Weekly W.R.A.P Up

Watching
John Wick Movie

This was seriously one of the best bad ass action movies I’ve seen in a long time. I don’t understand how I have gone this long without seeing it, I feel like an action movie fraud because I was yet to appreciate this gem. It was like the perfect mix of everything in 90 minutes. To make this better there is a second one that’s just been released.. So I know what  I’m going to be seeing next week in the cinema…

Reading
The Tail End on waitbutwhy.com

This blog post Tim Ferriss has been recommended on several podcasts I’ve been listening to and I finally got round to reading it. And god I’m glad I did. It essentially puts a human life in visual perspective and give you some scary facts like by the time we have graduated high school you have already spent ~93% of your in-person time with your parents. Considering I’m currently in New Zealand visiting my grandparents this post really hit home about making the most of the short time we have on this Earth. It is so easy at times to get caught up in the stress of the world and lose perspective so I found the way this post illustrated time in visual images particularly useful for regaining perspective of time.

The 3 Main Points:

  1. Live in the same place as the people you love and maximise the time you spend with them.
  2. Make a list of the priorities in your life that matter.
  3. Time is precious so appreciate and make the most of it.

Appreciating
The little things in life, like getting to feel the wind on my face and feel the air soak into my chest as I run. I’m currently over in New Zealand enjoying a week with my grandparents so I’m taking a moment to step back and appreciate each moment with them while learning from their wisdom and laughing at the lessons they have learnt. It’s been nice to take this time to just stop and appreciate being, breathing and nothing more. No expectation but rather just enjoying the meaningless beauty that the world holds. I’ve been loving going for a nice long run each day in the cool winter air, getting to feel the crisp breeze and the burn and just being present. I’m naturally incline to feeling as though nothing is ever enough that there is always more or better. So I find it really therapeutic to occasionally just catch myself and bask in the moment of life rather than looking towards the future.

Take a moment to go outside and breathe, feel your chest expand with air and exhale with letting it rush out. Just be there in the second. Appreciate the fact that your breathing and your hearts still beating, because being alive means no matter how much pain your in you have the chance to change it, while your still alive anything is possible. It’s truly a beautiful thing to sometimes just take a second to just appreciate, appreciate it all.

Podcasting
Good Life Podcast : The Truth About Money and Happiness

This was a really engaging podcast which brought me some further enlightenment around the topic of money and happiness. I’ve always felt a lot of resentment towards money and that it always controlled me, I think mainly because I’ve grown up in a household where no matter how much money we made, we never had enough. Also currently not have a steady income tends to make me feel very insecure in my finical future and out of control. The fact is it’s true that money makes the world go round and to some degree it certainly can buy happiness, but this podcast brought to light some new arguments and research findings for me to consider. Money matters but it isn’t everything and it definitely does not guarantee happiness.

My Personal Podcast Points:

  • Old research showed that happiness does not increase once income meets ones basic needs and any money above that does not improve happiness levels
  • NEW research showed that there is no gap in the income and happiness/life satisfaction meaning that happiness is seen to increase exponentially with income (the more you earn the happier you are)
  • BUT this research doesn’t take into account how people are spending their money… can you buy happiness in the way you spend money?
  • Money doesn’t buy happiness is WRONG because money allows you to buy better health and time SO if money can technically buy happiness why doesn’t it?
  • The PROBLEM is people don’t understand what truly makes them happy. Rich people simply buy the same but more expensive things as poor people which don’t make them happy.
  • 5 Ways to Spend your Money that Increases your Happiness
    1. Buy experiences not stuff. Key to this also to do experiences or activities that fully engage your mind. Stuff will not make you happy but experiences you can enjoy and remember can make you money.
    2. Spend money on other people. Giving connects you to other people, and it doesn’t matter if they are a stranger.
    3. Choose many little things over one big thing. Try spreading small sources of happiness over time instead one big moment of happiness (this prevents your happiness scale from adapting so you are still able to appreciate and enjoy small sources of happiness.  (example break a small chocolate bar into 4 pieces and enjoy it over 4 days rather than eating the whole bar at once)
    4. Pay before you play, delay the gratitude. Instant gratification is a serious cause of unhappiness, because we no longer know how to wait. Waiting and anticipating something and getting the imagine it ‘perfectly’ makes you happier than the reality.
    5. Buy time. Time has become one of our most precious asset in a time poor world. So spend time on things that will ultimately give you more time to do things that makes you happy.
  • As income rises, life gets better. BUT it is more about how you spend your money rather than the fact you have more money.
  • Make more MONEY to make a more MEANINGFUL and therefore happy life.
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Weekly W.R.A.P Up

