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The Shogun's Journey


The Shogun

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This challenge is going to be heavily focused on my mental health, rather than on my diet/fitness goals. That being said, it's all about baby steps here. I just go a promotion, with more hours and responsabilities… I already had a hard time balancing work with Ghost of Tsushima with panic attacks, so... I'm giving myself a lot of wiggle room here. This challenge ends a day before my birthday and I want to end this miserable year on a high note.

 

Goal 1: Saying no at being a Garbage Disposal at every meal

 

Starting simple, a yes/no daily goal. I'm temporarily staying with my family, and they had this habit (as many families do) that whenever we're eating and someone can't finish their meal, they offer it to me to finish it up. I hate food going to waste, especially when I know people could be needing food really close by. So I end up eating more than I planned.

 

Goal 2: Practicing at least 15 minutes of Wing Chun every day

 

You know what I discovered about panic recently? Sometimes when I'm working out, my body sees the increased heart rate, the quick breathing, the increase body heat, it thinks I'm dying and BOOM, full-blown panic attack. What's even funnier is that therapy recommends and encourages exercise as a long-term solution-ish for panic attacks, too. So I gotta keep doing it, even if it feels it'll kill me.

 

Rocky IV - If He Dies, He Dies GIF by MikeyMo | Gfycat

 

Lately, I've been working on stop waiting for anxiety to give me a break to start doing things (get off the bed, working, playing, etc) and instead start doing them despite the anxiety. I added my wing chun practice to that list, since it's a better way of easing into teaching my body that I'm not dying, that I'm just working out.

 

Goal 3: Meditating at least 15 minutes every day

 

I already have an early start on this one. My therapist encouraged me to start a meditation challenge using a technique we've been working on and that's reaaaaaally helped me, but the idea is to keep doing it, even on days when I feel okay.

 

Goal 4: Journaling at least 15 minutes every day

 

That's it, really simple. Just a matter of taking the dreadful monologue out of my head and putting it on paper, and see if it's stays there.

 

 

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One must still have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star.

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10 minutes ago, The Shogun said:

Starting simple, a yes/no daily goal. I'm temporarily staying with my family, and they had this habit (as many families do) that whenever we're eating and someone can't finish their meal, they offer it to me to finish it up. I hate food going to waste, especially when I know people could be needing food really close by. So I end up eating more than I planned.

Is food storage an option? Can you wrap up the food, put it in the fridge and eat it later?

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"By the Most-Righteous-and-Blessed Beard of Sir Tanktimus the Encourager!" - Jarl Rurik Harrgath

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2 minutes ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Here for support and technical info about ammunition.

Is food storage an option? Can you wrap up the food, put it in the fridge and eat it later?

 

Mmmm if it were my food, yeah, I'd totally go for it. But it's their food, so even if I end up saving it for later, I'll end up eating more anyways, and most of the times it's not enough for a whole meal is mostly leftovers. The thing is they save it for later, but never eat it, and it ends up going to the dogs... if we remember on time.

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One must still have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star.

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26 minutes ago, The Shogun said:

 

Mmmm if it were my food, yeah, I'd totally go for it. But it's their food, so even if I end up saving it for later, I'll end up eating more anyways, and most of the times it's not enough for a whole meal is mostly leftovers. The thing is they save it for later, but never eat it, and it ends up going to the dogs... if we remember on time.

Yeah, there's a lot of food guilt in the US about "wasting" food. But the thing is, you aren't helping anyone by eating that food, and you aren't hurting anyone by not eating it. 

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"By the Most-Righteous-and-Blessed Beard of Sir Tanktimus the Encourager!" - Jarl Rurik Harrgath

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Dude, sup. Nice to see ya.

 

I fight panic attacks myself, so... yeah. Can't offer much but sympathy and solidarity. Anxiety fucking sucks.

 

Here's a pleasant landscape for you.

 

1427132-bigthumbnail.jpg

"You are what you do. Choose again, and change." - Miles Vorkosigan

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On 7/31/2020 at 1:32 PM, Kyellan said:

Dude, sup. Nice to see ya.

 

I fight panic attacks myself, so... yeah. Can't offer much but sympathy and solidarity. Anxiety fucking sucks.

 

Here's a pleasant landscape for you.

 

1427132-bigthumbnail.jpg

 

Really??? We should exchange notes! How do you deal with it?

