My own work-life balance so out of balance that work dominates most of my schedule. Right now, I am trying to fix that problem. I am scheduling a few fun activities that are not work related to try to balance the scale. I am going to try to meet with a group of fellow astronomy-loving persons. I am even considering buying a telescope if the price is cheap enough. I have joined a couple of meetup groups based on a couple of my interests: science fiction and astronomy. I also go to events with my local Epilepsy Foundation group. I used to go to Zumba classes, which was a great way of coping with stress. Since it got really cold, I stopped going to them. I feel that this is a vital part of work-life balance, since exercise helps the mind as well as the body.
I am back from visiting my family. I didn’t have any problems with my seizures during the trip. I did manage to make it to all of my planes at the proper times, but plane delays prevented the airplanes from showing up when they should have. In the end, it all worked out and I got to spend time with my family.
I don’t really have any New Year’s Resolutions. I have a few things that I want to work on (listed in no particular order):
- My diet – I’m going to keep trying to lose that weight, and exercise a lot more.
- My health insurance – I had some problems finding health insurance that I could afford. I am in the process of applying for health insurance again. I hope that it goes better.
- Mind-body wellness – I want to work on this more so that I balance work and home life better.
- Family – I don’t get to see my family as much as I would like, and I can’t afford to fly there more than twice a year. I’m not sure what to do and am starting to feel out of touch.
Many things have happened throughout the month of October. For a good part of it, I didn’t have health insurance at all. Here is a summary of it all.
Weight Loss Plan
My plan for October was to get into a routine of exercise. For the most part, I attended Zumba class twice a week, and have no plans of switching to something else. I will probably introduce something else like climbing stairs to add some variation. I plan to increase the amount of exercise to three times per week in November.
I found myself eating out at restaurants a lot, but I tried to make healthy choices. I would carefully watch portion sizes. I have found a good app for my phone which helps me make better decisions. I eat sweet potatoes instead of regular potatoes, brown rice instead of white rice, and truvia instead of sugar. Although, I was far from perfect and ate the occasional French fry. I believe that I made some progress here.
My medicine dosage was recently reduced. My hands were shaking and it was really starting to freak me out. Several times I had problems holding things. Now that I am on a lower dosage of the medicine, I am meditating more to reduce stress. This will especially come in handy around the holidays.
I got accepted! I have affordable health insurance! My health insurance card hasn’t shown up yet, but I am in their system. The person that helped me spent many hours on the phone for several weeks advocating for me. I practically cried when he told me. I have talked about this for about two months now, and will be ecstatic to change topics.
I have recently made plans to fly to visit my family during Christmas. None of my immediate family members live in the same city (or state) that I do, so I need to fly to visit them. I have flown by myself only once before. At that time, I listened to relaxing music to ease the stress of flying. At least for myself, flying on airplanes has lost its fun appeal in the last few years. Especially during the holidays when airport employees would rather be somewhere else, and they take that anger out on you.
I have not told the airline about having epilepsy. I have my Medic Alert necklace. My seizures are controlled so far, and I don’t think that will change. When I have told some people about my epilepsy in the past, I scared them. I am a very blunt person at times. Should I be more proactive in letting the airline know that I have epilepsy? If so, what would be the best way to do this?
Meditation Oasis is a great website that I found with an interesting mix of meditation podcasts. Here are a couple of my favorites:
1. Simply Being
2. Music for Meditation & Relaxation
They are particularly useful for reducing stress regardless of your situation.
I have been reading Thich Nhat Hanh‘s book ‘Savor Mindful Eating, Mindful Life.’ Inside of it he suggests a ten-week sample mindful living plan. I will make small modifications for my own lifestyle. This ten-week plan helps integrate mindful living into your life while emphasizing weight control.
Week 1 & 2
- Cut down the amount of sugared beverages. I have already started doing this with sodas and plan to carry it to other beverages with a lot of sugar in them.
- Establish a regular meal schedule and do not skip meals.
- Do some form of exercise or activity for about 20 minutes per day. The key for me is to get moving. This is an area that will give me a few problems since I have always made excuses in the past to postpone exercise until a later date.
- It is also recommended that you find ways to integrate meditation into everyday activities.
Journal your progress
- According to the book, recording your progress in a journal helps people with weight control. There are many resources that you can use to do this. It may also be useful to reflect on your progress so far. What has worked for you? What has not worked for you?