Wearing
My track pants like everywhere, it’s almost becoming a problem because I honestly don’t think I’ve gotten changed in the last week. And you know what I’m not even made because I’ve been so dam comfy.

Reading
Derek Sivers Book Summaries – “So Good They Can’t Ignore You” by Cal Newport

This was such a refreshing take on passion and people’s futures. It basically discusses how the concept of teaching people they need to find passion to achieve happiness and fulfilment is total bull. Instead it discusses how to have a successful and valuable career or future people need to actually determine what skill they what to excel at and how that can contribute to the world. He then goes on the discuss how it is through mastering a particular useful skill set that makes you valuable and transferable that people then develop their passion through using that skill. So instead of following passion we should be developing a desirable skill and combining that with an interest and its through growing in ones work and mastering a skill that passion is created. When considering you future think of your interests, a skill and how you can combine those to make a difference in the world. That will almost always lead to meaningful and happy life.

I’ve been thinking about this post a lot and also listen to several podcasts that interviewed Cal Newport where he further discussed the concept of skill mastery then passion development. Through pondering this I’ve realised that through my studies I haven’t really developed any desirable skills other than being good at school so now I’ve focused my goals for my future to be much for towards developing a skill that will allow me to contribute and make for useful to the world. We all have a skill or can develop a skill we just need to find out what it is.

Appreciating
New Quest Bar Mocha flavour:
I wasn’t sure what to expect when trying this flavour considering I’m absolutely obsessed with the Oatmeal Choc Chip flavour but hated the Rocky Road. But this flavour was like the perfect combination of the chocolate chip quest bar with a hint of coffee. So so good so definitely give it a try if you get the chance!

P.s. Pro tip if you microwave for 45 seconds or bake for 10-15 minutes it is life changing like imagine a perfect protein packed cookie with all the goodness.

Podcasting
The Tim Ferriss Show #241: The Relationship Episode: Sex, Love, Polyamory, Marriage, and More (with Esther Perel)

This was seriously such a fascinating listen discussing what we define relationships as and commitment. It just shed some interesting light on how and why we structure relationships, telling the truth and always considering the why of anything.  I loved that it also how it brought attention to how we do so much in society for ourselves to improve ourselves and in that we have isolated ourselves which has been our greatest downfall. We should in fact be doing things for others and everything we should think of the other person first before considering what it does for yourself.

Happy Weekend you beautiful people. xx

 

Weight & Worth

Why do we equate our worth to our weight? Why do we let a number become the measure of a successful life? When you have an eating disorder weight feels like your entire world, everything and anything we do is done for our weight. Nothing is as important as weight feels. Our brains become hyperaware of how we feel and everything we feel is dictated by our weight. We have conditioned our brains over time to believe the eating disorder thoughts that tell us that weight gain equals failure and pain. Eating more will always equate to weight gain, that is the eating disorder rule. But is it? Is it really?

