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Old 03-03-2015, 07:14 PM   #37
Head Coach
Join Date: Jul 2001
Week 2 Tuesday Homework

Routine Activity - I don't think I'm going to have a whole lot to say here. I brushed my teeth and thought about it while I did. I noticed that I was favoring one leg and not standing in a nice, balanced way. I noted that I brushed my teeth for longer when I was focusing on it and not having my mind race ahead to the 10 things I needed to do as soon as I was done.

Body Scan - So I said I was going to do the meditation/sitting practice today, but that's before today turned out like it did. I decided I wanted to do something I've done before, and that I wanted to do something that would take longer and serve as a longer "break" from the day. See below on stress :P

I was tired at the start of the body scan. Its been a day with a lot of stress. I notice my nervous tic (the throat clicking sound thing that I do, which also involves not breathing for a moment) happening frequently. I remind myself that my aim is to observe, and not to judge too harshly. When I notice this I try to focus on my breath (which forces my breathing to actually happen, which stops the tic anyway). I find that for most of this I am just sitting on my breathing, or on my wandering thoughts, and less on my body. There are many, many times where I miss out completely on 2-3 body parts in the audio. In the latter half I think I fall asleep, and the bells at the end of the audio wake me up. I'm not certain, its that weird "oh, I didn't think I was asleep" feeling, but I cannot recall what I was thinking about.

Stress Responses

what about another example? Alarm goes off and you're still tired so you're upset to be waking up. The kids won't get ready for school easily and need a lot of prodding. The dog goes out for his morning shit and goes and digs up something in the garden where he knows he's not allowed. You drive to work and almost hit the deer. Your favorite parking place is taken and you have to park somewhere else when you get to work. You're a little late and your boss notices and points at his watch and gives you a disapproving look. You have a pile of work on your desk and you're already behind.

The above is from my writeup last night, a direct example of lots of little stresses adding up, all of them being treated by the body as if they were life and death stresses, that over time add up to real problems with our health and well being.

Ever have one of those days where nothing goes right and everything is frustrating? I know it happens to me a couple times a year. Really, not often. Pretty ironic i think for it to happen the first day after we're supposed to think about our stress a little. Let me see if I can write about my morning in the same way as the example above, and i'll explain the details further below:

I wake up early, I haven't slept enough. I am rushed because I want to get to the 10am class at the gym. At the gym, I am unable to complete the pre-workout warmup stretches because the pain in my knee has reached new heights. A couple movements I simply cannot make this morning. The trainer sends me home. I get home and put on my aircast/boot. I hate this thing. I go to make my breakfast, where I fail to notice that someone was using the stove before me, and I put two ziploc bags on a burner that was recently used. They melt into the stove before I notice. I also realize I forgot to go to the store last night after class and I am out of bacon. When I finish making my crappy incomplete meal, I open the door to the upstairs, forgetting that I have this giant boot on. I open the door into my foot, losing my balance just enough to spill my entire 32 oz mug of water on the floor. When I finally have that cleaned up and get to my desk, I have 3 high priority e-mails from the CFO of the company I'm working for. I feel behind on my work and was planning on using the day to catch up a good bit. Instead, I will now be working on a couple stressful, reasonably urgent tasks that have very high visibility. I have only been awake for 2 1/2 hours at this point.

-- Being unable to do the stretches at the gym is a first. Being sent home instead of given "modifications" to make things easier is a first (I know this is the right call). I am EXTREMELY distressed by this.

-- I wore this boot/aircast in November for 3 weeks for the foot problems. My knee problems started after I stopped wearing it. PT suggested that I may try to wear it for a couple days to see if my knee pain lessens/goes away. I didn't really want to do that, but after the problems this morning decided to. I seriously hate this thing.

Yeah, just one of those mornings. It happens, but it happens really, really, really rarely to me, seriously.

-- I noticed my nervous tic taking over throughout the day, well into the afternoon even once things felt more settled down.

-- I noticed my mind racing more than usual.

-- Stressful thoughts from friday/saturday that were starting to settle down now seemed a much bigger problem again.

I got my work done, all is well.

-- Twice during the day I made time to go lie down for 5-7 minutes and practice diaphragmatic breathing. The benefits of working from home. I could do this sitting up at my desk if I had to, but I get better results lying down.

-- After doing this, I felt no less stressed. But I'm hopeful it counts as the "break" that we were learning about yesterday some.

-- I chose to do the body scan mainly because it takes longer, but also because I didn't want to do the new thing today. I wanted a longer break at the end of the work day in the form of the body scan.

Just in case I needed one last reminder that sometimes things are just gonna go wrong some days, this is the second time I'm typing up this post. The first time when i tried to post it my router had died, and my post got eaten.
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