Sunday, October 21, 2018

October 21st, 2018 That Would Be Nice

October 21st, 2018 That Would Be Nice

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

Staying focused is a challenge for me. Certainly, there are things I've found a way to stay focused on or I wouldn't be here, but of all the things I focus on well, there are many things that don't get the same level of attention. In an effort to change this pattern, I'm looking at the things I'm able to focus on and dissecting what makes those work. I'm hoping this personal study will help me unlock a few areas of progress important to me.

I think it starts with the importance level I subconsciously assign things in my life. My "importance level knob" seems to have two settings, "life or death" and "that would be nice." Does that make sense? From one extreme to the other--The life or death setting requires boundaries and daily practices designed to keep me well. The that would be nice setting doesn't conjure up solid boundaries, daily practices, or action plans--because I can survive without the things attached to this setting. Not thrive, just survive.

Creating a few new settings between these two is critically important for me and my personal development.

The things I've written about so many times--too many times, like a committed weight training regimen, better overall physical fitness, and professional development goals/personal projects (another book, consistently released podcast episodes, developing a public speaking career, etc.)--all of those have been stuck in the "that would be nice" category in my brain.

Before I break each of my goals down into workable action plans they must receive a new importance level setting in my brain.

That would be nice is a setting best kept for things largely out of my control, like winning 1.6 billion dollars in the Mega Millions Lottery. Sure, that would be nice, but it isn't likely--especially since I never buy 'em, but at 1.6 billion, I might pick up a couple before Tuesday evening. That would be nice, huh?

These very real and important goals of mine deserve a better setting. Clearly, they're not physically and literally life or death things. But they do mean life or death for my dreams.

I don't want to reach the end of my life--laying there with my time up as family and friends stop by to visit, and I'm laying there preoccupied with mental visits from unrealized goals and dreams that were never given a chance to flourish. "Oh, what could have been" is a phrase I don't want in my brain during my last days on this earth.

This is a good place to find me. I'm looking at what works well and pulling some of that structure into other areas of my life. I'm creating new importance level settings in my brain. I'm creating action plans for real progress. I'm changing that would be nice into that is a must.

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Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Saturday, October 20, 2018

October 20th, 2018 For Me To Create

October 20th, 2018 For Me To Create

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, I took a very casual 30-minute stroll (walk) around the neighborhoods last night, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

It feels kind of strange to not have any commitments this weekend. No location broadcasts, no extra emcee type things--just a weekend, wide open for me to create. I'm certainly well rested for whatever I create and decide to do! I slept in like a champ. It felt good. The instinct to set the alarms before bed is a natural thing-- reminding myself at that moment how it isn't necessary, is wonderful.

My walk last night reminded me of a couple things. First, it reminded me of how exercise isn't found exclusively at "a place." I was simply out walking the neighborhoods around my apartment community. Secondly, it reminded me of how taking that time allows me to reflect and create. When I was actively pursuing stand-up all those years ago, some of my best writing happened while I was driving. I wasn't actually writing things down--but my brain was reflecting and creating...and I would flesh out bits--refine them, work them--say them aloud, repeat, repeat, repeat, until they were ready to try in front of an audience--and often, some of those bits never made it to paper. It's the same thing now--walking and thinking create the same dynamic for me.

I have a weekend to devote to my personal projects and that makes me very happy! It won't be all work though, I do plan on spending some time with my five-year-old grandson. It's been too long since he and I hung out.

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Friday, October 19, 2018

October 19th, 2018 Hang With Me

October 19th, 2018 Hang With Me

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

The funky feeling started hitting me early yesterday morning during my radio show. I'm usually pretty good at masking it on the air but quickly, I realized I wasn't doing a very good job of masking anything. I felt sick. Instead of pushing through, I organized the schedule, made changes in plans, and left work early to get some additional rest. I was feeling better by mid-afternoon. I had to cancel my participation as a judge in the Harry Potter costume contest last night. I gave them plenty of notice to replace me, and they were completely cool. I'm not 100%, but maybe 80% this morning with no fever, so I'm up and at 'em, ready to go for a solid Friday. Who knows what it was or is, but whatever it is, it's not anything major--and for that, I'm grateful.

The recent goals workshop with Gerri Helms has me completely enthused about things I haven't had enthusiasm for in quite some time. Hang with me and you'll start to see some of these things take form!

