• Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

Zenaxavoir

Nax completes the pre-reqs.

Recommended Posts

Lately my life goal has been to become a Wizard, or a mentalist, which is probably as close as one can get to becoming a Wizard in RL. After obtaining, ehh, less than stellar results during recent challenges, I had to do some thinking in order to figure out why my performance at the game of life is so sub-optimal.

 

It turns out that I may have been trying to embark on the Wizard path without having the proper pre-reqs.

 

To re-iterate what I've been complaining about for just about every challenge: I am way too quick to anger, can't focus worth a damn, stress out because of everything, am anxious as all hell, cry at the drop of a hat...you get the idea. This is the opposite of being a Wizard, and I've been trying to change things, but so far nothing has worked. I'll be feeling all good and fine, but then one encounter with, say, some random dumbfuck driver in the campus parking lot will ruin my whole day. Little things.

 

I've also recently admitted it to myself (and most people close to me) that I'm dealing with depression. Something about checking off fourteen items off the list when one only needs five in order to qualify for a diagnosis. This is mostly due to being in school for too long combined with the fact that academia isn't really a good fit for me. Did I realize this seven years too late? Oh yes. This, coupled with the inability to find a decent job or career and essentially starting back at square one with 30k of debt is, well, pretty damned depressing. I do realize that none of this is my fault, and is more the result of a shitty economy and job market, and listening to the advice of "grown ups" saying that a degree and hard work equals a good career. Goddamn lies. Even though I do enjoy learning moar science and taking classes just for the sake of learning, all the bonuses granted by leveling up "Science Degree" skills in the Game of Life were broken when the Harper Government update went live some years ago.

 

Back to the challenge. I don't have any documentation or supporting information for this, but I'm preeeetty sure that mental stability is a prerequisite for becoming a Wizard. It sure as hell is a pre-req for becoming a mentalist, as the book states. This challenge will therefore be dedicated to getting myself, my mind, and my life back on track. Or on a track in the first place.

 

Main quest: to level up the prerequisite skills that will allow me to unlock the Wizard class later on.

 

1.1, Lumosity: This one stays, for two reasons. One, I’m paying for it, and not using it would be a waste of money. Two, it keeps track of my progress, daily moods, and hours I’ve slept, meaning that I don’t have to keep track of these things myself. It’s also not very time-consuming. Speaking of sleep…

 

 

1.2, SLEEP!

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgfhGMnw0PI

 

I have only been sleeping for roughly 4.5 hours on average since December. This is clearly not enough, and it shows more and more with each passing week. For example, here is a list of mindless shit I’ve done this week so far:

 

- Forget how to turn the radio on in my car.

- SO MANY TYPOS! It keeps getting worse.

- Turned on the wrong stove burner, made a mental note to turn it off and turn on the correct one, forgot said mental note, deposited breakfast eggs on the wrong (and hot) stove, burning my hands and dropping the eggs in the process. At least the cats were happy.

- Forgot about my coffee, re-heated it, forgot about coffee in the microwave, re-heated it again…repeat 4x. This happened more than once.

- Constant brain fog, inability to think, and general lack of productivity that leads to increased stress.

- Hitting the brakes way too slowly while driving.

 

In other words,

 

Gku4L9j.jpg

 

My goal here is to get at least six hours of sleep per night. I know that most web sites suggest seven to nine hours, but I figure I should start small. Baby steps! If my alarm goes off at 5:30, it means I need to fall asleep before 11:30. So I need to be in bed by 11 just to be on the safe side.

 

I probably won’t go to bed before 11 on Friday and Saturday nights, but I’ll just sleep a bit longer the next morning. Still, it’s pretty much impossible for me to stay up past 1:30 now anyway, so my sleep time won’t get shifted by any more than a few hours. Tuesday nights are also variable, since I don’t have to be up at 5:30 on Wednesday mornings.

