My own Happiness Project

First things first: thank you so much for your comments on my previous post. All of you made me feel so relieved and like less of a crazy person. Monday had me feel the effects of the weekend still in strong discomfort and not wanting to be around other people. ‘Feierabend’ as we call finishing work over here couldn’t come early enough. Introvert issues. Sorry to my colleagues if I seemed distant and reserved. It’s not about you but me. #overusedbuttrue

As you might know by now I’m a huge proponent of finding the little joys in every day, even if it’s not the best one. Worrying a lot about my future and just about everything else this is my way of handling the anxiety. Silver linings are hidden in every day, we just need to actively look for or (!) create them. The latter ties in with the idea proposed in one of the books I’m currently rereading. It’s Gretchen Rubin’s “Happiness Project” – my first time reading it being at least six years ago so I didn’t remember much. I’ve noticed myself subconsciously following a lot of the principles listed already. Still a lot of room for improvement, obviously, but I thought for this Week in Review I’d show you how I incorporate these points in my life. If you feel like it share some of your ways of doing so in the comments! I’m curious to see what they mean to others. Let’s jump into my review of the past seven days. Thanks to Meg for hosting the shenanigans once again!

Week in Review

Act the way you want to feel 

Coming from a weekend of a messed up routine and craving me time I can’t deny I wasn’t feeling like socialising at all. Yet when a question by the bank employee – at that the one question I don’t like to be asked -evoked her to keep asking and talking I decided I was all up for it. In good old “fake it till you make” fashion I engaged in the conversation and it turned out to be really encouraging. I can’t say I’d ever experienced this at a bank before. Also can’t pretend I hated it. Read: faking a good mood can actually make you feel happier.

Tackle a nagging task

Dropped some paperwork off at the bank for my mum because their opening hours are ridiculous and she couldn’t make it working longer that day. Speaking before I could think my brain apparently decided I wanted to cross two of my own bank issues at the same time while I was there already. This was on Monday so definitely not a day I felt like tackling these things but it might have felt all the better getting them crossed off my list that day

Cleaned my electric kettle. Please don’t ask how long it had been since the previous time. Let’s just say: long enough. But hey, it’s spanking clean now so that’s all that counts, no?

Adulted by washing a load of laundry and got to let it dry ioutside n the sunshine for the first time this year.  It was a wonderful weekend after a rainy start to the week.

Prepared a second batch of what I’ll call peanut butter chocolate crispy treats – any better name suggestions? –  for now. You know I’m not one to play favourites but these are high (!) up on top of the list. High.

Took pictures of said treats. Did I ever mention this is my least favourite part of recipe creation? It’s frustrating.

Get in movement and time in nature [my own addition to the list]

Went for morning walks on both Saturday and Sunday. Starting my days first reading for a while, then getting to soak up sunshine and fresh air was blissful.

 Indulge in a modest splurge. 

Treated myself to little ‘extras’ here and there throughout the week. Bad consciousness for free obviously but I’m working on it. The items I bought weren’t even what anybody else would fret about – a nice wooden hairbrush to replace my old one  [long overdue], lots of almond milk [granted, this one was on sale but still a treat] and a magazine. Yet for me spending on anything aside from regular groceries is still an accomplishment. I know Cora can relate.

Obviously worked as usual.

Had some good conversations with my colleagues. If/when – and I’m really hoping it will happen in the not so distant future – I find another job I’m more passionate about these ladies are what I’ll miss the most. They’re the best. And no, not just because one of them – hearing me declare my fondness of After Eight chocolate santas – has already surprised me with an After Eight chocolate bunny for the second time already this past week. Literally the sweetest and I have no idea what I deserved it for.

Give proofs of love

Baked a loaf of gluten-free bread for my newly diagnosed celiac colleague. Granted, this is a  stretch as I woudn’t consider it a true proof of love as she’s “just” a colleague but I’ll keep it here. And before you wonder why in the heck effing world a) she wouldn’t just buy bread from a bakery and b) I baked for her, here’s the low-down. A) She mentioned buying her first loaf of gluten-free bread in a break at work – as well as the fact that it was tiny and crazy expensive. Knowing the blog world I was convinced there -had- to be better and more affordable options. I’m very thankful for not having any true intolerances myself and don’t want anybody to miss out on their favourite foods if they have some so I offered to get baking. She – not a fan of baking – happily accepted the offer. It’s in the oven as we “speak” [or at least as I’m writing this] and I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed it’ll turn out]. This is the recipe I tried and I’ll report back once she has taste-tested it if any of you are curious.

