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Organic Certification
Organic Farming
What is Organic Certification?
2013 EQIP Organic Initiative

Cottage Food/California/Marin County
SELC: Cottage Food FAQ
CDPH Homemade Food Information
Public Law Update January 2013
California Food Handler Certificate Program (Accredited)
Cottage Food Production
Cottage Food FAQ
Cottage Food Handler Training

Marin County Food System Assessment Project
California Retail Food Code
100% Pre-Packaged Food Facility
Health Permit Application
Marin Fictitious Business Name
Checklist of Requirements for New Businesses
Board of Equalization: Obtaining a Seller's Permit
Food Cart
How can I start selling my homegrown produce?

Legal/Accounting Issues
Sole Proprietorship vs. LLC
Sole Proprietorship vs. LLC
Accounting for a Sole Proprietorship

BioMass Packaging: Resealable PLA Flat Bag w/1" Lip and Tape (5.5" x 8")
BioMass Packaging: NatureFlex Clear Bag (5.75" x 7.75")
BioMass Packaging: NatureFlex Clear Bag with pleated sides (6" x 2.25" x 13")
Good Start Packaging: Cellophane Bags 5 x 7
Be Green Packaging Store
Distant Village Packaging Design
Green Restaurant Supply
Viv Biz Club

Plan It Green Printing
Moonen Natural: Compostable Labels

Homemade Breakfast Cereals
Additional Uses for Kefir
Baked Sriracha Butternut Squash Fries
Comal de barro
Perfect Plus Wet Grinder
Tortillas Hechas a Mano
GourmetSleuth: Masa Grinder
How to make homemade corn tortillas, using an electric grain mill
How to grind maize for tortillas on a metate
Green Christmas Guide: Unique Clay Cookware and Bakeware
Cocina Sana: Clay Cookware from Mexico
From Masa to Mesa

Victoria Electric Corn Mill
J.C. Ford
TUBC Machines
Manual Grinder
Superior Food Machinery Corn Mill 25HP

Dine Green
How to get a Certified Organic Product Label in the USA
What is the 'National List' for processed products?
Organic Standards & CCOF Organic Certification Program Manuals
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For awhile I've been slowly reading a book called Facing Love Addiction by Pia Mellody.

Today I'm thinking about the differences between my last relationship and my current one, and how in my last relationship I felt that I was experiencing love addiction more strongly. In my current one I believe I'm experiencing love avoidance more strongly, but I'm not entirely sure.

The three characteristics of the Love Addict:
  • "1. Love addicts assign a disproportionate amount of time, attention, and 'value about themselves' to the person to whom they are addicted, and this focus often has an obsessive quality about it."
  • "2. Love Addictions have unrealistic expectations for unconditional positive regard from the other person in the relationship."
  • "3. Love Addicts neglect to care for or value themselves while they're in the relationship."

My experience )
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Monday: Smoothie made with raw milk, and then flax+raw milk for breakfast but I could hardly finish the flax -- the smoothie was really heavy in my stomach and didn't agree with me. It was hardly sweet at all which was odd considering there was fruit in it.

I stayed home all day and read about fermenting stuff on the computer. I was trying to figure out all the different ways/products that can come from raw dairy, and holy crap it's a lot! For lunch, I had my veggies/greens/salad and added in some chicken and sauerkraut. I got in a workout mid-day. Worked at 4:00pm and had my tofu dinner and added in some guacamole and chicken.

Stayed up very late.

Tuesday: Smoothie made with raw milk, and then flax+raw milk for breakfast, and this time I only had a little flax left over, the smoothie tasted better. I tried to sleep in because I was so tired from the night before but couldn't. Got in a workout but it wasn't great. Worked in SF for awhile before I had to go to my other job at 4:00pm. Had my tofu for dinner and added in some guacamole and chicken. I left work a little early because I had a really bad headache, so I took off at 8:15pm. I gave myself a massage because my shoulders/neck weren't feeling great. Got to sleep earlier than the night before but still not as early as I wanted; boy and I stayed up talking.