During the initially stages of my recovery eating more actually lead to me losing weight, even though it felt like I had gained weight. You see your brain has been conditioned to feel that increased food equals weight gain regardless of what the evidence shows. Logic holds no place in the world of an eating disorder. The body and mind are separate and often what the body needs is not what the brain wants. Food is fuel. What we don’t realise in recovery is that food is actually what helps us feel better, but our brain won’t let us believe that. An eating disorder thrives off control and this is totally lost when trying to recover. This is exactly why during recovery you have to continue pushing, continue challenging your eating disorder beliefs and behaviours so they no longer control you. Stop following your feelings and start following the facts.

The fact is that increased nutrition and a more balanced diet will help improve your energy levels, cognitive abilities, mood and overall health. You may or may not gain weight. More often than not you will naturally gain weight because often eating disorder suffers are under weight, but with that weight gain you will also get to gain your life back. Weight gain is irrelevant to recovery. Challenging your eating disorder beliefs and behaviours are essential. You are worth so much more than your eating disorder. So stop letting your eating disorder define you.

In fact stop thinking about weight all together. Weight is nothing but a measurement of mass NOT worth. In recovery we need to focus on moving forward, moving beyond a world of numbers about calories and weight. More often than not people are able to initially challenge these thoughts and they increase the food intake, decrease the exercise, potentially increase the weight and usually they feel a bit better. So then they stop. They stop at that point in recovery where it’s maintainable and feels attainable, they feel better so there is no need to keep going to keep challenging. It’s as though you come to a place of co-existences with your eating disorder. You are allowed to live your life and your eating disorder is allowed to stay. You eat enough but you still track calories, you eat enough but you still excessively exercise, you eat enough but only certain foods,  and you see your life becomes this thing of BUTS. You are recovered BUT you still have an eating disorder. You still have that familiar comfort that go to in case anything in life is to go wrong or gets too hard. But you see that’s not real recovery, being stuck in that maintainable but miserable in-between of recovery, that’s not living. You need to keep going, keep fighting and challenging even when it feels impossible.

Take a moment to think how much better your life actually is when you are not starving yourself, excessively exercising or binging and purging. Really think. When you are not totally consumed by your eating disorder habits you actually have some time to live a life. Yes during recovery it still feels miserable and uncomfortable and it is hard as hell but your life actually is better than before. It is better than when you spend all day obsessing over exactly how many calories to eat, what time to eat, when to exercise, how much exercise, should you binge or shouldn’t you, and if you do then should you purge. Every day is another day closer to it one day being too much, it’s almost like playing a game to see when your body gives up even when your mind keeps playing. Whereas when your in recovery there is at least less chance of you being admitted into hospital permanently and wasting more time of your precious life. You have the potential of a life when you are in recovery and that is an incredible achievement because you were strong enough to challenge your eating disorder beliefs and behaviours. So does it not make logical sense that even though you may be at a this maintainable point of recovery, where your not sick but not better, that IF you continue to challenge your eating disorder beliefs and behaviours and keep fighting that your life should also continue to improve?

Yes there is no guarantee that there is this amazing life out there for you. But if you look at the facts it is simple, if you don’t challenge your eating disorder if you don’t try to recover you will continue to get sicker maybe lose weight but no guarantee, until eventually you get sick enough that you either end up in hospital or dead. That is the only guaranteed outcome of your eating disorder. NOW if you try challenging those thoughts and rules of your eating disorder every single day when you choose recovery, then you are faced with endless possibilities. Because if you committee to recovery and everything that comes with it such as adequate nutrition, potential weight gain, minimal exercise, and constant challenging of thoughts and behaviour, THEN you have the chance of a life. A life out of hospital, you have a chance to be happy whatever that may mean for you and as you begin to slowly build yourself a life during recovery your eating disorder will slowly drift away. Your mind will no longer be consumed by food and weight concerns instead you will be thinking about living. Thinking about your friends, your job, your hobbies, traveling opportunities and more. By giving the uncertainty of recovery a chance you are giving yourself the certainty of living.

