Project 6

Recently I had some leisurely time to think about my life time clock. Where I had some voids. Where I could fill in some blanks with things I wanted to do. Some things I want to do now vs. later. Some things I hate spending time on. Where I could reshuffle or realign for maximum return on my overall time and/or productivity. It wasn’t too hard when I took out my notebook and made myself a list of actionable tasks.

Growth: I took into account some areas that I could grow and set a path to embrace the uncomfortable to favor the end result(s). This isn’t new but a reminder of sorts to stay on task for me. Nobody else tells me where or how to grow. Just me!

Travel: I put 2-3 destinations or types of trips on the soon to happen list. Passports are ready. Adventure is on the horizon. Here I may adjust my travel partners. Sometimes by choice. Sometimes based on availability. No matter where I go and with whom, I plan to live each trip to the fullest.

Fitness: I put a 5k on the books to start the process with some other events on the horizon. Chipping away at the me vs me project. When I make this a priority so many other areas of my life benefit. I have set a new goal for myself that will require a little effort. A little patience. A little flexibility. All of which results in a positive attitude.

Reflection: taking time here and there to reflect on the state of now, what’s on the horizon as well as what’s in the rear view. This process is continual and a critical part of how I live my life. Never sitting in one place for too long. Always adjusting to the new tides that roll in each day/week/month. Looking at yourself in this way requires you to see imperfections and make adjustments. A lot harder for some than others.

Accountability: I am a nerd for tracking things. Numbers, statistics, trends, and so much more. When I monitor or track performance I tend to see better results. Most of the time I hold myself accountable but I also have a trusted few that I have monitor me from a distance as a double check. Who holds you accountable in your life?

Writing: as I write here today, I think of how my time is utilized for virtual journaling. A shared space with the world yet sometimes the content is focused on the good, bad and ugly of my life. Truth bombs. Writing has purpose for me as my lens on life is different from many and why I continue to write and publish. Some writing is for purpose while other writings are for monetizing. Either way my words hold power and a it’s a role I cherish. Never underestimate the power of your words.

Reading: each day I spend some time reading. It may just be five minutes one day. It may be an article vs a book. It may be a research topic. Nonetheless I read and gain knowledge of sorts. I find this to a be a peaceful time for me. A starting point to my day. A slow roll into what can be busy and hectic days. Some do yoga to calm their mind and soul. For me the slow breathing and simple mindset used when reading is just as beneficial for me.

As I wrap up my initial post on project 6, I will let you in a little secret. Project 6 is six month journey of sorts for me. The ups/downs and everything in between for the next six months. As I wrap up my caboose prepping for college and having many last memories before the new chapter of her adult life, my role shifts. 

I have more time for me. I have more time to focus on things I want to pursue. I have the ability to choose with a shift in responsibilities. As my caboose heads out into her new world, so do I. My world is round and free flowing as should hers. Limitless opportunities for each in different stages of life. While I celebrate her I will also celebrate me as we journey slightly different paths of growth.

Project 6 will shift to project 12. Then the shift will be year 1. From there the tides may shift again. Only time will tell. Stay tuned as I craft some writings in each of these categories that touch on how I feel when I’m each of these stages or phases of life. My project folder will soon be full of content and memories. 

Stay tuned as each story unfolds. Also wishing my dad a heavenly birthday today. This post is in his honor as he provided me with so much inspiration to do me in life and I hope I do the same for my caboose.



What does it mean to be a burden to others?

For different people this answer can stretch for what seems like miles from one extreme to another. There is the obvious burden for our elderly. Unable to care for themselves 100% or dependent on others for shopping, driving, personal care, even tech support. Sometimes the need is even as simple as companionship or mental stimulation. All these things take time and effort. Once capable adults may find themselves in need of help on weekly or even daily basis. 

There can be other scenarios for adults that are harder to see. Emotional, intellectual or even medical challenges or disabilities. These often cause dependency issues relating to transportation, housing, finances amongst others. 

Tragedies or accidents or diseases with crippling effects. Confined to a wheelchair or hospital bed. Limited mobility during recovery. Medical care costs, time traveling to appointments, the red tape of insurance claims, referrals, the list goes on. Each scenario can make the individual feel like a burden to others. A dependency problem. One may perceive themselves to be a burden while others may be willing to offer support without thinking of their actions as burdensome. The mismatch can become a barrier between people. 

