In Which I Decide to Begin Again [Happiness Project Update]

Did you hear that? That thud? Yep, that was me falling off the healthy eating bandwagon last week. I often wonder if there is anything harder to do than to break a bad habit. When I think about my own bad habits, it feels overwhelming to even know where to start. You see, the older I get, the more I realize that I am more than just a creature of habit. I'm completely dependent on my routines. Given what happened with my family last year, I have made routines a priority. I have no doubt that these routines have maintained my and my children's sanity as we continue to grieve, but also continue to live again. When my routine is broken or thrown out of whack, I tend to feel a bit lost. Some people may say that I need to be more spontaneous. But I'm not very good at spontaneity. And at this point, I'd rather know my strengths.

So, that's the issue at hand - Last week, my routine was thrown off track and I went back to my old habits of eating whatever is easiest to grab. No menus were planned (and you know how much I love to plan), my healthy food supply dwindled and life got in the way of my good intentions.

But I'm not beating myself up about it. I've proven that I can do it. So it's time to start again. I've made a decision and now I'm following it up with action.

With January coming to a close, it's time to grade myself on those Happiness Project goals I made for the month:

  • Develop a healthy eating plan and include the kids. Track our progress. I'm going to give myself a B on this. Yes, last week was a black spot, but I'm more determined than ever to pick it back up. The way I have felt (physically and emotionally) this past week tells me now more than ever how vital a good diet and nutrition plan is to my emotional health.
  • Get more rest. Definitely an A- here. I'm consistently in bed by 10 and I tend to feel more rested throughout the day.
  • Exercise three times a week (at least). A big fat F. Again, it goes back to routine. I know that setting up an exercise plan will throw off my routine that I've settled into the past 2 or 3 months and so I've procrastinated. No more! Once I'm done writing this, it's time to make the plan and fit it in.
  • Meditate. Another A- here. The quiet mornings have been a blessing.
  • Drink at least 64 oz. of water a day. I think I've earned a B+ on this one. The past two weeks I've been spot on with getting my hydration needs met. I'm not super crazy (like my younger brother who decided to go the whole month of January drinking ONLY water) but I do find that I'm craving water more than coffee and I've nearly cut pop completely out of my diet.
  • Develop a general awareness of my health. A solid B+. I stopped doing the daily check-in by journaling, but I'm still very much aware of how I'm feeling on a daily basis. I know there is more that I can do, but I think this is a good start.
  • Create something every week. A+! This was, by far, the easiest of the goals. While it took me nearly the whole month to do it, I finished my most ambitious knitting project yet and the act of knitting on an almost daily basis is more than therapeutic. Plus, my daughter loved modeling the hooded poncho for a photo.
  • Get kids involved in a physical activity. This one gets a B. I did the research and found the activities for the kids, but I didn't actually sign them up for anything. Yet.

Looking all these over (in a non-mathematical, subjective sort of way), I think I got a B (maybe a B+) for the month's goals. I made some great starts in some areas and still have a lot of room for improvement. But I least know what direction I'm heading in. And next month's theme is "Love" in my quest to find inner happiness.

So, if you'll excuse me, I have a date with the treadmill.