 

I'm drinking a lot of chamomile, valerian root, etc but I'm still having problems sleeping.

One must still have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star.

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Okay, these past two days, it's been difficult. I'm on training, learning about backlinking and a whole bunch of things I'm not familiar with... and that's leaving mentally exhausted, at the end of the day, I want to close my computer and never see it again until the next day, but I promised myself I wouldn't touch Ghost of Tsushima until I update my challenge.

 

Goal 2: Practicing at least 15 minutes of Wing Chun every day

 

On Monday and Tuesday I practiced doing empty hands forms (si num tao and lat sao) with chain punching. Since I'm not going anywhere and I'm really focusing balancing between getting a workout and not rushing into a panic attack, I tend to things more slowly, which is a different sort of workout, I guess, my muscles ache for standing or holding any pose for a longer than usual time. I thought that practicing before going to bed was going to keep me up, but it didn't make any difference. I was able-ish to sleep the same.

 

I need to IM Redstone to see if I can get some pointers on form.

 

Goal 3: Meditating at least 15 minutes every day

 

I finished the tapping meditation challenge I was doing, each session 16 minutes. I've also been taking regularly breaks to meditate during the days. So far, it's what been the most effective way to handle attacks, that and breathing exercises.

 

Goal 4: Journaling at least 15 minutes every day

 

15 minutes accomplished both days. I'm still not sure on what's the best, handwriting or typing. I enjoy handwriting more, but I'm more concerned about safekeeping (for the future, not in case my parents read my teenagers ramblings about my latest crush or my emo poetry, shut up, you're not even my real mom!)

 

Does anyone else journal? Where do you stand on this? Any recommendations?

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On 8/9/2020 at 8:19 PM, Kyellan said:

 

Me too.

 

On 8/8/2020 at 5:00 PM, Kishi said:

 

Gotta be frank, this place is where I tend to journal the most.

 

You know I've thought that too before, but I'm so hard on myself that I don't consider that a win for unless I go and do some actual handwriting on a physical journal, even if I'm so tired or just repeating what I wrote here at the end of the day, that's when I used to post regularly on these things, too.... like 20 years ago. I gotta cut myself some slack.

 

But it's nice to hear that you think similarly, guys.

 

Okay, it's almost midnight here and again, I told myself: "myself, you're not allowed to go to bed until you write an update for your challenge", so here it goes.

 

Quick recap of my last week, exhausting... exhausting AF. 

 

IF YOU WANT TO READ A VERY-LONG-WHERE-IS-HE-GOING-WITH-THIS-SPEECH-RANT, START HERE.

 

During the pandemic, I sort of became a pater familias of my household. I'm the main breadwinner, with my dad (retired therapist) supporting and my brother in law (who just had a baby, my godson) too, however they can. But my dad can't bear that weight anymore (not in this economy) and my brother in law has other responsibilities (the baby and everything that entails). It's not only being the breadwinner, it's also assuming a sort of leadership position (you can tell I'm avoidy-ish (English Error 404)  about assuming it), because well, my family has a bad history of meal planning and managing a pantry, and usually lived on buying on a daily basis what was needed for the day, which is totally not my style.. I buy in bulk and prepare for the worst, that also includes assigning roles such as who's in charge of cooking, cleaning, etc, my sister is not getting along with my mom and we're all forced to live together not because lockdown is strict here (far from it) but because the hospitals are full, the health system fell years ago, and the private hospitals are simply unpayable unless you're the heir of Amazon, or something like that. Not, add all that family stuff, with everything that's happening outside, with new responsibilities at my job, constantly training and learning new stuff totally out of my comfort zone and walking on eggshells because I feel ZERO confidence in what I'm doing because, duh, I haven't done it before. I also love spending time with my godson and it TRULY takes a village to raise a child, it's time consuming and distracting, as any parent working from home or Nerd encourager having a video call with a bunch of guild leaders can tell you.

 

IF YOU WANT TO READ A REFERENCE TO TANK, READ THE LAST SENTENCE ABOVE.

 

Oh, and at least one panic attack every day. 

 

* breathes in * 

 

Sorry about that, I had to vent. 

