So fun fact: I think my depression came back a bit in April. 👎 But my recent therapy sessions have been really deeply helpful in addressing the negative self-talk that just crushes me and makes me want to hide from life--stuff that would make anyone depressed!
So with that in mind, here's what's on the white board for May:
1. Use my energy as a guide: I want to act more in response to my energy levels than my fears and feelings of obligation this month. When nearly everything is a "should," you're basically always forcing yourself to do things, and that isn't very fun. So I'm trying to change my perspective. Instead of forcing myself to be productive (which makes me want to rebel and be totally UNproductive), I'm going to try to notice what gives me energy and take cues from that. I've tried it a little bit already, and re-orienting myself from "Ugh I have to do this thing" to "I am choosing to do this thing" has been really helpful in alleviating anxious feelings of trapped-ness. And I don't have to plan five steps ahead if I know that I can just tune into my energy level at any time and see which available option I feel most excited about.
2. Revamp budgeting: Another fun fact: I made a real budgeting boo-boo last month. I'm still not entirely sure how it happened, because I even double-checked my account and confirmed that I had available spending money before buying approx one million things online, but in the end, I did not have as much fun money as I thought I did. Eek. In addition to that budgeting blunder, I tend to go through a deprivation-binge kind of spending cycle each month. I don't have much disposable income at the beginning of the month, so I don't really spend any money for fun, and then I go overboard in the second half of the month. So I want to see if I can find a different approach to spending that helps me to avoid that tendency.
3. AM routine: I've started implementing a few small mindful gestures into my morning, and I want to keep it up. Just a few gentle stretches, setting an intention, and drawing one of Doreen Virtue's online cards. I am not a morning person, and this has been helping to keep me from being Major Buzzkill all day, and it's also a small enough change that I haven't immediately rebelled against it.
4. Yoga: Keep going to classes.
5. Shoulder exercises: My posture is pretty terrible, especially re: my shoulders, and I tend to have a lot of shoulder and neck pain. Well, now that I've been doing yoga again, I can see just how frozen my shoulders are. Like, when we're instructed to stretch out long on the mat, I can't even do goal post arms. Yikes. So I want to try to loosen up my shoulders some this month!
And how did my April goals go?
1. Be curious about how things like sleep, diet, caffeine, exercise, water intake, etc. make me feel: Hmm... Honestly, I kind of forgot this was a goal! I mostly noticed how transitioning off of one medication made me feel exhausted. And I occasionally noticed that my questionable carb-centric eating habits made me feel sluggish or gross.
2. Keep going to yoga: CHECK! The morning hatha class continues to be my favorite, despite forcing me to get up at 6 AM. 😩
3. Try chanting as a way to practice my breathing: Nope. Any sort of designated breathing practice makes me reallllly not want to do it.
4. Pay attention to when I order stuff from Amazon: Check! As I said before, I tend to have less disposable income at the beginning of the month, and sure enough, I didn't order anything from Amazon until 4/15. I didn't think I went too crazy with my Amazon buys, but apparently, I spent over $100 on there last month (mostly due to one bigger-ticket item, but still). Hmm. It's also interesting that I largely avoided Amazon until I had money to spend. And that that first Amazon purchase on 4/15 was totally fueled by anxiety and wanting to shop it away.
5. Go out on the weekend: LOL I forgot this was a goal! Well, I went out to a scary shopping center! AND last Friday, I went ice skating! By myself! At night! At a place I hadn't been to in ages! Totally a HUGE accomplishment! (And really fun too!) This goal also ties in with my Word of the Year "Out of Hiding." (I did go out during the workday to Nordstrom Rack and to get a massage, but there was still a lot of hiding in April.)
Linking up with Nicole at Writes Like a Girl!