8. jan, 2017

I promised I'd write about the “how to keep your resolutions” part. So here you go. These tips are all borrowed from my favorite author Gretchen Rubin. If you're interested, I wholeheartedly recommend her books The Happiness Project and Better than Before. Every time I read those books I get crazy motivated to change my habits and make myself and others happier by doing little things differently.

So, New Years Resolutions. Doomed to fail right? Wrong. You really can keep your resolutions, but you just need a bit of self-knowledge. The first thing you need to do is to determine what kind of person you are.

  • Are you someone who hates letting other people down but don't mind to let yourself down that much? Get someone else involved. If you want to eat healthy, ask if your partner joins you. If you want to go to the gym, get yourself a fitness buddy. If you want to go outside more often, just look at your dog. You don't want to let them down, do you? Maybe you hate letting yourself down and don't need others to motivate you. Maybe you don't work well with set appointments, but just want to hit the gym whenever the heck you feel like it. Take these traits in consideration when you set your goals and think a strategies to reach them.

  • Are you a morning-person or are you more energized at night? Say you want to keep your house clean. If you struggle in the morning to stay awake (like me), don't schedule doing the dishes or cleaning the toilet at that time. Do it sometime you feel most energized. If you schedule your resolutions at the wrong time, it's doomed to fail indeed.

  • Are you a marathon-runner or a sprinter? Do you like to take things slow and steady, or do you work well with deadlines? Also something to think about when setting goals. Don't force yourself to be different than you are: work with what you've got.

  • Are you a finisher or an opener? Do you like to start new projects or do you get satisfaction from actually finishing something? Do you like to buy things in advance so you have it when you need it or does it make you happy that you've finished all the spaghetti before buying new ones? Are you an under-buyer and do you procrastinate buying things you need or an over-buyer and get things just in case you ever need it?

  • Are you an abstainer or a moderator? Do you reach your goals best if you abstain from the wrong things (like sweets) altogether or does that make you rebel and lose the fight? Can you moderate your habit by having a cookie once a week or does that just ruin everything? 

All these traits are important to consider when you are thinking about how you reach your goals. Don't make it harder than it is! Be smart; and work with yourself, not against.

So who am I, looking at these traits? Gosh, definitely not a morning person. I seriously struggle to stay awake until it's time for my nap. I try to stay awake at least two or three hours (“get control over your body”), but often fail. I just feel so much better after a few extra hours of sleep. Although it can also backfire and I feel worse after napping. Happens a lot actually, but I don't really have a choice: it's not like I can stay awake and not nap. I feel more energized at night, so that's when I do the things I like to do. Nights are for knitting and reading, and showering and maybe go on a walk with Boyfriend and the dog. I don't force myself to do things I can't do in the morning. It's only disappointing and frustrating if I do.

I don't need others to motivate me to reach my goals. I'm doing just fine motivating myself. I hate letting myself down. I am definitely a marathon-runner, do not cope well with deadlines, especially now that I'm ill. I don't work well under pressure, I freak out actually and lose a lot of energy in the process. I do like to start new projects (Opener) but also get a weird satisfaction when finishing things, like using up all my yarn, or spaghetti (Finisher). But I also love having enough food in the house for weeks and obviously I like to have lots and lots of yarn (definitely not an under-buyer).

I am a moderator. I rebel when I can't have things. I do much better when I can have things, but choose not to. Interesting, huh? I'd love to know who you are? What traits fit you? Please comment below! And buy Rubins books, you won't regret it!


3. jan, 2017

I love resolutions. I'm a person who sets goals and gets motivated by them. I always have been that person. So naturally, for the new year, I set some goals.

1. read a book each month.
When I got ill, reading got a lot harder because I was exhausted and had trouble concentrating. When I get really tired, nothing interests me, so books don't either. But I do love reading. Since I was a little girl, I've been reading a lot and it bugs me that now I have trouble with it. Also, my brain craves information when I've been too tired to read for a while. I want to learn something, anything (remembering is a whole other story). So I don't want to read "just a novel", I want to read a good one, an old one, a classic. For January, the book I'm going to read is Jane Eyre from Charlotte Brönte. I already started, but now I'm finally going to finish it.

2. blog twice a week
Yes, this is not the first blogproject I've started. I have a tendency of abandoning blogs after a while, but this blog is tied to my project (Thehappyspoonieproject) which automatically makes it very important to me. Also, I've got loyal readers I don't want to disappoint. If you have any questions you'd like to ask me, please do so! I'd love to answer them for you.

3. have a guestblogger each month
Isn't that exciting? The guestbloggers for January and February are already working on their piece. I'm not going to tell you who they are yet though! But I will tell you that all my guestbloggers are people that I admire, spoonies, creative people, with an interesting lifestyle and something to say.

4. read a blog each day
I can write blogs, but I also like to read them. I am a fan of Gretchen Rubin and I want to read her blog daily. Also, I read blogs of other spoonies. If I read one that really gets to me, I will share it with you. This goal is also set to practise working with the computer. I have completely abandoned my computer for like a year, because it sucks the energy out of me. But the computer is a pretty cool thing with a lot of possibilities, so I better train myself to use it again.

5. learn new crafting techniques each month
I'm a "month"-person, as you can see. A month is not too long and you can set concrete goals. So for my crafting, I want to set the goal of learning a new technique each month. For this month: Fair Isle. This is a really cool knitting technique I really want to learn. I'm hoping to make a cute Fair Isle beanie this month. No, not hoping. I'm going to (that's the spirit!).

