Monday, December 13, 2010

#Reverb10 - 11 Things

December 11 | 11 Things.  What are 11 things your life doesn’t need in 2011? How will you go about eliminating them? How will getting rid of these 11 things change your life? (Author: Sam Davidson)

This has been one of my favorite prompts so far! But when it came through on Saturday, I knew it would take some time to put together a meaningful response. I needed time to mull.  What eleven things would I want to eliminate from my life in 2011? How would I accomplish it? What would it mean in my life?  Here goes:

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1. The dreaded question "What's for dinner?"  I know it seems innocuous enough. But it is a loaded  question. And no matter what my answer is, it will inevitably be followed by a groan of disapproval from at least one of my darling offspring. The question is also one that fills me with dread because I often don't know the answer! Honestly, I hate figuring out what's for dinner!

How to solve this problem? I'm going to have to start meal planning, consulting recipe books, trying new things. The tried and true and getting old and dull. And once I have meals planned, I am going to post them on the calendar - thus eliminating the need to ask at all. I also need to resort more often to the measured response of "I am fixing xxx for dinner. If you don't like that, you are welcome to fix your own." I just have to let go of caring what response comes next from the mouths of my babes. If I can do that, I will feel a lot more calm around the issue of what's for dinner.

2. Drama. With a capital D. And by this I mean teenage drama surrounding the littlest things such as what's for dinner, to the biggest things such as fights with the boyfriend. Since I cannot control the drama being created by these darling creatures of mine, I'll need to control my response to it. I can't fix it. Nothing I can say will be right. Offer advice only when specifically asked. If it's too much, count to ten and walk away. Just walk away. And breathe. They'll live through it. And it's not my problem.

3. Being Taken For Granted. Again, I know this is an issue where I cannot control the behavior of others - only my reaction to it. My reaction of choice for 2011 will either be to (a) not do those chores where I feel I am being taken for granted (allowing my children to do their own laundry, meals, etc.) or (b) accept that I will not receive any recognition for particular tasks and choose to do them with a glad heart anyway. How much better will I feel about my daily round with this shift in my own attitude?

4. Excessive Sitting. I need to get OFF MY BUTT! In 2011 I will post a series (downloaded photos) of stretches by my computer. And I will plan to get up every half hour and spend two minutes doing one of the pictured stretches.  If I can When I turn this into a habit, not only will I spend 4 minutes less per hour on my backside, but I will be getting regular doses of the stretches I need to keep my muscles from shortening and becoming tight.

5. Clutter/ Excess "Stuff".  I like clean surfaces.  I find clutter to be visually distracting and bothersome. I will continue my (now two year) effort to declutter my home bit by bit, eliminating all the excess that we don't need and being more selective about what new "stuff" is brought into the home.

6. Negativity. That insipid soul-sucking monster that arises from the depths of the never-enough crowd. I will avoid Negativity wherever and whenever I can, letting go of those who bring nothing but tainted energy and unhappiness to my doorstep. Where it can't be avoided, I will gently remind Negativity that its attitude is neither productive nor acceptable within the confines of my home and if it must indulge, to please take it elsewhere. 

I can greet with acceptance and compassion a bad moment, a bad day, a trying time. I will offer advice, a shoulder to cry on, whatever it is that a friend needs... But Negativity - if you insist on being unhappy without cause, if you derive pleasure feeding off the reactions to your incessant complaints and victim mentality - allow me to show you the door.... and try to not let it hit your sorry ass on the way out!

7. Fear/Insecurity. I need to let go of the worry that the economy will not turn around, that our jobs may be in jeopardy, that funds will be lacking for college tuition and other bills. In 2011, I will make a conscious effort to continue recognizing the abundance in my life and being grateful for all that I have. Knowing that all I have now is all I need - and that should my needs change, the Universe will provide. I will work harder at accepting and using the knowledge that I can manifest anything I need if I just ask.

8. Medical Issues. In 2010 I ran into a few snags in my fitness program with knee and back problems. I plan to eliminate medical problems in 2011 by continuing my physical therapy program and once discharged, by returning to the gym at least three times a week and continuing my stretching on a daily basis. I also plan to wean myself off certain OTC medications and continue to improve my overall health through vigilance in my meal choices, portion sizes, and attendance to regular medical check-ups and preventive care.

9. Fast Food/Processed Food/Refined Sugar. I have cut so far back on my fast food indulgences that I feel I have nearly eliminated that demon from my life. That leaves processed (convenience) foods and refined sugar. Which are going to be a tad more difficult to eradicate. They are tenacious little buggers. But this is one of my long-term goals and I will continue in 2011 to work on eliminating these evils from my life by replacing them with natural foods and learning more ways to cook foods on my own, instead of just heating things from a box.

10. Old, Unfinished Projects. I am the Queen of Unfinished Projects. I have the ornament to prove it! In 2011 I intend to revisit my ever-growing to-do list of partially completed projects and with each one - either get it done or let it go!  I'll assess my willingness/desire to finish each one, set up deadlines for the ones I'm keeping, and then JUST DO IT!

11. Perfection. I want to eliminate the need to make things perfect. Me included. I have been trying to let go of perfect, but it's still a work in progress. I intend to get a jumpstart on this one by letting go NOW of the need to make Christmas "perfect".  Perfection doesn't exist. Except maybe in a Hallmark movie. In which case it is entirely predicable and dull. Striving for perfection is a waste of the time. Time that could be spent finishing up unfinished projects. Time that could be spent just enjoying the little moments of life - even the less than perfect ones.


Anonymous said...

I love that you are setting your goals already! You're getting me thinking about what I want to try to accomplish as well, so thanks! :-)

Anonymous said...

Another thought-provoking post, Cheri. I think I told you my "word" for 2011 is FINISH. After reading this prompt, I think I will choose 11 unfinished projects to complete in 2011. Yes, there really are that many!

Melissa said...

Meal planning is a great idea - my sister does that and puts it on the calendar to avoid the what's for dinner question also. She's been doing it for quite a while and it works well for her. I am totally with you on the elimination of processed foods - we're doing pretty good as we both love to cook, but when dear hubby goes back to work I'll have to be diligent about keeping it up. Enjoyed reading this post, you've got some great goals for 2011.

Sian said...

Cheri, I tried leaving a comment on your later post but it wouldn't let me! My word for next year will be "reach" I think - to get me to try more new things.

I am so with you on #1! I detest working out what is for dinner and if I never had to do it again ever I wouldn't mind at all. Great list!

scrappyjacky said...

I love this post,Cheri....have spent ages reading it over and over.....there's so much to think about here.....and so much of what you write reverberates with me.
A good way to help eliminate the 'what's for dinner' to answer 'whatever you're cooking'....amazing how they begin to think better of asking it!!!!

quiltingfool said...

All admirable goals, and I expect you'll accomplish most of them. About the body & mind thing, the best I have felt in a very long time, euphoric in fact, where everything was wonderful, my life was perfect, and there was nothing to want that I didn't already have...was the day I got home from the hospital, Oct. 2nd. I was still under the effects of the drugs they gave me, and oh my, I felt sooo wonderful. I'd have surgery again to recapture that feeling! Really great drugs! And I don't even drink!

Cheryl said...

Such a great list, Cheri. I hope you will revisit this post throughout the year and let us know how it's going... because I'm nosy like that. :) I wish you all the best with your goals; I know you can do it!

PS. I have got to get one of those ornaments for our tree. I am definitely the queen-in-waiting of unfinished projects. :)