April Work Release; Week One

I’m going to try showing my work weekly instead of waiting for one giant release at the end of the month. It may not last but I’m feeling the need to tweak this practice. The first week of April has passed with wellness high and mighty because I worked at it. It doesn’t just happen.

Physical Wellness

I went running three days this week. I practiced yoga three days this week. I maintained a vegan diet. I went to bed early and got up early, even on the weekend. No medications or over-the-counter drugs. Spent time in Nature (either running or in my backyard) to counter the effects of sitting in front of a screen all day.

These are the things I do to feel splendid in my body.

Spiritual & Emotional Wellness

Photo Apr 01, 11 15 13 AM
It’s a tree root. I tossed it on the embers but it was too wet to catch.

I maintained a meditation practice and my daily Morning Prayers, even on the weekends. I studied the Great Mother archetype. I’ll be studying Her all month. I followed articles on spirituality from my blog reader. I made fire. I studied the therapeutic effects of the color burgundy. I spent a significant amount of time considering the Christian observances of Easter and the Jewish observances of Passover. Committed my religious thoughts to a journal to help me articulate and solidify what I do believe as well as what I don’t, since my spiritual practice is always evolving.

These are things I do to feel luminous in essence and spirit.

Intellectual Wellness/Creativity

I continued working with my frags. I perused articles from my blog reader on minimalism, mindfulness, humor, and recovery. I returned to my self-portrait practice.

 

The Chef got sick Saturday night; something viral. I wanted to fill the house with good medicine so I took the remote away from him and cued up a couple of hours worth of Jerry Seinfeld’s show Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee. We were both enlightened by it. This could also count as part of my physical practice since my own immune system was bolstered by the laughter and learning.

I finished reading The Blind Assassin and started reading An American Princess: The Many Lives of Allene Tew.  It’s another true story.

These are the things I do to feel soulful in relation in mind, knowledge, and expression.

Occupational/Financial Wellness

I maintained my Spending Fast, which means I only spent money on essentials. All extra money saved by not spending it non-essentials goes to knock out my one last debt. This week I was able to pay off another $560.00 toward that balance. I made $56.00 extra dollars this week from my side gig. This extra dough paid for beauty products; I’m still conflicted on whether or not these are essential. In the coming weeks the extra money I make from freelancing will cover flea/tick preventative (’tis the season) for both the dog and cat.

 

We tilled up a section of our backyard to plant a new herb garden. We’ll be growing our own again this year. You may remember we previously had an herb garden in the front yard but it was contaminated when a tree root damaged our sewer lines and turned our lawn into a lake of turds. We have been growing them in pots since then but we are finally ready to sow and reap in the ground again. We will put in plants to repel mosquitoes as well. The placement was also chosen to curb some erosion since we live on a hilly plot. The more we do ourselves the less we have to pay someone else later. This also doubles as physical wellness for the exercise involved and for the benefits of using the herbs for cooking and medicinal purposes.

Did I mention I finally found a natural cat litter that can be dumped right into the flower garden? I think the name is terrible — Cat Spot — but the product is fantastic. This stuff is made of coconut shells and nothing else. Twice a month it can be tossed right into the flower beds to decompose (after I remove the turds). I obviously won’t put it on the herbs or anything we eat but for the ornamental stuff, you betcha. After trying it out to see how it performed over time, I put it on subscription this week.

This week I found a hole in a dress. I’m trying to wear it out before I replace it. I mended it myself so we can keep on going. I’m trying to wear out everything before I replace it. On the cusp of spring cleaning I learned how to make homemade cleaning products with vinegar and witch hazel and recycled some spray bottles so we didn’t have to buy any this week. I downloaded the free book I get on the first of each month as a membership benefit. That’s another book I didn’t have to buy. I listened to the free music I get too. That’s more music I don’t have to buy.

These are the things I do to feel joyous in livelihood and lifestyle.

Social Wellness

I picked up my neighbor’s dog and took her running with me. I was honest that it was as good for me as it was for the dog. She makes me run faster.

I patiently listened to a friend vent about spending Easter weekend with contentious in-laws. I was honest with my friend regarding boundaries and saying No, even to family.

I was mindful and responsible for the energy I brought into the shared workspace at the office. I was honest that temper tantrums and grouchy-butt bitch sessions are disrespectful to people who can overhear them.

I sent messages of encouragement to my brother. I was honest about my regret.

I made contact with my full moon friend on the full moon. I was honest that I dreamed about him.

I spent a 3-hour lunch with relatives who were passing through town. My sister-in-law followed my lead and ordered the vegan menu option (whoo hoo!). I was honest that the family ranking system means I almost never get to touch the new baby.

I blogged here on the topic of social media. I was honest that my motivations were bitchy.

I made plans to see my cousin next month. I was honest that I’d rather stay in a hotel than bunk in someone else’s home.

I spent time with my stepchildren. I was honest when they asked me help name their new dog.

I gave away one of my emergency lunches because a coworker was cold and hungry and wished she had soup. I had vegan chili in the freezer in lunch-sized portions. I gave her one and it made her happy. I was honest that she did me a favor too because I’m rather burned out on vegan chili.

My desired feeling in my social relationships is honest.

Just like the good old schooldays when a math teacher would insist that we not only give a correct answer but show the work we did to arrive at the answer, so it is with wellness. It is work. It is ongoing work. It is never finished, ergo it is a practice. If we want to be well we have to practice wellness.

Practice with me. Determine how you want to feel. Choose work that helps you feel it. Lose the work that keeps you from feeling it. This is what works for me, always subject to improvement, change, or any other variable of life.

— Mercy

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