I am Open and Ready for Affirmation 2

I am Open and Ready for Affirmation 2

Last week’s affirmation, “Something wonderful is about to happen,” led me to some new and interesting places. Wonderful things happened!

On Sunday I ended up at a cigar bar with a new friend. We ended up laughing so hard we went into silent giggle mode. It was fun! In therapy on Monday, I began connecting with my pain and trauma. Finally admitting that horrific things happened to me, instead of hiding behind a convincing fake smile was very difficult.

I went to a Pranic Healing Session on Tuesday out of curiosity for a unique experience. My heart chakra was displaced according to the guides in my individual healing session. I burst into tears when it was repositioned. They said now I’d be truly ready to accept and forgive.

On Wednesday, I found a job fair for veterans by chance. I got dressed while repeating my affirmation on Thursday. Surprisingly, I was not anxious in the crowded conference room. I left much closer to a job I want, plus a new option of becoming a teacher. Another blessing happened! I have a job interview next week!

I ran five whole miles on Friday, which I’m super proud of, because it’s the first time I’ve done it! And Saturday? I prepared for my interview from a place gratitude instead anxiety. I can safely say… affirmations are what’s up! This week’s affirmation is:

I am open and ready to receive.

I am open and ready to receive. Weekly Affirmation.
Affirmation 2

Thursday was the first day I woke up without thinking about my broken heart immediately. It wasn’t until I was brushing my teeth that it crossed my mind. That was unexpected. I’m making progress, slowly but surely. I look forward to tomorrows a lot more, because I know it will hurt a little less. Knowing what I want and need gives me other things to think about and work toward.

Also, I am making phone wallpapers for every affirmation, so you’re more than welcome to save and use them, too. Let’s go on the affirmation journey together! I am excited to find out what this week has in store for me. Lastly, if you haven’t found me on social media, click one of the buttons below, they’ll get you where you want to go.

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Affirmation 1

I started this morning a little teary and downcast, because my family is going its separate ways after the Thanksgiving holiday. I don’t get to see them often, so I treasure those moments. But then I remembered that today is the start of my Weekly Affirmations. I chose an affirmation to focus on the possibilities of the present and future instead of living in the past, a habit that I need to break.

Something wonderful
is about to happen to me.

Phone Wallpaper

I’m putting this on a sticky note for my bathroom mirror, so it’s the first thing I see each morning. I made a cute wallpaper for my phone. I also made it a Reminder that will pop up every hour on my phone. I am getting affirmations from every direction this week!

I wonder what this affirmation will have in store for me this week? One of my goals for the better, self-assured Rachelle is to let go of negative thoughts in their entirety. Today, and the rest of the week, is my first small step forward.

I’m ready.

Weekly Affirmations

I’m taking this category into a new direction as of this week. Although challenging myself to overcome anxiety has been rewarding, I want to test out positive affirmations as a new way to work on anxiety. Choosing to see the positive or reaffirming that the world is a kind, loving, and generous place is another way for me to calm anxiety, quiet my inner critic, and release negative thoughts and fears.

Here’s the plan:
Each week on Sunday, I’ll post the affirmation that I’m going to repeat to myself each morning. The following Saturday evening, we’ll see how it went in terms of changing my attitude and how much my anxiety was impacted. The affirmation I choose each week will make me face a phobia, anxious, or negative thought that I’ve been holding onto for my whole life.

My goal is to have a totally different outlook in a few months’ time. I’m working on unlearning negative self talk and habitually being kind and forgiving to myself and others. Wish me luck & Happy Thanksgiving!

Challenge 6

My blog has not been getting the attention that I gave it at the beginning. But I have a great reason as to why! I just finished my Master’s class with a shiny new A as my final grade! Not bad for having a surprise vacation right in the middle of it.

Anywhoo, now that that’s done, I’m going to try and go through the VA to continue taking classes. I survive on disability, so having more than half of it go to one class was quite the gut punch financially. It may take a little longer to complete, but I’m okay with that. At least I know I can do it, and I don’t think about myself as critically anymore for not having done it.

