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  1. There is neither darkness, nor light; There is only the Force. There is passion, yet peace. Serenity, yet emotion. Chaos, yet order. I am the shadow cast by the sun, I am the candle burning in the night, And the Force alone shall guide me. Well, the first challenge saw a lot of good things happen. I'm meditating on the regular now, and I read my Bible just about every day now. I'm even writing more now. Yeah, my room isn't very clean, but nothing's perfect. In any case, this is as good a time of the year as any to have a mentality-based challenge. We are entering into the Lenten season, or if I may be permitted some Gray poetry, the Time of Ashes. If ever there was a time to be disciplined, this would be it. As I have begun to court discipline in earnest, I'm finding that there are undisciplined places in my mind. And sure, fine, it's okay to not be perfect. Nevertheless, there are bits and pieces of myself that are holding me back from being my best self. I spent last challenge stoking the Light into a fire. Now it's time to take that fire and walk into the Dark of paranoia and bitterness and self-loathing. But these things can't be beaten in six weeks alone. That's an on-going thing. So I must work in my body to transcend my limits, in my mind to learn a new story, in my soul as a man of love. If this all sounds vague and ranty as you read it, well, it feels vague and ranty to write it. I don't have a good way to take the concrete physical things and apply them to the abstract. It's all too big, and even if I succeed, new challenges will arise. I know that. But maybe that's the whole point of being a Gray Jedi - to be comfortable on that razor's edge of succor and struggle, to fall to neither side but refine oneself endlessly. Sure, I may not have any clue what I'm doing, but I'll be honest with you about it. Process 1: AthleanXero Well, we got six weeks of challenge. The Xero program is six weeks. I figure, me coming off a deload and having done well with it, it's as good a time as any to get back into it. So, I'mma grapple with that for the next six weeks. We'll see how she goes. Process 2: Pull Up Xero is a no-equipment program (no bench, no bar, no band, no bull!). The thing is, I want to get better at pull ups. 7FG challenged me to get to a one-arm-pullup by the year's end, so I'm progressing toward it. Currently, I'm practicing by doing pull ups in sets and reps rather than doing the banded method just yet. I'm adding one rep daily, basically. Goal is to miss no days. I can grease the groove for my reps, or I can do them as their own workout, or whatever. The idea's just to not miss a day. Process 3: Cleaning Okay, so. This failed nastily last challenge. We need to change the approach on this if we want to make this work. Basically, I let myself get overwhelmed with the idea of all the stuff being gone. The big boxes are what need to be gone, but really, everything needs to be gone. So, we start with low bar. Clean up the tiniest box I can find. Once per week. No excuses. Process 4: Lent This thing. I've decided to address a particularly negative habit for the season. And the thing is, I don't mind talking about it. I'm actually fairly comfortable talking about it. But I seem to be alone in my comfort with addressing it, and I don't know how to talk about it in a way that edifies anyone. So, in a rare move, this is something I'm going to keep on the downlow here. So why bring it up? Because I want/need some accountability. And if you ask me, I have no problem talking to you about it, but understand it's probably going to be something that needs to be kept to PMs. * And so it begins. I'm sure I've used this before, but to hell with it. Let's rock.
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