This obviously wasn’t everything that happened but decided to keep things shorter today. So without further ado:

Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today: Sunny weather. Spring is definitely here now and I couldn’t be happier about it.

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
Tell me three or more achievements or happenings from your past week
Do you follow any of the happiness principles above or what are some of your own?

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Good week with a side of introvert’s dilemma

Looking at this intro as well as my past ones the title ‘week in review’ here is definitely misleading. What is showing in these first paragraphs isn’t a review of the past week but a reflection of the weekend. Sunday thoughts – that’s what they are. And oh do these differ from what my mind would churn out on a Thursday or Friday. I’m aware and sorry that I might often appear negative and discontent with the current state of my life in these intros. If you met me on the street I wouldn’t be all gloom and doom. Life and my situation aren’t terrible. The weekends usually throw me way off with their unpredictability. Every. single. time.

As an example the past week held many of those wonderful little moments in it. The ones that bring a smile to your face, recharge both your happiness batteries and overall energy that might usually feel a bit low after a work day. It was a good week. And then came the weekend. Which I want to stress wasn’t bad, either. It’s hard even for myself to fully grasp why it affected me the way it did but I’ll try to explain it here and explore my feelings further for myself.

So we hosted several of my sister’s friends, all of which were staying in my apartment. This isn’t to say I hated hosting people. Like I said I can’t even completely understand my anxiety here but it was the case and is still mulling in my mind. As you will probably know by now I’m an introvert and need the weekends, particularly nights as me time. Sharing my apartment, my little refuge from Friday to Sunday with four people I hardly knew – if at all – was too much. That’s really the only way I can describe it without going into nitty gritty details of the whole situation. For the most part this is – yes, cliché saying – about me, not the others. There was more than one incident of feeling like an intruder in my own four walls. Which just wasn’t  … good. Usually, my weekends leave me looking forward to being surrounded by people at work again but right now I just want to get a day all to myself, nature and books.

[Luckily, I talked about this with a friend who – without me saying a word about my feelings towards hosting strangers for the weekend – expressed a strong dislike to hosting in general. So maybe I’m not the only one here after all …]

Excuse the rambles. I just felt like getting this off my chest. Now onto the good that happened in the past week through a Week in Review with our sweet hosts Meg and Ave.

Week in review

Some of the previous week’s happenings. I …

Worked. Nothing new here. Or, wait: Maybe the fact I got along extremely well with my [male; never a big deal with the female] boss. Probably irrelevant to you yet – blogging for myself – I like to keep track of these happy little things as they significantly change how I feel. Also had a few good conversations with my colleagues.

Got ice cream for the team again on what must have been the sunniest day this year so far. No ice cream for me again because the salty cravings still reign supreme. Sometimes I feel I should get some just to prove I can but then I see my boss – definitely no ED in sight – skip it, too, and am fine following my intuition and cravings. I wouldn’t say no if we were talking Erdnussflips ;). [These made multiple snack appearances at home, though]

Randomly struck conversations with cashiers. No cheese guys this week ;). Just like with the people close to us it’s wonderful – and happiness-inducing – to learn a little more about the others around us. How else would I have found out about the big and amazing goals of the local health food store’s employee than through a mere little comment on packaging? Try it yourself with the people in your life!

Vacuumed and mopped the floors on Thursday night already rather than the usual weekend cleaning. Typing this part of the post on Saturday night, though, I can already tell a repeat might very well be necessary [edit: it was and is yet again].

Posted to the blog twice. The week in review as well as more good good links. Definitely check them out if you didn’t get a chance yet. Especially the first category and the blogging articles really hit the spot on their respective topics. Also the one by Kylie/Imma Eat That which ironically served as a good reminder for myself just yesterday.

