Personal improvement

I’m not a great person.  Sometimes, if I’m honest with myself, I don’t even try to be a great person.  Don’t get me wrong – I’m not evil incarnate.  I even have moments when I really shine.  It’s just that on the whole, I’m not happy with myself.  This tends to magnify my negatives in my minds eye.  It’s something I aim to change.

I’ve been slouching around in not-great land for quite a while now – several years.  If you were to look back through my posts, you’d see all the fun I had with epilepsy.  The medication was a real bitch.  By the grace of God, the seizures stopped a couple of years ago and I haven’t been on the medication for some time now.  So I can’t really use the “medication is making me feel rotten” excuse any more.  So what does that leave?  I’ve been slouching around out of inertia and habit.

This has left me in a place I don’t enjoy being in.  A place where I’m depressed a lot.  A place where I’m overweight (a lot).  A place where I lack motivation.  It’s a pit, and it’s a hard one to climb out of.  But it’s a pit I’ve been in before, and I know how to climb out of it, and I’m ready to start.

I’ve been reading a lot about leadership lately, and you know what?  It turns out that the path to leadership is a lot like the path to personal improvement.  Because if you honestly work at being a good leader (at work or at home or in any facet of your life), you end up realizing there’s a lot about yourself that needs improving.

One of the books I read recommended mission statements as a way of focusing how you want to be – this helps you to keep the important things in perspective.  I wrote a personal mission statement (linked under Pages).  I think it’s OK.  It’s a start, and I expect I’ll change it over time as new things become important to me.  Much to my own surprise, writing more is one of the items on my mission statement.  It’s cathartic I guess.  I enjoy writing my thoughts, so I’ll be posting here more.  I don’t think anyone reads this page – maybe my wife (hi Allena!) but that’s OK.  It’s a journal of sorts, and it meets the criteria of “writing more”.

Another item on my mission statement is losing weight and getting fit.  I don’t think this is even all that high in my priorities.  It probably should be, because I KNOW that losing weight and getting fit is a big part of getting out of the pit I mentioned above.  Consequently, it’s something I aim to change sooner rather than later because it’s an enabling step forward.  Tonight I walked several laps around the driveway (don’t laugh, it’s a big circular driveway – probably a good tenth of a mile loop).  I didn’t really count the laps – the goal was just to start.  Sometimes the kids held my hands.  My wife (hi Allena!) joined me for a few laps.  It was a nice little walk.  Nothing fancy, just a start.

Food and diet has been on my mind a lot lately too.  I’m an emotional eater.  When I feel bad, I eat.  Usually this makes me feel bad too, so it’s kind of a cyclical problem.  I read an interesting tidbit today about food – not what you eat but how.  The recommendation was to chew really slowly – not to inhale your food.  I definitely inhale my food most of the time.  So that’s where I’m going to start.  Not a forced reduction in calories, or going low/no carb, or anything like that.  I’m just going to work really hard at eating slowly.

Well, there we have it – my starts.  My start on change, my start on fitness, my start on my personal missions.  Step one out of the pit.

One Response to “Personal improvement”

  1. Allena says:

    glad to see you writing and looking to live a happier and fuller life. I will be there with you each step of the way.