Tag: moreselfreflection

Two months left in the year–reviewing how October went

So October is over—we had Halloween, a full moon, plus had to set the clocks back an hour (what could go wrong???). The US presidential elections are in just a few days (fingers crossed that the election goes the way I want it to), and there are only 61 days left in the year.

Last month I tried the experiment of “scheduling” time for both checking my email and being on social media (namely facebook, instagram, and twitter)—the experiment lasted about a week and a half. I’m not doing it quite as often (at least checking mail), but also I didn’t like the ‘structure’ of it—what if I felt like it was the best time to post/share something?? So time management (in terms of email and majority of social media) is still a work in progress (especially on the weekend).

The US still hasn’t gotten the virus under control—when I published ‘September in Review’ I noted that the US had over 7.4 million cases and now the US is a little over 9.4 million cases (that is an increase of over 2 million cases in a month). With elections just a few days away, it will be interesting to see how it turns out—I’m hoping the way I want, that way the virus can be brought under control and then travel may be possible by sometime late 2021 or early 2022. I’m still planning on at least (hopefully) one mental health trip somewhere.

So as we head into the last two months of 2020, I should look back on the goals that I set for October and see how I did with each of them.

The goals for October included:

At least 155,000 steps (breakdown to 5K/day; daily step goal may go up, but again that depends on the daily number of virus cases in town)

Continuing with the combo calendar of Yoga Booty Ballet and LIIFT4

Read (or finish) at least 2 non-fiction books

No spend days/no spend weeks/no spend month

Finish the Medical Writers Organization

Complete at least one other e-course that deals with python

Then complete at least two other short e-courses

So how did I do with each one?

At least 155,000 steps (breakdown to 5K/day; daily step goal may go up, but again that depends on the daily number of virus cases in town)

            I managed to hit and surpass my goal of at least 155,000 steps. I actually managed to get in 223,675 steps for the month. Some days were slightly under 5K and other days were usually between 6-9K steps. The main thing going forward I need to do is figure out things to do during the day that will have me moving around more than me sitting on my ass.

Continuing with the combo calendar of Yoga Booty Ballet and LIIFT4

I’ve been continuing with my calendar—though I have taken a week break from Yoga Booty Ballet. This was mainly because I was feeling so tired and blah. I will still be able to finish on time next month, since I had actually added in an extra week of Yoga Booty Ballet to the entire calendar. Plus I can always add in a couple of days of Yoga Booty Ballet to the next program as well.

Read (or finish) at least 2 non-fiction books

I managed to finish the following books:

How to be everything: A guide for those who (still) don’t know what they want to be when they grow up’ by Emilie Wapnick

            This was one book that was bought mainly because of the title originally. While I’ve been on my reboot break and contemplating what I want to do with my life, nothing was actually jumping out at me as the direction I wanted to go in—and I finally realized why—I’m a multipotentialite. In other words I need to have several different things going at once to keep happy.

            Which is why looking back, I enjoyed college so much—I had a wide range of classes to chose from and was able to figure out a major (actually 2) and a minor that allowed me to have variety during the day. Grad school allowed me to dive deep into a subject, the first post-doc allowed me to dive a little deeper, and then I totally switched with the second post-doc and then following staff scientist positions.

            While I could have stayed in academia and figured out a way to be multipotentialite—I’m happy that I figured it out on my reboot break. There is one quote that really sticks out to me from this book and it was “We let the fear of being judged keep us stuck in careers that no longer serve us, and identities that no longer fit [us]”. That totally sums up the last few years of my life professionally—since I’m still uncertain about how I’m going to do my transition into industry, I let the fear of judgment keep me in academia longer than I wanted to be there.

Two other little pieces of advice that I’m taking from the book: 1) It is impossible to actually be the best; and 2) if you were an actual imposter—you wouldn’t get imposter syndrome.

I’m going to be taking nuggets of information from various books and blending them together and forging my own path forward.

            I’m giving this a five out of five star review.

