New Year’s Visions

2015-01-06 23.16.35

Behold my creation. It’s vanilla Victoria teacake with Raspberry Chantilly filling and iced with cream cheese frosting.

Resolutions may be great. So, I recently looked at the scale and thought, “Oh damn it, how did I get to be 170 lbs?” I must have been eating plenty of junk food and eating out. I haven’t been working out as hard as I used to. I’m in pain, so strenous workouts make it worse. I have to start slow and build myself up to it. I admit that it’s a blow to the ego when I have to significantly lower the weight I lift. I used to deadlift 150 lbs but now I’m at 90 lbs or less. I  had people tell me that I don’t look like I’m 170 lbs. Almost every lady in my office are on their resolutioner’s diets.  Oh, thanks for making me feel like a pig. On the positive side, gyms are having their New Year’s specials and deals. 

Every January, almost every gym gets an increase due to the resolutioners. As months go by, the numbers decrease. Now when I think of it, how many of us faithfully kept our New Year’s resolutions from 2014? 2013? 2012? Resolutions have the same lifespan of a fad diet with no long term lasting results.

I’d rather list New Year’s Visions as opposed to resolutions. I made a resolution to finish my novel in 2013. And, I still haven’t. Visions, as opposed to resolutions, help set the pace and outlook for the new year. It’s what I want from life and seeing myself achieve it. That makes it easier to ask myself, what step/s will I take to accomplish that? Some may take more than one year. That’s perfectly OK.

By the way, that's kilograms not pounds.

By the way, that’s kilograms not pounds.

Health/Fitness Visions

I see my clothes fitting me better, a slimmer waistline, more definition, and stronger. I’m also healthier and not getting sick as often. To me, my body is after all the temple, and I want to maintain it. 

I spent the last year focusing on recovering. Earlier this year, I felt like I was functioning at 20% but now I’m feeling more like myself, say 60%. I’d like to lose 20 lbs. However, I’d like to have a holistic approach to health and fitness. There is no point of losing 20 lbs, if my run time hasn’t changed or if I am not getting stronger, agile, or more fit. Fad diets are absolutely not acceptable. Most people get on this roller coaster of fad diets. A fad diet is not sustainable, so when a person starts eating normally, they end up gaining all the weight back. I’ve seen people who seem to be on some diet or the other every so often. However, they look the same as they have for years. I decided to talk to a nutritionist, nurse, and personal trainer to get their views on healthy eating and fitness. I also did some research on my own. Rather than “going on a diet”, I would like to understand what it means to eat a healthy, balanced diet as a lifestyle. That doesn’t mean that when I’m at a party I cannot eat sweets. It should be eaten in moderation. Here’s what I will do:

  • Drink more water, and snack more on fruits, vegetables, hard boiled eggs, and nuts instead of candy, cookies, chips.
  • Eat breakfast. Do not skip breakfast.
  • Join a gym.
  • Exercise 2-3 times a week.
  • Yoga or Pilates
laptop martini

FYI, I don’t drink hard liquor anymore. This was years ago when I was doing it Hemingway style. That was my 2013 resolution of limiting drinking.

Writing & Blogging Vision

I see myself improving consistently as a writer and being well-connected to a local Boston writing community. I will write often.

 I’ve been consistently writing and want to keep it up. For me, it was important that I keep writing and enjoying it. I have been editing other people’s work. It’s time for me to pitch my writing and actively pursue publishing my work. A DIY MFA in Writing involves: writing consistently, reading and studying the craft of writing, and being part of a writer’s community. I want to read more about writing and read some delicious books. I have visited a few writer groups, but want to find one that works for me. Another possibility is hosting one.

  • Blogging: I will post more articles about writing and life. The blog needs more pictures.
  • Novel: I’m still going for it. I’ll  keep going. I’ll pencil out time in my calendar to write. I had someone tell me that some writers take up to 10 years to finish writing a novel. But, I don’t want to take that long.
  • Articles: As much as fiction writing is my forte, I occasionally enjoy writing articles. I need to figure which genre and style. I have lot to say about travel, being a survivor of domestic violence and abuse, growing up living abroad, criticizing cultural values and society, and the art and craft of writing. I have been so focused on fiction writing. Sometimes I want to experiment with a different genre. I’m glad that I took a magazine writing class. It’s probably time to put it into practice.
painting

Self teaching myself oil painting. This is half done. Let’s see where it goes.

Getting Creative! 

Variety is the spice of life and one medium is too confining. I like to mix it up by exploring other creative endeavours like baking & cake decorating, and painting. 

