I just barely noticed that before I started posting again I hadn’t posted since mid-July. I have been contemplating why that is so. I actually have a few blog post written, but just couldn’t find it within myself to publish them. When perceived effort exceeds our perceived ability, we tend to procrastinate.
Let me explain.
1. I didn’t remember where the blog post were. I have used several writing tools to write my blogs and even though I had an idea where they were I wasn’t sure and I haven’t felt good enough to go searching. Sticking with one place to write and publish from would help solve that problem. I really like [Ulysses](https://ulyssesapp.com/ “Ulysses “) for writing so I think I will stick with it. They just supported publishing directly to your blog, but I have run into a problem where it is publishes to an alternate blog that I have in WordPress. I will have to search on their site for the fix.(I have since figured it out, I just needed to suse the custom setup option in Ulysses which allowed me to pick the blog where I wanted to post)
2. I have reminders to publish my blog, but I have just pressed complete and moved on. I need to take my notifications more seriously. [Due](http://www.dueapp.com/ “Due”) is a great reminder app that persistently bugs you until you complete the task, but you can get around it by just hitting “Complete”. I need to take the reminders more seriously.
3. Just do a little bit. Opening up an app and committing to one line of writing can propel you forward in completing a task. I started out writing this journal by just committing to publishing the previously written post led me to writing this one. Not bad for a small commitment.
4. Do important task first. In the Book, “[Eat that Frog](https://www.amazon.com/Eat-That-Frog-Great-Procrastinating/dp/1576754227)”, it emphasizes doing your most important task first thing. It is easy to get consumed by email and social media and have the day be gone and we have used up all of our in Incentive and energy on low return activities. Decide what your “frog” is and “Git ‘er done!”
5. Habits are best formed when associated the a trigger. Maybe brushing your teeth can help trigger a habit you want to do. Like drink more water. Commit to drink 16 oz. of water each time you brush your teeth. Before long the trigger will make your habit stick.
When I first started my blog, it was for accountability each week. After my injury, I gained back all the weight I lost and more. It has been a spiral of being fatigued because of my injury and being fatigued because of my weight. When I went and saw my PA about my heart. We both knew before I went in that losing weight would be good for my heart but help some of the energy come back as well. She just didn’t give me a lecture, she gave me some of her experience. She personally had lost 85 lbs. no she said it was the easiest weight lost she had ever done. She told me that weight watchers had changed things up recently and it was much easier to follow. I have lost weight before with weight watchers so I checked it out. They have an online/app program that is easy to track the points. I really like the app and just like LoseIt which I also like, it will read barcodes and has a large database to lookup foods you type in. Really easy and I find the point system very generous. Most days I have enough points left at the end of the day to have a generous snack . I couldn’t be happier. So far I have lost 13 lbs! Some days I gain but most days I lose so no worries.
One thing about Weight Watchers that I didn’t like was the weekly weigh in and meeting. These used to be mandatory. It was like going to an AA Meeting with older women clapping their hands for your successes. Not my type of motivation! You can still do that if you want, but there is an online- app option that I chose.
I’m glad to be back on the losing wagon again. Hopefully I will stay encouraged and take this extra weight off.
Are you where you want to be weight wise? If not, what are you doing to get where you want to be?
I will start showing stats again when I post on Mondays. It helps me when I am accountable.
I hope to start up exercising again. It is a real struggle for me, but Weight Watchers takes activity into account as well.
Hang in there and I will too!
About 2 years ago, I had been released from the hospital after my life altering surgery. Stairs were a bit of an issue with me still and my good wife was wondering if we still needed such a big house after all of our kids moved out. We decided to look for a smaller home with no stairs. We soon found a perfect house in a good neighborhood and decided to make an offer. Before we knew it we were signing papers and put our home up for sale. It sold quickly as well. We were now faced with the daunting task of moving 20 years worth of stuff to a new place. We faced the prospect that we didn’t need a lot of our stuff and so we sold most everything and decided that we would buy new stuff for the new home from a local furniture retail store. It went well, after posting stuff online at a good price and a good yard sale, we soon were rid of a lot of stuff. We were quite happy and relieved that we could leave the moving of the big stuff to our new purchased furniture. We got some new stuff that we were happy with and it was delivered to our new home. One thing was worrying my wife though. She is a prodigious home canner and had shelves and shelves of preserved food and was worried about moving it. At the time, I couldn’t do much because of physical limitations so a lot of the worrying was left to her. She realized that she didn’t have to move everything in one shot. All she needed to do was move one bottle at a time. By taking this approach she was able to get the bottles all packed up and into boxes that she moved one box at a time with the help of others. She took the same approach when we got to the new house and was able to get the bottled goods to the proper place.