Spent some time with the cutest little toddler in the world. Totally biased and I know it ;). The most precious moment was when I went to look for him waking up from his afternoon nap. Still a bit sleep-drunken he was very cuddly and babbled on and on. Way. too. cute. Sorry for the aunt rambles but I’ve really fallen for him´

Bought enough breathing masks to supply a small village – I may or may not be exaggerating slightly but the cashier did look surprised – and delivered them to the eager helpers. This was an unexpected emergency call task that took up about 1 1/2 hours and admittedly threw me off in my Saturday plans more than it should have [create of habit and routines]. In the end I was happy to help, though. Because I just realizse I didn’t explain it in the intro here’s the background Story: my sister and her husband are planning to move to a village not too far from where my parents live. The house in its current state requires plenty of work before the actual rebuilding process can get started. This weekend, my dad, sister and her husband as well as the helpers removed the hay from the attic of the old farm house. They returned covered in dust down to the last bit of skin. Poor guys.

Created a new recipe for the blog that not only was super simple to prepare – way different from my recent yeast experiments – and a hit with the whole crew. Part of it is even – unintentionally – toddler-approved. Now I just need to remake it to get pictures and share with you. I will try to upload a quick picture I already took after work today – well, tomorrow as I’m writing this on Sunday night

Helped my mum out where I could. Running errands, unloading the dishwasher, cleaning up. Isn’t it funny how often we refuse doing these simple tasks as children but will easily offer taking them up as adults because they aren’t that bad after all?

Tried a new workout that left me feeling more at ease when things felt overwhelming on Saturday night. Exerting physical energy is the one thing that very reliably helps me find mental Relaxation.

Lend an ear to a friend in need of somebody to listen and help reframe hr situation. Sometimes helping others is the best way to escape the mess in my own mind.

Thank you if you actually are still reading after my lengthy post and happy Monday! I hope the week ahead will be a happiness-filled one for you,

Happiness-inducing today: Lots of little bright moments calming my anxious mind.

 

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21

Pinterest: MissPolkadot21

Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

Tell me some achievements from your past week!

Any introverts who can relate?

Random: What was your least favourite household duty as a child?

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Mental vs. physical rest

 Alternative title: Dear brain, you’re way too much of a chatterbug. Take a break!
To-do list: Love them, hate them? Does anybody agree that, as beneficial as they are, these [endless] lists have their downsides, too? Checking items off is as satisfying as seeing time running away is anxiety-inducing.  Whenever I stumble across articles stressing the need to make time for self-care and slow down I feel they’re not applicable for me but people juggling many different responsibilites aside from just working and household duties.

What I’ve started to wonder, though, is if there might be a difference between mental and physical rest. Because even in the moments when I sit down – like now – I often don’t feel relaxed, instead finding my mind racing and worrying about all the to-dos I’ve yet to check off. It’s getting to a point where I procrastinate because I don’t know what to do first, time ticking along and me not even enjoying what I’m procrastinating with. This isn’t me asking for pity. Just the thoughts on my brain right now as I’m wrapping up the old week, gearing up for the one ahead. Maybe one of you can relate, maybe it’s just my weird, weird complicated brain. Moving on …

Let’s take a look at what I did do in the past week of life as inspired by Meg. Overthinking brains be quieted.

[I didn’t take any pictures  so will be reusing old ones #sorry]

Week in review

In the past seven days I …

Worked on the same schedule as usual. Things have been very busy lately which is good because I have a steady stream of work coming in and bad because it means staying longer and getting home later. Mostly good, though.

Posted just once. This is frustrating as I did in fact have a post pretty much finished and ready to go live by Tuesday but then things got awry and my mind was elsewhere. I know vague-blogging isn’t cool but I figure all of us have topics they’re not talking about online. Just a heads-up on my continued absence from blogging and commenting. I never made the conscious decision to step back from more regular posting yet it is what happened over the past  [many] months and I’m going to make an effort to change it. Here’s to better weeks ahead! You’ll at least get a new round-up of good good links on Sunday and maybe another post. Knock on wood!

Dropped my mum off at a station a 45-minute drive away right after work on Friday and managed the way back without one of the four radar cameras snapping an unfortunate picture of me. Possibly driving the people in cars behind me a little nuts when I slowed down way before the actual cameras a few times, though. Yes, I’m that annoying overly cautious driver.
Had afternoon tea/coffeewith my parents who invited me over to join them upon returning from a weekend getaway. We had a great conversation that ended on a not so amazing note thanks to [my] parents’ ability to pick up on things that you’d rather not chat about. It still was really nice to sit together.