  • I enjoy baking, especially for parties and special occasions. I’ve been getting into cake decorating. It’s not only relaxing, but another creative medium.
  • Painting is a self-taught hobby of mine. I’m primarily a writer but sometimes I get stuck or need a break. A way to kindle creativity while taking a break is to explore another artistic medium. My secondary medium is painting. Abstract art is my favorite.

us-at-hostel.jpg

 Relational Visions

People have come in and out of my life. I welcome everyone to share life with me. Mutual respect is the basis of all relationships. Sometimes, I have to let people out and either let them go or kick them out. Other times, the unexpected happens. 

  • My boyfriend, Luis. I’m thankful for him coming into my life. I’m also happy to meet Eddie. I enjoy spending time with them.
  • My sister. I’m glad that I have one sane family member in my dysfunctional family.
  • My relatives. Honestly, it’s been a mess. It’s chaotic, confusing, and messy. I’m not sure where things stand. I prefer relationships with mutual respect and appropriate boundaries. It’s tough setting boundaries with older people. One time someone asked my sister about Indian culture. She told them, “There’s a bunch of nosy old ladies who pry  into other people’s business and gossip.” We all laugh about it. I’m ashamed to say that I simply cannot stand the nosy, gossiping, judgmental, self-righteous attitudes of the desi crowd. In some ways, I’m glad that I left India. It’s not a mystical, exotic place. It’s a dirty mess. I can’t stand the backwardness and cultural hypocrisy. (Welcome to reality). I left the country years ago and have no interest in connecting to my heritage. I don’t know about my relatives. There are some sane people. I want to keep them. But I’m tired of pretending we’re one close, happy family. Because we’re not!
  • Friends and mentors. Some of my friends are much more closer than my own family members. They feel more like family than those who share my own blood. Since I moved across continents, friend-shifts are bound to happen. It’s a part of life.
  • New people and acquaintances. There’s so many new people coming into my life. I enjoy meeting new people.
  • Toxic people. I’m glad to let go of toxic people.
My last classroom. So many memories. What a journey. This phase of my professional journey is coming to an end.

My last classroom. So many memories. What a journey. This phase of my professional journey is coming to an end.

Professional Visions

I’d like to see myself transition well from teaching to another career. It’s not easy. But I’m not the only one who made a career change. 

  • Networking. I wish I spent more time in college learning networking. I didn’t learn how to until I graduated. Even after I graduated, I realized that I was doing some of it without realizing. Since I’m in a new area, I need to spread out my roots. I’m still new and doing ok. I enjoy finding professional organizations and events.
  • Soul searching. Luis got me a copy of The Compound Effect. He’s an evangelist for that book. I’m intrigued. I want to pick up some more books. It’s amazing how much more time I have to myself since I quit teaching.
  • Going for it. The whole job searching process seems very daunting. I want to break it down and approach it like a journey rather than a daunting chore. There’s a parallel to my dating experience. Once dating made me nervous. I see myself as that shy, awkward girl. When an attractive man flirts with me or gives me attention, I’m embarrassed and get nervous.  I’m worried if I’d say something stupid and embarrass myself. Then, going out there and meeting guys made me nervous. I meet weirdos or have bad experiences. I then wonder: What the heck is wrong with me? Why am I attracting weirdos? That was dating in my 20s. I used to complain about how much dating sucks. I’d get comments like, “Why? An attractive girl like you should have no problem attracting guys. And you’re a nice girl. Why are you single?” I hated those comments from well-meaning people. Then, sometime down the road my attitude and approach to dating changed. I knew what I wanted in a man. I became confident in myself. I saw going out there and meeting guys as an adventure or experience. Even if things didn’t work or if I met a weirdo, it’s an experience. I can laugh about my bad experiences with my friends. I went on a few dates and had a good time even though nothing came out of it. Then, of course, I met Luis. I found him attractive. He was a confident, mature, responsible man with common interests, similar communication styles. I enjoyed our time and it’s been over six months. It’s not that I was  a desperate beggar when it came to dating. I was always a chooser. I’m not one of those girls who’d rather be with a moron than being single. I enjoyed my singleness. I guess the difference was that I became a much more confident chooser. I became a better person. Naturally, I attracted the right person and it happened. Maybe when I’m job searching, I should see it as an adventure and journey rather than a chore. I should rejoice and embrace the best qualities I have to offer to a company or boss. I should get better at doing what I love. I should also go out there and network. I already enjoy parties, meeting people, and getting to know them. So why should it be any different in a professional setting? I’ll go for it. Speaking of confidence, I recently met a 50 year old lady who divorced and started dating again and changing careers. She said it’s awkward. She got dating advice from her daughter and son who were in college. She told me when she was changing jobs, her confidence wasn’t great because she was just divorced and going through a tough time. She told me it all happened in the right time and told me I can do it.

Let this year be a year of recovery, restoration, and rediscovery. I’m ready to embrace this year. 

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