In our own lives, we have to take the same approach. We often have task to do that are too overwhelming to do all at one shot. I watched a seminar this week by the smart guys at Asian Efficiency and they said that you need to break up task into doable 5 minute chunks. I took this approach on something that wasn’t all that hard to do, but it had enough steps that it had been all year and I hadn’t got it done, By chunking it down to small steps, I was done in less than an hour and happy I got it done. Don’t forget the one bottle at a time approach. It can help you get a big and important task done.
Have you ever been going down the road, thinking you are doing well and paying attention then suddenly you heard rump rump letting you know that you had strayed from your lane. Or even worse before rumble strips you hit a few weeds on the side of the rod. There are many reasons that this happen but most of it is due to distractions. Distractions on the road can stem from, texting, eating, being sleepy,day dreaming, and fumbling with the radio. I look forward to the technology that will help us avoid the consequences of these distraction. Things like lane assist, proximity braking are just two of the emerging technologies that will no doubt save millions of lives every year. We would do well to have technology save us from ourselves. Do you find yourself intending to start on something that you thought needed doing and then an hour later finding that you did everything other than the task at hand. Here are some suggestions to help you stay out of the weeds. Eliminate distractions:
Close down browsers/tabs that you find entertaining.
Don’t read email first thing.
I’ve heard that email is someone else’s agenda for your time and money. Plan your email time out and use GTD principles on processing it.
Plan out your day the night before.
Identify the three most important things to be done that next day. Identify one of them as your frog. Frog?!? Mark Twain is credited with saying to identify your frog for the day. Eat it first and the rest of the day will seem easier in comparison. Cautionary note. Don’t tel yoour significant other that they are your frog of the day. Even though it may be the most important thing to do today, it i not a favorable comparison and you will have a lot of back tracking to do to get out of trouble!
If your boss tries to pile something else on you, tell them what you are working on and if they want you to dump that on work on this new project. It will put the burden on them to see if you should change course.
Try a system like the pomodoro method to help you focus.
Invest in some sound canceling headphones. What a difference it make to block out noises around you! Here are the ones I like:
Distraction are all around us and will take us off track without warning. Don’t beat yourself, just realize what distracts you and come up with effective strategies to help you get on top of them or even eliminate them. Distraction are my biggest enemy to getting the things done that I want, These suggestions have helped me and I hope thy help you too.
I read a m blog about failing being ok. It got me to thinking when I technically had failed but still learned a lot and was pleased with the result. I thought immediately about the Ogden Marathon that I competed in. It was my one and only marathon. I worked hard to compete in this marathon. It had a cutoff time in the middle of the race. You needed to cross the dam under a certain time or they would pull you off the course. I remember being approached before the dam I I read a fitbit blog about failing being ok. It got me to thinking when I technically had failed but still learned a lot and was pleased with the result. I thought immediately about the Ogden Marathon that I competed in. It was my one and only marathon. I worked hard to compete in this marathon. It had a cutoff time in the middle of the race. You needed to cross the dam under a certain time or they would pull you off the course. I remember being approached before the dam being told that if I didn’t cross the dam in 5 minutes that I would be pulled.
It was hard to coax my body to hurry up. I was already tired.
I remember running across the dam and the same guy approached me. At first I thought it was bad news, but he smiled and said, “You made it!” Tears came to my eyes as I turned down Ogden Canyon to finish up the marathon. I still had a long ways to go. Too tired to even smile.
I was on mile 17 which means I still had 9 miles to go. Towards the bottom of the canyon, a guy came driving up to me offering me a ride to the finish. A little rage welled up as I declined his offer. I felt like if I had run that far I wasn’t ready to give up. At the bike path at the bottom, I was joined by a member of of Ogden Police force who was on a bike. He rode along side me all the way to the end talking and encouraging me along. As I ran down Harrison Boulevard to the finish line, I was joined by the rest of the bike crew as they formed a semi-circle around me and behind them was a line of police cars.
