You sometimes might not realize how much the grime that’s accumulated in your system is affecting you until you start dislodging it. The stresses of life build up innocently. Too many days without getting enough sleep, not eating well, not drinking enough water, or not taking care of yourself can, like my rowing machine’s chain, generally lead to a build-up of gunk that probably slowed down my rowing stats for years… let’s compare next week?
Maintaining my rowing machine has become a fun hobby for me. While I’ve known about some metric and standard/American sizes for a while now, it’s a fun tidbit to know that the seat, shown in the upper part of the picture below, is in metric whereas the rest of the machine is in standard. Concept2 must have outsourced that part of the production. If only we could maintain our bodies as easily as our machines.
Five years in March since I last drank any alcohol, five years in March since I last consumed any cannabis, and I just passed two years without taking anything that could affect my mind or body, other than caffeine or naproxen. This’s the one I’ve had the most trouble talking about because… how can I put it… …this is the counter that says I need to close any cheating loopholes. I am addicted to weakness.
I was in athletic shape once. I worked hard for months, rigorously studying fitness, until stopping for years. Careers are similar. You get the degree and perhaps opportunity, until you stop trying. Maybe you don’t get fired, laid off, or underemployed. Maybe it’s just you get disenfranchised. The nice thing about being a contractor, workin’ “the gig life,” is that your career fitness is always in athletic shape. You’re always fit and ready to work.
Passing another year of sobriety- five years in March– let’s consider how the Gig Life has both reassured and risked that progress. The biggest aid is that I’m almost legally prevented from getting too invested in any gig; I’d have to bill for that time. The biggest ailment is the grit that comes from jumping into projects in the yellow or red. Contractors are never needed when big projects or workloads are in the green.
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.