Minimalism: A 1-Month Update

I was going to start this blog post with how I have failed to meet so many items on my must list, but let’s instead turn this around and think of what I actually have accomplished first before moving on to areas where I still need some work.

Here, again, is my original must list (with any additions I’ve made since then):

I must eat healthier.
I must sleep more.
I must spend my money wiser.
I must declutter my home.
I must write every day.
I must practice self-love and confidence.
I must promote kindness.
I must read every day.
I must exercise 4 times a week.
I must learn yoga.
I must spend quality time with Ana every day that I have her.
I must work towards fostering better relationships with Jer’s kids every time I see them.
I must relearn the piano.
I must read every day. I read 15 books in the month of September. Yes, a lot of them were Young Adult which is maybe a bit shorter than a typical adult book, but that’s still 15 books finished so yes, I will say that I read every day.
I must spend quality time with Ana every day that I have her. I think I did alright on this one. I still need to set down my phone more, for sure, but I have been making a conscious effort to redirect my attention to her when she’s around. She’s important and the most valuable part of my life and I need to make sure that she knows that and is treated accordingly. How can I say that she’s the most important thing to me when I can’t set my phone down for 2 seconds to talk to her? That’s hardly fair.
I must work towards fostering better relationships with Jer’s kids every time I see them. We had a bit of a rough weekend, but there was some discussion about setting up some games or some challenges to help improve our interactions and to try to curb some of the problems that we have. This is a work in progress, but any progress is something.
I must declutter my home. I had a ginormous pile of shit in my living room for a month. I had filled over a dozen boxes of knick-knacks, dishes, books, toys, clothes, and all sorts of junk. I hosted a Passion Party and let my girlfriends rifle through it and take whatever they wanted and that made a dent in the pile. I was going to hold a garage sale later this month, but I couldn’t handle staring at it any longer and Jeremy was tired of hearing me sigh and look at the pile with contempt so we packed it all up into his truck and donated it. Gone. I sold a few things and I have a few more items listed on Craigslist that will be out the door as soon as i can get them gone. I still have a ways to go. I still definitely have way too much stuff, but it was a good dent and I’ll keep looking for more things that I can remove. I also noticed that I didn’t buy things I might have purchased previously. I was in Whistler for the weekend and saw a great set of coasters and I picked it up only to set it back down again with the thought, I don’t need this in my house. If I can keep that attitude up, it will go a long ways towards keeping my home clutter-free as well as helping me out financially.
I must promote kindness. I feel like, in general, I’m a kind person so I don’t know that this is much of a challenge, but I know that there need to be changes in a much bigger way. For example, I was sent a link to a series of pictures of prom pictures gone bad and while I giggled at a few of them, I stopped looking a few pictures in. Here’s why. There are real people, doing their thing, who are now being mocked by people who have never met them. Also? The commentary on the slideshow was horribly anti-women and I cringed more than once at the attitude of a girl not being able to wear a revealing dress or a woman having no self-respect. People-shaming in general needs to stop. Yeah, ok, so some of these people maybe don’t act or dress like your average human. Why does that matter? Why are we taking enjoyment in blasting their pictures all over the internet and making fun of them in practically the most public manner possible? As much as possible, I want to avoid the People Of Walmart-style humor. It’s just not that funny when you’re standing in front of the real person.
I must eat healthier. And here’s where my musts really start to derail. Yeah. Not so much. Still need to work on this. I have an inbox full of recipes from one of my besties and I need to meal plan and I need to focus. I say this all the time and I never do it… so I need to figure out what’s going to make it stick.
I must sleep more. If falling asleep on the couch last night and waking up 2 hours later overheated and confused about where I was counts, then sure. Nope. Stick to your bedtime, Courtney, your body will thank you.
I must spend my money wiser. I’m still in a bit of a position where I haven’t had a ton of extra money to spend, but I can already think of a few huge expenses that I should have avoided. That’s alright. Live and learn and keep on trucking. As I mentioned previously, I am hopeful that my I don’t need this in my house attitude will be of assistance in keeping my wallet stashed in my purse.
I must write every day. I was doing well at this for a while and then it fell by the wayside. I still haven’t written in my private journal since I returned from Indonesia and that certainly needs to be remedied. Even if I’m not posting here, I should be writing somewhere.
I must practice self-love and confidence. I find it very interesting how my brain works. I completed Mudderella, as I posted previously, and dude, I felt like such a freaking badass afterward. It was incredible. What a high. Then the next day I was sore, which, fine, I expected that.  Then on Monday my foot was SO sore and really swollen and I was limping. I had it looked at and apparently I somehow managed to get an infection. I was really angry with my body. I felt let-down. I felt, as I so often do, that my body is failing me. It’s just now, as I’m sitting here writing this, that I’m thinking that no. My body has NOT failed me. My body went over walls and through pipes and down slides and HIKED A MOUNTAIN. My body did pretty incredible. Injury shminjury. It’ll heal and I’ll get back to work and I’ll eat better and my body will bounce back and continue to climb mountains and do feats I didn’t know it could do.
I must exercise 4 times a week. I’m still pretty good at the 3 days a week, I need to up my game and get to 4. I am signing up for a half-marathon in June so adding regular runs into my schedule will be a good way to meet this goal. As soon as my foot is healed.
I must learn yoga. I did 8 days of the 30-Day Yoga Challenge and then I fell off the wagon. I still have all the videos and I think when I get back from being away this weekend that I am going to start over from Day 1 and just get back to it. I was really enjoying the videos.
I must relearn the piano. I’m kinda laughing as I read this because I have made zero moves towards this must, but that’s okay. I have a lot on my plate and it will come.
So that’s where I’m at. I have a lot of work yet to do, but I have accomplished quite a bit in the last month and I’m ready to keep tackling these goals of mine.
Where are YOU in YOUR minimalist journey?

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