I went through some shit last year with anxiety. Don’t get me wrong, compared to a lot of people that deal with anxiety what I had was minor. And my troubles even more minor.
What I’m trying to say is that I’ve had it pretty good in life.
We all have demons. Most of my stress stemmed from a career that I hated but what made it worse was that I was just trying to do too much. I was obsessed with clean eating, gaining muscle, lifting weights a certain way, stretching three times per day, etc. I was the epitome of information overload.
Since then, I’ve seen a therapist and done some other things to try to get my anxiety in order and I think I’ve come a long way. I finally feel like I’m in a place where I can start to work on myself again.
So I’ve recently started to add back some habits that I think will be beneficial for me in the long run. The important thing is that I don’t let them consume me. My goal here is long term success and happiness.
Here are the six things I’m tracking/working on:
- Stretching daily
- Writing daily
- Working out or just moving more
- Daily meditation practice
- Avoiding the snooze button
- Walking the dog
I’m using an app called Way of Life to track my progress and here’s how the last 60 days have looked.
Important note: The ‘No Snooze’ category is no more because I was doing so incredibly bad that I got discouraged and just deleted it. Full diclosure, right?
Other than the dreaded, evil snooze button, I think I’ve done good.
I have written every day. That may just be a blog post and that’s fine. It’s something. The important thing to me is that I created something that didn’t exist before I wrote it. In that time I’ve had two blog posts and a short story published and have another coming this week, so that’s good.
I can use work on my meditation practice. Im streaky at best. I need to make time for it. My problem is that I get stressed about making time for it, which defeats the purpose.
I’ve also been stretching on a daily basis. I do a 30 second deep squat hold with my feet flat, a 30 seconds glute activation, a 30 seconds hamstring stretch, a 30 second hip flexor stretch, and finally, either Band Pull Aparts, Band No Moneys, or a Crucifix Stretch. It feels fucking fantastic and I’m obsessed. I’m also doing yoga once a week which kills three birds with one stone (working out, stretching, and meditation).
I suck at snooze. Fine. You win snooze. Here’s the thing: I have a baby on the way and in a few short months sleeping will be a distant memory. So for now, I’m going to sleep as much as possible.
Another thing my wife and I have been working on is walking our dog, Marshall, more often. It’s been a pretty mild winter in Ohio, so that helps. But we’ve done a good job, I think. Hopefully Marshall agrees.
Apps like Way of Life are great because they help you build a solid foundation on your habits. I used an app like this to start flossing a couple years ago and haven’t looked back.
I plan on deleted the train/move category after this article since I don’t really need it. Basically, I’ve always been good about training and in the last seven years or so I have never really fallen off track. I’m not sure what I’ll replace the category with. Possibly daily blog posts or a daily word count towards a novel? I don’t know.
What I do know, is that whatever it is, I can handle it.