usual under-productivity that I’ve pinned down more so to my lethargy from being sick in combination with the fear of the many responsibilities that feel as though are pilling onto me and making me feel frozen in a sense of dread of the possibility of failure.

But the whole point in me thinking things out and talking things through is in a hope that I will find some solution to any given problem that I happen to be facing.

In this case the solution that I’m hoping might come to my aid is the solution of: being more present. I noticed that in being stressed out, my mind is always wandering and I have trouble keeping focus, but now I want to give myself a challenge and hope that I will succeed in this challenge and it is the challenge of trying to focus on one task at a time. Although in some ways the single task proposition will feel a little underproductive, since I’ll not be allowing myself to multitask, I actually believe that multitasking may be one of my main problems to begin with. Some examples I’ll give are regarding my day to day activities: example one-I’ll put on some water on the electric boiler, it’ll shut off on its own without my noticing and I’ve distracted myself with some other activity with the state of mind of a sense of convenience and yet I never get back to what I initially started since I’ll forget about it. Example two-which applies to not only myself in this household, I think we’re both guilty of this: putting on a load of laundry with the intent of getting back to it and finishing it, but once again falling into the same sort of rabbit hole and forgetting about it all over again. I’m tired of my own distractibility.

This may almost be a sort of self-imposed punishment, but it serves a purpose and will serve to hopefully aid in some of my own progress. I’ll only semi-multitask from now on. When I set about doing some such convenient activity I must choose a way to pass the time in a way that doesn’t fully distract me from my initial action so as to end up forgetting it altogether. Examples of boring tasks to pass the time with: studying (ding-ding-ding-ding-ding), reading, painting my nails, semi-meditation, exercise, etc. Examples of unacceptable excessively distracting activities: watching T.V., being on the phone or computer, etc.

Also all-in-all I intend to try to eat my elephants one bite at a time so as to not overwhelm myself and cause myself to burnout or freeze up. All these big sometimes seemingly impossible tasks in life are impossible to conquer in one go. We are all human, at least I know I’m only human, so I need to remember and to remind myself that sometimes the only way to get things done is by taking little bites, little bites until the elephant has been eaten.


DIY: Pumpkin Bouquet (Easy)

So here I go with the 1 hour limit, plus I’ll likely not add any additional posts in the next few days since I’ll be working, but this post will be where I’ll be getting a little Pinterest-y/Martha Stewart-y on this blog. I saw a post on Pinterest at some point in time of a pumpkin bouquet and I found it really cute and so I thought that I’d give it a shot.

What I used for my bouquet was: a bouquet of flowers, one appropriately sized pumpkin, a large cup, paper towels, some fake moss (optional), and a little elbow grease.

Step 1: Buy flowers and pumpkin, fake moss optional.

Step 2: Cut and clean pumpkin using elbow grease, the top of the pumpkin can be discarded since it’s not used in this DIY. Also, I added an extra step for myself with washing the pumpkin inside and out with a bleach and water solution to slow the rate in which it would naturally rot.

Step 3:IMG_1835.JPG Take the large water cup and fill close to the top with water, then place cup in the center of the hollowed pumpkin. Put folded paper towels under cup for balance and between the glass and pumpkin edges for support as well.


IMG_1836.JPGStep 4

Trim flowers to fit container and arrange as desired.

This next part is where you can use fake moss if you wish, I used it to fill the little gaps between the pumpkin and the cup to give it a neater more professional look.

Step 5

Find a home for your pumpkin bouquet, as a table centerpiece or in any other place in your home and enjoy your fall creation.

Rule #3: Blog No Longer than 1 Hour Each Day

I’m taking to liking blogging a good bit. I do enjoy it more than I imagined I would and this is the point of my rule #3, to set limits for myself. Just as I don’t like to overdo social media, I’d also prefer to keep myself from overdoing this as well. This is more of a general guideline for myself of more-or-less spending no longer than one hour each day blogging, seeing to it that an hour is a relatively adequate amount of time to write. I’ve broken this rule already, but then again I’ve just made it at this moment so I’m not sure that it would even really count. It will count tomorrow though and henceforth.

Rule #2: Buy Comfortable Shoes

Maybe I’ll be seen as boring for making this rule for myself, but my second rule for myself is to buy only comfortable shoes, the reason being that: I’d rather have happy feet that will last me many years to come rather than suffer in my later age with things like plantar fasciitis. I’d rather look imperfect in the shoes I wear today and be able to run and jump and be pain free tomorrow. Some shoes allow us to meet in the middle and manage to serve both form and function, so it isn’t to say that I can only buy unattractive shoes, all the shoes I buy can look nice as long as they’re also comfortable. I’m not going to force myself to go out and replace all my shoes all at once, but rather to keep this rule in mind each time I’m ready to buy new ones. So for shoes: function before aesthetic. So converse, my old friend, so long you attractive but poorly supported shoe and no more hard soles or overly high heels for me either (at least none of the high heels with the steep angles that arch my foot too much).

Rule #1: Restriction of Clothing Purchases

Don’t buy any new clothes until clothes that have been selected to go to donation have been donated and until any other existing new clothing purchases have been washed and stored. When there’s no longer clothes left to be sent to donation and when all new clothes have been washed and stored it’s okay to make new clothing purchases again.

Tea Essentials

List of essential teas for myself:

  1. Standard black and green teas.
  2. Peppermint tea for one of my good friends.
  3. Passion tea for warmer weather.
  4. Tumeric tea for an immune system boost generally speaking or for times when I’ve caught a cold.
  5. Ghirardelli chocolate chips (I know this isn’t a tea but I intend to store it with the teas to make a copycat filipino hot chocolate so I’m putting it on the same list).

Potential bonus teas: rose tea (it looks so pretty, I’d like to try it and see if it’s any good) and matcha tea although I may have to purchase the special whisk that’s used to make it as well.


The Right Amount of Items on To Do Lists

I am very much a sucker for making lists: grocery lists, to do lists, goals lists, etc. More than anything though, to do lists and I’ve noticed that lately I haven’t been as effective as I normally am. I feel in part I’m simply tired and may be in a little slump, but I imagine it’s likely more than just a matter of these things.

I believe the problem lies not in the list itself, but rather the way I’ve been making my lists. They are much too extensive. A little constant progress is far better than short little fizzling spurts of energy. My overly extensive list though often doable require too much energy and may also be too aimless.

I’ve heard before the lists should be only of three things, I probably list five times that amount and possibly more. Now, I think I should adopt something close to, but not quite the same as the advice given. I believe that perhaps from now on my lists should contain about five items. Enough to make it feel like I’m doing more since the number is greater than three, but also short enough to likely not get me to fizzle.