 

Grading: daily Pass/Fail

 

 

1.3, vanity: Several little things can be done in order to improve my appearance and my life in general. Or should I say improve my life first and my appearance second? Either way, many books I’ve read have made mention that good-looking people make more of an impression, or at least have an easier time making a good impression. Even the mentalist book says so! To maximize my chances at getting a job—and to generally feel better about myself—I’ve come up with a checklist of little things that will give me +CHA:

 

1.3.1: Not picking at my face

Why: this has been a challenge item before, and I had done well at reducing the amount of face-picking at the time. The bad habit has recently returned due to recent stress, and has to be dropped again.

Grading: based on how many pickings. 1 to 15 = A, 16 to 30 = B, etc. (GRADING SCHEME MAY CHANGE)

Result: clearer skin, healthier skin, not looking like an anxious wreck.

 

1.3.2: Staying hydrated

Why: the fluids I ingest usually consist of coffee or alcohol, and never water. My blood likely has the consistency of syrup, which can’t be good. I’m aiming for 6 glasses of water per day for a passing grade.

Grading: pass/fail.

Result: better-looking skin, hopefully more energy, increased possibility of getting on the goddamned leaderboard at the gym when it’s shuttle-run day.

 

1.3.3: No more than two drunken nights per week

Why: So I don’t become a real alcoholic. I need to re-post the list of what alcohol does to one’s skin…and liver and everything else. Even though dry red wine or spirits contain fewer calories and sugars and probably won’t make me fat, they certainly won’t help me lose fat, either. So whenever I feel a drink craving, I’ll just think of the fat that still clings desperately to my ass. BE GONE!

Grading: pass/fail, with two fails allowed only if I make it a point to eat well during those days.

Result: clearer skin, probable fat loss, overall increased appearance.

 

1.3.4: Take care of my nails daily (I can’t believe I just wrote this)

Why: my fingernails have been getting quite filthy lately, and it looks unprofessional. I’m not only thinking of job interviews here, but also every day interactions and general networking. I think the filth is mostly due to me putting coconut oil or hemp seed oil on my face as a moisturizer, and then the oil gets under my nails and collects dirt more easily throughout the day.

Grading: pass/fail, automatic pass if no filth is detected.

Result: not feeling gross, not looking like a hobo.

 

1.3.5: Brushing and flossing every night before bed

Why: so I don’t wake up with a gross taste in my mouth the next morning. I usually have no problems brushing and flossing once daily, but I wake up with an icky feeling when I don’t do this just before sleeping.

Grading: pass/fail.

Result: not feeling gross, whiter teeth.

 

1.3.6: Take cold(er) showers

Why: because hot showers dry my skin right out, making it all flaky. In turn, flaky skin 1) makes me look older, 2) gives me the urge to pick at my face more, and 3) turns my black coat sleeve grey when I wipe it across my face. Yes. It’s THAT bad.

Grading: % will depend on how many showers were taken.

Result: dry skin, be gone!

 

1.3.7: Relax my face

Why: I’ve noticed lately that my face muscles tend to be tense all the time, for no good reason. This probably makes me look awkward and ugly. Unacceptable! In fact, I’ve caught myself doing this so many times just writing this post that I’ve lost count. I’m pretty sure it’s over 40.

Grading: ?????

Result: less wrinkles, not looking constipated during everyday life.

 

1.3.8: Cook quinoa once per week

Why: because quinoa is awesome and I want to have it more often, but the pre-made quinoa salads are freaking expensive, even at Costco. The dietitian on campus also stated that they were a great source of carbs (along with fruits and potatoes) and that my carb intake was way too low since I had greatly restricted bread from my diet. I used to cook Kraft Dinner like a boss, and I’m pretty sure that cooking quinoa is similar, and involves soaking the quinoa in water, and then doing…something, followed by something else. How hard can it possibly be?

Grading: pass/fail.

Result: reduced chance of getting fat.

 

1.3.9: Wear that ugly retainer

Why: so I can stop chewing on the insides of my lips and cheeks, which is a habit that’s become even worse than the face-picking. Having the retainer in my mouth for a few hours per day will also force me to enunciate more, lest I sound like I have a speech impediment.

Grading: pass/fail (will have to elaborate on this a little. I clearly won't wear it ALL the time).