Wednesday: Slept in late. Had half a smoothie for breakfast. Then I also had a random craving to try sourdough. So the boy and I went to Whole Foods and I got some of their fresh sourdough, and some sliced sprouted sourdough bread. We also stopped by the local natural market to see if they had more raw milk but the delivery hadn't come in yet, so I bought a hunk of raw cheese instead. We went back to the house and had breakfast with my mom around 10:00am. I had toasted sourdough with raw butter and raw honey and a glass of raw milk. Ugh, so good! Later, though, I couldn't finish my lunch. I didn't get hungry until about 4:00pm, but at that point I got very hungry very quickly. I ate a little bit of my lunch but it didn't feel great in my stomach and I was running out of time anyway.

Then my friend and I met and we went to the gym and I got in my workout since I'd missed it in the morning -- elliptical, some v-sits and other strength stuff, a bit of free weights, and I played around on some of the machines. Then we went to Thai food dinner and my friend and I split tilapia, white rice and veggies with yellow curry. Also had a glass of chardonnay and we split fried bananas with coconut ice cream for dessert. Oddly, I didn't feel stuffed at the end! But we ate very slowly and had a lot of good conversation.

My boyfriend also cooked some chicken liver I had bought and left it for me in the fridge, but I wasn't even thinking about food when I got home, ha.

Thursday: Feeling awful today. I'm on the first day of my cycle and my stomach is way unhappy with me. Had half a smoothie for breakfast -- with water, because someone finished up our raw milk last night -- and one veggie/one chicken taco for lunch. Still full from lunch right now, I don't feel like I'm going to eat for another couple hours yet. Definitely not feeling doing a workout today.
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Friday: Smoothie for breakfast, then for dinner I ate some macaroni and cheese, a boiled egg, and some baked chicken from Whole Foods along with some salad and broccoli. No digestive upset.

Saturday: Smoothie for breakfast, then for lunch I had a slice of pesto-goat cheese pizza. VERY cheesy. Stomach was a bit noisy but I didn't feel bad. Then, after an adventurous shopping trip!, I tried some raw butter and some local yogurt. Had one veggie taco and one chicken/barbacoa taco. No digestive upset.

Sunday: Smoothie for breakfast, and then a glass of raw milk and a little bit of flax for breakfast. One veggie taco and one chicken/barbacoa taco for lunch. Chicken/barbacoa burrito for dinner, and I think I may try some more raw milk later if I'm feeling like it. I'm definitely feeling full because I finished the burrito (we can't save our employee meals for later and I really can't bring myself to throw away that perfectly good food), but I planned it out well enough that I didn't verge into stuffed territory and/or that overly tired "food coma" feeling that I know so well. Again, no digestive upset! Though I think the meat is creating a certain feeling of heaviness in my stomach.

To be honest, this is pretty shocking for me. I think I always thought that dairy and meat didn't agree with my system very much, but with the amounts of new dairy especially that I've eaten over the last few days I wonder if that's not so much the case. It does seem like raw makes a different. The one cooked thing I ate -- the cheese on the pizza -- was the one I seemed to do worst with. Hmmmmm.
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Mesophilic (room temperature) yogurt starters

Bonny Clabber
About Bonny Clabber
Kitchen Revolution: Bonny Clabber
10 Cultured Dairy Foods
Word of Mouth: Clabber | The Kitchn
Recipe circa 1900: Bonny Clabber/Loppered Milk

How to make your own cultured sour milk (the cultured sour milk version of buttermilk, NOT from butter -- which sounds more like bonny clabber to me)
The myth of authentic full fat buttermilk
History of buttermilk

Cultured Butter
Making cultured butter with raw milk
How to make cultured butter
WebExhibits: Ways to Churn Butter
WebExhibits: Making Butter - "Well into the 19th century butter was still made from cream that had been allowed to stand and sour naturally. The cream was then skimmed from the top of the milk and poured into a wooden tub."

