Thursday, September 18, 2014

Life is Rewarding, but Challenging

I plan on sticking around for the long run. What that means, is that to be here, as long as I can be -- bar an unfortunate early demise -- I need to make changes.

I like my life. Through the unlikable moments bordering on feeling unsurvivable, still, at this moment, things feel good.

If we want to enjoy life as long as we can, there are some things that have to happen, without question. Non negotiables that are required on a daily basis to have the odds be ever in our favor.

The biggest things of the largest crucial impact over time, are basic (basic does not mean easy, look it up):

Eat right. Sometimes (okay a lot for me) that means saying no to Twinkies, or whatever your Twinkies is. Put the Twinkie down and say yes to nuts, fish, raw vegetables, raw fruit, whole grains, and wonderful water. Keep good stuff in the house as in good for you, and leave the Fig Newtons on the shelf at the store. Not easy, that's why I said "challenge."

Move every day. Without question, you need to exercise, or walk, or play catch outside. Get up and off the buttchair. Everyday, rain or snow or too hot or too foggy or too lazy, you move your body and don't go to bed until you do it for 30 minutes at least once that day. Don't be lazy.

Sleep. Skipping sleep to find more time in the day seems like an easy answer. I know it does, but it's not. Time management in your day, with strict limits on how many minutes you spend where, is the only way to find time. Time Management is another way of saying Discipline. Sleep no less than six to eight hours a night. Go to bed.

Company. Oh, watch who you are with. If you can help it. Keep your group filled with encouragers and light bringers. There will be times when those you know need you, and maybe will be not their usual selves -- if you keep yourself strong, you can be there for them, and lift them back up to being where they want to be. But the ones who bring you down with negative comments or wear you out by always finding the worst in situations... reflect on their place in your life, because it can be mentally unhealthy to talk to some people. You may not have to unfriend them, but you could get busy doing other things that keep you fulfilled. This is hard.

Be a good guardian of your mind. This takes work. There is a lot out there that you really don't need to know about. The one in charge of what you see is you. Be aware but watch your sources and your doses. We need to know about our world, without a doubt, but we don't need to know about every single sick act out there. Take care of your soul -- watch what you read, what you listen to, what your ears and eyes fall on. Do not fall for the clickbait.

Find something that takes you into the zenzone. Faith, prayer, meditation, focus, writing, running, playing with your kids, music, community theatre, drawing, baking, singing. That thing that makes time stand still is that thing that recharges you. Find it and disappear into it. It can be what I do. Don't get out of your bed in the morning until you spend two minutes listening to your breath, and feeling who you are. This is an important one.

You can pull everything together by saying, Pay attention to your life. This takes work, and the challenge is to care about the situations we create for ourselves, with our eyes as wide open as we can. The reality is that we are a sum of our daily activities. There are rewards to the challenge of saying yes to the right things.

I want all the time I can get, because old people tell the best stories.

Should add ten years... 
 * * *


  1. Excellent advice. It hit me recently that I'm not getting any younger and I need to be taking better care of myself.

  2. Exactly, Shell. We can't keep doing what we've been doing and not expect it to catch up. It's how people end up in poor health -- not paying attention to their life.

  3. Basic yet hard sometimes. The eating right is the one that I have the biggest problem with. Because I love pie and cinnamon rolls.
    Ive been reading a lot lately about sleep. I think that one is affecting a lot of people because they don't realize that they are sleep deprived. Most of the articles have been saying 7-9 hours. I doubt there are many adults who get that much. It makes me wonder, did people sleep more or less in generations past?
    I am going to start focusing on my breath for two minutes. I think that would be a great way to start my day.

  4. Being a good guardian of your mind is something I'm really realizing I need to do lately. Sometimes I just can't with all the bad news and the "what happened next will blow your mind!"

  5. Yes, yes, yes. I do half these, but I've been meaning to do more. Thanks for the push. I'll bet if I sleep more the guardian of my mind thing will be easy. Less of the interwebs and more sleep is a combination I need to make easy. And time management will be the hammer. xoxoxo

  6. Being kind and laughing extends life. I truly believe in that.

  7. This is so great, Alexandra, such good "life" advice! I struggle with the first one. Even though I eat a lot of good for me foods, I also really like "twinkies" (a.k.a. sweets in general). Thank you for these reminders... :)

  8. It is so easy at times to say "Oh I am really good with 2 of those things"...thanks for the reminder that it isn't a pick and choose multiple choice, it's D...all of the above!

  9. Shannon: basic, and necessary. If we do these things, I think the rest will come. Let me know how you like the two minutes thing. It's finally automatic for me.
    Leigh Ann: there is a lot out there, and a lot that can make you anxious, feel hopeless, and generally non productive. We need to know the important things, but not all the things.
    Naptime: time management I am convinced holds the key.
    Alison: Yes to kindness and laughter. We're here, let's make it better for the whole planet that we are.
    Elaine: thank you for saying that. Makes me feel good to know this helps. Someone told me, I can't remember, but it was "eat for your future self." That'll do it, right??
    ANdrea: Right? It has to be all of them. xo

  10. Boo. My comment got eaten. Or maybe you've got it set up for blogowner approval these days? It happens when I comment here I hope you see them. Somewhere. XO

  11. Hello, Alexandra! It's been a little while since I visited here, but I am so glad to be back for this post.

    I LOVED the Be a Good Guardian of Your Mind. Too many of us forget that we are indeed in control of what we take in; once it's there, we can never throw it back out.

    And just had to say your next post should be about your beauty regimen, because you look lovely in that pic.

  12. Julie: YAY, your comment is here! xo
    Hillary: HOW GOOD TO SEE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!



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