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Read. Write. Grow.

Whoa! I’ve been blogging for over a month. Whaaaaat? That went FAST!

This also means I’ve been #goaldigging hardcore since the end of June. So! To give myself credit for the hard work I’ve been doing, to keep myself accountable for what I could be doing better, and to stay motivated – let’s review!

June 26th – Paint 1x per week for the next 6 weeks.

Oh man. Sooo happy with this one! I’ve sat down and truly enjoyed painting/creating weekly since making this goal June 26th. Cultivating creativity through regular practice is very important to me. I commit to painting 1x weekly for another  month. It’s fun trying new techniques and experimenting more.

I still don’t feel like I’m an overly talented painter – I look at other painters on Instagram and think “Awe man, look at THEIR style! So great. I wish I was better…” Then I remember Brené Brown and her saying to stop comparing… just do me. I  probably have 30-40 (here’s wishing) more years in my life to paint. If I keep painting weekly, imagine the paintings I’ll create and the improvement in skill during that time frame! I also remind myself what Elizabeth Gilbert said in Big Magic… it’s not about the product, but the process… I can just enjoy painting. No matter how “good” my paintings are!

 

June 26th – Explore what meaningful work may be for me at this stage in my life. I will do this through researching job postings, volunteer opportunities and maintaining this blog of reading/writing/growing.

This has been going well. I’ve read and reviewed four books! All four were inspiring in different ways. I’m feeling pretty darn pumped these days about life, my present, and the future!

I’ve been paying attention to the “magic” of the universe and the signs it’s been sending my way. In my search for meaningful work, a professional partnership may have came my way! I will need my private practice registration completed before truly pursuing this AMAZING opportunity. I’m proud to say that I’m only one piece of paperwork away from completing my application for private practice! WHOOOHOOO! I had been avoiding this… for whatever reason… It’s scary to think of branching out on my own. I’m still terrified, but I’m doin’ it anyway!! Boom! Here’s to getting registered and to opening new doors!

July 7th – 1x per day for 2 weeks mindfully cuddle one of our pets for 10 minutes.

I’m not sure if I mindfully cuddled my pets daily for 10 minutes, but I definitely was more aware of mindfully playing/cuddling Dottie. I’m making an effort daily to take chunks of time to truly be WITH her in every way – no phone, no distractions, being present. It’s lovely. She’s lovely.

I would like to make an effort to get out with the dogs 1x a week to see them in their element – they are SO joyful when we get to have adventures off leash. I definitely don’t take enough time to enjoy the pups as I should.

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July 7th – For 2 weeks when challenged with a situation, say to myself “This is good because…” and fill in the blank.

I wish I could give you a concrete example of when I was able to use this… I feel that it’s something I do quite regularly. Being able to assume inconveniences, annoyances, and stressors are actuality positive is POWERFUL! Try it!

July 12th – As a family, we will not eat out more than 3x a week (this is HUGE for our family… we eat out A lot! Especially when I tire of meal planning and give up)

Ok. So. Truth bomb. We SUCK at eating regularly at home. If we eat four dinners at home a week, it’s a true success. Isn’t that terrible? Part of it is that it’s tough to nail down meal planning, but part of it is because we are SO busy on weekends running the roads that eating out is just more convenient.

We’re working on it – and we have come a LONG ways on this one, let me tell ya. This is definitely an area that I will continue working on with my family… I can do better… We can do better. Perhaps a cookbook review blog post is in order with some concrete meal planning goals! I’ll keep ya updated!

July 12th – I will run at least 3x a week to train for my 5k race September 30th.

I would say I’ve been running approximately 2x a week… and I’m pretty happy with that. I was using a Nike app 5k training program, but felt myself getting discouraged. I was annoyed at the “speed” runs and “tempo” runs – I just wanted to throw on some music and run. I don’t want to do speed work! I’ve decided to run 3x a week for a half hour or 5k, whatever I’m feeling that day. Last week I ran 3.8k in a half hour and completed 5k in 40 minutes (even with walking my whole last km!). My 5k race is September 30th, so I would say my training is going well. Yay!

I’m super discouraged this week, though. My calf and behind my knee are really bothering me. My hope is that it’s just tight muscles, so daily yoga could be helpful. I’ve decided to add a NEW FITNESS GOAL for the month of August. It’s a goal to combine mindfulness and stretching – 30 days of yoga practice with Adriene ! I did Adriene’s yoga for runners today and really liked her. I stumbled on this 30 day challenge and thought, why not! It’s a great compliment to my running, only 30 minutes a day, and is a nice little challenge. I’ll keep you updated on my progress!

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July 12th – I will do 3 circuits a week for the next 2 weeks – either with my trainer Nicole or on my own using her program.

I think I may have done 2 circuits a week for the 2 weeks. My first mistake was not documenting my workouts.

I’m not finding circuits all that fun right now… I’m brainstorming what’s missing. I think it’s the camaraderie of a group. I used to run with a couple of wonderful running groups when I lived in the valley. Some of my lifetime best friends were made running in those years (Lookin’ at you Kate! Love you!) I’m considering a local CrossFit gym to enjoy a community of fitness peeps. I love weight training, so thought CrossFit could be a good option. Or maybe boxing? I have friends that box to keep fit and LOVE it. What do y’all think? Any other ideas?

So there ya have it!

Creative endeavours… Career exploration… Mindfulness goals… Fitness goals…
It’s been a busy month! I may not be perfect. I may not be rockin’ every goal. But I’m improving in SO many different areas of my life! I see it documented like this and can’t help but think “F*ck yea! I’m doing pretty dang great!” I think the hugest shift is feeling a sense of PURPOSE. Having my blog to keep me engaged in intellectual/life pursuits has been energizing! The feedback I’ve gotten has been really validating – THANK YOU to those who have taken the time to say hi and that you are enjoying the reviews and posts. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

I hope you are rockin’ your goals too! What are YOU working on?

Until next time,
Read, Write, Grow
Amanda

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