Result: passive speaking practice bonus, not making random and unattractive duck faces.

 

1.3.10: Coffee cap: three cups

Why: having five or more cups of coffee per day can't be good for my system. Think of those poor adrenal glands :(

Grading: pass/fail.

Result: better-looking skin, reduced anxiety, increased savings.

 

 

Life Quest: get a job!

 

I need a job. Like, now. Preferably something I can tolerate and involves opportunities for advancement. Every day I will do one thing (or more) that will increase my chances of finding employment, be it send a resume and cover letter somewhere, make a new cover letter, update my LinkedIn profile, follow up on an application, check out job web sites, etc.

 

I will be keeping track of this job seeking adventure on my tumblr. The good thing about tumblr is that it does not require one to use their real name in order to make an account (yet), and thus my rants will not be found by potential employers like how they would be on Facebook B) I'll probably post these here too, actually.

 

If I can ace this challenge, I’ll have my life in order, and I will be able to work on becoming a wizard/mentalist again.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There we go, just made the final edits, although there's a few minor things I'm not 100% sure how to grade yet. Ah well, will figure something out.

 

Loki pic on first reply? Acceptable XD That's the smug smile I want to be able to give to life when is all done. Several items in this challenge do, after all, involve me not doing things, and I'm a pro at not doing things.

 

Uh oh, ants! Ants that carry insightful quotes? Yes plz!

 

Glad to be here also X)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Nax, great to have you back! (I feel though that there hasn't been so much of a break btw challenges this time, do you agree?)

As I said before, you're making great and difficult insights and decisions. I am so impressed.

Sleep, great goal. Not sure that you should start so small but you're the only one who can decide that. I'd say 7 hours minimum. Many of your difficulties may be related to lack of sleep.

Vanity, are you sure that you want to have so many subgoals? Consider dropping some......

Let's do this!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought you'd like that one.  The fact that he's in a neck chain and still able to be that smug makes me so happy.  

 

Appropriate. I bet the runes engraved on the collar translate to something like "job market", "economy" or "student loans" too.

 

 

Hi Nax, great to have you back! (I feel though that there hasn't been so much of a break btw challenges this time, do you agree?)

As I said before, you're making great and difficult insights and decisions. I am so impressed.

Sleep, great goal. Not sure that you should start so small but you're the only one who can decide that. I'd say 7 hours minimum. Many of your difficulties may be are definitely related to lack of sleep.

Vanity, are you sure that you want to have so many subgoals? Consider dropping some......

Let's do this!!

 

Fixed! And yeah, I definitely agree about the shorter challenge break, although I didn't exactly finish strong in the last challenge lol!

 

I wasn't 100% sure about the sleeping hours. There was some discussions about sleep at those workshops I attended a few weeks ago, and what the counsellor/coordinator was saying was that it was usually better to change sleeping habits little by little, but I don't recall exactly whether that applied to shifting one's (consistent) sleeping hours back or extending them, or both. I'll have to go over those pages again. The goal is to move to 7+ eventually, so it'll happen somehow XD

 

The vanity list did look overwhelming when I looked at it at first, but when I really think about it, several of the "tasks" listed involve doing less, whereas others are simply modifications to pre-existing habits (like brushing/flossing and cleaning my nails for example, and showering of course lol). Some items will take care of themselves, too: if I wear the retainer for most of the day, I won't want to drink coffee or alcohol, and water will replace these fluids since I'll still want to drink something B) And not picking at my face will probably result in my nails not getting dirty as fast. Dem synergies!

 

The only vanity list goal that I'm sort of worried about is the quinoa one, since I'm frequently guilty of doing the whole "Oh, I have a whole week, I'll do this later" thing. So how about I do this now: I will cook quinoa on Fridays! Mom (also into healthy eating, mostly) designated Fridays as "junk food night" where greasier foods are acceptable, so preparing quinoa on those days will make me eat less junk. Who knows, Friday nights might become known as quinoa nights, assuming I'm allowed to cook without being told I'm doing it wrong lol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Found your challenge! The internet is working well enough again to check it out. I'll read the whole thing later again, but I am watching you! 