It's very easy to get into a rhythm unconducive for positive change even when that rhythm keeps us fairly well, or "okay," or better than it used to be once upon a time. I want more. What I'm discovering as I sort through the elements creating my personal rhythm is this: It doesn't take major- sweeping changes in order to move in the direction of our dreams. In fact, seemingly small, intentional actions interrupt the rhythm of complacency and allow us to change our course at a speed allowing the calmest of stable progression. Fast and furious doesn't work well for me. Completely upending my life and routine would only serve to counter the very stability on which my daily practice aims.

The daily practice is working well at the moment. My food plan is in good shape and my focus on the important structural elements (meditation-personal spiritual time-staying connected with others in the same life boat-logging and tracking-offering support to others-listening to others more experienced than me) feels like it's in a great place.

Okay-- I better get into this Friday! I have a busy morning radio show planned and waiting for me. This weekend provides a wonderful opportunity for me to accomplish some things I haven't made time for recently. I have zero radio or special event commitments this weekend. I haven't been able to say that in a month or so, so that's a good thing!

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Thursday, October 18, 2018

October 18th, 2018 Bigger Thing

October 18th, 2018 Bigger Thing

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

I'm discovering ways to better navigate my schedule on particular days of the week--and Wednesday is teaching me how it must start earlier in the day. The nice thing about this perspective is how I'm not beating myself up because of my late dinner or later bedtime, I'm simply looking at the facts and finding ways to rearrange when and how I do things. This is certainly a practice that will help me every day of the week.

I'm enthusiastic about the road ahead. The changes to my plan are working well and really amount to a few minor adjustments in the elements of my daily practice. The bigger thing is giving my plan each day the level of importance it deserves. It's easy to fall into a sort of auto-pilot mode where certain elements are just expected to happen--but they don't happen in the most efficient way without a measure of awareness and intention. In other words, I'm giving special attention to things I haven't because they're all important. 

My food is planned for today, I've already completed my morning foundational routine, and I believe I'm ready for a good Thursday.

I'm one of the judges for a Harry Potter 20th Anniversary costume contest tonight at one of the big sponsors of my morning show. Butter Beer isn't on my plan, so I'll bring my water--or hey, they have a coffee bar--yeah, that!

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

October 17th, 2018 Social

October 17th, 2018 Social

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, I had a good walk last night, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

I've added quite a few MyFitnessPal friends lately--and thank you! Jeanne, thank you for your message with your request! Staying connected and open has been a major part of this when it's going well. The opposite of connected and open always played a big role when it hasn't gone well over the years. The importance of building accountability and support measures--and staying open and connected, is imperative for my continued wellness--and anyone's, in my opinion.

If you're using MyFitnessPal to log your food, I invite you to send a friend request my way! My diary is set to public, always--I'd love to have you along! My username is: SeanAAnderson

Also, if we're not Facebook friends, I'd love to have you there as well. www.facebook.com/seananderson505 and Twitter, too: www.twitter.com/seanaanderson  I have Instagram but I just haven't gotten into using it regularly, I'm SeanAAnderson on Instagram, too.

The opportunity to connect with people "in the same lifeboat" is made a thousand times better with social media. Remember the old days, before social media? My attitude and perspective on social media are positive--it's all in how it's used. Using it to create an environment of support can be a very positive thing--a game changer, in my experience!

Things are going very well here. I'm taking exceptional care of my plan each day and staying directly connected with close support contacts. 

I'm looking forward to the road ahead! And that's a wonderful thing.

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

October 16th, 2018 Much Easier

October 16th, 2018 Much Easier

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I met my daily water goal, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

Sometimes, just getting something done that's been on your list awhile, creates a wonderful feeling of accomplishment! My mom has been through multiple cell phone issues over the last couple of years. Every time, we've said--you just need a landline--a simple phone, well, now she's got one. No more chargers, burned up batteries from over-charging, tiny buttons, and confusing options--just a phone. It's a big relief for both of us.

Things have been going well lately. The elements of my daily practice are better and I'm feeling confident about moving in a positive direction. What's interesting to me is how this tightening of sorts has cleared enough mental space for me to make measurable progress on my other goals.

The recent goals workshop with Gerri Helms really helped me solidify some goals, visions, and the action plans needed for these things. Now, with a more confident, certain, and positive stride, giving those things the attention they need is coming much easier.

My food is planned for today, I've accomplished my morning routine, and I'm ready for a productive Tuesday. The daily practice continues!

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Monday, October 15, 2018

October 15th, 2018 Rest Day

October 15th, 2018 Rest Day

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

Sunday was a rest day in many ways. I slept-in very well! This has turned out to be a very busy season so far. It was good to have a slower pace yesterday. I did conduct a training session yesterday afternoon for a couple hours, but that wasn't too bad at all.