I have to find some new goals to close out 2019. Can you believe it’s almost a new decade? 2010 seems so far away from today.

Time for a new challenge! Right now my goal is to read a few books a month, now that I have the time. My current stack of library books looks like this:

I am two-thirds of the way finished with Hillary Rodham Clinton’s book, What Happened. It’s an interesting read, and many of her candid stories about her campaign, the emails, and her family have painted her in a different light for me. I never thought she was bad or believed the hype about The Clinton Foundation, but reading her book makes her more seem more human than politician, if that makes sense.

My next goal is to pick what my next career should be. Following that? Save some money. After that? Start another book!

My hope/ goal is to start 2020 with a clear head and purpose. The last few weeks have definitely been a test because of personal things, but I feel like I passed. Here’s to carrying my goals, solutions, and lessons into the new decade.

Challenge 3 Revisited

I’m done with my third challenge! I did all 6 weeks of Steel Edge! I only missed one class, because of a very misguided hair decision.

Although I don’t have the measurements that Desiree took on the first and last days, I can safely say that I went from 122 pounds to 130 pounds. I’m also happy to announce that my butt finally showed up for work, after being AWOL for thirty years. I was pretty happy about that after trying on a couple of my old swimsuits. Little booty coming through!

Final class! As you can see, I am not much of a poser.

I still can’t say that I enjoy exercise. I’ve come to the conclusion that I absolutely hate it. It’s something about touching multiple surfaces and the noise level in a gym. My heart gets anxiety workouts daily, and going to a place that makes the anxiety worse, with the intention of making my heart rate faster is still not my idea of fun. I lost count of pools of sweat I sat in or laid on that weren’t mine. It was just part of the process. I never thought I’d look forward to showers so much.

I’d post progress pics, but eh… I’m not really into putting my body out there on display for Internet strangers. I was able to lifts a few pounds heavier every session though. This is probably the first time I’ve actually noticed results from doing any kind of workout. That’s pretty awesome.

Since I realized I don’t like working out, I signed up for two more classes. I don’t think I’m the best self-starter when it comes to doing things I really don’t like, especially dragging myself out of our comfortable air-conditioned home into the Guam heat and humidity. Best way to make sure I’m at the gym is by financially making sure I can’t choose to not go. My own wallet calls me on my bullshit. That’s pretty neat.

I’m pretty happy about my experience at the gym. Overall, everyone was very kind and friendly. I made some new work out buddies. I did get upset when my fiancée (that also works out there) mentioned that some dude felt the need to make a racist joke saying my dreads make me look like I’m straight out of Compton. Wellp, first of all, my hair is in Senegalese twists, not dreadlocks. Second, I’ve never been to Compton (or L.A. for that matter). Third, I guess he didn’t know he was basically saying, “Wow, she looks really ghetto,” which we all know is code for another six letter word to the man I’m going to marry. Fail on all fronts. Sadly, that’s just another day in the life of a dark-skinned black woman.

It’s disappointing to know that you can mind your business, work out and not bother anyone, but still be targeted by racism. It’s more than disappointing actually. It ruined my day, because I had gotten comfortable there. I was under the impression no one was watching our class, because they were concentrating on their own workouts. I felt safer there than I had at any gym, ever, but that evaporated in a simple sentence. But Jack assured me that dude doesn’t go there regularly. I need to just ignore other people’s ignorance at the end of the day. It’s a shame, because that came on the heels of me walking out of a Salvation Army with a stack of new books in my arms a few weeks ago. Another person felt the need to shout a slur at me while I walked to my car. I don’t go out a lot, so you can imagine my shock and frustration with something like this occurring more than once in such a short amount of time. Like I said, it’s more than disappointing.

Buuuut, one idiot aside, I’m gonna keep going to Steel. I’m gonna keep doing my thing, which is literally working out then going home and keeping to myself. It would be nice to just live in a world where people don’t automatically make the assumption that I’m from “the hood” because I have twists and dark skin. It’d be nice to live in a world where people don’t shout slurs just to be edgy and impress their friends. But that’s not the world we live in. I guess all I can really do is keep getting more swole until I’m intimidating enough to make people keep their ugly words to themselves.