We're gonna rock this challenge, we have similar goals. We're gonna be awesome, just you'll wait and see. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Two glasses of water so far. It's amazing how 1) hot water form the Keurig machine can be a good substitute for the extra morning coffees, and 2) having some cups of hot water this morning actually gave me momentum and motivation for this challenge.  I should probably make a list to keep track of all the vanity sub-goals. Or write them down in a little book, so that it looks like I'm doing something important.

 

Also, decaf tea counts as a glass of water, for hydration purposes. Am I at coffee cap before noon? Of course.

 

Taking cold(er) showers is...bleh. When I say colder, I mean something around (or just slightly below) room temperature, so it's not like torture or anything, but...IT FEELS LIKE IT, BECAUSE HOT SHOWERS ARE MY FAVORITE THING IN THE WORLD. You know, except for the dry and flaking skin that results, but still. I took a cold(er) shower this morning after the gym. For a while there I was considering not showering at all lol. I didn't wash my hair because the Loki hair I had from Saturday still looks decent it would have taken too long, and I'm going to have to wash it later anyway because tonight is BodyAttack night.

 

But yeah, showering is now like this:

 

cat-falls-in-water-o.gif

 

THE PARCEL I WAS WAITING FOR FINALLY CAME IN THE MAIL THIS MORNING WHEEEE! Right before I left for campus. Now I just want to go home ASAP but there is group meeting later. It made me late a little, and I forgot to bring my retainer X(

 

My fingernails get cruddy all by themselves, almost instantly, no matter how often I clean them. WTF.

 

 

EDIT: Woops. Do cat gifs still equal burpees?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Day 1 is practically over. Scores:

 

1.1, Lumosity: Done

1.2, sleep: Pass. I'll definitely go to bed before 11, because it's 9:40 now and I'm exhausted already.

 

Vanity goals:

1.3.1, picking: 44

1.3.2, water: 6 glasses, pass

1.3.3, sober weekdays: pass

1.3.4, nails: pass

1.3.5, brush/floss: pass

1.3.6, colder shower: pass (I, uhh...didn't shower after gym session #2, but I already had one in the morning so whatever)

1.3.7, relax face: N/A

1.3.8, quinoa: N/A

1.3.9, wear retainer: fail. I'll wear it while I sleep

1.3.10, less coffee: pass

 

I need to make a table for 1.3, or something. This post is half to record goals, and half to write this list so that I can copypasta it into future posts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A retainer is that little thing you put in your mouth/on your teeth to make sure they don't shift. People usually get them for several years after they have braces. I had braces several years ago, and wore the retainer often for around 3 years after they were taken off, but then kinda' ...stopped lol. It still fits, which is good, and I should probably keep wearing it just in case.

 

There's probably a -1 CHA penalty for wearing it, buuuuuut, it'll stop me from chewing on my lip so damn much, and it will probably improve my speaking ability in the long run, so there's a +2 CHA that I'll get later. Having it in during the day will probably make me crave coffee a lot less, too, because then I'd have to take it out, rinse it, and that's too much effort. Laziness is totally a good thing!

 

Oh, and guess what I forgot at home again today. Gaaaah! I should go home early to pick it up.

 

I washed my hair this morning, in a cooler shower. I don't think I've ever washed my hair so quickly. Watch the house's water bill drop by half within a month lol. Eh, at least my skin isn't dry and peeling like crazy right now.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Aaah that thing! x'D I used to wear it too, for about half a year. Then I stopped wearing it. I simply started forgetting. When I put it in now it's only a little bit tight, but it still fits. After having worn it for a few hours, I don't notice any pressure anymore. My teeth are still straight and my braces were removed about... uhm... 7 years back? 8 years? 
 

Anyway, good that you're going to use them to stop chewing your lip and reduce the amounts of coffee you drink. :) Good on you! Clever idea.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you'd lose CHA if you didn't wear it and your teeth went back to what they were prior to braces! Nice first day :)

 

Hah! Yes. Why did I not think of that?

