Why Some Days Are Better Than Others

As we make our way through January of a new year, it’s not unexpected that many people’s heads will be swimming with resolutions and ways to improve themselves in 2017.

Making promises to yourself to change for the better is often a plight to achieve our perfect lives – our perfect body, career, home, family and faultless days to boot.

But what is a perfect day? Is it a day full of productivity, errands and perfect health? Is it holiday cocktails on the beach with no work or responsibilities in sight?

And how impossible is it to achieve this flawless life?

One of my recent online discoveries is Amy Young, a life coach specialising in relationships. Her YouTube videos make me laugh and she’s super real about life and a big advocate for taking it easy on yourself.

One of her videos is about ‘better than’ days. Go watch it. Seriously. After suffering anxiety, she started to note down activities that made some days ‘better than’ others. Not perfect, just ‘better than’ the not so good days.

I’ve started doing this in the last month. Each night if I feel I’ve had a ‘good’ day, I’ll note down what made it a good day and, I’ve got to say, it really strips things back to the bare bones.

My ‘ingredient list’ for good days, as Amy calls it, is not outlandish or impossible to maintain – in fact most of the activities are things I can do pretty regularly.

Below is a sneak peek of my ingredient list for good days:

  • Doing a Yoga with Adriene video
  • Going for a walk in the sun
  • Eating pasta and drinking red wine
  • Writing a blog post :)
  • Calling a good friend
  • Dancing around the house to music

My challenge to you: when you find yourself heading to bed thinking ‘well, that was a good day’, note down in a log what made it ‘better than’ other days.

Let this serve as your roadmap to what you want to punctuate your days with and let me know what improvements you see when you work these activities into your life more regularly.

A flawless life is probably unrealistic, but good days are not. 

Where I'm At with Susan Williams-Goebber

If you've been reading my blog for a while, I'm sure you've gathered I crave organisation by all the time management posts I write.

This month I'm interviewing Susan Williams-Goebber, who specialises in helping women schedule their lives - whether it be work, play or sleep, she's got tips for every area of your life. Susan is a teacher and she also blogs and offers group and 1:1 coaching to help women avoid overwhelm. I hope you enjoy this insight into how she plans her days - I personally love her focus on self-care and rest. 

What is your usual wake up time?

Weekdays I get woken up at 5:30am, but I don’t get out of bed till about 6:30–7:00am.

On the weekends I don’t have an alarm so I wake up when my body says so, which is normally around 7–8am.

How do you like to start your day?

I love to start my day in bed with a cup of coffee or two. Oh and a glass of water with lemon that I didn't drink that night. 

I write in my journal to get everything out of my head, which is the first conversation that I have.

It is so important for me to know what’s going on in my head and get all the worries that I don’t want to share down on paper. I feel much better after writing.

While in bed I go through my emails, look on Facebook, answer any questions or comment on posts.

Then I watch webinars that have happened while I have been asleep. If there aren’t any available I watch Periscope or YouTube. I have now added guided meditation to my morning routine.  

I’m not a good morning person that is why I need such a long time in bed. I don’t talk to anyone and hubby has learned not to talk or ask questions 'til I’m out of bed, washed and dressed. It sounds bad I know, but I know me and it is easier on both of us. The good thing is that hubby is a farmer so he gets up before me and he’s out of the house.

Tell us about your commute. 

I drive to school at different times throughout the week. When I’m in my car I love to listen to books on my Kindle. Or let my mind wander.

I also like to go through my lesson in my mind and visualise how well-behaved the children will be and how much fun we are all going to have. I will also pick a song and start to sing it to get in the mood.

Do you like to plan your day ahead or allow some spontaneity?

I love to plan my week. I really need to know what’s going on and religiously write it in my planner. I believe I’m not good at being spontaneous and need to plan ahead. I feel safe when I plan.

After planning I know how much free time I have, so that when things come up out of the blue I can say yes or no. So really you could call it a ‘controlled spontaneity’.

How do you spend your ideal lunch break to recharge for the afternoon?

Oh I love my lunch breaks. I hate the cooking part so I am always grateful when hubby cooks. I then go and lie down every day at the same time (1:30pm) and sleep for about 15 minutes.

I then go through the same routine as my mornings, mad moodiness and all. I then take phone calls again at 2:30pm. 

My ideal lunch break would be to have a cook who has a healthy lunch waiting for me when I come home from school. I’d eat in peace, then go lay down.

What kind of workout schedule do you try to adhere to?

I love my yoga Wednesdays. My week doesn’t feel right if I miss it. And that’s it! I take my two dogs for a walk each day and that’s my workout. 

I used to do so much more, and will add more to my life soon. I know that’s what everyone says but I know me and I know why I don’t do more. I’m working on changing that.

How do you like to end your day?

I like to end my day reading my emails, looking on Pinterest, watching webinars. When that’s done I will sometimes fall asleep watching something on Amazon Prime, my computer or my Kindle Fire.

What time do you doze off?

Whenever my body says so. It’s different every day. It can be as early as 8pm or at 2am. I don’t worry about it anymore.

What do you aspire to every day but never / rarely actually do? (you can tell me, we all have them!)

I want to read more in the evenings, not just emails, but books. 

I just have the feeling that I am missing something and need to have a look on social media to be present. I know this is stupid and I need to change my mindset on that.

Any advice for women trying to find ease in their every day?

I believe that we as women ought to put ourselves at the top of our to-do list. Be more selfish – we are entitled to free time and putting ourselves first.

We would be teaching our children not to sacrifice themselves for others, and our daughters will learn not to burn themselves out as future mothers. Have a set hour just as alone time and fight for it, it’s worth it.

Can you give my readers your quick go-to recipe after a busy day?