Said no to a time intense request that just was none of my business. I felt bad afterwards but it didn’t seem to really bother the person asking.
Baked another nut Striezel, this time braving the scary yeast myself. It fortunately worked out quite well, especially the kneeding being more fun than I’d assumed. Unfortunately, it didn’t look as good as the previous one so I’m still debating on whether I like the pictures or not. Blogger confession: Taking pictures is my least favourite part of recipe creating. Why do some delicious foods look so … wrong in pictures?
Did further ‘gluten-free in Germany’ research aka product spotting for my colleague. This was as she told me a) how expensive her first gluten-free grocery run had been [I knew there were cheaper options, only had to check back] and b) that she hated grocery shopping. I wouldn’t have liked her to miss out on foods she used to eat as well as pay much more than necessary so I paid more attention to the gluten-free selection at stores whenever I was running errands.Turns out it was just this week Aldi released a few gluten-free cookie options. Helping my colleague out is just another act of selfish unselfishness: finally getting to use the gluten-free living knowledge aquired through blog reading that I formerly had no use for. Win-win.
Looked up and translated a few mug cake recipes for another colleague after she mentioned she liked cake but never got to bake any since her apartment is oven-less. Mug cakes – popular in the blog world but another thing not widely known over here. Searching for suitable recipes wasn’t a big deal aside from the fact I had to ensure no ‘weird’ ingredients were required. Because coconut flour and various nut butters or alternative sweeters don’t happen to have their place in non-blogger households – who would have guessed ;)? Really, though, us health nuts do have to admit that we use a lot of ‘unusual’ foods.
As is the case every week it’s once again getting late as I’m finishing this post here and wishing you a
Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today:  My morning reading time. Tea time with my parents and a walk outside.

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21

Pinterest: MissPolkadot21

Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
Tell me three [or more] achievements from your past week!
What was the last amazing book you read and couldn’t put down?

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Family time and facing yeast fears

Be thankful for what you have, don’t yearn for what you don’t. 
Something that I’d like to think I’m quite good at. If I give into those thoughts lingering in my mind or have a particularly bad day – rather week – I can think of a many things I don’t have. Most of the time, though, I’m aware of how blessed I am. Hearing about the harsh contrast in the life of somebody else once again both made me wish I could do more good than just small favours for others. And realize [once again] be even more thankful for all I have. Not necessarily focusing on materialistic things here.
Anyway, this very mindset seems absent whenever I reflect on past weeks. Rather than seeing the wonderful opportunity to spend time with my family I see a lot of unchecked items on my to-do list. It’s something I wish was different because it keeps me from truly enjoying the days with them when I constantly worry about my unfinished to-do lists.  Sunday afternoons/nights don’t do my mind any good and I’d be better of not writing these kind of posts at that time lest I scare all of you away.
How about we just jump right into another Week in Review with Meg and Miss Ave? Sounds good?! I thought so.

 

Week in Review

 

Some of what happened in the past seven days: I. ..

Worked. Technically the same as usual but it was an unusually good week. No ropportunity to work in my favourite position this time around, yet acknowledgement from my [male] boss  [the harder to please one] and simply a good flow and conversations with colleagues. This makes such a difference even in less than exciting jobs.