Curds and Whey
Nourished and Nurtured: How to Make Whey and Cream Cheese From Milk Kefir, Raw Milk, or Yogurt
Rain Garden: Real Milk: curds and whey, and butter-making
Enjoying Little Miss Muffet's Curds and Whey

Cream Cheese/Sourdough
How to make cream cheese
The Stone Soup: Rustic Sourdough
Homemade artisan sourdough bread

Fermented Rice/Eggs
Homemade fermented rice
Homemade fermented rice
Miso-fermented egg yolks
Salted duck egg
Picked egg

Fermented Black Beans
Chinese Fermented Black Beans
How to make Taosi
Simply Ming: Fermented Black Beans
How to Ferment Black Beans
History of Fermented Black Soybeans (165 B.C. to 2011)

Cultured Foods
Introduction to ferments
101 uses for soured raw milk

Cilantro: Dosai Series: Tips for perfect crispy Dosai
Kentucky Housewife (1839 Cookbook)
Preparedness Pro
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Health & Beauty
Sleep Tracker
Philips Wake Up Light
F Lux - Better Lighting for Your Computer
Mommypotamus: I Kissed Toothepaste Goodbye and Homemade Toothsoap and Tooth Powder
Cultured Food Life: Homemade Toothsoap Recipe
OraWellness Brushing Blend
Beet and Blackberry Makeup (video)

Nourished Kitchen
The Filbert Report: Homemade Rice Noodles
I Heart My Bakes: Homemade Fresh Rice Noodles 自制河粉
I Heart My Bakes: Steamed Savoury Glutinous Rice 蒸糯米飯
Vegan Crunk: I'm a Vegan Cheese Snob
Lacto Fermentation: Raw Vegan Cheese Making And More
GNOWFGLINS: Lacto-fermented guacamole
Nerdy Mom Speaks: Lacto-fermented guacamole
Raw Food Punk: Raw Avocado Yogurt
Raw Food Toxins
How to hand pat tortillas (videos): video 1, video 2, video 3, video 4.
Study: Influence of spontaneous fermentation on [...] maize-based cowpea-fortified nixtamalized foods
Primavera Tamales
Masa from scratch
Homemade corn tortillas: part 1
Let's talk masa
Tortillas and Nixtamalization
How to make traditional corn tortillas from whole corn
Que vivan los tamales! Food and the Making of Mexican Identity
Developing Destinies : A Mayan Midwife and Town

Diets/Conscious Eating
Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat
Well Fed Homestead: Gaps vs. Paleo vs. Primal
Autoimmune Patients’ Top-Rated Diets: Paleo vs Primal vs SCD vs GAPS
Mommypotamus: Are you a Caveman, a GAPSter or a WAFPer?
Weston A. Price: Living with Phytic Acid
The Healthy Skeptic: Paleo vs. GAPS vs. Weston A. Price
The Healthy Home Economist: The Five Most Common GAPS Diet Mistakes
Cultured Food Life: Gluten Pain: The Beast Teacher

Growing at home
Growing Spirulina at home, made simple | JoJoCafe’s Weblog
Growing Chlorella and Spirulina indoors human consumption
Cultures for Health: Kefir Grains

Comal $34.95
Press $28.95
Molcajete $275.00
Metate $100

White Lotus Home: Natural & Organic, Handcrafted in the USA | Organic Pillows
Organic Bedding Collections | Coyuchi
One Stop Green
VivaTerra Green Home Products

Clary Sage Organics - Apparel
Mosaic Turqoise Tree of Life Necklace Sterling by GetNoticed

Spirituality/Conscious Living
Spirituality is about awakening to your identity
Voluntary Simplicity (haven't read yet, but it's on my to read list)

Pop Culture
Artículo: Jesse & Joy
El Universal - Espectáculos - Jesse vs Joy, los hermanos se separan

How women can do pull ups
Erector Spinae Exercises
Back Exercises
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Today, for the first time in my life, I bought myself some meat - half of a baked chicken.

Wow. This was not a radical life change that I saw coming!
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This is a challenge of mine that I have been aware of for some time, and am exploring again anew through this conscious act of habit changing that I have decided to do.

When I'm craving comfort is when I'm more likely to do things like watch TV, eat out of boredom, and seek pleasure in other ways. That's essentially what I'm doing -- whatever I'm feeling is unpleasurable and I'm seeking activities that feel pleasurable to soothe my feelings, to soothe the discomfort.