Oh yeah, I should end this post with a goal for the next session. I’m gonna learn all the names of the exercises. I slacked on that this time around. Next time, I got it!

Challenge 5 Complete

I did it!

I enrolled in a Master’s program! Originally I had started an MBA when I was in the Air Force, but I’m going a different path. It wasn’t really my cup of tea. I almost started a General Business degree when I was in college at my dad’s suggestion, but I’m glad I followed my strengths and instincts instead. I started the MBA program at his suggestion again… and that’s probably why I didn’t continue with it. It wasn’t the right fit.

I enrolled in a different program with the same institution, but already have one class done! I have credits toward a Masters of Science in Leadership. I figure the skills I learn will be useful in dealing with anxiety and interacting with people. Nothing like being prepared. I’m so ready to get on with it. I’m one of those weirdos that enjoys writing papers and doing research.

I start in two weeks! I’m gonna do one class at a time for right now, because it’s what I can afford. I’m so proud of me. This summer has been everything I needed in terms of getting my life back on track.

Challenge 5

I started my Master’s Degree in 2014. I got a class done, but life did what life does. It got hectic and busy, and I put my education on the back burner. I look around, and what do you know? 2019 is slowly turning into 2020. I’ve spent a majority of the last two years tutoring a friend in his college classes. Although I’m happy to help, I’m not gaining anything personally by giving my knowledge and time to other people. I need to use my time and skills wisely. I need to make the most of my life, and make sure that I’m doing things that benefit my growth, not just helps others.

Education’s no small thing in my family. It’s a huge deal. Both my parents have Master’s degrees. My younger brother just completed his Master’s recently. My older brother graduated with his Bachelor’s, too. I’m thinking, yeah, this is a goal that I can accomplish. It’s not a pie in the sky dream. It’s attainable, and it’s something I can plan toward.

I’ve tried to get started with school again several times through the VA. I do have certain benefits that come with service, but the four or five times I’ve tried have been fruitless. It’s always some paperwork mishap or the job position is not filled. It’s always something. It never works out. I’m one of millions that the VA has let slip through the cracks. It’s disappointing, but I’m not letting it hinder me any longer.

This time, I’m taking matters into my own hands. I’m finding an affordable program. No more excuses. I’m going to pay for it myself. When the VA gets it’s shit together (ha, as if!), I’ll use my benefit. I’m challenging myself to research schools and Master’s programs. I’m really excited! I love learning. I don’t mind writing papers or doing research. I love reading. I’m so ready to accomplish this new goal!

Challenge 4 Incomplete

My phone sang me the song of its people at 5 a.m. Unfortunately my snooze button also sounded mighty attractive. I missed the Color Run! And that’s okay! I’m not perfect, and I see no use in pretending that I am. I’m choosing to focus on my hits, not my misses. I also made up for it with a brief jog this morning.

I did however get through the second week of my Fitness Bootcamp! Everything is very sore and swollen. I’m not sure if that’s what’s supposed to happen, but I’m trusting the process and my trainer. I feel considerably less anxious in the gym. That’s a win for me!

A goal I made this week was to learn the names of exercises. I have been calling them made up names for now. Turns out “bent over arm pull things” and “medicine ball wall twerking” are not the technical terms. I’m still learning.

This week, I figured out my favorite and least favorite exercises. I like overhead presses. They make me think of DoodleBob yelling, “Mehoy minoy!” It makes my grimace turn into a grin. Turns out, I really don’t like burpees. I dread them. I’m throwing myself at the ground without a 100% guarantee that I’m gonna catch myself with my arms. It’s a gamble every time. Gravity and I are known enemies. One of these days, I’m going to catch myself with my face, I just know it. But until then, I gotta keep doing them.

Week 2 done!

