I’ve always wanted to meditate but I just can’t seem to slow my brain down and I always just ended up feeling frustrated. I’ve tried guided meditation, online, in-person, with friends and it just never worked for me. Well, I think I finally found a way to make it work with a thing I didn’t expect, macro photography. I’ve been going out every day and taking pics at various times during the day and I’ve found that in order to get a chance at a decent pic I *have* to slow down. I have to slow down physically, mentally and focus on what’s in front of me. These daily outings have left me feeling refreshed, at peace and more calm. I’m also really, really happy with the results I’m getting so far. I’ve been into photography for a long time and I’ve had various camera gear over the years but it was always something I had to travel to do. Well, travel kicks my anxiety into high gear so I always found a reason to not do it. With macro I’ve only gone in my front yard and I haven’t even explored all of the front and still have the side yards and back yard to do! I’m also devoting time to learn to edit photos and to edit for myself. I love that dopamine hit of posting a pic on all the socials and in the past I would search for the shots that I thought would get the most likes. I’m still posting pics to social media but I’m not shooting specifically for that purpose. I’m also not editing for that purpose either. I’m shooting for that rush of “omg, did I just get that shot?!” and editing for “Holy shit, I can’t believe how amazing this looks!!”
I’m allowing myself to feel. I’m not tamping down my feelings for fear of what someone might think. If something makes me happy, then I’m happy! If something upsets me then I allow myself to be upset. When someone complements me or something I’ve done I accept it without qualifiers and simply reply with a “thank you!”. Admittedly negative emotions/thoughts have been harder to deal with. I want to acknowledge them but not let them spiral out of control. That is a work in progress. I had the first meeting with my old therapist this week. It has been almost 4 years since we spoke last and I didn’t realize but the first time I started seeing her was back in 2013! We had a very productive conversation and I was able to list the things I wanted to work on and she feels like those things are definitely fixable or at least deal-withable. I’d forgotten how draining therapy is for me, even this “intro” session. Apparently my subconscious did remember b/c I asked for a late day appointment on a day where I don’t have a lot of meetings and no meetings after my appt.
Had a discussion about my company’s “back to office” plan that felt really productive. Bottom line for me is I don’t want to be in an office environment again. I’ve disliked the office environment for my entire career and have always wanted to go fully remote but just dragged my feet. My company is also not requiring proof of vaccination to come back in, just a simple “yes” or “no” to a survey question. That’s not good enough. People’s behavior over the last year has shown me that I can’t trust them. I’m relatively healthy but I don’t want to be exposed to other people by sitting in an office for 8+ hours a day. Also, I can literally do my job from anywhere with an internet connection. There is nothing in the office I worked out of that requires my hands on attention. The main reason that my company is pushing for everyone to be back in person is “collaboration”. Absolute. Horseshit. We’ve been collaborating just fine (and more) over calls and video chats for the last 18 months. Hell, even the ceo said on a company wide call that productivity and collaboration were up since we all went remote! I have other reasons that I don’t want to go back including caring for a family member but the main reason is I just don’t want to be in that environment again. He’s going to take my concerns to his boss next week but he’s already making plans to find another job if they force him back in the office and I’m going to dust off the ole resume as well. I don’t want to leave but this is a line in the sand for me.
Overall I’m feeling a lot better about things in general. I’m still on track with my weight loss and next friday is my next appt for updated lab work to see how my diabetes is doing. Hard to believe it’s been almost 3 months already. As of this morning I’m down 33lbs since I was diagnosed in early May. I’ve been pretty inconsistent with exercise over the last few weeks simply because it’s been so goddamned hot and humid. Unless I get out before sunrise it’s just too miserable to run/walk, even in the evenings. I’ve been pretty consistent overall with my eating. I’ve had no soda since I was diagnosed and I’ve had 3 pizzas and a couple of sausage, egg, cheese biscuits since then but I’m not going allow my brain to tell me that I’ve failed in that regard. This is a complete lifestyle overhaul and something that has to be sustainable for the rest of my life. I’m going to have pizza or bbq or fast food or dessert and I’m not going to let that cause negative thoughts to spiral out of control. I think the only thing I won’t have anymore is soda. I honestly don’t miss that one bit. Sparkling water has been my go to if I want something carbonated and I’ve found the carbonation is what I want, not the sweetness. I’ve done a good job of getting things like my diet under control and incorporating exercise into my life in a sustainable fashion and I’m fucking proud of myself for that!