On the first day of 2016 I saw Chris Brogan share his 3 words for 2016. After giving his article a read, I thought about what my 3 words for 2016 would be. I thought this practice was a much healthier way of setting my intentions for the new year.
My three words for 2016 are:
Strength. Do. Relax.
I’m quite familiar with the goal to lose weight and it’s on many peoples to-do list, especially near the first of the year. During the last two years, my body decided to take things in the opposite direction. This year I’m determined to find out what’s really going on.
Since we went paleo in 2009 I’ve lost weight, gotten stronger physically and mentally and have become more productive. In the last two years though it feels like all that progress was flushed down the toilet.
In 2014 we remodeled our kitchen so we could start filming episodes of Paleo Porn TV. Little did we know then that taking on the remodel ourselves would start what we currently believe are issues with mold that are causing my body to become inflamed.
Our home is also our office and working from home day-in and day-out while mold could possibly be festering in the very place where I stand daily was and is a problem. We only narrowed down this as a possible culprit recently when Jeff was looking at the data from our bluetooth Withings scale and pinpointed the exact date when my weight started to shoot up. That’s when we made the correlation to our kitchen remodel.
We immediately hired a mold specialist to come out and test our dining room at the entrance to our kitchen and it was determined that there were elevated levels of Aspergillus/Penicillium in the very place where I stand to work. This specific strand of mold is of interest to us especially because I’m allergic to penicillin.
We immediately started remedying the problem. Jeff found a used IQAir Hyper HEPA filter on Wallapop within the week. We purchased new filters for the unit and have been running the air filter non-stop, daily, ever since.
On the first of January we replaced the first level of the filter. IQAir says that filter should be changed after 10-15 months. As I said we’ve kept it running all day, every day, for the last three months and in that amount of time it already needed to be replaced. Clearly, we had a problem and the air filter is starting to fix it.
Our next step is to remove all the carpeting in our house and flush the air ducts. That’s quite the project and is definitely not a quick one to complete but a necessary one that we plan to start soon.
In addition to gaining weight I’ve also had terrible episodes of anxiety and depression. I’ve not been as active as I want to be. Jeff & I played on a football league with our friends last year and we each broke one of our fingers. I truly believe all of these things are related.
Strength is the first of my three words. I am making it a priority this year to build strength in all different ways.
In the last two years as my anxiety and depression have increased, my motivation to be active drastically declined. Paradoxically, I’ve found that I’m less anxious when I start my day with some type of training.
Heavy bag = fabulous stress reliever (and it doesn't even talk back) I've really been enjoying this little medley: 4 rounds of skips, push-ups, kettlebell swings, get ups and rounds on the heavy bag every 3 days. Gotta search for some boxing gyms today in Toronto, Vermont and DC so I can continue my habit while on the road. #paleopornheadseast #PaleoPorn #tour #paleo #primal #fitfam #kettlebell #jumprope #boxing #heavybag #sweatymess #fitness #training
At the end of the summer and through the fall I was getting into a boxing routine training in my garage, and loving it. When we left on our road trip my training was interrupted and when we came home I couldn’t get back into a rhythm again.
Luckily we’ve had a mild slide into winter this year. In November and December I started taking walks around the park near our house while reading. Having access to sunlight while walking around outside, these were my baby steps back into a routine. Near the end of December I started going back to The Dailey Method and taking barre classes again. My current goal is to go to class at least three times a week with the intention of going every day if I can.
Not only is it a physical battle to build strength but a mental battle because I have been stronger than I currently am and building back up to what used to be my base, is exhausting.
Not only am I focussed on building physical and mental strength, I’m also working on building emotional strength.
I’ve never been clinically labeled as depressed but the more I’ve read about both anxiety and depression, the more I’m positive that I’ve been battling some form of both since I was young. I have many strategies I’m introducing to help with all these things and I will write more about them soon.
There are many projects and ideas for projects that Jeff & I have had that have not seen the light of day.
We have been working on some extremely large projects lately, three of which we’re planning to launch in 2016.
DO represents my intention this year to continue to do more and launch all the things. As I mentioned in my Life After Teaching interview, I’m most happy when I’m creating.
In 2016 my goal is to continue to Do more. When I’m making art, traveling, training, being creative, productive and learning new things is when I feel most optimal.
Though I’m working on building Strength and Doing more, I must also make time to Relax. Which is my third and final word.
I need to spend less time in panic mode and more time focussing on inner peace. Meditation is a practice I started introducing last year. One I would like to continue however this is not the only strategy I’m using to help me relax.
When I loosen up I find that I can be more creative. So, I’m making time for learning new ways to make Relaxing a priority.
My health is different from Jeff’s health is different from yours. We’re all battling something. This year I plan to focus on Strength. Do. Relax.