Published two post: a Week in Review revealing the “selfish” side of my random acts of kindness and more good good links.
Took a spontaneous rest from my workout. I haven’t talked about this before – other than mentioning it on a side note – but exercise is a tricky issue for me. While I’m not doing any crazy strenuous or long workouts balance and taking a break out of schedule don’t come easily for me.
Spent time with my family [sister, maternal grandparents, my brother and his girlfriend], including little P. who’s not qute as little anymore. It’s both marvelous and sad how fat he has grown from baby to toddler in seemingly no time. Seeing him walk around in his own when it feels like just yesterday that he crawled through the house makes me want to slow time down …
nephew_toddler in nature
Bought not one but two new books. Those of you who have been around for a while know this is a major accomplishment for me. Spending on myself – food and daily necessities such as toiletries not included – is hard.
Helped a colleague out. She’s been suffering from constant stomach problems for years and finally gotten further tests done lately. Being a blogger and hence – a real advance as I’ve come to find – familiar with more potential causes/illnesses thanthe average German I printed out some information for her [assuming it might be IBS from the symptoms she described] and after her diagnosis – celiac’s disease – showing her some blogs and Instagram accounts. This might sound odd to most of you but these diseases as well as information on how to deal with them or what to eat are mostly unknown around here so she was genuinely lost on how to cook from now on.
Burnt one of my hands when pouring hot water into my thermos from the electric kettle. If you’re having a deja-vue deja-thought moment: true. Yes, I do seem to have a slight, albeit not worrisome, tendency to accidentally hurt myself in the kitchen. This accident was particularly unfortunate as I’m left-handed and guess which hand happened to be involved? Cooling salve and a tight bandage put a damper on my productivity for the next few hours. [The hand is now fine again.]
Dared to work with yeast for the first time. Granted, I have memories of baking a yeast-based cake years ago but that doesn’t really count. Anyway, yeast was still one of the ingredients intimidating me and I had my mind set on conquering it this past week. Thanks to abovementioned incident the making of turned into a family business with my mum, grandma and self-proclaimed yeast expert sister chiming in on the dough prep. As well as my sister graciously offering to do the final kneeding by hand and rolling out the dough. Because there was no hygienic or practical way of doing it for me. Long story short project healthy Almond Striezel [a certain type of strudel] was a huge success. You know it is when all three of your ‘yeast experts’, some of them skeptical of healthy baked goods, give you a thumbs up.
Mandelstriezel_healthy almond Striezel
 Now that leaves me wondering if I should remake and share the recipe on the blog or not. On one hand, I really want to because it passed the taste test of all family members, is suitable even for toddlers because – final point – the whole Striezel contains a mere 3 1/4 or so tablespoons of coconut sugar yet is sweet enough. Woop!
Honest opinion please! Does anybody still bake with yeast these days?
As usual when finishing these posts it’s getting late again so I’ll bid you goodbye for now and wish you a …

Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today: The time with P. and the remainder of the family, obviously.

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
Tell me three or more achievements or happenings from your past week!

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Selfish acts of kindness

Oh hi, final Monday of February!
Truth be told: Up until shortly ago I was sure about skipping the Week in Review. After a busy week, the weekend with more leisure time led me into some kind of overthinking funk once more. My original intro for this post elaborated on the ruminations of my mind yet I opted against sharing them for the sake of a more positive start into the week.
Here’s the whereabouts of the slightly odd title. In previous Weeks in Review, I’ve frequently mentioned the little favours I’m doing for others. The inclusion of these things wasn’t an attempt to make myself look like the most selfless or sweetest person on earth or fish or compliments [ick]. Seriously? I can be snappier than a snap pea when I’m moody, tired, hangry. In fact, I’m pretty selfish in my acts of kindness. Why? Because I engage in them even more when I’m not feeling the best myself. Doing favours for others is my way to combat unwelcome thoughts and emotions in my life. So the ‘accomplishment in them is – if there’s any; they’re rather little happiness inducers – getting myself out of moodiness.  Two examples in this past week were the ice cream pick-up for my colleagues and calling my aunt. My mind was spinning in these situations and I needed to get out of it. Helping others or doing little things to brighten their days is a way of charging my own happiness batteries. See: selfish. Or maybe a win-win situation? Either way, it’s benefitting me as much as the person I offer help.
Onto the Week in Review with Meg!