My quick go to recipe after a busy day has nothing to do with food. It’s just a cup of something warm and time to breathe. Clear your head and write your thoughts down on paper. Easy!

You can find Susan at the links below - go show her some love! 

Website | Facebook | Pinterest | Twitter | Instagram

 

Where I'm At with Paige from Healthy Hits the Spot

Squeal! I am super excited to feature Paige Schmidt from Healthy Hits the Spot on the blog today. I looked back and I've now been reading Paige's blog for almost 3 years.

She is famous for posting her 'daily eats', but even more importantly for her views on intuitive eating and breaking up with diets.

Paige has been a huge influence on helping me move to intuitive eating and I can't wait for you all to read her interview.

I'd also urge you to follow her blog and social media if you are in need of a positive influence in your 'web life'.

What is your usual wake up time?

Since I work from home, my schedule is pretty flexible in the early morning and late evenings. I mostly plan those times according to my husband’s current work schedule so that we get the most time together. Currently, we’ll wake up anytime between 6:00 AM and 7:30 AM. 

How do you like to start your day?

During the week, our day starts with coffee, making the bed (hubby does this), cooking breakfast (I do this), cleaning up (both do this), praying together before he heads to work, and then I sit down and work on my blog.

Once I’m done blogging, I’ll usually jump in the shower and get ready for the day, and start work early on. I love answering emails from my clients in the morning and early afternoon.

There are also seasons in my life where I’m really great at incorporating morning quiet time, which I love… This includes reading a devotional, a little bit of my bible, and journaling. With our current schedule, I haven’t quite figured out how to get that quiet time plugged in, but I do love that time when I have it… For now, my quiet time has been praying with my husband before he leaves for the day. 

Do you like to plan your day ahead or allow some spontaneity?

I love a little bit of both. My personality definitely leans more toward the planning side. When things are planned, I feel like I can look forward to them for a longer period of time, which brings me a lot of joy. 

To create balance for myself (I talk about this in my eBook [http://www.healthyhitsthespot.com/shop/]), I typically plan more of the work week and leave room for spontaneity on the weekends.

How do you spend your ideal lunch break to recharge for the afternoon?

When it’s time for lunch, I shut down the screen on my computer, head to the kitchen, and enjoy a quiet lunch.

I leave my phone behind, and sit at the table so I can enjoy some peace, quiet, and a few non-work moments as a recharge. I’ll often step outside for a few minutes too, just to get some fresh air. 

Right before I head back to my office, I’ll usually make a hot cup of peppermint tea to sip on as I ease back into working. This feels refreshing and helps me to “recharge.”

What kind of workout schedule do you try to adhere to?

I don’t have one. I aim to move my body in some form each day, and I’ll ask myself each day what would feel good and what I would enjoy. Some days this might look like a walk, others it might look like a run outside, or a trip to the gym to hop on the elliptical and lift weights.

As a woman, I try my best to honour that my body has different needs day to day. 

How do you like to end your day?

During the week, if my husband is home at a decent time (5:00 PM), we’ll usually have dinner together, walk around downtown, and watch Netflix shows together. Some nights we’ll walk to the nearest RedBox and pick out a movie. 

If my husband is working a long day (home around 10:00 PM) I have the evening to myself. In this case, I’ll eat dinner whenever I get hungry, I usually find myself taking a long hot bath, I’ll likely spend a little time at the gym, and I’ll end my night with reading in bed. I don’t enjoy TV or shows much when I’m alone.

What time do you doze off?

I go to bed anywhere between 8:30 and 10:30 depending on what time I’m waking up the next day. During certain seasons I have to wake up at 4:30, and in those seasons we’ll go to bed at 8:30. Right now, as I’m waking up between 6:00 and 7:30 I usually fall asleep around 10:00 or 10:30.

What do you aspire to every day but never / rarely actually do? (you can tell me, we all have them!)

Hmm… Good question! If I had to choose, I would say quiet time.

However, I really don’t love setting goals over and over and not reaching them, so I often like to get realistic with myself.

If I haven’t been doing it, and I’m fighting it day in and day out, I usually cut myself some slack and just take it out of my routine completely until I realise that I miss it and would like to bring it back. 

I’m a fan of following through with what I’ve told myself I’ll do because I really believe it’s important to create trust with ourselves.

That being said, if I occasionally plan to exercise, or something along these lines, and change my mind later on, I do my best to make this a conscious choice. So, instead of saying “I have no time or control over my schedule, I just can’t go.” I’ll say something like “Realistically, things come up, and for today, going to the movies with my husband (for example) feels more rewarding than sticking to my goal of exercising this evening. So, I’m making a choice to enjoy the movies and quality time instead.”

Any advice for women trying to find ease in their every day?

Remain calm. Don’t be hard on yourself. Take good care of yourself.

When we feel taken care of (by our own selves) we’ll feel happier, more in line with who we were created to be, and we’ll feel more valued.

Can you give my readers your go to recipe for after a busy day?

Above all else know that you don’t have to have endless time to be healthy. Feeling good and healthy in your body is not as hard as some people make it out to be.

Here’s a post I wrote on eating your favourite foods and feeling healthy too! http://www.healthyhitsthespot.com/2014/05/07/you-can-eat-your-favorite-foods-be-healthy-too/. (Ed: So many delicious recipes here!)

Thanks Paige! What really hit home for me with this interview is changing your goals according to what is working for you, and not being hard on yourself if you consciously choose to do something else. 

You can read Paige's blog and follow her over at:

Website - http://www.healthyhitsthespot.com

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Healthy-Hits-the-Spot/109111482522205

Twitter - http://twitter.com/HealthyHitsspot

Instagram - http://instagram.com/healthyhitsthespot

Pinterest - https://www.pinterest.com/paigeyyybee/