When I'm wanting others to take care of me I'm more likely to:
  • feel dependent on them to achieve my goals
  • get overly upset with them (in proportion to what the actual circumstances are).

These two usually come hand in hand.


I will give an example I've experienced recently -- I woke up early and was doing my workout. I was not wanting to do my workout, I really would rather have been cuddling in bed with my boyfriend. He was awake and talking with me and just relaxing in bed. I told him he should get up and be active, too, do some active stuff with me, and he didn't want to because he said it was nice under the covers. The day before I had asked him if he would do my workout with me, as I'd been feeling very resistant around doing it and felt some company would be supportive. It didn't end up happening because before we got the point where I was going to do my workout he started thinking about a family member who had died recently, felt sad, and then fell asleep. I didn't have any hard feelings about this, obviously, because he was feeling grief and I wouldn't want to intrude on that or impede it in any way. I did my workout on my own while he was sleeping.

Anyway, this time, I felt very sad. I somehow felt that he wasn't taking care of me. I think what I had really wanted to say to him was it's hard for me to resist my temptation to lie down in bed with you and cuddle rather than do my workout, can you get up and be active with me and help me resist that temptation? But instead I said it pretty lightly, like it wasn't a big deal, and then felt very hurt by his lack of interest. I felt that he didn't truly understand how hard I was trying, and how much I could have used a helping hand, and how very much I just wished someone would get that and just help me without me having to cajole or even having to even ask, honestly.

Things I felt as this was happening:
  • "I shouldn't feel so sad about this, he totally has the right to want to stay in bed and relax, I shouldn't try to blackmail him into doing what I want by getting sad."
  • "I shouldn't depend on him to be able to do my workout, I should be able to do it on my own and if I can't that means that I don't really want to in the first place, or that I'm not taking the full responsibility of my decisions."
  • "This kind of behavior is codependent." (I am codependent.)

But the truth is I didn't really feel those things I was supposed to feel. I felt disappointed and unsupported. I felt that I didn't want to try to convince him. I felt that, I don't know -- I wanted him to get it, to be there with me emotionally. I really, really wanted him to get it. To get how I feel without me having to explain every nuance. I wanted him to understand that there are times I really push to keep going and how very much it would mean to have him at my back, to have him remind me of the course I want to steer.

I felt really, really sad. At that point, he was still watching me work out and I told him I didn't want him to watch me anymore -- we had stopped chatting -- because it made me nervous. But mostly it was that I felt really bad and didn't know what to do with it. I knew I didn't want to immediately react. I took a little while and felt the sadness for some time, and then I talked to him and told him that in all honesty, I would like that support from him. That I was struggling in the mornings to stay on track and I would really appreciate having him wake up with me and getting up and making the bed (we have a bed that sort of folds up, so once it's folded up it reduces the temptation to lie down), and I said that I'd like it if he did something active with me in the mornings. He said that he'd be happy to support me in that way and if I could wake him up and toss him a pair of pants in the mornings he could do that.

Now, ultimately, I feel pretty okay about how I handled it -- I revealed what was going on with me and I think I did well not using my emotions to pressure him to do what I wanted -- but at the same time there's a discomfort I have with the intense sadness I experienced.

It was just such a feeling of not being SEEN, of not having help or support. And it felt that it had an intensity that was definitely outside of those moments. Something that I've been carrying around with me for a long time -- a sense that I'm not understood, that the help I need/want is not available to me, a sense that what I want is TOO MUCH, it's NOT OKAY, it's mentally/emotionally wrong somehow, etc.

I think a big part of it is that I have felt for a long time that people really have very little sense of the weakness I feel at times. There are times when I really wish people would help me make mindful choices -- telling me "Sheera, let's have fruit for dessert" rather than people telling me "come on, Sheera, you can skip out on your diet for today, let's get chocolate for dessert." I wish people would help me out when I'm feeling weak, and instead of I usually feel that people don't even KNOW that I'm feeling weak or conflicted. I usually want to do the right thing, whatever I believe the right thing is in the moment, but I do have a limited store of willpower available to me.