Anyway, I think I feel better and look better than I did at the beginning of the year. Last year, I had switched medications and lost about 20 pounds due to a stressful situation. I was fairly underweight for my height, but I feel like I’ve gained a healthy amount back. I’m also in much better spirits and not stressed. Win-Win. Unfortunately, I don’t have any comparison photos. I had a mishap with an iCloud backup and lost all my pictures from January through June. The good news is, prior to starting this class, Desiree took before photos and did measurements. I’ll have some concrete evidence to support my thoughts in August!

Challenge 4

New week, new challenge! My fiancé is off-island so I have all these little projects and challenges to keep busy. So far, so good! I do miss my goofball, though.

What’s on the table for this week? A Color Run on the Naval Base for Guam’s 75th Liberation Day anniversary this weekend!

Here’s what I know:

  • It’s a 5K and the first 400 finishers get a t-shirt
  • The show time is 6 a.m.
  • I’m going to have fun!

I haven’t done a 5K since last September, so it’ll be interesting. I am not a distance runner. I prefer the exact opposite. When I was a kiddo, I loved to sprint. Feeling the air rushing by and knowing that the pain was temporary was the best! Finding a pace and sticking to it is not my strong point, but I’m going to find a good playlist and try.

This week’s challenge is about getting out of my comfort zone and braving the Black Drongos. They’re these mean little black birds that are super territorial during their nesting season. They sounds the alarm and dive right at people’s heads. Their favorite target is runners. It’s not uncommon to see runners duck and cover randomly in Guam. One of the Black Drongos favorite places to hang out is the track on base. Little assholes.

Hopefully it’ll be fine There’s safety in numbers, right? I’m ready to get colorful!

Challenge 3 Complete

Okay this challenge is gonna be ongoing!

I started the fitness boot camp on July 2. Honestly I was terrified beforehand, because I have a pretty rudimentary knowledge of weight lifting/CrossFit type stuff. By that I mean, I have the most basic of the basics.

Pick up heavy thing + Put it down = Gains?

Run fast + Eat Less = Lose Weight?

Yup. That’s the sum of my knowledge about gyms. Hard to understand why I’m not built like Serena Williams, right?

The first session wasn’t that bad. I chose to go easy on myself to learn correct forms of exercises. My class has more than 30 participants! But a lot of folks were continuing from previous boot camps, so they were happy to show me how to do things. I got smoked by all these women who were having a great time and working hard!

1st session down.

The trainer’s name is Desiree, and she is a 100% badass. She’s also really kind and inspiring. Her class is a whole lot different than being yelled at in the military. I prefer it. It’s nice being told that you can do it, instead of being told you’re a weak piece of crap. Turns out I’m motivated by encouragement, not verbal abuse. Go figure. But that’s another talk for another day.

The next session, I decided to go with an “I’ll try my best” attitude instead of “I can’t do that” attitude. It made a mountain of a difference. Although I was still pretty anxious, because it was a loud place filled with people, I survived. I did deadlifts correctly for the first time in my life. One of the exercises was pushups, and I know I can do those well thanks to my time in the military. No knees for me! I was pretty happy about that.

I’m holding onto my arm so it doesn’t fall off.

The third session was a lot more difficult because the soreness finally set in. I struggled through everything, but something unexpected happened. I actually felt good after a workout. Yes, I felt very woozy and nauseous as usual. But it was such a rewarding feeling to have stuck with it! I took heart in the fact that I started something hard and didn’t give up!

Week 1 and done!

I’ve tried changing my diet to ease the soreness. That’s not really working out (ha!), and I’m suffering through the off days. Quite literally, everything hurts. Everything. I’ve tried yoga, a foam roller, and walking to move the lactic acid around, but no dice. Supposedly being sore is the reward, but I hate being in any kind of pain. That whole “Pain is weakness leaving the body” is not true for yours truly. The world is ending if I get a paper cut, so sore hamstrings is like being thrown into a volcano. I like being able to stand up or walk without grunting or groaning… but that’s just me. So far, I’m sleeping a lot more and walking kinda funny, but hopefully that changes as I get used to it.

But hey, I did it! On to Week 2!