Starting four years and eight months ago, I began developing mental fortitude against temptation, negativity, and the stresses that would otherwise compel me to numbness through alcohol. This pursuit of sobriety propelled me into self-improvement, which I partially credit for my endurance to evade sketchy situations in my conscious life. How about in my unrestrained dreams? Where anything is possible, including finding myself pouring vodka into this very glass, splashing in some orange juice, and…
Word brevity prevents sentence clutter; room tidiness prevents house clutter. I was hesitant upon hearing my rowing stats platform would double their posting character limit because my writing has benefited from word count limitations and character restrictions. Just like decluttering a space, it’s tempting to fill in the new space with junk. If you’re careful with your planning, you can be effective with your storage solutions. Fitness is the same: rowing consistently prevents weight clutter.
Physical fitness is a daily decision. While making smart decisions throughout the day to eat better quality foods can help me feel better, I’ve found that exercise more directly inspires my diet. When I haven’t exercised or thought about aspects of my personal fitness, my cravings that day will go toward junk food or impulsively getting a second plate of Thanksgiving dinner. When I have, I’m more interested in eating healthier foods and smaller portions.
Self-confidence might be the hardest thing to acquire. You can work at any menial job to get pocket change. Most information is now free, so you can learn practically anything, except, the most important thing of all: you aren’t worthless. Maybe you’re in a jam. Maybe you’re living well. Maybe you’re just OK. If you accept your core being, the good and bad, then any mistakes you make are permissible. We’re imperfect beings, after all!
I just snuck an extra benzodiazepine from their hidden stash, and was debating when to ease my anxiety, before fully seeing this beat-up keychain I found during a decompression walk. I put back the same medication I had been prescribed after my panic attack and continued my day. Even years later, there are days when it would be nice having that crutch to fearlessly ease into social situations. That’s when I must “stay strong” most.
I’m refining this organizational theory for completing tasks. Inspired by highways, warehouse shipping/receiving, the human body, and other data processing systems, this workflow has only three sections: “incoming,” “processing,” and “outbound.” When all aspects are working correctly, things flow smoothly. Otherwise, if one aspect isn’t working correctly, things build up. I’ve been successfully using this system to tackle my own hoarding tendencies, so let’s explore the specifics of this component of my “Zeal” office renovation.
Rather than strictly for weight loss or “looking good,” fitness should be about maintaining one’s body. Exercising should help us practice our muscles and detect possible issues. After getting fit (burning off 60 pounds, thanks to rowing), then fat (gaining 30, then 65), I sustained a hamstring injury that I carried with me for years. Over the last few months, I finally started to maintain my body again, and massaged that injury away. Rowing is my maintenance inspection!
There’s a point I never want to return to again. It’s a place everyone knowingly or unknowingly has: their worst negative space. Mine lingers under hundreds of layers of hard work, earned gratitude, and lavish praise. When things go bad, it’s like I instinctively dig through those layers to negativity. Since learning to handle life without inebriation, when things get anxious for me, I remember that I have many layers of positivity still shielding me.
A useful idea in overcoming mental anxiety is the mind palace. Let it be a comfortable structure, holding the sum of all of your acquired knowledge, where people may decorate and reside in their own room. These perceptions of people could be close family, good friends, single-serving friends, inspirational figures, imaginary characters, or sworn enemies. You make the house rules and you’re the landlord. Shouldn’t the first rule be forbidding enemies from attempting mental trespassing?