Another example -- I came home early from work one day and wanted to watch TV. My mom was watching TV. I asked her if I'd be able to watch -- I decided I was going to take a few days off from my no TV program. We went back and forth about it a bit and she finally clarified for me that she wanted to watch for 3-4 more hours, she had a disc she wanted to finish.

She asked why I was doing it, and I explained that I was longing for the comfort of it. That coming home, laying on the couch, and catching up on my favorite shows sounded really appealing right now. That I just wanted to take a few days off from being so productive all the time, always on it, always ON period. I wanted to turn on and enjoy my shows for a bit.

And then I felt sad that she still didn't decide to let me watch. She asked why I was sad and I didn't want to explain -- I felt that I would use my sadness to guilt-trip her in that moment and didn't want to. But I felt very unseen, uncared for.

Two scenarios of what I was wanting:
  • To decide she could watch her disc the next day (when I'd be working all day and then out of the house that night as well, not that she necessarily knew that) so she could let me enjoy my afternoon of relaxation, I wanted her to be able to sense that I could really use that and be willing to make that space for me
  • To stop watching what she was watching for a minute and sit with me and help me investigate WHY I was craving television so strongly, and would there be some other activity I could use to fill up this day, and maybe together we could figure out something I could do to stay on track that would still fulfill my relaxation need. Honestly, this is the option I think I would most prefer and I feel is least likely to happen.

I had a lot of the same shoulds going through my mind with this. I shouldn't be sad at her reaction, I shouldn't expect her to read my mind and know what's going on with me, I shouldn't expect her to sacrifice her time to help me, etc. And of course there's merit in all that, but then simultaneously the fact of the matter is that I'm feeling what I'm feeling.

I think in some ways it boils down to wishing that other people would help me maintain good structure. I wish people would help me make more mindful, positive choices and that people would understand how much I need that help at times.
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In the PN lesson I'm reading today, it's differentiating familiar difficulties with new challenges. Familiar difficulties might be: constantly running oneself into the ground working two jobs, etc., and though it's hard work and a lot of effort to maintain that, it's FAMILIAR effort.

And for someone like that, a new challenge might be cutting back on work, staying at home a whole day and enjoying some time with their family. Or going out and enjoying a relaxing activity just for themselves.

So I wanted to think about what kind of challenges I'm avoiding. Now, there is a definite familiarity to my plan for me. I like to plan; I like to set big goals; I like to try to find the "right" way to do things. I've never done anything so ambitious nor done it this way before, so there is a lot of newness here for me, and I'm learning a lot. I'm not going to make the mistake of making this all black/white -- I'm sure there are areas where I'm in familiar territory and areas where I'm not.

But what new challenges am I SPECIFICALLY avoiding?

Well, I can think of a few off the top of my head.
  • Becoming more comfortable with insecurity. I hate insecurity. I hate feeling insecure. I hate NOT KNOWING things. I hate not knowing basic things, like when I'm going to wake up or when I'm going to get to sleep, I hate not knowing more complex things, like how my boyfriend is feeling after a potentially tense interaction, I hate not knowing when/if I'm going to have the time to do the things I want to do.

    I hate the idea of trying to accomplish all my goals without setting up a structure and time structure that make it possible. I hate the idea of trying to wing it every day. I hate the idea of trying to fit things in when I can. I want to have ample time, I want to feel relaxed, I want to feel SECURE. I fucking hate the idea of day to day struggling to figure out things like, okay, I didn't have time to do a workout this morning because I woke up five minutes before I had to leave, but maybe I can do it tonight when I get home from work right before I go to bed...

    I hate that idea. I hate the idea of that insecurity, that constant feeling of being off-kilter, of struggling so much. I love the idea of getting up in the morning, taking care of what I want to take care of, and then being able to go to work, get that done, come home and sleep and be relaxed knowing I've done my stuff.

  • Taking on too much variety. Initially I was thinking that I'd be able to start varying my workouts more by February. Instead, I have cut back to basically one workout routine for February, because I'm still struggling so much with the sleep thing.

