• Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

Jean

Jean goes tactical on life's face!

Recommended Posts

Hey there, folks! Great news: I'm alive! (Youtube music links ahoy - and no, much to your dismay, they aren't all Celine Dion.)

 

So, it has dawned on me recently, thanks to Amber:

 

And scalyfreak :

 

 That I've been playing life dumb. As in: put your armor on, go on the battlefield and tank 'till nightfall. It has allowed me to stay on my feet up to now but it won't carry me through life. If I want to soar and fly, I have to play it smart so, this challenge will be me becoming tactical.

 

Things I already have in my arsenal:

Holding on.

Getting back up again and up again.

Sapping (preparing the ground so that people will be willing to go my way before we even meet on the field of discussions).

Pushing on.

Beating things until they give.

 

Moves I want to add:

Disengaging.

Tactical fall back.

Regrouping.

Feinting.

Flanking.

 

I won't be lifting stuff but the Warrior's guild seems to me like the best place to put this into motion. I love the imagery of viewing my life as a battlefield so I expect having a lot of fun playing this out. I'll be thankful for any support along the way.

 

The Mission

Get the number of additional hours I owe to HR down to zero.

Register every hour worked. Write down any work related expense.

Have the vineyard ready for picking by the end of this challenge.

Be in a better financial shape at the end of this challenge than at the start.

Be alive to tell the tale.

 

The Strategy

Work 9 hours a day except on Fridays.

Friday is free rein: take any amount of off hours necessary to get the vineyard done and rejuvenate.

Never leave work before having written down the daily hours and work expenses.

Keep track of my expenses but don't spend more than 15' on my financial spreadsheet per day, except for the end of month review.

Run every day to keep myself sane and energized.

 

Additional rules

Nobody dies on the field -> fall back and take a few hours off if I need to in order to handle things more clearly and cleverly.

The battle is won when the objectives are fulfilled, not when you're the last one standing -> keep a clear mind and be wary of pursuing red herrings. Focus on what will win me the battle, leave out all the rest.

 

Metrics

Mo-Thu:

#hours worked (>=9 = success).

Hours and expenses registered yes/no.

Expenses tracked yes/no.

Time spent on my spreadsheet (<=15' = success).

Time spent running (target = 15').

 

Fri-Sun:

Lines of vines dealt with (ready for the picking) (>=2/day = success).

Expenses tracked yes/no.

Time spent on my spreadsheet (<=15' = success).

Time spent running (target = 15').

 

Adaptability and flexibility will be key. Keeping my mind above the battleground and reassessing the situation whenever it becomes too fighty should be kept in mind at all times.

 

If I can do all that, I'll be a true survivor.

 

Battle tune: The Script feat. will.i.am - Hall of Fame

Battlecry: Strength and Cunning.

 

So, if you feel like going on an outpacing, outrunning, outsmarting ass-kicking adventure, be my guest and hop in!

  • Like 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since there's no day like today, starting right off:

 

Monday, July 29th

#hours worked: 12 Success!

Hours and expenses registered. Success!

Expenses tracked: yes. Success!

Time spent on spreadsheet: seconds. Success!

Time spent running: 15' Success!

 

Strength and Cunning.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And so, the dance starts: I've taken some time off earlier than usual for the lunch break and went back later. I've napped and prepared my running clothes for when I'd get home in the evening. I've kept some smooth tasks for the end of the afternoon and when I got home, it was raining. So I had dinner then went running.

 

Engage - Disengage - Regroup - Engage - Prepare to change position - Change position - Fall back.

 

Tuesday, July 30th

#hours worked: 9.3 Success!

Hours and expenses registered. Success!

Expenses tracked: yes. Success!

Time spent on spreadsheet: seconds. Success!

Time spent running: 15' Success!

 

Strength and Cunning.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/29/2019 at 2:44 PM, Jean said:

Friday is free rein: take any amount of off hours necessary to get the vineyard done and rejuvenate.

Good idea here!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Today was dumb. I don't want to vent about it so I'll just go to sleep and run tomorrow in the morning.

 

Wednesday, July 31th

#hours worked: 9 Success.

Hours and expenses registered. Success.

Expenses tracked: yes. Success.

Time spent on spreadsheet: seconds. Success.

Time spent running: no running. Failure.

 

Dumb.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some days and some people. At what point does getting in a "no-see" situation with your family becomes a bad idea and at what point is maintaining contact with them when they're ghouls feeding on your dedication the dumb option?

