On Self-Maintenance.

We had a long drive back from Texas this weekend and it gave me a lot of time to think over things, things I’d normally push aside because I had more interesting things to do. The primary focus of my thinking was self-maintenance, mostly for Kerry and myself. We’ve always just “done what we could with what we have” but we’re in a position now to finally go beyond that.

For the both of us that will look like getting up at 5 a.m. to make sure we get our workouts in. I’m mostly focusing on strength training and yoga-we both have no issues getting our cardio in on a regular basis, and I’ve noticed that people who spend time lifting and stretching seem to move much better as they age, something we’re thinking about as we watch elderly relatives in action.

It will also look like getting our daily diet back on the track we’d like it to be. I don’t do weight-loss programs, it’s a trigger for me, but we did stray from eating real foods to processed this winter, and I’d like to reverse that. We also have financial goals we’re wanting to reach and that means we need to focus on actually making our meals: we will be cutting back drastically on takeout/fast food runs (not that we did that often but still, it adds up). I’ll be dusting off my crock pot in preparation;)

And then I had a few things that were for me specifically. I don’t buy into the beauty schmuck that’s frequently marketed to women (and now men) in our society: I don’t need makeup to be beautiful. I view many of the current beauty routines as a waste of time and money, and that’s not going to change (although if you truly enjoy the routines then you should continue … I mostly react when I’m told I should be doing something that I don’t view as necessary; my opprobrium does not extend to the people who truly enjoy their beauty products) … but there is a level of grooming that I do think is necessary, given that I have to interact with society. And I’m not entirely immune to the desire to feel pretty; I just seem to go about it in odd ways.

So I googled “minimalist beauty routines” and was pleased with what I found. I’m still not entirely sure what all the makeup things are for (bronzer? highlighter?), but it looks like I can easily stick with my goal of three products and be pleased with the results (I think I’m going with primer, a lip/cheek tint, and then maybe mascara … I can’t do eyeliner, everything I’ve tried makes my eyes go puffy, and I do like to highlight my eyes). More importantly, I will look put-together as I go about doing my artsy things.

I’m also planning on going through my clothes and putting them into outfits (the capsule idea, which has worked well for me before). Since I work from home it’s easy to stay in yoga pants all day, and that’s fine, I adore yoga pants, but I want it to look intentional rather than “I picked up random stuff off the floor”. I also need to buy some business casual attire; given that I plan to continue doing art fairs and I want to volunteer it seems like it’s time to be a bit more dressy. Which gives me an excuse to buy matching jewelry, one of the things I -do- enjoy buying, so I think this will be fun.

Another goal is to be more intentional about my routine. I still have a toddler at home so I need to be smart in allocating time; I tend to skip over my morning Bible/prayer time on busy days, then we turn on the tv, and it all goes downhill. It truly doesn’t take that much time but having a habit of prayer, or meditation, or even just silence if that is your thing, really helps with the day. And being more intentional includes preparing meals, putting the phone down when the kids get home from school, yadda yadda. All good things.

So I’m excited about this upcoming year. I feel as I ease into my 30s I’m becoming more and more at ease with who I am, what I want, and how I want to go about doing things. How does 2017 look for you? Any specific plans or goals?

And of course, Art On. I’m getting back into the studio today and I’m so excited!

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