    There's something about a lot of variety that I find offputting and intimidating -- I don't think having to THINK so much all the time, I like the idea of becoming comfortable with one specific routine, improving at it and being able to note my improvement, rather than constantly feeling like I'm barely even able to get through routines. So I was going to wait until I have at least one workout down before moving on to adding others. I don't like to idea of learning multiple things at once, feeling like a beginner at multiple things at once. Maybe it's because I'm also learning a new job and learning new skills at my main job (branching out into a new area of the same work I do), but when it comes to my workout I want to be able to have a set of moves DOWN. I like that security that comes with having something down, with not having to refer to the paper every five seconds.

  • Eating slowly. This was something I thought about before signing up for Precision Nutrition, and I didn't decide to put it in my plan. But it turned out to be the second habit for PN! Hahaha. I was resistant to challenging myself with this because I felt at this point it was more important for me to at least be putting healthy foods in my body on a regular basis, because in the past I've had resistance to eating healthy even when the food is made for me. I really struggle with eating slowly. I've been struggling with the habit a lot. I have no problem CHEWING and eating slowly, actually. I have problems NOT DOING OTHER THINGS. I always want to somehow keep myself occupied while eating -- reading, browsing the internet, whatever.

    I actually find that when I sit there and just focus on eating, I tend to eat faster. If I do something else while I'm chewing, then I can chew more slowly. There's something about just sitting in front of a plate and staring at it that I find very unpleasant. I think boring is the word. Obviously this isn't such a big deal if there's someone I can talk to, but when it's just me, and I'm sitting there with a plate of food and feel like I'm just WAITING, I don't know. Bleh. I'm still working with this, ha! Even though we're on to our next habit this is still the one I'm putting more effort into.

  • Meditation. I thought about adding meditation into my plan and opted not to. I didn't quite feel like it was the time. I feel that that's something I want to tackle when I'm a bit more solid in my routine, etc. I'm not sure if that's because I want to put off something uncomfortable until I feel more "secure" and "together" or if it's an accurate intuition letting me know that it makes more sense to tackle one area at a time.

  • Relationship stuff. I work on relationship stuff to a certain degree, and have gone to couples therapy with my boyfriend, but I know that I'm capable of doing a lot more focused and directed work. I know that I'm really able to WORK this stuff if I want to, and there's a part of me that thinks "no, I want to do all this other stuff first, then I can work on the relationship stuff." And in this instance I do think it's part of me avoiding. Avoiding all this mucky stuff that relationships bring up.
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This took me quite awhile! I think part of the problem was that I wasn't even sure what kind of body I ultimately want. At first I was wondering why most of the pictures out there weren't speaking to me, and eventually I realized it's because so many fitness models, though muscular, still have that "curvy" look -- and I've always had curves, and always wanted to be LESS curvy. I've had a C cup for quite awhile now and really have always wanted to have a smaller chest, for instance.

This past summer when I lost some weight (not for healthy reasons, it was stress), I found that I dropped a cup size and I loved it! I had never imagined that that was possible. I love that lean, svelte look.

Awesome ladies )
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Dear me:

1. I know that I put everything I had into this year.

2. I can do things now and have done things that I didn't even dream were possible before with my body. I feel comfortable in my body, relaxed, and powerful. I no longer have to constantly adjust myself to find the least painful positions or ways to perform an activity. I move with confidence.

3. I am STRONG, and best of all, I FEEL that strength.

4. I have a structure in my life that supports me and helps me through the rough times and to excel in the good times.

5. I have a greater sense of security internally and externally, a greater a sense of wholeness spiritually, physically, mentally and emotionally.

6. I am more myself than ever before, and I celebrate the emergent dream of who I am becoming.
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Thus far my biggest challenge has been sleep. Getting to bed early enough to wake up on time, waking up on time, waking up on time even if I get to bed later, not napping too much, etc.

I also think sleeping may be one of the most important aspects of this whole plan.

Fuck, sleep and I. I feel like we've had this stand-off so many times before.

What's been going on:
  • Beginning of January - things were going fairly well. I was just pushing through the sleepiness in the morning and I even remember that as soon as the second day I was getting to bed way earlier. I was hopeful by that by the end of January the sleepiness would be kicking in at night at making it a lot easier to get to sleep.

