Lvl 1o: Life & Goals

What is Level 10 Life?

I first came across the premise of Level 10 Life from a Pinterest pin, which led me to this blog post.  The idea is that you want to be living your best (happiest, most satisfying) life, and the first step is an honest assessment of where you are right now.

There’s some contention about what to call the areas of your life that you’re assessing.  For instance, you’ll likely see “relationship” or “marriage” as an area to look at, and that’s fine if you’re in a relationship/marriage, but if you’re like me and single, what do you do?

I made up my own categories.  I tried to make sure that the final list of areas of my life encompassed as much and as many areas of my life as possible, without having a bajillion categories:

  • Physical Health
  • Mental Health
  • Emotional Health
  • Spiritual Path
  • Friends
  • Family
  • Work / Money
  • Crafting Skills

So. You’ve got your list.  Now what?

Now you take a really honest look at yourself, and how you feel about each area.  How satisfied are you, on a scale from 1 to 10, with that part of your life?  Do you have any really low or really high times to compare right now to?  How much room for improvement does each area have?

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My assessment (on Jan 7th) was as follows:

  • Physical Health = Lvl 4
  • Mental Health = Lvl 6
  • Emotional Health = Lvl 3
  • Spiritual Path = Lvl 2
  • Friends = Lvl 3
  • Family = Lvl 2
  • Work / Money = Lvl 1
  • Crafting Skills = Lvl 2

As you can see, I wasn’t feeling very good about my life.  I was unemployed, my relationship with my father (or as I occasionally call him, “the Fatherlord” — Avatar reference) has been pretty dismal for years, I hadn’t practiced my spirituality for quite awhile, and my craft projects were not progressing.  My physical and mental health were only assessed so high because I have recent lower points to compare with.

So… if the goal is for each area of your life to be maxed out at Level 10, how do you get there??

Level 10 Goals

You set goals.  Achieve the crap out of them.  Celebrate.  Repeat.

… Seriously.

I feel a bit hypocritical saying this, because so far I haven’t been very good at this.  But it’s working.  A month and a half later and there has been progress in at least two areas.

I chose 2-3 goals for each area, because much more than that would be overwhelming and nothing would get done.  The key is to try to keep them realistic and manageable.

  • Physical Health:
    • Complete weekly checklist (exercise goal: 5x each week, with various activities that count as exercise) ((Shoveling snow totally counts as exercise.))
    • More vegetables! (Need to sign up for the farmshare this summer)
    • Stretching and/or physical therapy exercises
  • Mental Health:
    • Sudoku at night (stop browsing Pinterest; Sudoku doesn’t use data)
    • The Great Courses lectures (something educational)
  • Emotional Health:
    • Regular (daily) time outside
    • Journaling prompts
    • Move out & get an apartment
  • Spiritual Path:
    • Observe Sabbats & Esbats (solar & lunar cycles)
    • Practice divination regularly (Self, you’re not gonna get better at it if you don’t practice. Love, Me)
    • Work on & improve Book of Shadows
  • Friends:
    • Attend potlucks & game nights
    • Monthly letters to far-away people
  • Family:
    • Tell my brother & my bestie how much I appreciate them
    • Have tea with my aunts and/or cousins
    • Contact my mom & stepdad weekly (They live in western PA; I live in western MA.)
  • Work / Money:
    • Apply for 3 jobs per week until working 40 hrs/week.
    • Restart Etsy store
  • Crafting Skills:
    • Crochet a hat
    • Make a corset
    • Re-cover a parasol

There has already been progress.  I think I’m going to do an assessment quarterly (4x per year), so the next will be around my birthday in early April.  Stay tuned!

I got a job!!!

As the title of this post suggests,

I got a job yesterday!!!

It’s a full-time office job located 15 minutes from where I’m living.  $14.50/hour, 40 hrs/week, paid every week.  They offer health insurance and a 401k.  (I’ve never been offered benefits before!)  They’re really flexible about needing time off for appointments and I can make up the time lost.  After a year of working there, I’d get a week of paid vacation.  (Which alternate universe did I jump into??)

I owe the friend that recommended me to them, big time.  And a Lannister always pays their debts.

I can do things now.

I am most excited about getting this job because it means I can do things, like:

  • buy groceries
  • apply to refinance my private loan to a lower interest rate
  • get my car fixed
  • bike to work once the weather warms up
  • attend dance weekends & events
  • progress on my costuming without excessive worrying about cost
  • save for an apartment & move out! (Hoping this one happens this coming fall)
  • sign up for the farm share again this summer (will literally be working down the road from the farm)
  • send my winter coat to the dry cleaner’s (it’s wool, or I’d wash it myself)
  • buy myself new sneakers in the spring
  • bring Holly to the vet, should she need to go
  • go to the chiropractor without excessive worrying about cost
  • bring my dance boots to the cobbler for repairs

If things progress smoothly, my starting date is Feb. 27th.

Health Update #I’veLostCount

The Good News:

I went to the nutritionist this morning and weighed 248.5 lbs, which is down 23 lbs since the Diabetes diagnosis in September! Yay progress!  Go me!