Mom and I made a trip yesterday evening to visit Courtney and the little ones. They're only twenty-five minutes away and still, it seems, we don't see them enough. Noah, Oliver, and Phoebe are doing great! Noah was super excited about the visit, too-- he was in fine form, putting on his T-Rex costume and scaring us all! Oh my goodness, we needed that visit.

We dined at our tried and true Mexican place after the visit. As far as my food plan is concerned, I always bring a plan into that place.  Without a plan, that place could be super dangerous for me. I honored the boundaries of my plan and it was a good meal and visit. We skipped the shopping portion of our weekly outing because it was getting too late.

I'm feeling very good about the actions I'm doing each day in taking exceptional care of my overall plan. Everything about it is tightened just a little more. It's basically the same plan, just making sure I pause long enough to give each element the care and attention it deserves, and of course--the slightly smaller calorie budget (2,000 or less). Staying connected with exceptional support has been key.














I love apples and pears! Last food of the day was enjoyed!

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Sunday, October 14, 2018

October 14th, 2018 Prepared

October 14th, 2018 Prepared

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal, I ended up with significant natural exercise, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

As far as my food plan was concerned, yesterday's challenges were identical to Friday's challenges. Friday it was plenty of off-plan food offered at my location broadcast and later that evening with the pressbox catering. Yesterday was the same location broadcast and instead of pressbox catering, it was the food table at the wedding I was djing/emceeing. I had plenty of access to off-plan choices. I showed up prepared. And for me, "prepared" isn't exclusively about the food. It's about staying connected with accountability measures and support contacts.

When I choose to stay connected with accountability and support, suddenly I'm not trying to "go it alone." Going it alone doesn't work for me. I've tried that route and it doesn't lead to good places.

The refinements I've applied to my plan are going very well. Fortunately, these changes aren't giant changes, they're small adjustments and tweaks-but I know from experience, given the time and commitment, the consequences will be favorable.

One of the challenges of late is saying no. I have a hard time saying no to special projects or extra jobs even when I seriously don't have the time or energy to say yes-- but I end up saying yes and somehow making it through whatever is required. The problem in that is, it usually turns out okay, but often at an expense that takes from other areas of my life. Case in point-- The other night, on the spot--I was offered an extra job that came with the phrase, "...and I pay very well." I appreciate the opportunity and Lord knows I have bills that could use that money--and it is certainly a nice validation that what I do, I do well, but I'll likely say no to that opportunity because the time and commitment required is too high an investment on my part. Saying "no" is difficult for me--and the reason why I believe--is directly tied to my past. Let me explain...

Saying no goes against my desire to be accommodating and agreeable in order to maintain likability. The flaw in that pursuit is how constantly saying yes when the best answer is sometimes no, gives the illusion of likability while tearing down respect and consideration...but it's a pattern for me that developed in the mind of my 500-pound body over the years because in my brain, I thought my appearance was enough of a barrier to being likable--so in that flawed perspective, I couldn't risk doing or saying anything that might diminish opportunities to be liked or favored. Make sense? Yeah, it's deep stuff.

Finding the balance between what I can and cannot do--and between what I shouldn't and should do, is an ongoing challenge. Basing those decisions on the above-mentioned dynamic isn't healthy for me and only leads to resentment and exhaustion. When I speak of this "daily practice," it covers so much more than my food and exercise plan.


















Last night's wedding was a wonderful experience. The whole thing went very well and even ended a little earlier than expected. I was planning on stopping at IHOP on the way home for coffee and a low-cal omelet, instead, I opted to wait and prepare my own at home. The 1.5-hour drive went well and waiting turned out to be the best decision for me.



















Stadium announcing at Friday's football game was certainly out of my comfort zone but it really was an honor to be asked and it worked out really well. I had a lot of fun with it--especially my personal spin on "...and that's good for another Ponca City Wildcat Firrrrrsssst Down and Tennnnnnnnnnnyyyyyyyuuugh."  The "yuh" at the end was my little unique signature. I wasn't the most knowledgeable booth announcer or the most qualified by any stretch, but thanks to the spotter and assistant in the booth, I was able to pull it off.

My two extra events this weekend were things I'm really glad I said yes to doing. It was a really good experience all the way around.

I slept in today-- wonderfully. I feel rested and ready for my Sunday. I'm about to prepare a meal before going to the studio for a training session I'm conducting for new on-air talent.