‘Don’t keep your day job: turn your passion into your career’ by Cathy Heller

            One thing I liked about this book was that there were numerous self-reflection questions one can ask themselves when trying to figure out what passion to try to turn into a career, and that there are also four different roles that one can take: creator, teacher, curator, and investigator. Currently—I’m still investigating which of the four I think would be the best fit for myself.

            There are also questions to ask about creating a side hustle, and steps that one should take for starting that journey. The two core things I’ve found the most helpful: be yourself on social media (which I try to do anyway), and then I’m also working on trying to identify the 9 to 12 categories that are most dominant in my life—as those are the categories I should be creating my content around.

            And the one quote I’m taking with me from this book is “Use your fears to fuel you and raise your standards to the life you believe you deserve”.

            I would give this a five out of five star review.

No spend days/no spend weeks/no spend month

There have been a couple days where I did spend some money—not as many days as I’ve had previously, but I still haven’t worked up to a totally no-spend month. Most days it was just a few e-books—but it did add up by the end of the month. One goal for the coming year is to actually try to minimize my spending and see how many days I can go without buying something.

Finish the Medical Writers Organization

            Currently I have finished the first two modules and I’m halfway through module 3. I’m hoping to have this program finished by mid to late November.

Complete at least one other e-course that deals with python

            This didn’t happen. I spent more of the month reading than I did working through e-courses.

Then complete at least two other short e-courses

            This didn’t happen. I spent more time reading and being outside (since we are now heading towards winter, there won’t be many days left that are nice for sitting outside).

I’m working on self-compassion and realizing that even if I don’t meet every goal for the month—I’m still making progress. I managed to finish two books, continue with my workout schedule, and get an additional almost 69,000 steps in this month.

I have to keep reminding myself that I shouldn’t be concerned with the opinions of others—there are going to be people who like me, who hate me, and everywhere in between. It is time to start living my life on my terms, following my dreams, and working towards fulfilling my goals and aspirations and no one else’s dreams/goals/ambitions.

Goals for November will include:

At least 130-150,000 steps—I’ve realized that as it gets colder, I’m less likely to take my dog out for a walk and I usually am sitting more than anything during those days. Therefore I’m going to have to figure out something to do (possibly put on movies or something and march in place to get the steps).

Finish up the combo calendar of Yoga Booty Ballet & LIIFT4; then start 10 Rounds (which is 6 weeks and should take me right up to Christmas), with a little Yoga Booty Ballet tossed in here and there

Read (or finish) at least 2 non-fiction books

No spend days/no spend weeks/no spend month

Finish the Medical Writers Organization program

Get half way through either the Management Consultant Firm or the Project Management Consortium programs

Start working through at least one e-course that deals with Python

Complete at least two other short e-courses

Start refreshing Spanish

Any small step is still a step towards progress and achieving my goals/vision. I’m reminding myself daily that going all-out and full-speed ahead is what almost brought me crashing into that metaphoric wall. Now I’m trying to slow down and ask myself—does this actually align with something I want—and not what someone else may want for me?

2020 may not be going the way I wanted it to go—but I know I can head into 2021 curving towards the direction I want to be going in—I just need to keep taking the baby steps towards that direction.

While reminding myself: “Progress over Perfection”, “You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one”, and “Not caring what other people think is the best choice you will ever make”.

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Time for meditation, listening to one’s intuition, & self-reflection: Libra New Moon Goals

So we are coming up on October’s new moon (either last night, tonight, or maybe tomorrow—again depending on where you are in the world). For me, the new moon is tonight. We’re a little over halfway through October, and that means there are basically 66 days left in 2020; and only a little over 2 weeks until the elections.

So the moon is going to be moving through the Libra constellation over the next day or so (hence, this is the Libra new moon), and that means there are various things we can look at or work on over the next few weeks—such as:

            Look at how you’re relating to other people (difficult to totally assess this year due to the pandemic and self-isolation, but should see if you’re helping more than asking).