No one was treated better that day than the last place runner. As I crossed the finish line, many volunteers were still around and made a human bridge for me to run under.
Making a bridge for the last place finisher!
My brother, sister-in-law and cousin were all on hand to greet me. I was tearing up as I realized that I had finished something really hard for me. Last place, yes, but I finished. There were many others who didn’t make the cutoff or had to pull out of the race for what ever reason.
I never considered myself the fastest runner on any of the courses that I ran, but I did have a good experience at one race. One year I ran West Jordan 5k. It is an early season 5k. Not many registered so I came in third place in my age division.
It was a cold rainy race, but I stood on the podium that day. Probably not many in my age division, but I still finished in the top three. Another time I finished a 5k at Orem high under 30 minutes. That was a fast time for me and I had to work hard to come under that time. I had a sense of elation knowing I had run my best that day and reached my goal. I ran on the track that I had trained on so many times and it felt good to beat the 30 minute mark.
There was also the time I trained well for a half marathon and I felt strong after. Many friends and family were at this race and I was greeted at the end by my daughter and granddaughter. I wasn’t the fastest that day, but I was pleased with the result.
We can get all sort of satisfaction without coming in first because it comes down to being in competition with yourself. Being able to accomplish a race you have trained for can bring great satisfaction. Knowing that you are doing things that you have never done before is great and most of your friends don’t even attempt to do it. I also enjoyed becoming part of the running community in the Orem area and made many friends and was encouraged by many running neighbors who kept me honest and didn’t let me give up on my dreams. Don’t fret about failure. There is much to be learned on the journey and many opportunities ahead if you are not afraid to try.
You’ve got to tell your story before it’s time to go – Neil Young
The church I belong to relies on it’s members to fill the organization needs. Everything from leadership to teaching is based on calling members to positions of responsibility and the member willing to do the calling on a volunteer basis. The reason I mention this is I was asked to fill in for one of the youth Sunday School classes. The lesson I taught was of the value of keeping a journal.
I have journaled in one form or another for years. In my early years of marriage, I kept a daily journal. It was a glorified weather report from what I remember. You know. “It was hot today’” But I do remember adding details of my life in abbreviated form.
A few years ago, I decided to start blogging to hold myself responsible on weight loss. I quit when I reached my goals. In the meantime, I started to get bad headaches, eventually got diagnosed with a subdural hematoma and immediately underwent 3 surgeries to correct the problem and try to solve post surgery complications. Not only did I have to learn to walk, talk, go to the bathroon and swallow again, I regained the 110 lbs I had lost. I have recovered most of the way, but I still suffer from sevier fatigue which has put me on long-term disability. I decided to start blogging again to help others who are struggling and also blog my recovery process. I have also learn a few tricks along the way and have a perspective on life which I feel is unique based on my experiences and observations.
The point I’m trying to make is to tell your story before it’s too late. Your descendants and others will benefit from you perspective. Your life and experiences will benefit others. Capture those ideas before you forget them. Hang in there and I will too!
All about your heart. Believe me when I say
It’s not about your scars
It’s all about your heart – Mindy Gledhill
I’ve been traveling the past few days and I heard a song by Mindy Gledhill. The quote above tells us it’s not are scars that are important, but our heart. A physical example is after my surgery for subdural hematoma and having my skull removed and reattached with titanium screws, I was left with 80 some odd staples in my head. Post-surgery
2 years later I still have six noticeable dents and some pretty good scar tissue around these dents. These are battle scars but they haven’t been the defining point since my surgery. I feel like I had a strong will or heart if you will after the surgery. I couldn’t walk, talk or even use the restroom when I woke up 10 days later. I had to have the heart to face these challenges head on. I told myself that I would do what ever was asked of me. With all of my friends and family cheering me on. I was motivated not to let them down.
One event that sticks out was when I was asked to move from a chair to an elevated mat that I could receive physical therapy on. What would be an easy task for me now, took me 20 minutes to accomplish. I kept trying because I had family in the room and I didn’t want to disappoint everyone by asking for help. It took me a while, but it was in my heart to do it.