6. Swim each saturday
So this is pretty cool: the pool closest to my house organizes a weekly swim session for handicapped people. There are people with all sorts of handicap, physically and mentally. I'm now a "physically handicapped" person with my chronic fatique (ME), because I'm exhausted pretty much all the time and with ME you have to be very careful not to step over your limits because you can get a lot worse if you do. I love swimming though, I've really missed it. I started swimming therapeutically at the therapy center, but now that I''m "free" of therapy for a while and on my own, I want to continue swimming. Also because, well, being housebound isn't exactly great for your figure.

I'm pretty tired now so the "and how to keep them"-part I will talk about in another post.

So these are my resolutions for 2017! What are yours?


31. dec, 2016

It's 16:22. I'm sitting in front of the computer that I put on the table (resolution: no computer on my lap, but nicely put on the table). There are fireworkbombs going of around me, all day long. Little children are throwing them off the balcony. It's so dangerous. The Christmas tree is crooked, because my rescue dog Kai hides under it. He's now in his cage, his bed at night, and that's remarkable because he never enters the cage voluntarily. Now it's his safe place. He also hides under the curtains and in every corner of the house I didn't think he'd fit. My heart aches. It's like this since yesterday. Last night at 03:15 I woke up because he was making noises in his cage. When I went to see what was wrong, it turned out he pooped a little. Poor thing is too frightened to stay outside long enough to do his business all day. So I was outside with him at 3:15, the only time it seems that there are no bombs going off. Then I washed him in the shower and then took a shower myself, since I was up anyway. It was like my child wet his bed, I felt like a mother. Tonight will probably be the same.

That's my New Years Eve so far, but it will get better. My man and I, together 5 years yesterday!, will stay in, but we will make it a nice night together. I'm looking forward to it. What are your big plans for tonight, or are you also staying in, watching tv in your pj's and eating snacks? 

It's tradition ofcourse on this day to think about what happened this year. Enough has happened in the world, but I want to think about my personal events this year. It's the year that my grandparents turned 80. Since they smoked a lot and my grandmother is not that healthy anymore, we doubted that they would reach that age, but there we were, two days ago, in the restaurant celebrating. We had a lovely time and I'm so glad we still have them around. 

Our family dog Suus died in July, a week before my 25th birthday. We had her for so long, it was hard to imagine life without her. We dreaded this moment for years, as her health wasn't good, and she was such an angel. The moment came and we had a beautiful last day with her. She died on my lap (I was her favorite human, I'm proud to say, and she was my buddy). After, we all went out to dinner together to end the day right. Now, it looks like we go out to dinner all the time, but trust me, going to a restaurant is a special occasion for us.

My sister and I got a matching tattoo together, with a little S from Suus in it to carry her with us at all times. That feels right, and the tattoo is beautiful. Thanks, sis, for giving me that for my birthday. And no, it didnt hurt!

One of the best things that happened was that we moved to a place that we could not be kicked out of at any moment. No sudden messages that we had to go find another place asap. We can stay here as long as we want. But moving took all my energy and made me way more ill. This year also marks the year of my rehilibitation proces. I started going to therapy especially set up for ME patients. And it helped so much! I'm still not functioning properly and still feel ill on a daily basis, but I can do so much more than before therapy. I will write about therapy in another post. Also, I'd like to know what kind of therapy you have done, my dear spoonies, if you have had any. 

This year, around the same time that we moved, I officially quit school. I have tried one more time to go to class, but I was out for days after that, so I didn't go anymore. I couldn't concentrate on reading anyway, so there wasn't much for me there anymore. It was quite a decision and I'm hoping to go back someday. But when that day arrives, I have no idea. 

We went to Italy with my family because my parents were married for 25 years and wanted to celebrate that by taking us to their favorite place in the world: The Grassina House in Florence (look it up if you're planning to go to Italy!). We had such a great time. I was forced to use a wheelchair, because I was so ill at that time. But Boyfriend pushed that chair for days without complaining even once. 

I started The Happy Spoonie Project this year to give my life some more purpose, as I was craving purpose. I will write about the project in another post to tell you all what exactly I meant to do with this project. But one big thing I learned this year was to crochet.  My aunt taught me the basics and YouTube took it from there. It was a struggle at first, but I was determined to become good at it and I still am. Also picked up my knitting needles which my grandmother taught me when I was a kid. It's my favorite thing to do, playing with yarn and creating beautiful things to be proud of. Feeling productive is so important when you're ill and housebound. 

I met some great people online, especially in the spoonie community on Instagram. From the moment I learned about the community, it felt like home. Such amazing and strong people. So much love and kindness. I met some of my best friends there. I will try to get them to write a Guest Blogpost here so you can meet them too. Oh, if you are a spoonie in need of some spooniefriends, I can introduce you if you want. Just message me!

And the last beautiful thing that happened in 2016 for me was Kai, our rescue dog, our old friend who came to live with us. He was supposed to stay only until they found him a permanent home, but the thought of him leaving didn't sit well with us, so we adopted him ourselves. Best. Decision. Ever. I will tell you more about Kai and Karel (our cat who is totally unaffected by fireworkbombs) later.

Well, I'm going to get myself a glass of wine and put on some music. Have a great night everyone!! And I will see you in the next year. 

PS: I looooooove it when you comment, like, Retweet or share my posts (hint hint) ;)