Holidays are hard. Which seems weird because my brain is filled with all these fuzzy, warm, cider-scented memories. But in the moment, those memories only seem to increase my anxiety in comparison to the reality of the holiday season as it engulfs me. For me, holidays are lonely, stock-full of nights being the odd-numbered wheel of the gathering/event/party wagon, too often a reminder of what my life lacks instead of all the great things it is filled with. (<--Dear Grammar Nazis, please excuse this sentence ending with a preposition; I briefly considered rewriting it as "...instead of all the great things with which it is filled" but discarded the idea as I would then feel compelled to add that you must read that uppity-sounding sentence in a British accent or something equally nasal.)
This season is writhe with expectations: my own and those I perceive others to have. Expectations, more often than not, end in disappointment. Holidays are filled with family time, which can be wonderfully warm and laughter-filled...but can just as easily be uber emotional, stressed-filled, draining and yucky.
After three days of self-medicating and failing to fix the problem of seasonal stress and yuck growing inside me, I find myself here. Although it's hard to do, I have to take my own advice and be gentle with myself. I have to remember that "...failure is not making mistakes. Failure is not trying something new and crashing and burning. Failure is quitting. Period." So, let's go on a journey. Let's figure this sh&* out. Let's make it so this doesn't happen again. Ready? Here we go.
Why am I doing this?
I recognized habits in my life that were impeding my growth as a person and slowing my progress towards my goals. Four months ago, I decided to do something about it. I wanted to be healthier, more balanced, and to challenge myself to accomplish something that felt impossible. Ultimately, I don't want to allow the days of my life to slip by me poorly-used.
How can I be successful in the continuation of this goal?
I think a piece of my recent downfall was the "all or nothing" approach. So, when "nothing" failed, I went immediately to "all"...for three days. My goal is not deprivation, it is changing habits around how I interact with these items and being successful at navigating stress without these items. I reread the sugar monkey article and got a lot of ideas that I will be employing as I move forward. I want to have a fall-back plan to avoid a repeat "all or nothing" death binge.
|He ate chocolate to get his, |
mine could be used to eat chocolate.
> they are to be used socially, in a context that is a one-serving situation (no leftovers!)
> have a buddy know what's happening, accountability is key
> savor the experience
> plan for the subsequent cravings that will occur
> document each use of a ticket on the blog
Again, my goal is to not use them, but I want them there in case I do. I'm thinking a non-consumable reward could be a fun motivating factor at the end if I make it with 7-8 tickets still in hand. And maybe a less extravagant reward if I have half or more.
I would love to know your thoughts on my plan, ideas for golden ticket rewards at the end of this, even hate mail if you feel like I've cheated you by falling of the the Clean Train. I welcome any comments/thoughts you have!