Week in Review

 

In the past seven days I …
Worked the usual five times with Monday through Wednesday being downright insanity. We were shorter than short on staff with one of my colleagues sick and the other on holiday. As I mentioned this meant I was working at the front desk with one of my colleagues. Since she had to simultaneously oversee another area of the business there were moments of just me at the reception, two phones ringing and three clients asking for help. It was nuts but nevertheless I enjoyed it far more than my usual job. Stress is strenuous in the moment of but seriously rewarding afterwards. I truly hope I’ll be able to help out at the front desk in the future again.
Published merely one post. Bummer. This week will be better in that you’ll at least get more good good links on Sunday. If time allows I’m hoping to really get up another post prior to that one, though. I miss blogging more regularly and have multiple drafts yet can’t seem to finish them to my satisfaction.
Called my paternal grandma. It had been a while and she actually tried to put me off right away as she’s not feeling well lately. Yet I decided to just chat a little more – did I mention I’m a smidgen stubborn? –  and while it didn’t turn into a really long conversation she was up for it more than initially stated. My grandma is about to turn 90 and since she’s living too far away for  regular visits I at least wanted to exchange a few more sentences. Life is short.
Called my paternal aunt. She in a rough time in life and knowing how much I appreciate a good conversation in those moments I figured I’d call her. Though nothing can really take away her pain right now at the end of the conversation she sounded happier.

Some people work in the important area of cross-cultural communication. As a German blogger settled into the English-speaking blogging community I'm probably dabbling in that field a little, too. But let's be honest: I'm much better at cross-diet communication 😉. Like with these grain-free, vegan and paleo chocolate tartlets. [yes, the recipe is coming to the blog soon] Prior to blogging I didn't know about all the different diets out there. Now that I do I have fun trying to work out recipes suitable for multiple at once. Though I obviously follow a certain lifestyle myself and at that have preferences blogging and noticing the similarities of on first glance opposing diets has made me more open-minded. At the end of the day, the way we eat doesn't change our character. And if we meet and can share good food suitable for our different diets – what's not to like?! Which diet – if any specific one – do you follow and is there any particular reason why you chose it? . . . #vegan #thefeedfeedvegan #grainfree #glutenfree #daswortzumsonntag #paleotreat #chocolateplease #glutinchensatt #vegandeutschland #veganwerdenwaslosdigga #bgbcommunity #schokocontent #sonntagssüß

A post shared by @chocolatea_me on

Baked a new treat for the blog. Yes, I’m aware I owe you many recipes by now. Once I can figure out the lighting situation and decide on a light box I will get those proper pictures and share them. Actually, I did take a few more picturesof these little tartlets that might not be the worst so we’ll see …
Did some laundry for my parents while they were on a three-day holiday plus a load of my own laundry. This involved lots of frustration about the [insert swearword] washing machine fussing around.
Prepared a new batch of healthy Nutella and managed to not burn my finger this time around. Big deal ;).
Prepared another batch of peanut butter the following day. See, I’m slowly working on overcoming the dread of cleaning the Vitamix afterwards.
Got ice cream for my colleagues on Friday. It was a strenuous day for the two of them yet lighter on the paperwork for me – see above mention of being short on staff – so when I was mostly finished with my duties I walked to the ice cream parlor. Just in case you’re wondering: no ice cream for me because I wasn’t in the mood and – like my boss – found the temperature too cold for a frozen treat. Mostly savoury cravings, though.
Ice cream
 [Recycled picure because I obviously didn’t have my camera on hand at work.]
Cleaned the apartment including a thorough mopping of the floors. Not my favourite part of adulting.
Went on daily walks. I need all the fresh air I can get despite the weather not being the best.Umbrellas and scarves were invented for a reason after all.
Meal-prepped while listening to yet more podcasts. I’m really getting into these and givingnew ones a try every week.
Being a little late in writing my review this week the clock is telling me I should end things here to avoid an overly late bed time. So I’ll leave it at that for now and wish you a …

Happy Monday!

Happiness-inducing today:  My morning reading time. I picked up a book I’d set aside not enjoying it much previously and it’s better than I initially thought.

Stay in touch!
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living
Tell me three or more achievements or happenings from your past week!

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Rinse. Repeat. Rest.

Some weeks can only be summed  up with ‘same old, same old’. Or as I would say about mine: Rinse. Repeat. Move on. In some cases like washing dishes the rinsing is in fact literal. Truth is that my days flew by mostly go go go and the weekend was over in the blink of an eye. It’s these weeks that make me feel unsatisfied and hard on myself. Did I really just let another week of life I was gifted pass by without major accomplishments?  Gifted – I know some might find this a little ‘woo woo’ but the way I see things we never know how much more time on this planet we get. Work is definitely playing a role in my feelings towards the fleetingness [probably not a word] of life. Anyway, it was Meg herself, commenting on another comment in my previous Week in Review who reminded me/us that sometimes just working and keeping ourselves fed is accomplishment enough. I’m trying to convince myself it’s true.

