Monthly Archives: October 2013

On Juice, Rivals, and My Commandments

IMG_3454I kind of want to start this post with a little God DAMMIT. Do you ever wish that you could control your thinking, and the effects that other people have on you better? No? Just me? (Surely not.)

So, as some of you know, a girl who I disliked when I was growing up (we were best friends, she dumped me coldly, and then we had a crappy antagonistic relationship after that), went into the exact same field AND exact same sub-field as I did. Only she went straight from her undergrad program to grad school rather than waiting 10 years, and has been successful ever since. She has a great job and she’s already tenured– while I’m just beginning to write my dissertation.

I try to resist comparison (it is the root of suffering, ね), but whenever she pops up in my professional sphere I find myself sliding into a funk. It doesn’t help that lately I feel like a horrible failure at absolutely everything in my life. So, a message from her arrived in my inbox just now and derailed my morning…. because every time she wanders into my peripheral vision, it’s with a new accomplishment under her belt $#($#$!

There might be a way to constructively have a rival- if I could figure out how to make the experience motivate me to work hard, rather than something that sends me into a spiral of self-doubt and panic. J used to say to me when I’d get upset about her: “Well, at least youuuuuu have a handsome husband.”

So yeah, now I don’t. Good for me.

I think I mentioned that I’m doing a 40-day yoga challenge at Big Yoga in Houston. It’s intense. Yoga 6 days a week, 5 of it at their studios, twice daily meditation (this week it’s 20 minutesx2), reading this book, and…. this week will be a juice fast. (Actually my new juicer should arrive today. So excited.)

Anyway, I can tell that the yoga and meditation IS working on my brain, because as I freaked out about this most recent series of accomplishments by the rival, I found myself returning to my breathing and just… sighing it out. I WILL write a stellar dissertation. I WILL just continue to do my best at what I do (my best has been compromised by depression lately). I WILL find a new handsome husband. (Don’t worry, I don’t intend to re-marry anytime soon.)

Inspired by The Happiness Project, I’ve been working on “My 12 Commandments“. They’re basically the key rules by which I try to live my life. I haven’t gotten very far, but I’m sharing with you anyway:

1. Be L. (i.e. be me).
Directly stolen from Gretchen’s list, because it’s so important. Recognizing what I do and don’t like, recognizing when it’s useful to push myself out of my comfort zone (i.e. I am self-limiting out of fear), and when I’m trying to be a person other than who I am. Trivial recent examples: I am never going to be someone who puts on makeup every day, I am never going to think lingerie is a good use of my money. Part of me WANTS to be a perfectly made up girl with matching sexy bra-undies sets, but I’m just not that person.

2. When driving, drive. When walking, walk.
This is a tough one for me. Put down the cellphone, L. 

3. Leave early for appointments
I need this commandment, because I tend to leave late to travel to obligations. And even though my instinct screams that leaving early = waste of time = the worst thing ever, I have a better day if I end up early for something than if I end up late for it.

4. A green drink a day…
Corny way of putting it, but… science backs me up here.

Still working on the list. Am thinking about these things slowly and methodically.