 

1.1, Lumosity: done

1.2, sleep: will be done before midnight. I don't have to get up at 5 tomorrow, so bed time can be pushed past 11 X)

 

Vanity goals:

1.3.1, picking: 44

1.3.2, water: 7 glasses, pass

1.3.3, sober weekdays: pass

1.3.4, nails: pass

1.3.5, brush/floss: pass

1.3.6, colder shower: pass

1.3.7, relax face: N/A

1.3.8, quinoa: N/A

1.3.9, wear retainer: fail

1.3.10, less coffee: pass

 

I like this challenge a lot more than the last one. I'm just having a hard time fitting the life quest into the mix, which is probably the most important quest. All I need to do is write cover letters, but by the time I'm done all the other crap I have to do, I'm just like..."nope."

 

For example, tonight I did laundry and cleaned the table. I had my crafting things scattered all over the table, along with junk, and all of that necessitated that I organize everything (make piles, paints in one box, brushes in a jar, sort which junk gets kept and thrown out, etc.) Now it's 11:30 and after folding all the clothes I'm tired and haven't done anything life-goal related, nor have I cut out the pattern pieces for the shirt I'm going to make at the sewing lessons on Thursday. It's like all the boring yet necessary  tasks constantly encroach on the tasks that I do want to do.

 

Well, okay, I suppose I wasted time when I had a nap too, but that was only 40 minutes overall.

 

On a more positive note, I was at the mindfulness workshop again today and had a good time. Since this was the last session (sadface), a few minutes were spent on discussing what we had gotten out of the workshops. I said essentially what I posted in the original post, along the lines of "Yeah, my life is going nowhere, but now I do realize that none of this is my fault, and is more the result of a shitty economy and job market, and listening to the advice of "grown ups" saying that a degree and hard work equals a good career. ...and everyone was like o_o, and the coordinator said that I "got it", which made me feel good about myself. Even if my life is going nowhere lol. I was also told toward the end of the workshop that I generally looked more positive, so I guess I'm making some progress!

 

Another thing that the workshop coordinator mentioned is that sometimes one can adopt another person's thought patterns without even being aware of it. The example she gave was from her own counseling sessions, where a client was all exhausted, negative, and had a wailing baby, etc. ...then when that session was over she (coordinator) went home and noticed that she was feeling exhausted and had a general case of the blahs, even though she was full of energy before seeing that one client. The gist of it was that being around highly negative people can make us negative. This got me thinking: everyone in this house always seems upset. Arguments are rampant, it doesn't seem like anyone is ever happy, and there's clutter everywhere, and...the whole house just seems like a giant cesspool of negativity. Something has to be done about that at some point.

 

At least the table is cleaned?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1.1, Lumosity: Done

1.2, sleep: Pass...most likely. I still have one hour, but I'm rather tired, so this shouldn't be a problem.

 

Vanity goals:

1.3.1, picking: 19

1.3.2, water: pass (6)

1.3.3, sober weekdays: pass

1.3.4, nails: pass

1.3.5, brush/floss: pass

1.3.6, colder shower: N/A

1.3.7, relax face: N/A

1.3.8, quinoa: N/A

1.3.9, wear retainer: pass. I didn't wear it all day, but did so for a good portion of the day, as well as overnight. It's back in now.

1.3.10, less coffee: pass. HOLY SHIT, I ONLY HAD TWO! WHAT IS THIS!

 

Lumosity scores seem to have increased a little in the lest few days. I hope they keep increasing, because ego boost.

 

I was able to talk about life and the future on DDO without getting extremely sad. Maybe I've simply entered the "acceptance" stage lol. I also cut out fabric, and worked on cover letters a bit...but not enough X( Oh wait, there's still an hour before bed time, right? LES' DO THIS!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What's DDO? Anyway, good that you didn't get so sad. There is still hope for you. ;) Hehehe, sorry, I'm being silly. But it is really great to hear that you didn't get too sad about it while talking. In the end it'll give you a clearer vision on things, when the emotions aren't so extreme anymore. And clearer vision means a better chance of knowing what to do, thus a better chance of succeeding. 

