On day four, Denise discuses tips for, if you are having a bad day, turning it into a good one. For example, calming down, having a cup of tea, and vowing to start over. Other tips include repeating the serenity prayer, or a mantra. I think my mantra is, “In the End, it doesn’t even matter.” (And yes, I sing that line in my head.) I know that doesn’t sound very upbeat, but to me it is comforting sometimes to think about the fact that we’re all going to die and that the earth will get eaten by the sun, and these small little negative thoughts I have that get stuck in my brain are really rather insignificant in the grand scheme of things.
Today was okay… I did text my friend from my previous job like I said I would yesterday. I finished my owl from yesterday… see picture here! I did practice some breaking of negative thought patterns by saying “no!” out loud when I was stuck on one. On the downside, I did spend too much time on the internet, and I still had the fuzzy cloud hanging over my head. I did a little reading of Denise’s chapter on negative thinking, and one thing that resonated with me, was to stop trying to anticipate what other people are thinking, and to try and control every situation, especially in regards to work. She says it’s exhausting, and she’s right. She also recommended in that chapter to do a “Positive Thinking” night cap. Each night, right down 1) At any point today, did I choose to take the positive view? 2) At any point today did I slip into negative thinking? 3) What shall I look forward to tomorrow? I think that this exercise might really help me. Additionally, sometimes I think I get so stuck in negative thought patterns that I forget what else to think about! Perhaps I should make a list titled “other more interesting things to think about” and look at it when I find myself stuck!!
Alright moving on. Today, Denise reminded me to go with the flow today. She told me to have a bagel with ricotta cheese plus jam and cinnamon on it, plus an apple for breakfast. I had cream cheese instead of ricotta and a banana instead of the apple, but I believe the spirit was the same!
She said, during the chaos of my day, to return to my Mantra, and to have a protein bar as a snack. I repeated “In the End, it doesn’t Even Matter!” as I was driving to a nearby town to go to the library again, and, I did have that protein bar. After work she said to sweat out a bad day on my cardio machine, or to do the workout routine in her book, which I forgot was a suggestion for the day, but I did sweat out to her dancing workout video pictured here.
She said if I need an extra pick-me-up, which I do, to watch a favorite comedy this evening. I rented Edwards Scissorhands from the library, which somehow my husband has not seen, so we are going to watch that tonight. I seem to be backsliding instead of moving forward in some ways. I doubt this is what Denise anticipated; probably not, and probably it is my unique quirks. Also, my worst habits, like internet surfing, don’t show up on the Personal Energy Report, but are listed as an energy drain in her book. I think need to list a “stuck to only going online between six and eight PM” as part of my own addition to the Personal Energy Report. Gotta keep myself honest somehow!
TODAY’S PERSONAL ENERGY REPORT
When you Wake Up: Morning Energy Questions
◊ What will I look forward to today? More books from the library, including “The Abstinence Teacher” by Tom Perrotta.
◊ What pleasure will I add to my day? Reading
◊ How will I connect to someone today? Message a woman I used to work with about books I need to get back to her and meeting for lunch sometime when next I am in her town.
During the Day: Energy Checklist
◊ I got enough sleep last night. Yes
◊ I energized with my morning stretch (detailed in book). Done
◊ I ate breakfast. Done, per Denise’s instructions (mostly).
◊ I drank eight glasses of water. I have fourteen more to go. Hope I don’t have to pee a lot tonight! Also, I’m breaking my no screens before bed rule to watch Edward Scissorhands. Tbd if my sleep is affected, ha ha.
◊ I got outside for some fresh air and sunshine. Yes, the sun was back out today and I walked along the main street of a nearby town.
◊ I did my afternoon Energy Shot stretch (detailed in book). Done.
◊ If I caught myself slouching or slumping, I corrected my posture. Only remembered when I typed this. Again!
◊ If I caught myself in a negative thought, I turned it positive. Again, I’m definitely more aware of how often I’m in negative thought cycles, but in some ways I think this is stressing me out even more. In some ways it is exactly the same as when I used to obsessively keep a running tally of the calories I ate in a day, even though I didn’t really want to be doing it.
◊ I connected with someone. I chatted with a different lady that was working at the library today.
◊ I did something fun or relaxing, just for me. I started The Abstinence Teacher.
◊ I worked out for thirty minutes or more. Yes, one of Denise’s “Dance Party” workout videos
◊ I did my bedtime stretch (detailed in book.) To be done this evening about ten p.m.
Before Bed: Evening Energy Questions
◊ Did I live the promises of my Morning Energy Questions? Yes
◊ What fired me up today, and why? Getting out to the small town near by was good for me.
◊ What tired me out today, and why? Ruminating again, also, I surfed the net a lot of the morning and didn’t get out of the house until after lunch. It has become abundantly clear that my two main enemies of having much more positive energy and being more healthy are my net surfing habits and my negative thoughts habits (especially around things I can’t control, like other people’s perceptions of me, or wanting to get a project done but not having a clear idea of how to do it).