  • Roadblock in mid-January - I'm finding that the nights I work I have an especially hard time getting to sleep early, and even some nights I'm not working I'm still having a hard time relaxing at night. The sleepiness in the morning is getting hard to push through. One day, I'm so tired that an hour into my workout I realize that I can hardly focus because all I can think about is sleep and my heart rate has been up since I woke up, which is generally a bad sign for me. I then take a nap, and from that point things have been going up and down.

  • End of January - I realize that this isn't working out because more and more days I'm sleeping in, and I'm still not getting to bed much earlier. I realize I'll probably need to think of some things to help me wind down at night. I brainstorm, come up with a whole list of possibilities, and decide that I want to experiment with some combination of the following:
    • melatonin
    • having a strict lights-off time
    • lighting a candle when I get home instead of having bright artificial lights on
    • spending a few minutes "unloading" from the day in whatever form that takes, journaling, etc.
    • some time doing self-relaxation techniques - something similar to affirmations, but not quite like that. I would describe what I have in mind more along the lines of self-reassurance. Reassuring myself that everything's going to turn out okay, that the next day will be fine, that I'm doing well, that I can relax.
    • some time meditating

    I've been doing some mixture of the above elements most nights, and it's helped. I have more consistently been getting to bed at an earlier time, though I'm still not waking up at my target time yet.

  • Today - today I am feeling disheartened. Last night I stayed up quite late and today I didn't get up on time, and I have no urge to work out. I am into the second week of February and I just feel disheartened that I have another setback with this. Today I slept in and my body feels like crap and I'm just not happy with a bunch of other stuff, on top of that. Part of me is frustrated because I felt like this sleep thing would be worked out by now and that I'd already be able to be moving on to other stuff, and instead I've actually cut back on working out and simplified some other elements of my plan because I know that until I get this sleep thing down everything else is too much. BLAH.

And more context. )
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01. Feeling that I am doing well/that I am doing good things/that I am capable of good actions. I have struggled with a long time with simply feeling that I COULDN'T POSSIBLY do anything so amazing as get in shape, that as a person I didn't have enough self-discipline, drive, skill, etc. I didn't feel that I was CAPABLE of doing the good things I longed to do.

I want to measure and also encourage this by regularly checking in with all the progress I've made, celebrating that progress with others, and emphasizing the positive over the negative.

02. Feeling strong and free in my body. I will measure this in a few ways: tracking how much my joints crackle and pop in the morning, how often, where and how much tightness do I have in my muscles, how often do I get tension headaches, etc. Also by how I feel while exercising - some exercises I feel good while doing, and I want to get to that point with more and more physical activities. Ultimately, I want to be able to feel that a large percentage of the time I can really "kill it" in my workouts (in the good way!).

03. Feeling relaxed, feeling that I can trust myself, that I can trust life - that I can trust myself to KEEP doing well, that I can trust that my life will not fall to pieces at any given moment, that I can trust that whatever comes my way I can handle it. The universe and I have had a weird, complicated relationship for awhile now! I'm tentatively working on the idea that I live in benevolent universe rather than one that's out to get me and keep me down.

I will measure this by how I feel in the morning and at night - do I wake up dreading my day or looking forward to it? Do I fall asleep worrying about what's coming or feeling confident that I can handle it? Can I trust that even if I don't know how something that will resolve, that there IS a solution, that things will be okay?
radicallifechange: apple. (Default)

You wake up tomorrow morning with everything you've ever wanted. Every life change, every goal, everything you’ve ever striven for has been achieved.

What would my life look like?

I find this scary, but it so instantly springs out of me:

I speak four languages and I’m casually learning more. I speak Cantonese, Spanish, German and English. I’m casually learning Italian, Russian, Portuguese and Mandarin. I speak the first four fluently, with EASE and without worry and a feeling of inadequacy. The other four I can hold a fun conversation in.

I have traveled extensively, seen many different parts of the world, and lived in a different country for at least six months.

I feel healthy in my body. My skin is clear, glowing, and my nose has regular-sized pores for the first time I can remember in my life since I was a kid. My scalp is healthy and dandruff free. My nails are strong and healthy and no longer peel. They’re not bumpy any more. They grow long and break clean.