Do not settle for being some what recovered. Keep fighting, keep challenging those eating disorder thoughts and behaviours until you don’t have them at all. Until they are replaced with new beautiful beliefs of hope and possibility. Replace your eating disorder with your life. It will not be easy, but it will be worth it. The only way to get better is to keep going because the alternative of being ‘sick’ again, restricting again, binging and purging again that all only leads to one result, no life and no possibility. You will never be enough for your eating disorder and that is NOT because you are not enough. You are ALWAYS enough. So stop letting your eating disorder tell you how to live your life because that is not living. Start challenging your eating disorder and keep challenging it until you start living! xx

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Weekly W.R.A.P Up

So I thought I would start these weekly W.R.A.P up posts! Which as suggested essentially are a weekly summary of things I’ve been Watching, Reading, Appreciating and Podcasting. I thought this would be a really good way for me to let you guys know certain things I’ve found insightful and helpful through the week with day to day life and my recovery. Plus I would love any suggestions or recommendations anyone has of things to look into!!

Also I’m going to start posting at least weekly some on recovery information that I’ve found particularly useful in my recovery journey, and wondered if there are any topics in particular people are interested in?

But here is my weekly W.R.A.P Up this week! Hope you enjoy. xx

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Watching

Forensic Files on Netflix

I have been recommended to watch this so many times because I’m basically obsessed with crime shows but I’ve kept putting it off. This week I finally got round to watching it and I’m so glad I did. They are super short 20 minute episodes about real life crimes that have been solved. I find it so fascinating to see the different crimes that are discussed and honestly just to see the ridiculous excuses people use to justify murder or crime. Plus getting to an insight into the real life science used to help with solving these crimes I’ve also found super interesting and it is amazing to see how far we have come in our crime solving abilities. So it’s definitely worth checking out! Plus did I mention there is like 100+ episodes… it is seriously dangerous in the best way possible.

Reading

Decoding Anorexia – How Breakthroughs in Science Offer Hope for Eating Disorders
By Carrie Arnold

I found this to be one of the most helpful books to my recovery and one that I often find myself turning back to during times of struggle and doubt. It not only provides a realistic and personal insight into the struggle of anorexia recovery, while also providing scientific evidence to support and explain the ‘voice that is anorexia’. It reminds you that you are not alone or at fault in your struggle and not only is there a reason why BUT there is also hope for recovery. I will be releasing a full book summary of this book this week that I personally found fundamental and regularly turn to for a reminder.

Appreciating

I’ve been appreciating slow yoga practice with hip openers. Focus and allow yourself to feel that release in a stretch, let the energy and pain flow through and out you, attention on breath and breathing deep and full. I have found slowing down and letting myself enjoy a stretch rather than focusing on the workout very peaceful and fulfilling this week.

Flexibility Flow with Action Jacquelyn

Podcasting

I’ve been listening to lots of podcasts this week but this particular one I really enjoyed where Jocko and Tim delve into depression, suicide and success. I found the topics enlightening and really enjoyed Tim’s advice of self care and how we should view our future path. And just always remember you never have to be alone in your struggle.

Jocko Podcast #50 Time Ferriss – darkness & how to stay on the path, last days of life & what to do, back up plans, misconceptions