Hope. A simple four-letter word. We can all offer hope to others through our positive actions. Sending a note card, a text or making the phone call. Checking in to offer a helping hand. Some will accept while others will deny any help.  They may even hide the fact that they need assistance. Watch for other signs with those who deny any need for help. Depression. Isolation. Self-harm. Lack of interest in religion. Giving away prized possessions. These signs could lead to other issues.

Maybe it’s their stubbornness or I can do it mentality. Maybe they don’t want to waste others’ time. Let’s face it, we will all find our selves in this scenario at some point in time. How will you handle the burden dilemma? Will you accept help willingly? Will you ask for what you need? Will you want to be isolated and do it all on your own? Will you consider quitting the fight all together?

On the other end, if you offer support is it endless? Is it just a starting point? To force the one struggling to face their problems head on? Will you continue to offer support time and time again? What if somebody takes advantage of your kindness? How does one communicate to the person in need that it’s okay to have help? It’s okay to work as a team. It’s okay to not be okay all the time, but it’s never okay to take help for granted.

Sometimes the one who needs the help becomes a taker because the giver allows it. One must always set boundaries. You can offer help but expect change and effort (or at the very least gratitude) in return. And watch out for reverse abuse. Words can hurt. The one who feels they are a burden can lash out at the ones closest to them. Unless you have that hard conversation the hole will continue to build. Consistent and honest communication can go a long way toward sharing the burdens so no one gets overwhelmed. 

adventure, challenges

Climbing Life

Every day I set out to climb the mountain of life. Some days it rains. Some days it pours. Some days the sun shines bright. Some days are meant to be for laziness. Other days require a dialed into productivity mentality. No Matter what the weather of life spits out, I still climb through the turbulence. No climb nor day is ever exactly the same.

Today’s climb encompassed physical strain, outdoor adventures, lots of sunshine and just a different set of people to converse with. Keeping in mind the latter can be exhausting in itself. This girl was tired and working on fumes at the end of the day but the strain may just be the icing on the cake. It was the weekend but being booked solid Friday to Sunday isn’t for the weak at heart. The climb was taxing, physically this time.

Reminder-spending time outside in the sun can have positive benefits for your varied recovery stages.

Tomorrow will be a contrast. A different mental Monday starts in with new people and places adding stress and awkward moments. As long as the sun shines a little the kinks in the day will easy work their way out. If the weather is rainy I may feel bumps in the day. For now the weather seems to fit the need for my mental Monday. A day to dial in and focus on the productivity needed. This climb is more about mental strength than physical.

Sometimes the calendar brings along dates or events that get locked in months prior. A long wait time to get to the certain day. Sometimes it’s a dreaded day and other times it’s a welcome day. A business meeting of sorts. A dress up day. A get shit done or else kind of project. How does one even get wrapped up in such chaos? Little ole me of course. A positive attitude can go a long way on these day that seem like a mountain to climb in 15 minutes or less.

Whether one has a job interview, a class final, a sales meeting, a review with their boss, a court date, a wedding, a birth or just any other once in a blue moon event one will feel stress of sorts. The key is training your mind to win the day. Climb the mountain of life. That day. Conquer that obstacle that may seem so big, yet it’s only as big as you let your mind make it. These days seem more about emotional strength. Being able to endure life’s surprises.

Seizing a day.

Capturing that big moment.

Feeling the rush of completing what seems so difficult in the moment.

Looking ahead at what can be with a smile.

Putting your head down to climb the mountain of life. Taking little steps to chip away at that monumental task(s). Exercising patience. Growing physically, emotionally, socially and mentally. Putting oneself out there. Applying strength when needed. Pushing when required. Pushing again when resistance hits. Reframing. Regrouping. Reclaiming life. Your life. After the mountain.

Life can feel weighted at times. That’s life. Some days you need to lift heavy physically. Some days mentally. No two mountains have the same terrain. Life is full of mountains. Life is a gamble of sorts. Sometimes you need to gamble on yourself. This involves taking risks. The bigger the risk, the greater the rewards in life.

Never stop climbing!


Up Too Early

3 am came too early for the girl who likes to sleep past 7 am on the daily and even later on the weekend.

What was different? A few things, but nothing serious. Tired, of course. Just unable to sleep. Maybe too much caffeine before bed? Was it a restless night? Not so much. Just a good old case of she can’t sleep. Now. Today. At all. Talk about frustrating!