I plan on picking up mom later for her weekly dinner out and shopping trip. She looks forward to getting out and about. Mom is doing well in several ways. She's starting to make the most of her time day to day, too--exploring ways to enjoy her days, instead of just focusing on when she can get out and go. And that's a very good thing.

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Saturday, October 13, 2018

October 13th, 2018 Teaching Me

October 13th, 2018 Teaching Me

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my slightly reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

I've noticed a big difference in my stride the last couple days. It's not just feeling good about the changes in my daily practice, it's proceeding with a certain measure of certainty I was missing.

Uncertainty, to me, is a like an infection. It grows. Suddenly, where we are isn't certain and how we must proceed isn't either. Laying everything out on the table this week has helped me restore a measure of certainty by showing me where I am, where I want to be, and it's helped clearly define the action steps needed to shut down the uncertainty. This experience is helping me with my daily practice, of course, but it's also teaching me about how this dynamic affects my other goals. My goodness--I could write 20,000 words on this at the moment--but I'll save it for now.

Yesterday included a lot of free food offered to me throughout the course of the day. It was at my broadcast earlier in the day and it was in the press box at the stadium last night for a game where I was the fill-in public address announcer. I committed my plan to a support friend and a kept it in every way. These type of situations sometimes include on-plan foods and in those situations, I can make adjustments and put together a meal. The events yesterday didn't include food on my plan. It was a lot of trigger foods for me, so it was a no-can-do. I made sure to navigate with what I needed when I needed it, and it worked out well.

The food-plan dynamics of today are almost identical to yesterday. I have a location broadcast this morning and tonight I'm booked to play music and emcee a wedding ceremony/reception in Oklahoma City. More free food, everywhere!! My goodness! I'll do the same as yesterday--I'll commit a plan with the right to call an audible and then, I'll make sure I have what I need in case the choices just don't work for me.

If you're on MyFitnessPal, I invite you to friend me! My username is SeanAAnderson. You can join me on Twitter too, @SeanAAnderson

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean

Friday, October 12, 2018

October 12th, 2018 Humble and Grateful

October 12th, 2018 Humble and Grateful

Yesterday: I maintained the integrity of my slightly reduced calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal, I had a good exercise session at the YMCA, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

Those points above-- yes, yes, yes--highlights of an exceptional day. The best part wasn't any specific action, though. The best part was the mental and emotional freedom experienced after yesterday's post.

Recognizing the trend, being alarmed about the trend, keeping the effects of the trend largely to myself--constantly being reminded of the trend with tighter clothes and pictures that look just a tad bit "fuller," is exhausting. Standing up, facing forward, laying the facts out on the table for all to see, and most importantly, creating an action plan, was super-empowering and very much like releasing a pressure valve.

The love and support received on this blog, in email, messenger, and on Facebook, was absolutely beautiful, too. Thank you, sincerely. I'm humble and grateful.

One email from a longtime reader (thank you, Becky!), very gently and kindly, asked if my food plan had been as tight as it needed to be or if it became loose, especially after stopping the extreme accountability of the tweet stream of everything. Very good question!

Yes, in certain ways it did get a little loose. At the same time, logging everything in MFP remained and will remain a daily part of the practice, indefinitely. Still, more meals out--less care and attention to preparing my own meals, small differences that weren't as precise as before, certainly could have contributed to a certain extent.

I do believe I created the perfect storm-- maintaining 2300 calories per day, not weighing myself, lack of activity, lack of proper rest, getting older (as a few suggested--uhg!!)--I think it all contributed in different ways.

I've learned enough to realize the exercise is important but it isn't a big factor for the bottom line unless we're talking about hard-core Olympic-style training--and that's never been me. Let's be real. It always comes back to the food plan. Refining my food with this new action plan will be good for me. Slightly lowering the budget by a few hundred calories, getting enough exercise, and getting better and more rest, will all contribute in positive ways. I'm not bringing back the tweets just yet, but I'm not completely opposed to it either.

As for the gain-- eighteen pounds in a year is a creep. A consistent creep, but a creep. For someone like me, with my past behaviors, I'm capable of gaining eighteen pounds in a couple weeks. Heck fire, if I really "tried," I can pack on a hundred or more in a years time--I've done it, remember?

I'm grateful and humble to be right where I am. Surrounded with good support and moving forward in a very positive way.

I have a location broadcast midday and I'm the stadium announcer tonight for the big football game (never done that before--wish me luck--and say a little prayer for it to go well, please!) My food is planned and my day is set. I'm ready for another good one.

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Strength,
Sean





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