 

This is venting, so I'm spoilering it:

 

 

Today is national celebration day. My father's family has a habit of celebrating on the eve of it, so, yesterday. We do it with a "Raclette", which is a traditional dish requiring 1-2 people to be cooking it during the whole meal and 1-2 people to serve it so that the others enjoy it. My father, who I know to be a vampire feeding on his family (I used to think it was an alcohol problem but it seems it's also family related...), usually brings the cheese, I volunteer for cooking, we usually manage to have people serving it.


Now, yesterday: my father wasn't there and pawned on me to bring the cheese, which took me time in an already complicated week (all weeks are complicated but that's a different matter). Work was a dumb, taxing "tank through" day, I had given forewarning that I'd be a little late for the celebration. I leave work, drive there, hop at my parents home to take a few things necessary for the cooking, go to the celebration site without a minute rest. I get there late. Do you think I'd have had some kind of "hey, we're glad you've made it"? Nope: "whew, we've been afraid we'd not have something to eat". Cash, open, honest, totally self-centered, despicable.

 

I start preparing the cheese for the cooking. Do I get offered a glass of wine? Think again. It's done, I start discussing with people for around 10 minutes then I'm asked to start cooking. I ask about who will be serving it, I'm told "we'll manage". I answer that the meal will be ready in 5 minutes, we'll need people serving it because it must not get cold and we (the cooks) will be drowning in plates and have no place for cooking if it's not dealt with: "we'll manage, start cooking". I start cooking, once again, it's traditional to have plenty of wine given to the cooks in this kind of meals but I get offered no glass and have to enquire as to where the bottles are. The dishes are ready and it doesn't fail: people are not ready to eat, nobody is ready to serve. We handle it, I focus on cooking deciding that serving is none of my problems, things go ok but not totally smooth and BLOODY PEOPLE COME TO ME COMPLAINING ABOUT THE SERVICE!!! Each and every one of them was bloody responsible for it. They all could have stepped up, taken a plate and brought it to the others but they're all so absorbed in being served and the king/queen of the party that they have the guts to complain to the guy who's done nothing but dedicating himself to the organization of the party for the whole evening!?

 Anyway, at that point, I just didn't want to see or talk to these people anymore so I've finished cooking, cleaned the cooking place and went away.

Now, serious question: I'm a family guy, I've always thought that having bad relationship with one's family was dumb. I now know that what I want for myself is to never ever see any of these people again. There are too many interesting people to build relationships with for me to waste time, energy and happiness keeping leeches in my life. This is what I want and what I think is good for me but, looking at how I was thinking when I was a kid, this may not be the better option for my potential future children (which I may very well never have). At what point does cutting relationship with one's extended family (father, uncles, aunts and cousins) become a bad idea and at what point is it a very reasonable self-preserving measure to take?

 

 

And now to forget it and live this day like a holiday where I can do whatever I want to do. Sorry for the rant and see you later. :)

 

ETA: Mandatory music for the day: Ian Honeyman - This is our land.

 

ETA2: Answering my own question: I've never had much of a relationship with my parent's uncles and aunts and cousins so this is 100% my call. Nice to have figured it out.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rants are great sometimes, and that sounds like a frustrating experience.

As for forcing yourself to continue dealing with family that annoys you - my take has always been that the great thing about family is that every damn permutation is equally valid. Friend groups, adopted families, blended families, close coworkers, subcultures - its all a way to find your tribe and what relationships nourish you.

What this means to me, personally, is that I’m damn grateful to live in a time when I can choose what family means to me and who is in it. I don’t owe the people with whom I share biological bits with a thing, and can choose what relationships I pour my energy into.

Having said that, I do get the draw of wanting to belong in a group and to a place on a basis that feels permanent - so sometimes participate in the social construct that is familial obligation - on my terms, and when I choose.

And if I’m not feeling up to dealing with that shit? I don’t. And they’re okay with that, or they’re not. Not my problem.

If I’m there, I’m as present as I can be and I take the time I need with a smaller group of my choosing if things get too overwhelming. And then I go home exhausted.

I try and not expect family members to behave in ways I wish they would, and I work damn hard to remember that every path in life leads to the end. Whether you’re selfish and self-centered or not - we all have an expiration date and their actions don’t have to affect my own. I can choose that shit while I’m listening to the BS falling out of their mouths - or am faced with the horror that is some of their lifestyles.

Even when they start in on how ‘fancy’, ‘extra’, and ‘woo-woo hippie’ they perceive me to be. I take some deep breaths, envision lighting shit on fire, and remember that it doesn’t really matter. My life and wellbeing do not depend on their generosity of spirit or wallet.


  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Jean said:

Some days and some people. At what point does getting in a "no-see" situation with your family becomes a bad idea and at what point is maintaining contact with them when they're ghouls feeding on your dedication the dumb option?

 

Hmmm. Are they always like that? Sounds frustrating. Anyway, you don't have to make a permanent decision right now. You can start spending less time with them/start saying no to more things and see how you feel. 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's like everything when perception is involved: I can't say for sure. Part of it could be me projecting emotions on the whole scene and lumping everybody together when I really only have problems with a few of them.

 

You're right on the scope of the decision, they'll be happy to have me even if I don't go to family meetings for a while. It's more of a general pondering that what I really like these time is being all alone on my own seeing nobody and I don't tend to allow myself to do just that. Part of the purpose of this challenge is to give more weight to what I want to do in my life. I think I'll skip the next two family reunions, just to let them handle it without me and learn to function differently, as well as giving me time for myself and stop thinking that just because I can help means that I have to.

 

Thanks both for your insights (I'm taking more if other people have input).

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not sure of my choices for today but I've decided to drop it all and do what I actually wanted, that is, resting. This being a holiday, it's meant to count as a Sunday for metrics purposes, so:

 

Thursday, August 1st:

Vineyard: didn't go to the vineyard. Failure.

Expenses tracked: yes. Success.

Time spent on spreadsheet: seconds. Success.

Time spent running: 15'. Success.

 

I've taken tomorrow off so, same metrics. I'll put a higher priority on the vineyard.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm sorry about the family event. Mostly because it sounded like it could have been truly lovely.

There are lots of people on the forum struggling with different permutations of wanting to disconnect from family. For one, I think @DarK_RaideR has a lot of relevant and hard-earned wisdom.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It sure could have been nice and fun. I guess I'm not really in the mood for these kind of events, though, it may get better when I'll be more rested and less on low batteries.

 

Speaking of which, this is where I'm meeting my demons and need to confront them: I went to the vineyard but did only one row. It's in a worse shape than I would have expected and I tend to back down in these situations, arguing to myself that it's a time to rest. Truth is: the need for rest is real but there are also times meant to push myself and actually do the thing!

 

So, I'm a bit at a loss as to whether I should completely rest up (which means months ahead), then tackle my demons or keep fighting on the way. The vineyard doesn't leave me with much of a choice (the picking is starting in a month) but I'm still toying with the illusion that I can do less of it and still reach the target...

 

Friday, August 2nd:

Vineyard: did only one row. Failure.

Expenses tracked: yes. Success.

Time spent on spreadsheet: 15 minutes. It was "end of month review". Success.

Time spent running: 15'. Success.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like it was a fairly trying gathering. I'd like to offer advice, though that's not really where my strengths lie. What I do have is this: Put yourself and your welfare first. No one, relative or not, has the right to demand your time if you don't feel able or comfortable to give it, no matter how big or small the occasion. Maybe it is just a case of recharging your batteries like you said, and maybe you would benefit from severing ties. What Harriet said about spending less time and saying no to them more has worked out well for me with my own family issues, and in doing so you do get a chance to, most importantly, recharge yourself and also time to consider just what you'll do in the future.

 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Jean said:

eaking of which, this is where I'm meeting my demons and need to confront them: I went to the vineyard but did only one row. It's in a worse shape than I would have expected and I tend to back down in these situations, arguing to myself that it's a time to rest. Truth is: the need for rest is real but there are also times meant to push myself and actually do the thing!

 

So, I'm a bit at a loss as to whether I should completely rest up (which means months ahead), then tackle my demons or keep fighting on the way. The vineyard doesn't leave me with much of a choice (the picking is starting in a month) but I'm still toying with the illusion that I can do less of it and still reach the target...

 

I don't really understand the vineyard thing. Does the vineyard belong to you? Is picking grapes hard work? Can you hire help? Or is it for your own fitness? What are the demons? 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, iatetheyeti said:

I'd like to offer advice, though that's not really where my strengths lie.

 

What you do have is really good advice, thanks for that. Even though I preach it a lot, I often end up forgetting it.

 

34 minutes ago, Harriet said:

I don't really understand the vineyard thing. Does the vineyard belong to you? Is picking grapes hard work? Can you hire help? Or is it for your own fitness? What are the demons?

 

It's my vineyard, that I got from my father as an early inheritance. I've taken it because it allowed me to have a place outside where I could invite friends (it has a nice pergola and a fireplace, which helped when I didn't have access to a backyard - which I now do). This is the second year I'm tending to it and, as with last year, it had started fine but then, in may-june, when the vines grow and there's regular stuff to do on it, I've been kind of overworked and have given up working on it. It's now a jungle and I have to take it back in shape in order for the grapes to get some sun and to have access to it without a machete for the picking that'll happen sometime in September.

 

Hiring help would be an option, but it's a pride thing: if I'm not able to tend to it, I might as well sell it. I want to prove to myself that I can take care of it, and I fail. I had good excuses last year, I feel like they're holding way less water this year so this means I have to take action. I didn't want for it to become an obligation but it now kind of is. It's further from home (I've moved at a 1 hour ride from there) but is now something I still hold in my old town, allowing me to keep some kinds of links with it.

 

All in all, the real options are:

 - selling part of it to make tending to it more manageable in the future ;

 - lending it so that I don't have to care for it anymore ;

 - selling it all ;

 - gathering friends and work on it together, potentially making our own wine later on.

 

The last option was the one I wanted to implement this year but I've let myself become pretty distracted by work and not wanting to see anyone. I'm considering the first and the last option for next year.

 

The demons are just an image I'm using for my shortcomings. Laziness is one of them, so it's hard to differenciate when I'm getting too drained and need to back off and rest and when I'm just being a pussy and should get a hold of myself. It's not helping that I've spent the last 4 years jumping from stressful situation to stressful situation so, I don't really know what a not overworked life is anymore. I'd need to rebuild this, which is something I'm pursuing with this challenge (not taking everything head on but choosing what I want to tackle and what doesn't need to be).

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Random thoughts of the day:

  • Why is it that I always feel that I have to protect people from reality while I'm myself always pretty fed up by people trying to bullshit things prettier than they really are?
    • could be a matter of me not valuing enough the people I'm around and thinking they're not able to deal with the way I want to deal with things;
    • could be that it's the right call and people around me need a nice cushion of psychological bullshit to sweeten contact with reality;
    • could be that I'm not surrounding myself with the right people and I'd need to find life bros and sis who'd share my liking for taking it raw.
  • I'm getting batshit crazy due to sleep deprivation. Puting a solution to this into motion requires me not to be batshit crazy.
  • How come when I think I'm winning the fly wars, there's always a bunch more flies to come around and buzz in my ears when I try to nap?
  • Holy crap, I've just witnessed a necrophiliac fly. :wacko: (ETA: Two of them!)
  • Yes, I am definitely turning batshit crazy.
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Allright, if I'm going to win this - and by winning I mean be alive, sane and not broke by the end of this challenge -, I'll need to be rested and ready. I've not gone to the vineyard today: I could not find the energy for it and am feeling too tired for driving so, new goal:

 

Lights out by midnight.

 

I'll have to keep swapping these flies until they get off of my skin when I'm sleeping: can't very well rest when being hidden under the blanket to avoid having them partying on me.

 

So, today is not a victory, I'm tired as shit and not able to sleep (seems like I've programmed my body to wake up early during the night). My mind is saturated and I need to find a way to free it. Not sure if it's a matter of me facing too much pressure on too many fronts (work, sleep, finances, having a life) and not finding a way to rest or if I'm just imagining most of it and just put pressure in my mind that isn't really there. I'll improvise tomorrow as to whether I'm going landmower-style on the vineyard or if I'll play it as another slow day.

 

Saturday, August 3rd:

Vineyard: didn't go to the vineyard. Failure.

Expenses tracked: yes. Success.

Time spent on spreadsheet: 15 minutes (reviewing the numbers and planning the month). Success.

Time spent running: 15'. Success.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, Jean said:

The demons are just an image I'm using for my shortcomings. Laziness is one of them, so it's hard to differenciate when I'm getting too drained and need to back off and rest and when I'm just being a pussy and should get a hold of myself.

 

<— Maybe this means something else where you’re from. To me it refers to women’s anatomy while implicating femaleness and femininity in weakness, whining, and subordination. Not sure if that was the message you were intending to communicate.

Anyway, it's hard to give advice because it sounds like you're maybe a little ambiguous about the vineyard. Pride might not be an adequate motivation in the long run when faced with a lot of work. If you've been going from one stressful situation to the next, maybe you should get some help looking after the vineyard for the next couple of years, then make another attempt at doing the work yourself/make the decision about whether to keep or sell when things are calmed down.

Damn, it sounds like the lack of sleep is really getting to you. I don't know if you already know and are doing this stuff, but sleep hygiene is important. The things that most improved my sleep are: no alcohol, no caffeine after 4 or 5pm, no tv or screens for an hour before bed. Regular meditation helps reduce repetitive thoughts and rumination. Also, weirdly, earplugs help me fall asleep, even though the sensation is uncomfortable. I don't understand why, but blocking out other sounds also quiets my thoughts.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just answering this quickly, then going to bed:

9 minutes ago, Harriet said:

<— Maybe this means something else where you’re from. To me it refers to women’s anatomy while implicating femaleness and femininity in weakness, whining, and subordination. Not sure if that was the message you were intending to communicate.

 

Small cute kitten is the meaning I was intending. So, not a fighter, prone to hiding, but cute. It's hard to find a name without too much connotation when both wanting to afford cussing and to avoid belittling titles. Women have it particularly tough (most names used for "weak" men are female related, which tells quite a bit about our society).

 

No belittling of the women among us (and in society) intended. I was just trying to harness some of the power of strong words because, sometimes, cussing helps (and yes, I use a lot of positive imagery to bolster myself up too so calling myself names once in a while is ok in my book).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Jean said:

(most names used for "weak" men are female related, which tells quite a bit about our society).


Indeed. 
 

2 hours ago, Jean said:

I was just trying to harness some of the power of strong words


I have some favourites terms for the weak, cowardly and lazy: impuissant; pusillanimous; and indolent. Combine with invertebrate animals such as worm, slug, sea cucumber for maximum effect. Do not use these on yourself, however. Save them for your enemies. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Harriet said:

Do not use these on yourself, however. Save them for your enemies. 

 

But... but... but... what do you use on yourself, then? It's my butt I'm trying to kick, I don't want to give my enemies a boost. ;) I like sea cucumber, though, I might try it and see how it fares.

 

20 hours ago, Harriet said:

it sounds like you're maybe a little ambiguous about the vineyard.

 

I am. In the end, I'm happy I haven't let it go but it happened at a bad time when I could have done without the extra work. It's too late to adjust for this year (the friends have already been summoned for the picking but I still have to put it into shape first) but I'll take the time to think about it after that (when things will slow down).

 

20 hours ago, Harriet said:

Damn, it sounds like the lack of sleep is really getting to you. I don't know if you already know and are doing this stuff, but sleep hygiene is important.

 

I know it and I could already feel a big difference today, when I was not so tired (still pretty tired, though). Thanks for the tips. Despite the importance of it, I still voluntarily fight it with all my strength (like my life depended on it). Somehow, taking care of myself feels like a stressful hassle that I don't want in my life right now. I've had the same feelings with body care, it's my way of functionning, it's very self-destructive sometimes and gets me out of unsolvable situations on other times. It's the first time I've felt the madness crawl in, so that changes things. I'll start slow, it's how I do things, but I intend to follow the "in bed and no lights at midnight" rule for a few weeks and see how it fares.

 

 

Another thing that is getting to me, and I know it sounds weird, is all the killing. I had, like, a bazillion flies in my house. I've hushed away the ones I could through the window, using a night lamp, but there were still a ton of them. They don't feel like they're sentient at all but it's still pretty weird to me, killing things with my bare hands (I'm using a swapper too). Then they go on the place of slaughter and, instead of fleeing the carnage, eat their deads and push me to kill some more. Pretty disturbing, I was not used to it (killing just a few didn't do that to me). I've also tried fishing recently and clubbing fish to death without any skill (I've learnt how to do it properly, now) has been a pretty disturbing experience too. Yup, I'm soft and I like it that way.

 

 

I've ended up doing just a normal day today. It felt relaxing enough so it was probably not a bad option.

 

Sunday, August 4th:

Lights out by midnight: yes. Success.

Vineyard: did my two rows. Success.

Expenses tracked: yes. Success.

Time spent on spreadsheet: seconds. Success.

Time spent running: 15'. Success.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.