Not hungry. Not thirsty. Not angry. Not unsettled. Not hyped for a trip or a meeting or a big work deal, nothing. Not a thing to weigh one down. Insomnia. Just insomnia. Toss. Turn. Peek at the clock. Take deep breaths. Count to 20. Listen to the soft sounds of doggies breathing. All so peaceful…but sleep is still miles away. Hate to see what my whoop says tomorrow or today about my overnight recovery. The yawns get heavier but still the sleep doesn’t follow. Day breaks and as predicted, the whoop insists sleep is needed! Just a confirmation of what I already knew.

Visits to dreamland are short. Then longer visits seem deeper yet disturbing content causes me to wake. Unexpected. Sleep deprived: no stormy weather just stormy sleep; a long day awaits this tired soul.

A day outdoors with the sun on her face adds to the exhaustion. Will a late afternoon nap help offset the tiredness? Would a wind down cocktail be better? Who’s to know the exact recipe to support the exhausted. Minutes in daytime seem as long as the endless minutes overnight. Hungry every couple of hours. Snapping at co-workers. Attention drifts. Not quite firing on all cylinders. Body feeling heavy. When is bedtime again?

This fiasco starts again as the new night begins. Eye masks. Extra blankets. Blankets pulled up just right. Reading for a few minutes. Nothing could soothe the soul of the tired one. Maybe it’s time to count sheep? Lullabies? 

Have you ever had a sleepless night?


Badass Babes

It was called the Badass Babes Light. A GoRuck event.

The title sounded interesting. But after reading the description, I definitely wasn’t going to do it.

Two hours. Unknown physical challenges. All under the weight of a ruck.

Not doing it.

Team work with no one I knew.

Nope. Nope. Nope.

The hour came, and a handful of the gals I just met threw their packs on and looked at me…”are you coming or what?”

And so it began.

Me and 93 of my newest gal pals corralled in a large field. A woman stood in front of us. It was her job to warm us up for the challenges / adventures to come.

50-40-30-20-10 she said.

50 jumps over your pack

40 pack deadlifts

30 reverse lunges (pack on your back, of course)

20 weighted air squats

10 burpees with a jump over your pack.

Oh, and when you’re done, you can either sit in a pack-on full squat hold, or a pack-on plank.

I looked around. No one to complain to. Just do it. But if this was the WARM UP, I had a strong sense of the madness to come. I seriously thought about just walking away. No one was there to stop me. Who would know?

But I just decided to stick it out a little bit longer.

What followed was a 1.5-hour tour de force of strenuous exercise. 60-pound sandbag suitcase carries in a circle, pack-on pushups, more burpees. Clip the bags together and carry it with all your fellow badass babes in a line. Pick it up, put it down, pass it one way, pass it back. Put the sandbags down. Step ups on a long local bench with your pack on. Up, down, up, down. Then the 5-gallon buckets come out. The leaders each fill one with the salt water in the canal behind us. They come back up to the long line of babes and start picking people off by the bucketful as they step up, down, up, down. Thankfully it was hot as heck. But shouting encouragements to others when an unexpected dump came left me with a literal bad taste in my mouth.

More walking with the clipped sandbags, back to the original corral. Then, we had to lift and toss the bags, all 25-30 of them, around a circular path. 90 plus women, 30 bags, so we were taking turns with the tosses. This had to be my favorite part. I love my sandbag at home, which isn’t quite so heavy but I do know how to clean it to my chest and launch it. This made me feel so strong and like I contributed. Finally, back to a big circle with more sandbag throws and pushups with pack.

I forgot what may have been the hardest part for some, which happened at the very beginning, even before the warm up. All this was done with nothing to hold back your hair. I have short hair and had nothing holding it back anyway so when they told everyone at the beginning to take their hair down I just stood there. As you’ll see on the patch we earned, the badass babe has long flowing locks so the two dudes in charge said it’s a rule to have our hair down. I wondered for a moment if that meant I wasn’t woman enough. Then I decided I didn’t care what their narrow definition of femininity was anyway. What would three men know about that? Not much. Nothing that mattered to me, at least.

30 minutes of yoga and cool down and I earned my patch for my ruck. I am a total patch chaser and I knew what it meant. All the Street Parking Women who completed it took a group pic, but otherwise there was no evidence it happened. I was too busy suffering to grab a photo. I do have the patch, of course. Another effort and experience for the books. I didn’t give up.