It’s the 10th January and just over a week since I wrote my last blog post with a bright future in my eyes and hope in my heart. I can slowly feel the excitement of New Years’ seeping away from me as the grey skies and long nights of January take their toll. This weekend I’m mainly considering the concept of balance.
In my excitement of committing to a million resolutions, this week I booked in three meetings with friends, a meeting with a colleague, two supervision sessions, and organised new private clients. As it all became a little overwhelming last night I considered cancelling, however I used the device of my TICS and TOCS (Task Interfering Cognitions and Task Orientating Cognitions). With the aid of several TOCS (“You’ll have a good time once you’re there”, “It’s only an hour out of your day”) I attended all of my arranged meetings and had a great time! However looking through my diary for the coming weeks, I get an ominous feeling of dread in my stomach and the negative automatic thought (NAT) “But when am I going to get a weekend to do nothing?”.
I’m a bit of an all or nothing person. I get excited very easily, become enthused with lots of ideas and then take on too much. I can recall a history of boom and bust, particularly since I left University at 21 . Through self-reflection I have identified the driving force behind this, but a driver that I have failed to pay particular attention to is the fact that I love learning! And I love meeting people, doing new things, and being challenged. However if I intend to fulfil all of my resolutions for 2015, I need to get a balance of pleasure and achievement; pace and plan my activities, and prioritise what’s most important at the time.
So far I am on track with my resolutions. This week I have:
The #100HappyDays challenge has been really interesting so far. I was aware of my NAT’s before I began the challenge; “I’ve got a really boring life, I’ll have nothing to put up”, “I haven’t got time”, “Everyone will be bored with my pictures”. However, the first ten days of the challenge have opened my eyes to the true meaning of the task. I’ve realised that the challenge isn’t about anyone else; whether they’re bored with my photos or think I have a boring life. The challenge is about me.
It’s about me taking a second every day to appreciate what I’m doing or experiencing, and who I’m experiencing it with. I’ve woken up wondering what I might take my picture of, and getting excited for the opportunity to take a photo. I’ve been the first person in the office to notice the birds singing outside; I’ve appreciated the feeling of the sun on my face. The #100HappyDays challenge has allowed me to be mindful during my busy week, and appreciate the small joys of a beautiful sunrise, and feel grateful that I have three different groups of friends who I can enjoy spending time with.
I’ve only completed 10 days of the #100HappyDays challenge, and I already feel like it’s starting to change my outlook on things. Is this the difference that mindfulness can make? It’s not too late to join me if you want to, just visit http://100happydays.com/ and sign up.
I’m going to continue as I have begun with my New Years’ Resolutions, but with the notion of balance set firmly in my mind.