My teeth are healthy and strong.

My joints are healthy and strong – I move freely. I have muscular and skeletal strength. I can lift heavy things with ease, I can do impact training with ease.

In the morning, I wake up with the sunrise and have a zest for the day. I look forward to each day and contributing to the world. I start my day off with enjoyable, fun, and challenging exercise. I work up a sweat at least once a day, and love my endorphin high every day. I get in some great cardio and strength training.

I am fully proficient with the lo hon gong.

I take conflict in stride. When I feel stressed I have constructive and fruitful ways of dealing with it. If my life were a graph, the line of my stress is constantly going down while the lines for my enjoyment, pleasure, relaxation, confidence, strength and sheer happiness and joy are constantly going up.

I prepare my own food and eat healthfully. I eat wonderful, rich, whole foods that are in line with my values around the environment and being better stewards the earth.

I do meaningful work that contributes to the good of others. Work that helps others.

I have a peaceful, satisfying, mutually beneficial relationship. The relationship is a positive, beautiful growing force in my life. It deepens more and more with time and helps me see more parts of myself and the other person. I continually deepen into the practice of unconditionally loving myself and the other.

I have a beautiful place I live. I grow my own food. I preserve, ferment, and prepare my own foods. I harvest edibles from the land and grow native edibles. My home environment is colorful, organized and aesthetically gorgeous.

I am creative. I dance, sing, and artistically express myself on a regular basis. I share my creativity with others.

I have reliable, available people in my life. We are mutually responsible. We do not play games – we are honest, forthright, and put everything on the table. I know I can count on them to be there. I know I can count on them to see through what they commit to.

I feel secure.

When I lay down at night, I feel satisfied with my day, happy with myself.

I feel capable.

I feel that I am doing very well.

I feel relaxed.
radicallifechange: apple. (Default)

How This Plan Works


Hence, the name of this blog. This is an ambitious, comprehensive plan that covers almost all aspects of my daily routine.



So, as for more specifically how I'm going to go about achieving all this radical change in so many different aspects of life: one of the biggest parts of this will be my support person.

This person does meal prep and cooking for me, based on the plan I have generated. I also get support around my wake up time (a wake up call) and accountability -- my support person checks off certain boxes for me every day based on the behaviors I have completed.

And funny enough, this person ended up being my mom! I had actually gone out and hired someone (who I rather quickly fired), but when my mom saw what the person was going to be doing for me she expressed her interest. I had hired her to make lunches for me for a couple months because I was already feeling like I wanted a change and wanted to get in more home-cooked meals. But when I told her about what I was thinking of doing, she misunderstood and thought I wanted some version of a personal coach who was going to kick my ass out of bed every morning and yell at me through my entire workout. Haha! Once she figured out that I wasn't trying to create my own crappy reality TV show, she suddenly decided to throw her hat in the ring for consideration. And consider I did -- I interviewed all the potential candidates who got back to me and thought about it, and in the end although there would be certain things she wouldn't be able to do for me (originally, I was going to have the person also do things like pick up groceries, but she can't drive so that's a no go), in the end I did feel she was the best choice.

So far it's been working out pretty well. I'll admit I was hesitant at first, for many reasons -- mixing money and family, my mom and I have our issues, she doesn't have much of a solid routine herself in many aspects, etc. -- but it has turned out to be good for her, too, I think, and it's one of the first times in her lives that I think she's had regular work that she felt able to do.


I have also signed up for the Lean Eating program at Precision Nutrition. Looking at their before-and-after shots and promos makes the emphasis really seem like it's all about getting skinnier and weight loss and that it's similar to most of that other gimmicky shit out there, but I'm glad I looked into the program a little more because it's not. I really like the empahses on health and working out, and to be honest those are more important to me than dropping fat. I also like that there are daily check-ins and that you can communicate with your whole group through forums. They also have a very realistic approach to how people can change -- they don't give people really huge tasks, but rather small, focused ones that over time make a difference.


radicallifechange: apple. (Default)

May 2013

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