I am the poster child for the type A personality.

Mother effing flower sniffing champion at your service

It doesn’t mean that I don’t know how to be content. I know how to be content! Contentedness arrives through goal setting, progress towards things I want, and achievement. When I am moving towards what I want, I am happy. I wake up excited (most mornings) these days to check all the numbers of all the things that I need to check the numbers for, attack my to-do list, and then relax later after it’s done. This is my perfect day. I can even correlate this with my Garmin – when I am doing the work that I want to be doing/should be doing, my stress levels go wayyyyy down. Give me a whole morning to focus on tasks and the actual attention to do so, and I am a very happy little type A nerdo. I do need to save myself from myself occasionally and have a do-nothing day, but that causes me significant stress unless it’s PLANNED.

I’ve had more of this lately, checking things off the list and making progress, and it makes me very very content. While we got a chance to go play in the woods once over our week off (yay), and we also spent plenty of time relaxing on the couch playing video games, reading, and watching TV, we also did a lot of productive work around the house. I didn’t realize how satisfying and stress relieving that would be.

I was worried that this productivity might just be a vacation week fantasy but getting back to work kept a similar vibe. Monday, I had something big I feared would take me all day take two hours. My focus workday Friday began with three tasks and two appointments. Once I stopped getting distracted and dug in, I was able to get almost everything done, which was better than I expected! It feels really really really good starting these days not emulating me with the 1-plate salad bar at Jason’s Deli.

Don’t challenge me to min/max ONE plate of salad. Or tasks, apparently.

I keep arriving at finish lines of proverbial marathons I didn’t even know I was running and recover mentally and physically a little bit more each time. I was so used to my piled-up “to-do” plates, I had forgotten what an achievable day felt like. My body has been in sad shape for so long, I forgot what a functioning meatbag that isn’t injured feels like, on that isn’t overstressed, and takes the time to do the recovery things, and it feels great. And the house stuff. I had turned a blind eye to the condition of my office and stayed in my little bubble corner for so long I didn’t think it really bothered me. However, now I’m happy to walk into the room in the morning to start work instead of having a little unconscious sigh before I go back to ignoring it. I have a feeling as we fix each room in the house, I’ll feel the same way about it.

By the end of the year-ish we have three more projects:

  • Finish the office – this means get the music nook set up and organized, unearth Joel’s desk, figure out what to do with the fabric/sewing machine, and get the guitar cases back in the closet (since they have nice stands and get played now, they get to stay out!).
  • Tackle the pain cave – Joel has a bike desk that has been sitting in the hall waiting to be set up for nine months now. 😛 We also need to clean out some shelves and drawers and closets and just clean the floors. It’s another office situation – I can tuck myself in my little useable bubble and ignore the rest, but it will be SO NICE when I don’t have to.
  • Finish Joel’s office/gaming/hobby room. This needs the third set of shelving to house the printers, and the artwork to be put back up once we fully decide on a layout (this may wait until after Christmas stuff is put away)

None of this is huge, just a few hours each project max. Next year we’d like to tackle some bigger stuff. First up, our master bathroom is literally falling apart so we need to get it redone, but we have so much to clean out in the vanity area first, so I think the master bedroom/bath has to be the next room for us to unearth and organize and it’s going to take a LOT more than a few hours. But thinking about alllll the things we need to do is overwhelming, we’ll just do our 1-2 hours per week and make progress and that will be enough to make me happy.

Speaking of progress… look at this sexy beast…

Last week when I was off, it could have gone bad- but instead I made some solid progress because I stayed consistent. I tracked my food, stuck to my workout and calorie plan, and used the time off to make progress on things and destress instead of pigging out and being lazy. I went a few calories over on Thanksgiving (as one does) but got right back on track the next day. Spoiler alert: December looks similar to this trend and yesterday, I weighed the lowest I have all year. So, consistency brings progress and progress brings the motivation to continue consistency.

I got 7 hours of activity on my week off (and almost as much this week)! Two runs, lifting three times, a bike, a swim, an elliptical, and eight miles of walking. That’s great! This week, I hit my goals to run 2.5 miles twice, lifted three times, cycled once, elliptical’d once, and I friggin’ TRIED to swim (but the pool was full and I ran out of time). The weekend was for walking/hiking since these beautiful fall colors won’t be lasting forever. Yet again, more weeks like this please!

I ate 1583 calories/day the week off, and this week I’m back to 1509. I got just over 10k steps both weeks. Overall, I think I’ve found the sweet spot with achievable goals in calorie input/output which seem to be working. They take consistency and diligence but don’t feel overwhelming. And that makes all the difference.