 

And lol about the coffee. x'D I didn't know you needed that much. When I drink 2 coffees in a day it is a lot for me, hahaha! But just for my idea, how much coffee is regular for you? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Normal" amounts of coffee before this week: 5 - 6 cups

 

"Normal" amounts of coffee during crunch time (for example: the month before graduating with my B.Sc): 9 - 11 cups.

 

So yes, two cups is very little XD Oh, and DDO = Dungeons & Dragons Online, It's one of the few games I still play, along with Diablo III and Marvel Heroes.

 

Guh, turns out that I did not pass the sleep goal last night. Or at least I don't think so. I did go to bed before 11, but brain was all like "LOL NO I'M NOT GOING TO FALL ASLEEP :D" ...and I didn't sleep until like 11:40 or so. Should this count as pass or fail?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, what's this glass of wine? I'm modifying my alcohol goal for this week due to Easter weekend: the gym is closed tomorrow, and Friday's workout is pushed to Saturday, and the circout includes those atrocious shuttle-runs that make you want to die at the end, after a pile of squats and deadlifts x_x Needless to say, drinking the night before this workout is...undesirable, so I'm drinking now instead of Friday ;P

 

1.1, Lumosity: done

1.2, sleep: passed out (8h, or close to it)

 

Vanity goals:

1.3.1, picking: 52

1.3.2, water: pass (6)

1.3.3, sober weekdays: Fail, but it's officially not a weekday anymore, as stated above.

1.3.4, nails: pass

1.3.5, brush/floss: fail

1.3.6, colder shower: N/A

1.3.7, relax face: N/A

1.3.8, quinoa: N/A

1.3.9, wear retainer: pass (not all day, but most)

1.3.10, less coffee: pass (3)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(Copypasta'd from my tumblr)

 

I decided last week that Fridays would be quinoa days from now on, as in, I would cook quinoa at some point during the day. All I knew was that it involved rinsing the quinoa, and then putting it in water, or something. I figured this was akin to making Kraft Dinner, and I can make Kraft Dinner like a fucking boss. How hard could cooking quinoa possibly be?

 

The recipe on the web site:

- Rinse quinoa under cold water

- Pour cold water (2:1 water:quinoa ratio) into a saucepan and bring to a boil.

- Once boiling, turn the heat down and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.

- Turn off the heat, let the quinoa sit for about 5 minutes.

 

The actual recipe:

- Rinse quinoa under cold water

- Pour cold water (2:1 water:quinoa ratio) into a saucepan and bring to a boil.

- Once boiling, turn the heat down and simmer for 45 minutes because the Internet is distracting.

- Turn off the heat, say “fuck†a lot, and let the quinoa sit for about 5 seconds.

- Scrape crispy quinoa from the edges of the saucepan with a sharp knife. Say “fuck†some more.

 

The thing is…I tried some of the crispy quinoa (because, why not?) and…it’s actually really freaking good o_O It’s all crunchy like chips, but it’s quinoa. Did I just invent a thing?

The rest of the quinoa is passable, I guess.

 

I give myself a 5/10.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Scores today (Apr 18) so far, will update as I go along.

 

1.1, Lumosity: done

1.2, sleep: pass (7 hours, or close)

 

Vanity goals:

1.3.1, picking: 31

1.3.2, water: fail (3)

1.3.3, sober weekdays: fail

1.3.4, nails: pass

1.3.5, brush/floss: fail

1.3.6, colder shower: N/A

1.3.7, relax face: N/A

1.3.8, quinoa: pass

1.3.9, wear retainer: fail

1.3.10, less coffee: pass (3)

 

I should probably shower. Just looking over my constant N/A's for the cooler shower goals makes me feel rather gross lol.

 

EDIT:

 

Maybe after more alcohol I won't loathe the cool shower as much. Also, I am still doing ten burpees after each drink. Without the jump, because the ceilings are low and I want my fingers to remain intact.

 

It looks like tomorrow will be quinoa day again, because mom just stole all the quinoa I made earlier.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites