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Those Vampires Aren't Going to Slay Themselves


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What's a Slayer to do when she finally comes to terms with the fact that she can't continue to fight the forces of evil with just her (admittedly awesome) brain? That maybe she has to actually train her body instead of always trying to outsmart them? Through some sort of cosmic oversight (or joke?), our heroine has no Watcher; instead, just a party of friends doing all they can. But hey, nobody can kick vampire ass like a Slayer...

The whole trouble started a week ago when I was in a routine fight, and I got sloppy. It was late, I was tired, and I let the ugly demon get its teeth around my knee. I staked it then and there, of course, but I guess I have to come to terms with the fact that I have to use to learn the rest of my body... Those damn vampires aren't going to slay themselves.

 

So I'm cleaning up my diet, introducing some more yoga to give me the strength, balance, and clarity I need to fight more like a Slayer. Any ideas for yoga on an injured knee? It's mostly just the puncture wounds now. I'm not limping around anymore.

 

My other focus--I'm writing a book. An important one. Basically a guide to slaying for non-Slayers. Now, don't get me wrong. It's dangerous work, and I don't want just anybody doing it. But if you're getting attacked my a vampire, you ought to at least know how to fight back. But, unfortunately, the book's a little bit of a mess, so I'm in the midst of a massive overhaul. It's a lot of work, and I'm procrastinating on it like crazy. It's a lot of pressure.

 

But it's time to stop whining and get to work. People's lives are hanging in the balance.

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Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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Today (and in general right now), I'm trying to focus on habit and routine building. I generally focus way too much on willpower to help me do the things I want to do, and not enough on habits that don't require decision-making. I've been reading some books on habit building, and they've been surprisingly helpful. Here's a list of all the things I can think of that require willpower or decision-making that I would like to start to automate:

 

Pick outfits
Decide what to eat for breakfast/lunch/dinner (eating healthy)
Decide what to pack/eat for lunch
Decide what to order at a coffee shop/bar, etc.
Decide what to work on first
Decide when to do each of my habits/to dos
Work out (when/how)
Get out of bed to my alarm (deciding whether to push the snooze button, which I always do)
Get off my electronics an hour before I go to bed
Decide when to do leisure stuff and when to work
Write
Go shopping (how much to spend and what to buy)
The continual fight to not procrastinate or do fun things instead of productive things
What to watch on TV/what movie to watch
What book to read
Where to go when hanging out with friends/eating out

 

Some of these are silly, but some of them have a pretty big impact. And either way, I don't want to waste decision making power on silly stuff. So here are my potential solutions (and no, I'm definitely not planning on implementing them all at once):

 

Time block the day--schedule all of the habits and things I want to accomplish so that I don't have to decide whether/when I'm going to do them 

Meal plan a week at a time (and cook ahead of time whenever possible)

Decide exactly what workout and exactly when I'll be doing it ahead of time

Lay out outfits for the week

Decide before going out for food or drinks what I will get

Journal about bad habits I want to break--what are the cues and rewards? How can I alter it to still get a desired reward from that cue without having the unhealthy habit?

Take away the snooze button option

Quantify/track things I'm trying to improve so that I can see the actual data--food journaling, checking my step counts, etc.

Do hard things first thing or right after eating

Limit my choices in every way I can when those choices don't actually matter

List all of the (conscious) decisions I make so that I can plan more based on that 

Keep things tidy--studies have shown that people in an untidy space have lower willpower

Hide away tempting things to limit the number of times I have to decide not to do them, and keep positive triggers in sight to up the likelihood that I'll do them 

 

The things that are the most important to me right now, and the most related to my current 4-week challenge (link in signature), are the snooze button issue (so I'll have time to do the workouts I want to do), meal planning ahead of time (to deal with veggies and no grains), workout planning/scheduling, and scheduling when I'm going to write (NO EXCUSES).

 

The plan:

 

Take away the snooze button--remove my electronic devices from my bedroom and use only my UP band, which I can't snooze

Do weekly meal planning/some prep on Sundays (I've planned for this week as much as I can, but starting this weekend)

Also on Sundays, plan workouts. Because I'm mostly doing indoor stuff right now, there shouldn't be anything major to force me to always change my plans

When I'm going to write--this is the hardest for me, because I never feel like I have the energy or focus after work to do it, and I generally don't have the resources to do it at work. I think I have two (not mutually exclusive) options. I can bring my computer to work and go to a coffee shop after work, during which time I block my internet and can only write. I can also try to start writing in the morning. I'm going to my friend's cabin this weekend, so I'm not going to be able to do after work writing tomorrow, so I'm going to start with trying to do a little bit of writing (like 15 minutes) tomorrow morning. Next week, I'm going to pick two days (when I'm laying out my week) to go to a coffee shop and get some writing done. Maybe I'll try to find a cool, unique coffee shop near my work so that I can combine getting writing done with doing a little bit of exploring.

 

Why didn't I make a battle log before? This is so helpful! 

 

Anybody have any tips on writing consistency/other related habits? I would love to hear them!

 

Slayer out.

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Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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I actually did end up writing after work on Friday--I went home and packed for the cabin, then wrote for like half an hour at Starbucks before I headed up to the cabin. Not a ton, but better than nothing. It's been an adventure figuring out how to write a book on slaying for the non-slayer disguised as fiction, but I think it's going pretty well. At this point, I'm mostly trying to make it more readable and fit in any important information I'd forgotten. But when there's this much pressure on a project, the cleaning-up part is the hardest part, at least for me.

 

I've been using the app MyPaleoPal to food journal. I'd been using MyFitnessPal, but the calorie counting can be really tough if you're eating a homemade meal or something from a restaurant that isn't listed in their database. I would just end up not doing it because it was a pain. On MyPaleoPal, you just take a picture of your meal and post it. As a bonus, people can help you figure out whether it's paleo or not. You can also post privately, which is nice, which means I can post a picture of the beer I drank without having ten people inform me that it's not paleo. Yes, I'm aware.

 

Since I'm off work tomorrow, I'm going to do my workout planning and meal planning/prep then. I'll pre-make some green smoothies (I forgot how much I love them) and do some other planning. I'm thinking about trying a Whole30, though that would be tough since I usually eat dinner with my family and I don't want to do all the cooking myself or force my mom to totally change what she's cooking. We'll see--I'm going to look into it.

Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

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Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

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I FINALLY FINISHED THE SUBPLOT I'VE BEEN WORKING ON FOREVER. So, that's a good thing. The week's been good food wise, and I have finally done some yoga because my knee's healed up. So, yeah, things are better. Having a plan definitely helps. I haven't been able to do as much meal planning and smoothie making as I wanted, but I've still been doing well with packing lunch and making smoothies.

 

On the Slaying side -- things have been going all right. Quiet, mostly. It makes me nervous, to tell you the truth. Patrol hasn't been coming up with much, so I'm starting to wonder where they are.

Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

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Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

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Yesterday was challenging at work--we're moving offices, so I was kind of running around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to coordinate everything. But I got some good writing done yesterday and today, and I even managed to get in a yoga session today. That means I hit my challenge quota for this week for the first time! Three yoga sessions this week. I also found out there's a local yoga studio that has free sessions on Sundays, which I'd love to start going to. I love NF Yoga, but I also love being in a studio with a teacher who can help me with my alignments and create an atmosphere. I can't go tomorrow, though. AFC Championship! Go Broncos!

Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

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Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

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Happy Monday! Today, I'm evaluating some of my current goals by trying to re-tool my morning routine. Mornings are an endless source of stress for me. If you've ever heard Mike Birbiglia talk about Sleepy Carl, this is my brain in the mornings. I find endless ways to continue snoozing, even if my alarm is across the room. I can be hyper-motivated about all the things I want to do in the morning, but Sleepy Carla (my version) always talks me into staying in bed the extra hour instead of being productive.

 

Here's my "level 50" morning (which incorporates the idea of starting your day by creating, not consuming, besides breakfast, of course!):

  • 5:30: Get up without using the snooze button and enjoy a quiet cup of coffee/tea (or something else I enjoy so I'm happy about getting up--I'm still working this part out)
  • 5:50: Do yoga and meditate
  • 6:25: Shower, do hair, do make-up
  • 7:25: Eat breakfast, set goals for the day (lunch was made the night before). Might incorporate visualization here, too, and/or prayer & prayer journaling
  • 7:50: Write
  • 8:15: Leave for work (and this way, I'm not late!)

Here are some of the ideas I have for getting there:

  • I know I need to start getting up at the same time every day. All of the research says that. I think, though, I need to take baby steps, which is hard for me. I need to start showering at night, and for now, just aim to get up at 7 every day. After I do that for a week, I'll move it back to 6:45, etc.
  • The night before, I need to lay out an outfit, make my lunch, prepare my breakfast (if it's something I need to prepare for), pack up my purse and put it by the door, and put together my yoga mat, etc. to take downstairs.
  • I need to figure out if I can turn the volume down far enough on my wake-up light that the light alarm still works, but I'm not relying on it to wake me up--it has a snooze function, but my UP band doesn't!
  • I want to start using my sleep journal again to see where I'm at.
  • I hate getting up because my room is so cold, so I'll put my robe next to my bed to put on over my PJs.

So, here's my Level 1:

  • The night before: shower, lay out clothes, pack up my purse, and put together yoga stuff.
  • 7:00: wake up with no snooze button, get a cup of coffee
  • 7:20: do yoga
  • 7:50: eat breakfast, set goals for the day, pray/prayer journal
  • 8:15: leave for work

This is definitely missing some things I want, but it builds a yoga habit, and I really want to start avoiding the snooze button. This week is the trial week, starting tomorrow morning!

Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

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Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

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I did it! I actually managed to get up without my snooze button this morning. At 6:50, but still. And I did yoga and ate breakfast and everything! It was nice to have such a good morning before a stressful day at work.

Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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Double posting today. Already thinking about the next four-week challenge, since this one is almost up (four weeks isn't really that long!). Ideas:

 

  1. Fitness goal 1: continuation of my 3x/week yoga goal. I'm going to up it to 5x/week, because I actually want to do every day, and this gives me some wiggle room if things come up.
  2. Fitness goal 2: continuation of the vegetable goal, but I want to up the ante on this one. Maybe increase the number of servings I have every day? I also have to define what a serving is.
  3. Fitness goal 3: the grain thing this month isn't super working for me, so I'm going to try something a little different--I think I'm going to try limiting the number of meals with grains rather than the number of days, because right now, if I have any grains at all in the day, then I just kind of "what the hell" it the rest of the day.
  4. Life goal: This challenge, it was getting my rewrite done, but in actuality the goal was submitting to Angry Robot (which I'm still going to try to do, even though I'm not 100% ready). Time to really get the rewrite done, though, to the point that I'm sending it through beta readers.

I kind of want to structure it like a paid fitness challenge -- schedule ahead emails to myself with my goals for the day, my workout, motivational images, crap like that. Might be fun!

Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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Just set up a new four-week challenge thread (you can find it in my signature). I detailed there a little bit, but I'm basically dealing with the fallout of a pretty brutal battle from a year ago--the vamp is dead, but the scars he inflicted are not. So I'm trying to start to really work through all of that. 

 

Partially because of that and partially for other reasons, I'm suspending work on my "fictional" guide. Instead, I'm working on some other, lower pressure fiction (though you can be sure you'll find good information in there, too), and writing an ebook on productivity and prioritizing your life. It'll still be slaying-related -- the thing you need to make time for in your life might be killing vampires! Or maybe that's just me. Good information all around, though, I think. I'm hoping to have the draft done by the end of this week (hopefully sooner) and have it out to the masses in the next few weeks. Stay tuned!

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Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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The week's been a little bit of a struggle. I was doing really well with getting up in the morning and getting some writing in, but for whatever reason, my body isn't really cooperating this week. I've gotten some more work on the ebook done, but I want to really put in some concentrated time this afternoon.

 

On the fitness note, I've been eating okay this week, but not moving a whole lot. I'm on a dance team right now (in my "spare" time), which is helping me at least get moving consistently on Monday nights. I was going to CorePower yoga for a while and really liked it, but I was on a Groupon membership and now trying to weigh how often I'm likely to go and how much I'm willing to invest in a membership. I love doing yoga at home, but I always felt like I pushed myself way harder when I was at the studio. It felt like such a good workout! I feel like every time I start to get a little stronger, life and slaying get in the way and I slide right back to where I started. And I say this knowing full well that slaying would be a lot easier if I were stronger! Vicious cycle, but I'm still working...

Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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Aww, I've struggled with an injured knee for quite a while myself, rehab takes way too much patience for anyone's liking!

On another note, the terms you're using feel just right. What kind of monsters have you been slaying?

Feel free to point me towards any old threads XD

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Apprentice of Intent .  Lvl X Druidu Bronze IV

Epic Quest | Battle Log | Current Challenge

' Who has the time to stall reaching hus highest potential? Death tells me "I'm a fickle thing, and I see you." ' •Aerisand

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[This particular master vampire was an ugly breakup with a boyfriend of almost 3 years. I'm still doing a lot of processing from how that relationship affected me, and how to find myself again. Fun times.]

 

Last week was definitely rough -- I got sick twice this weekend, which was terrible, but I'm starting fresh this week. On a good note, I did make quite a lot of progress on my guide, the draft of which is finally almost done. I started a related challenge for myself on my blog here.

 

Getting back up on my feet this week. The weather's terrible, but it's supposed to get better after a couple of days. Training is nicer out in the sun...

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Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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Another month has passed, and I've (sort of) accomplished another Whole30 in the interim. I wanted to do a breakdown for myself on how it went, and reflect on what's worth it and what's not worth it for me at this point. I'm still doing reintroduction, so this may change as that process continues.

 

Not worth it:

  • The majority of grains
  • Any bread that isn't insanely exciting and delicious
  • Starbucks, etc. pastries
  • Sweet coffee drinks
  • Basically any store-bought dessert
  • Cream in my coffee
  • Tortillas
  • Meh candy
  • Added sugar and soy in stupid things
  • Rice, most of the time (unless I really need carbs)
  • Soda
  • Most pasta
  • Beer I don't love
  • Mediocre cocktails
  • Side pancakes/toast
  • Frozen waffles
  • Canned whipped cream
  • Frozen yogurt
  • Ice cream that isn't my favorite

Worth it:

  • Homemade chocolate chip cookies (but just my mom's)
  • Homemade or Cheesecake Factory cheesecake
  • Special, amazing desserts
  • Really good tortilla chips (sometimes)
  • Amazing cocktails
  • My favorite beers
  • Pancakes at Snooze
  • Fresh whipped cream
  • Baked & Wired cupcakes

These are just things off the top of my head. More to come!

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Slayer Druid

"Welcome to the Hellmouth."

 

My Epic Quest | My Battle Log | My Blog

 

Current challenge: Slayer Hits the Books

Archived challenges: 12345

 

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