 

Truth is, I'm speaking from a place of privilege (it feels kinda weird saying that) but so many people have lost their jobs and had to reinvent themselves while I not only got to keep my job, I make more hours and money because the digital marketing industry wasn't affected. Also the people at my agency have been A-MA-ZING, going a great length to reassure me that I'm great at my job, that they love me, that they're not going to fire me, that I'll have a job for a long time and that I don't pester them with questions and with being so self-conscious.

 

Where I was going with all this? 

 

IF YOU WANT TO READ ABOUT MY MEDITATION PROGRESS START HERE

 

Oh, that's the bulk of my days. So, I'm having a hard time finding time for myself that's not working, sleeping, panicking. The most progress I've made is meditating, as soon as I wake up I meditate, but mostly because as soon as I wake up I get 20 seconds of bliss where my mind is asleep and then BOOM, I get a friendly reminder of everything and anxiety and panic strikes, and because I take breaks when I feel anxious and panicky to meditate, too. Those meditation breaks, breathing exercises and a constant flow of chamomile valerian tea is what's keeping me sane.

 

During the weekend I closed my laptop and promised myself that I would do absolutely nothing but play Ghost of Tsushima and binge watch Netflix, and I did, and that was the end of my week.

 

IF YOU WANT TO READ ABOUT MY MONDAY, START HERE.

 

Okay, so today I woke up after a night of bad sleep, with a tight chest and trouble breathing.

 

IS IT THE RONA?

 

Yeah, no. That's what my mind says every 30 seconds, but then it passes and panic giggles because it fucked me with again. I couldn't believe that anxiety and panic could that, but I had it checked, physically and by the phone, and both doctors told me that yeah... anxiety can actually do that?

 

So, I took 20 minutes to meditate, and it went from a 6 to a 3... still there, but allowing me to be a slightly functional excuse of a person. I went out (after 2 months or so?) to get some packages from my courier and bought groceries, distributed around the home and went into my cave to work... and power went out.

 

Oh, yeah, I forgot. I have to deal with all of this with no running water and the occasional power outage. At least the internet no longer sucks.

 

IF YOU WANT TO READ ABOUT MY WING CHUN PRACTICE, START HERE

 

At least during that couple of hours I could do some empty forms and drills on my own. I made an order today from amazon and included a Wing Chun ball so I can actually punch something, it should be here in a couple of weeks.

 

Power came back, I could finish most of my important tasks for the day and well

 

IF YOU WANT TO READ ABOUT MY PROGRESS JOURNALING START HERE

 

I was going to sit down and write in my journal after this, but one, it's already tuesday here and two, I'd just repeat everything I posted here, so I'm gonna take a page from Kishi's and Kyellan's book.

 

See you tomorrow, monks.

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One must still have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star.

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I'm glad your income is secure and you've got your family with you, even if that has stressful sides. Not a good time to be living alone, or have retired parents living alone. Hopefully it means extra hands to deal with the more time consuming chores.

 

Best wishes to your sister. If she just had a baby, she may not be in a great place, hormonally or emotionally. Extra tough situation.

 

I should do more meditation. It's not in this challenge, but I do need it.

 

I felt like I could run forever, like I could smell the wind and feel the grass under my feet, and just run forever.

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Dang, you're in a rough spot with the family. You're already dealing with panic attacks, so I wouldn't recommend trying to address any family dynamics until your panic attacks get better. It's ok to take care of yourself so there's something in you to take care of the family.

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Gonna echo Tank on this one. There's a point where you need to care for others, and there's a point where you have to care for yourself. I don't know what that point is for you exactly, but getting yourself to the point where baseline isn't panic attacks and anxiety is probably wise. You aren't failing anyone by taking care of yourself.

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Hey, Monks!

 

Quick update! Last time I posted here, I got diagnosed with a severe allergic reaction that caused some inflammation in my lungs. So it wasn't everything in my mind!

 

After two weeks of meds, rest and treatment. I'm slowly getting back with my goals and training. My new wall bag is here and I'm testing it tomorrow with a few drills. Work is crazy, so I have little time to updates between work and habits, but I'm really glad I've taken the time and stayed consistent with mornings of journaling, planning and organizing my day and finances, some tea and breakfast, IF during the afternoon, and ending my days with at least 15 of wing chun and meditation or therapy.

 

Still wish I could get some reading and podcasting done, but I'm fairly satisfied with my progress so far. I'll try to be more elaborate next update.

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One must still have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star.

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