            Look into your partnerships (any issues that need addressing?)

            Negotiate—try to bring things into balance if needed.

            Look gorgeous—work on improving your self-image, and self-love.

            Regain your identity—figure out how to resolve any unhealthy co-dependency issues if needed.

The Libra new moon is also moving through my 12th house—or my secret zone. This is the time/house when you really just want to retreat from the world and work things out for a while. In terms of self-care/self-love what are some of the things you could focus on during this time?

            Practice yoga

            Take a break from social media and/or numerous social obligations

            Start a dream journal

            Face one big fear

            Trust your intuition

            Buy a meditation CD & use it every day for a month

            Write poetry from the heart

            Share one of your secrets

So this new moon is actually urging me to find a balance between social obligations and self-care/self-love. In one way it is easy—I’m still self-isolating, and therefore any “meetings” that I would be attending are all virtual. I haven’t actually had a sit-down conversation with someone (outside of family) since March. Looking back at old entries—I’m still working on trying to achieve mental clarity/calmness. One thing I’ve noticed, is that I have a habit of having numerous ‘stories/conversations’ running through my head—and none of them really mean anything, but at times they all spike my anxiety into the zone of not wanting to do anything (giving myself an anxiety attack for no reason).

So what are my goals going to be for the Libra new moon?

            Improve/work on my nightly meditations; I have nature CDs on my iPhone, that I use to listen to when I was meditating. Lately, I’ve just been doing an oracle card reading, interpreting the cards, reading, and then trying to meditate a little before going to sleep. I’m going to try to put the ‘meditation’ between reading and going to bed. Sometimes it’s works better sitting/laying on the floor then reclining on the bed.

            Start trying to tune in more to my intuition/gut instinct. While I’ve spent quite a bit of time over the past ten months doing self-reflection, and trying to listen to my inner voice—it is still something that I need to work on daily. I’ve listened to it in terms of turning down potential job leads—most are in research and since I’m not absolutely certain that is the way I want to go, I’m turning things down (as I don’t want to go in a direction, simply because it is the only thing that I know).

            Continue working on regaining my identity. Currently I think the only ‘unhealthy co-dependency issue’ I have is with sweets and I’m working on changing my mindset in terms of food. We’ve all been taught to treat food as ‘good’ versus ‘bad’—when it’s just food, energy for our body. Yes, some may be a little more nutritious than others, but there is no checkpoint in our body that stops calories and questions them on the food source they came from. I’m working on developing an identity that doesn’t revolve around higher education research—an identity that encompasses all of me (strengths, weaknesses, quirks, and faults) and allows me to go through each day feeling like I’m making a difference in the world.

And as I continue moving forward (no matter how small the steps seem) I’m going to be keeping the following phrases/quotes front and center:

“Progress over Perfection”, “You can’t start the next chapter of your life, if you keep re-reading the last one”, and “Not caring what other people think is the best choice you will ever make”.

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Creativity, personal/professional development goals for the Pisces Full Moon

So the moon will be entering its latest full moon stage either tonight (marking the full moon at the very beginning of the month) or tomorrow night. The full moon is marking the fact that there are now only four months left in 2020 (quietly looking out the window to see what is coming towards us).

So if I looked to the book “Moonology: working with the magic of lunar cycles” by Yasmin Boland, I’d see that there are five questions that one can ask themselves during this time:

Have I been dreamy to the point of not getting enough done and making silly errors?

Have I been overly sensitive and too easily hurt?

Have I been acting like a martyr? Or too easily led?

Have I been meditating every day, and if not, why not?

Have I been in touch with my intuitive side? Following my dreams and hunches?

So if I were to number the above questions 1-5, I think that my answers would be as follow:

  1. I’m not sure if I would say that I’ve been dreamy to the point of not getting enough done. I’ve probably been wasting time (scrolling through social media and the news) that I could have spent doing something more productive. This was actually something I realized earlier—I need to find a balance between being an well-informed individual and wasting time on the computer.
  2. I don’t think that I’ve been overly sensitive lately. Truthfully, while being in self-isolation due to the pandemic, I haven’t been around many other people so I haven’t had to deal with other people’s emotions.
  3. No, I have haven’t been acting like either a martyr or someone that can be easily led around.
  4. I usually try to mediate for at least five minutes every night—some nights I manage, and other nights I don’t. One thing I’m still working on is creating an optimal meditation area in the room.
  5. This is something that I’ve been trying to do more of lately. I resigned back in December so that I would have the time and energy to try to figure out what it is I really want to do with my life. Then the SARS-CoV2 pandemic hit, and I will admit that I’ve spent quite a few months shaking my head—I realized that it would probably be a bad year, I just didn’t fathom how bad it was going to get. So I am trying to follow my dreams and hunches—one of the things I’m going to be doing is trying to help improve science education/communication somehow (still brainstorming ideas on that).

So in addition to the self-reflection questions, one should also check to see what house or zone the moon is moving through as well. For me, the Pisces full moon is moving through my 5th house (according to my rising sign), which is also known as the “kids, romance, and creativity zone”.

Any of the zones this year are more of a challenge—mainly due to the pandemic and self-isolation. Truthfully—even if we weren’t in the middle of a pandemic, I probably still wouldn’t have a lot of time currently for romance. I’m trying to figure out my life and part of that is trying to figure out where to move—I don’t want to start a relationship with anyone knowing that I’d be moving out of state at some point in the near future. So—I’m not to worried about romance, currently not around any kids (I don’t have any, my niece is out in California, again with the pandemic I’m not getting together with any friends that may have kids)—unless you count animals (then I do have six to deal with—three dogs and three cats and they’re constantly around, and two of them will have all the veto powers in any of my future relationships), so the only aspect that I’m going to concern myself with currently is the creativity zone.

I had promised myself that once I started my “reboot break” I was also going to have more time to spend on creative work (whether that was doodling, journaling, knitting, taking pictures—something that was not related to the current job search mindset). While I have been spending time doing something creative daily, I haven’t been varying (and learning new) crafts. I’ve been sticking with things I know how to do—if not great, at least well (namely photography, knitting, and some doodling and journaling). Since self-isolation is going to be stretching longer than anticipated—I’m going to slowly start stepping out of it and try my hand at a different craft.

So what are my goals going to be for the Pisces Full Moon?

            More creativity time—specifically I’m going to try my hand at cross-stitching. I bought a small starter kit a couple of months ago—and haven’t touch it—due in large part to it being something new that I’ve never done and therefore I have nothing to compare it to (in terms of what I think of the finished project). But I’m going to probably try sketching out some basic geometric shapes and then try my hand at coloring them in (this should be interesting, since I have a hard enough time drawing a straight line with a ruler, can’t wait to see how the lines look when I’m just stitching them by hand).

            More time spent on self-reflection. This is going to be a combination of meditation, and journaling. The journaling will be done as part of both personal/professional development (answering any questions that pop up), and self-reflection—I’m going to start drawing a single tarot/oracle card (sometimes in the morning, sometimes the night before), and writing whatever comes to mind when I look at it, then read the message in the tarot/oracle book, and see if my thoughts have differed from the intended message.

            Time also spent on personal/professional development—namely working through various e-course packages that I’ve bought over the years. I know that I want a career that allows me to use my strengths (learner, intellection, input, achiever, and deliberative/ideation/arranger), while also allowing me to improve on some of the ‘weaker’ areas as well. The best way to start doing this—work through various courses bought, network, and try to set up and hold informational interviews as well.

But above all remember the following—“Progress over Perfection,”, “You can’t start the next chapter of your life, if you keep re-reading the last one”, and “Not caring what other people think is the best choice you will ever make”.

No Comments AstrologyCraftsFull Moon GoalsPandemic2020Personal Developmentprofessional developmentReflections