  • Advice on getting out of ‘depression funk’
    1. Exercise & Movement daily
    2. Stoicism – reading Annaeus Seneca or Marcus Aurelis > or by planned practicing of stoicism in daily life
    3. Meditation/Mindfulness practice whether its traditional meditation, journaling, physical activity etc
    4. Alternative small goals = doing something that will allow you too see progress > learning how to do a handstand > gives you something to focus on and strive towards that is also possible with practice
    5. If you cant make yourself happy do something to make someone else happy
  • Behaviour Modification
    • Committee to less than you think you can consistently for at least 5 days > want to start running then committee to walking for 5 minutes a day at least 3 days a week OR 3 knee push ups a day > START SMALL and ACHIEVEABLE  > this removes performance anxiety or procrastination
    • Break the task down into small individual tasks > ex swimming involves floating in water, face in water, directly body down to allow it to float, kicking/moving feet, arm movement
    • Provide incentives to achieve > ex betting pools, accountability factors, money (www.coach.me or www.stickk.com) > give yourself a physical reason to actually do the behaviour because knowing what to do is not enough > people NEED REASONS
  • Other personal take homes
    • Isolation is a killer
    • The need to stop searching for more and instead taking the time to enjoy what you already have > stop trying to label or define everything
    • Becoming better learners and learn how to learn faster, managing fear & learning to be aware and incorporating stoicism
    • Cognitive biases in humans, the difference between causation and correlation
    • Everything is environmentally situational > look at the environment then at what the situation requires to achieve at it
    • Discipline = Freedom
    • No one owns you anything

Not Giving Up Even When It Feels Like You Should

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Today was a day. And by day, I mean the kind of day where nothing goes right. This morning I realised I had run out of cashew butter for breakfast so I had to have almond butter instead, which just isn’t the same. Then I had an expo to attend and when we arrived I realised I had gone to the wrong location and then a job interview I was meant to be having this afternoon got cancelled because the interviewer was sick. So, to try and make the best of an already bad day I decided to make some more homemade cashew butter which seriously tastes like heaven in a spread. I decided to try something new and soaked my cashew nuts because its meant to help make them easier to digest, but continuing with the theme of my day… it turns out when you soak cashews and don’t let them dry for at least 24 hours, it doesn’t end well. At this point I realised I’d just wasted a whole bag of cashew nuts and had none left to make more, and I tried to save the mixture I really did but watery soaked cashew nuts just aren’t that saveable…

Trying to still stay positive I went and brought some more cashew nuts to start new and keep with an old recipe that I know works. I roasted the cashew nuts and took them out of the oven so excited to finally make this nut butter, only to accidently drop the tray and have the cashews go flying all over the floor. There are no words for how I felt in that moment. Now I know these are first world problems, but it that moment it just felt like the world was against me. But while I was down on my hands and knees picking up my sad little cashew nuts I realised I could either give up and take this as a sign I was just destined not to make cashew butter today, or I could tell the world to shove it and that I was making cashew butter today no matter what it takes.

So, I picked up those cashews put them in the food processor added some creamed coconut, vanilla and a pinch of salt and in a few minutes, I had mouth-watering roasted cashew butter. And damn it was good. As for the failed cashew butter, I ended up using it to make two batches of protein balls which actually didn’t taste too bad. It was then I realised that just because it feels like the worlds against you doesn’t mean you shouldn’t push back. At the end of the day I got to go to my expo eventually, my job interview will be rescheduled, I made 2 batches of protein balls and I got my cashew butter in the end. It might not have been the smoothest day but you know what it was still a success.

Basically, what I’m saying is don’t ever let the world tell you what you can and can’t do. If you want it and you want it bad enough then go get it. Yeah you may not have the easiest journey to your destination but if you keep going you will make it in the end. The world wasn’t made equal and although it’s unfair that’s life, plus it’s the journey to the destination that makes it interesting anyway. Use those unfair moments in life to learn. Today I learnt a few simple things, to read event details more closely, not to soak cashews before making nut butter and to be more careful when taking hot trays out of the oven. Don’t let the world win every day because your so much stronger than that.

It’s the same for when in recovery, you need to keep going even though it feels so wrong, because nothing worthwhile is ever easy. Some days it will feel like the whole world is against you and you will want nothing more than to give up. But don’t let the world win , don’t give up, be better than that. Keep going, keep pushing until you win the war because you can do it, every single one of you can beat the world. And just take a moment to imagine how it will feel when you’ve done it, when you look back and realised you won. Plus, once you’ve beaten the world once then you will realise anything you want is possible. So, go out there and beat the world, BEAT the world until you win!
xx