The idea I’m trying to get across is that it doesn’t matter what you have been through. What matters is how your heart comes out after struggling hard. Try hard not to let past events define you too much. Keep your good heart and try to hang on to what you know is true.
I am cheering for you and hope you will cheer for me as well. We all go through very hard things in this life. Don’t let the affliction overcome your soul. We are all better than that.
Mixing things up
As many of you know, I have been trying to lose weight. Last time I tried this, I lost 110 lbs. This time around, I am trying to lose even more. My biggest challenge this time around is a diet will work for a couple of days and then I will hit a long and frustrating plateau. I’ve decided to try mixing things up. My wife has been doing a juice cleanse. She has been doing it for over a week now and is seeing positive results. I myself have tried many things, Medifast, high fat, restrictive calorie, but keep getting the same results. Lose a few pounds and then hit a plateau where I yo-yo up and down. I read a while back one if
Chris Powell’s books where he suggest alternating between high carb and high protein. He likes to mix things up. I decided to do something similar except I am adding one more component, juicing.
I use our local community recreation center. They have a big pool, weight room, indoor track, aerobic machines, racket and basketball courts. Another thing I like about the rec center is I have met a lot of good people. I had a lengthy chat today with Jonathan who told me about the benefits of including pomegranate juice along with pointers on how to use the pool as weight resistant training. He spent at least a half hour with me giving me pointers on how to make the most of my pool time. If there is interest, I will post an entry about it. Just comment or contact me via social media about your interest.
Sometimes we get stuck on the same thing and won’t let go of it. Even if that thing is giving us diminishing returns. I would like to suggest the power in trying something different.
You are probably aware of diminishing returns. Some proscribe to the fact that 20% of the efforts that we make are the efforts that make the biggest difference. That means we waste 80% of our time working on the same thing. For example, I was getting stuck on putting a header picture on my blog. WordPress wanted it to be a certain dimension. I knew and understood what was needed, but I didn’t know how to get the job done in Photoshop. I spent 80% of my time trying to learn how to do it. I could have finished up in Photoshop, but I got the job done quicker and easier using Canva on my iPad. I got the job done with the 20%. I wish I would have looked for an alternative quicker. It would have saved me a bunch of time.
Find out a different way of doing things
I have suffered with the effects of my TBI caused by a subdural hematoma. I have been blessed by looking at alternatives. I have seen a lot of medical doctors and experts who have tried to help me overcome my fatigue. I have tried taking Nuvigil which is used to treat narcoleptics to stay awake. It was like taking sugar pills at the rate of $100 / month. Nothing has been as effective as working with my sister who practices cranio-sacral therapy. This alternative has helped me understand my fatigue better. I often feel much better after a session with her. I really appreciate all she has done for me!
What can you do differently than you are doing now?
Stop what you are working hard on for long enough to determine if you are doing it in an effective way. Don’t be afraid to try doing it different. You never know, you may find a better way and enjoy what you are doing a lot more. I have been doing my zentangle pictures using Paper 53 app, but I found an app last night which I really like and it has enhanced my drawing enjoyment. The app is called Sketches
My art is not even close to professional quality, but I am having a fun time exploring art. is an example of my ineptness
Find the 20% that will make the difference in your life and the particular problem you are trying to overcome.
Do you find yourself feeling like this on your dream. I want to post twice a week, but my record hasn’t been stellar so far. I could blame external factors that are real like losing one of my blog post (I later found it), I posted one to publish in the morning, but that was the post that got lost and it didn’t publish how I thought it should. I have gotten distracted a couple of times. But if I am honest with myself, I can learn from these mistakes and learn from them and get it right.
Nothing But Excuses
For instance, I can use a better tool to help save my post correctly. Hopefully I have found that tool. I can also set up reminders to help me remember to post. I need to make this task one of my “frogs” of the day. It needs to be at the top of the list of things to do.
What Can I Do About It
I do have a stockpiles of blog ideas which will help. I also need to see when I have obstacles coming up. I have family coming into town in July and I need to spend time with the family without missing my post.
I need to learn my toolset better so I know how to publish at a later day.
What’s Holding You Back?
What is keeping you from doing your best? What role are you playing that you need to correct?