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Screenshot of my FitBit app.  You can clearly see the peak in Sept.

What kinda baffled me at the time of getting on the scale is that, for the past two weeks or so, I’ve been eating a lot more carb-ish types of food than I had been, and I’m astounded than I’ve continued to lose weight.  The problem, of course, is that I’m still unemployed, and based on bills, current bank balances, and how much money I net-lost last month, I’m putting off grocery shopping for as long as possible.  That means a lot more meals featuring beans and rice than I (and my medical team, I’m sure) would like.

Luckily my nutritionist is pretty understanding of circumstances (and this isn’t the first time I’ve had issues affording decent food), so my “homework” from today’s session:

  • Continue elliptical & walking & dancing – 1 day per week each
  • Increase vegetables – inexpensive ideas: broccoli, cabbage, frozen veggies, carrots, & turnips
  • Continue to limit portion sizes of things like rice, beans, etc.
  • Continue lots of water

I don’t know when I’ll get work, or when I’ll run out of okay food to eat from the pantry, but I will definitely keep the veggie ideas in mind (in other words, tell my bestie so he can cook them).

But YAY, PROGRESS!!

I’m grateful for…

January 2017

  • Holly (my sweet kitty, who’s been with me since I was 10 yrs old)
  • understanding friends
  • Bubba (the best Best Friend a girl could ask for)
  • clean drinking water
  • Zack (my younger brother, who is pretty cool)
  • MassHealth (yay health insurance!)
  • good night vision
  • YMCA discount membership (YMCA Greenfield MA)
  • my long winter coat (calf-length)
  • I don’t have food allergies

February 2017

  •  my new winter boots (a much-needed gift from my brother)

BuJo-Planner Lists

Adventure Ideas

Books I’ve Read

  1. Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs – A Beginner’s Guide
  2. Mercedes Lackey’s “Owl-” trilogy (Darian’s tale)

New Restaurants

  1. Fresh Side (Amherst MA) – The pad thai T-roll and spicy chicken T-roll were the best, but the pho was pretty good, too.

Entertainments (Movies, Concerts, Shows, etc.)

  • The Secret Life of Pets – 1/12/17 – Cute, a little funny. Likely, once was enough.
  • Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox – 2/3/17 – Calvin Theater, Northampton MA – Not as satisfied with this show as I was with the last time I saw them.  Music was still awesome, but the show felt rushed (entire show was 2 hours, for $44 per ticket); I missed the emcee acting like it was an old radio show, and Scott Bradlee himself doesn’t tour anymore (what??).  As I said, the music was still great, but I felt the whole “PMJ Experience” was lacking.

Completed Projects

  1. Remade blue scrap yarn circle afghans; Actually know how to crochet a flat circle now!
  2. Finished mending for Saera H.
  3. Replaced a bag zipper for Katie O.
  4. Finished crochet Slytherin sweater

 

Planner + Bullet Journal = …?

Late last year (October?) I’d purchased a 2016 planner with the intent of mapping out my weekly exercise options; dancing, lap swimming times, group exercise classes, that sort of thing.  This didn’t really work, but I was reminded of how much I like this particular planner, so I got one for 2017.

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An example of planner pages I haven’t written on yet

I’m not entirely sure how this happened, but I was browsing Pinterest one day (late December?) and came across something that eventually led me to the idea of the Bullet Journal.  I gotta say, I’m not a fan of a lot of BuJo styles; like, there is no need to memorialize every single To Do list I ever make.  (I’m a huge list-maker.)  However, there are some things about them that really appeal to me:

So I’d bought a planner (about $18 after shipping) and then found a new idea.  The problem with just starting a bullet journal is that I haven’t been employed since I was laid off at the end of November 2016, so I have literally zero dollars with which to buy frivolous things.  But!  The planner I’d bought has many non-planner pages; pages of things like articles, advertisements… Heck, even the inside covers!  So I went to BigLots and bought a pad of lined paper (approx. planner-sized) and a 4-pack of colored pens for less than $5.  After reading the articles in the planner, I decided which ones I liked, and started covering the ones I didn’t like with a new writing surface.

16427584_1412621752102273_4413891413388450334_nBuJo-Planner Lists: (These things will likely get their own posts that will be updated when the list is.)

I’m still trying to keep to the health planner I’d intended, but I’ve changed the format.  Instead of writing down everything I could do, I write a list down the side of the planner of different types of exercise I could be doing (Swimming / Dancing / Dancing / Elliptical / __________*) and cross them off when I do them. (*Could be Long Walk, Elliptical, Shoveling Snow, etc.)  This way gives me a bit more flexibility in planning out when I do the things..

Quick Diabetes Update!

Literally just got the results of my blood tests from last week:

  • A1C = 5.7%  (less than 5.7% is Normal)
  • Cholesterol = 196 (less than 200 is “desirable”)
  • Triglycerides = 87 (less than 150 is Normal)
  • Direct HDL = 66
  • Direct LDL = 103 (“within normal limits”)

So my A1C is down 0.4% and my cholesterol panel is “excellent.” Go me!  ^_^