Truth is – and it’s funny we all seem to feel the same here; even those people we would see as superwomen jugling way busier lives – we will probably always feel we’re falling short compared to others. Even if – that’s okay.* We’re all just doing our best in this game called life. Every day. Guilting ourselves over past shortcomings doesn’t help. Making changes in the future does.

Jumping into the past and in writing this post the future already: here’s to another Week in Review with Meg.

*yes, I’m totally giving myself a pep talk here, too. Spealing of which: Here’s more pep talk if you need some right now. We all do at times.

Week in Review

Worked five days. It was an unsatisfactory week in that I caught up with my to-dos early on, new tasks only coming in slowly for the first few days but on the upside I got to leave earlier on Monday and Tuesday. I’m aware it’s an odd thing to ‘complain’ about a lighter workload but I like being of help and don’t enjoy waiting around for tasks coming up. On the upside, I had a constructive conversation with my [female] boss that I’d worried about unnecessarily beforehand. It wasn’t a big deal but simply to clarify the right handling of some tasks I wasn’t entirely sure about.

Posted twice: theWeek in Review and a collection of posts worth reading.

Spontaneously went on a long walk with my dad on Monday. Getting home early on this first beautifully sunny day in a while I wanted to get outside again soon and he happened to have similar plans, asking if I wanted to join him. Long time readers will know we have a difficult relationship so I agreed with slight unease. Yet in the end, it turned – one short blip aside – out to be an enlightening conversation, finding out more about my dad. It might sound odd but I think we’ll never stop learning or know all about even the people closest to us.

Flowers

[Throwback picture because #bloggerfail of not taking pictures again.]

Went on multiple walks by myself – soaking up the sun while it was still here – and one with my sister, husband, P. and some of their friends.

Finally went and ordered new inlays for my shoes. An item that’s been on my to-do list for a very long time  … Isn’t it funny how some of those tasks – unfortunately not all of them – we keep postponing end up way less uncomfortable or in this case time-intense than expected? Making that first step is the only barrier.

Spent time with my mum, P. and abovementioned friends’ five-year-old daughter which involved me reading her a book and randomly explaining gravity. It’s sweet to watch children play, explore and understand the world bit by bit. Marveling at what seems so trivial to us as adults. I miss this a little at times.

Hung out with my sister, her husband and P. on Sunday before dropping them off at the station. Their visit was short this time around so my happiness batteries could already take some recharging.

Ran errands for my parents a few times. This involved talking to the cheese guy again. Just to clarify this: No, I’m not into him but it’s nice noticing that uncomfortable feeling disappearing a bit.

Was in bed earlier than in many past months again. It’s not easy for night owl me but also not as much of a struggle as it used to be.

PJ pants_striped_bed

Worked out five days and – the actual accomplishment – spontaneously rested on Saturday. The reason was that I realized I wasn’t going about it for the right reason. Saturday night I found myself anxious about a few things, mostly because I hadn’t crossed off a satisfactory amount of tasks on my to-do list. Previously, I would have worked out, then made an effort at catching up on multiple tasks at once and delayed dinner until forever. Instead, I sat with the anxiety, made some tea, had dinner and finished my good good links. While my workouts [unfortunately; I miss those intense classes I used to visit while still living in another city] aren’t super intense or long I realized I was depending on them to stay calm and feel in control too much. So I took a cue from Cora and showed myself some compassion  [or tried to because the guilt still lingered] rather than rely on exercise. It’s still a process of learning to rest and truly relax. How can something like this be so hard for some of us?

…and now it’s Monday again. The day dreaded by so many people yet I’m looking forward to it. Granted, I could do without the early mornings. On the upside are getting out and socialising again, particularly as I’ll be working at the front desk all week, subbing in for a colleague who’s on holiday.  Things could definitely look worse for me. I hope you have something to look forward to on this first page of a new week, too – and even if it’s ‘just’ sunshine, catching up with colleagues or friends, …

 

Happy Monday!

 

Happiness-inducing today: Goofing around with P.

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