This post will be kind of quick because my cousin is arriving from North Carolina tonight and will be staying in this state for nearly the entire month of July. Since he will sometimes be at this house, my blogging may be a bit lacking.
Near the beginning of June, I came up with goals. Let’s see if I accomplished those goals.
Goal 1: Learn a new life skill. For this goal, I decided to learn to cook something following a recipe. I made lasagna and had minimal help from my dad. Goal completed!
Goal 2: Start learning and using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy techniques. I actually started doing this shortly before making this goal. The technique I used this month was journaling. You just write in your journal about how you’re feeling. I had to do this with my second therapist and my blog post about how I felt about being diagnosed with a very mild case of ADHD is an example of journaling (trigger warning on that blog post: mention of suicidal thoughts).
Goal 3: Get my yellow belt in kickboxing. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen in June. Probably because my coach was away from the class for a few days due to attending his girlfriend’s mom’s funeral. However, I was told that I will soon be testing for my yellow belt shortly after he comes back from July 4th weekend (also his birthday weekend).
Goal 4: Finally start reading the book “Harmony” by Karis Walsh. I finally started reading… on the last day of June. Hey, can’t have more than one unmet goal! I’ll do a review on the book after I finish reading it (whenever that is…). Once again, I have to do the review here because it’s an LGBT book and I don’t want any of my YouTube videos to be restricted.
Goal 5: Start doing exercises outside of kickboxing class. I have been doing this. I mainly use weights and I helped a co-worker move into his new apartment this past Tuesday after work.
I know it’s weird to mention goals this late in the month, but I’m doing it anyway! You can’t stop me! I haven’t set goals for myself since January, and although I don’t set goals each month, I feel like setting goals will help me become closer to who I want to be.
- Learn a new life skill. I’m very far behind in regards to independent life. If I learn life skills, I can finally move out of my parents’ house. I’ll probably learn how to properly cook first because my cooking skills are limited to using the microwave and boiling water to make food. Gosh darnit, I want some chicken orzo soup sometimes!
- Start learning and using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy techniques. Seeing as how my mental health has been getting worse since last year and therapy didn’t help me at all with my issues, I’m going to do things myself. I mainly did cognitive behavioral therapy with my second therapist, and I felt like this was the most effective thing for me. I even stopped picking at my skin for awhile! I found a site that has cognitive behavioral therapy techniques that I can do on my own. In a later blog post, I will talk about techniques I have learned in therapy and techniques that I learned online.
- Get my yellow belt in kickboxing. Typically, kickboxing classes don’t have belts. I think this is a way to track progress and see what there is to learn next. We don’t have official tests until black belt, but the coach decides when we have earned our belt. My kickboxing coach is a godan (5th degree black belt) in karate and a former professional kickboxer. I hope I get my yellow belt this month because he said it takes 3 to 6 months to be able to get a yellow belt for the kickboxing class and I’ve been doing this for more than 4 months.
- Finally start reading the book “Harmony” by Karis Walsh. I’ve had that book since Christmas and haven’t read it yet. That was because I wanted to save the book so I could read it during jury duty selection back in January. They didn’t need me to come in, though. Even if I only read a chapter or two this month, at least I finally read it.
- Start doing some exercises outside of kickboxing class. I have a set of 3-pound weights and 8-pound weights at home (they were my dad’s. The 3-pound weights were for his physical therapy after his shoulder surgery 3 years ago), I have a treadmill, and I have enough space to do ab work and work on my splits (I can almost go all the way down when my right leg is forward and I’m so happy about that!). Exercising outside of class could help me become a better kickboxer in regards to strength and stamina. Maybe my co-worker would want to spar or something.
Wow, that’s more goals than I originally thought of (goals one and three were my original goals for this month)! I should be able to do it though, although the yellow belt in kickboxing will be the hardest goal to achieve this month because although it’s up to me to work hard, the coach has the final say in when I get my belt. So tell me, readers, what goals do you have for this month or the next few months?
A few things unrelated to today’s blog topic first. Happy National Nurses Day to all nurses! You’re just as important as doctors. Remember that. Second, I have been getting followers and likes on my blog posts, so thank you everyone who has liked a post or followed my blog! I look at some of your blog entries as well. Now to the reason I’m blogging! I haven’t done any self-reflection on this blog since last month, so it’s definitely time for me to self-reflect. I’m going to talk about what things I’d like to do and I’ll think about how easy or difficult it would be to do what I want to do.
- Start playing the clarinet again. Level of Difficulty: Easy. My clarinet is stored somewhere in the laundry room, but I will most likely need to buy new reeds. I haven’t played the clarinet since seven years ago and my reeds probably don’t look good anymore. I may have some unused reeds, but I don’t know if they will still be any good. I should also see if I have my lesson book from middle school music lessons, but if I don’t, I can buy another one at the nearby music store. It’s less than $10.
- Learn to ride the bike without training wheels. Level of Difficulty: Hard. My biggest blocker is getting a bike and helmet. Another big blocker is that I’m 24 and haven’t ridden a bike since I was 10. I felt like I was too old to ride with training wheels so after graduating from elementary school, I stopped riding my bike. I think I was starting to get too big for the bike with training wheels because my bike eventually kept tipping over and I’d have to quickly hop off. Riding without training wheels requires balance that I do not have, a bike that I would have to buy at a bike store somewhere (which will likely be very expensive), and a strong core which I am working on doing ab work during kickboxing conditioning hour.
- Improve my cooking skills. Level of Difficulty: Medium. The most cooking I’ve ever done was last year when I helped dad make lasagna and I had fun saving my dad a few minutes of time. Otherwise, my cooking skills involve either the use of a microwave or boiling water and adding things (not including soup). What makes this more difficult than it should be? I don’t like touching things that are slimy (so cooking chicken would be out), I’d have to buy things (I am stingy with my money), and someone would have to teach me because I never learned how to learn independently and just following a recipe would likely not end well. Honestly, I’d just make tacos a lot.
- Do volunteer work. Level of Difficulty: Medium. I did Service Corps for a year in university which is a club where we did volunteer work one Saturday morning per month. Outside of this club, I have also volunteered one afternoon per week in the summer at a hospital and picked produce at a farm that grew crops for food banks and soup kitchens. Time is my biggest issue for volunteering because I work full-time, I do kickboxing 6 hours per week (2 hours per class, which occurs three times a week), and I’ll be starting to work on my Master’s degree sometime in 2018. Due to time, I would only do volunteer work once a month.
- Get back into dance. Level of Difficulty: Hard. For five consecutive years, I did dance classes through a rec center. My fourth-year and fifth-year trophies are a few meters away from me. I had to stop dance because mom thought I’d be too busy with middle school to continue. I tried hip-hop dance once, and I didn’t like it. I tried out for the high school dance team and didn’t make it. I also tried out for the step team in university and I didn’t make it either. I never had to learn dance choreography in short bursts of time and my short-term memory isn’t very good (but my long-term memory is very good. I have scared people by reciting memories from weeks, months, or years ago). Difficulties mainly rise from time, finding a class for adults (there is surprisingly few adult dance classes in studios), and I’d have to relearn ballet first in order to learn any other dance style (most studios require ballet as a prerequisite for other dance styles). Dance can be a form of self-expression and I can use dance as a form of activism.
So out of all five of those, playing the clarinet again would be the easiest thing to do. I keep wanting to pick up the clarinet again because I listened to too many marching band songs on JW Pepper, the site where my high school band teacher would buy marching band music for us to perform. So tell me, readers, what is something that you would like to do? I’d like to hear from you so I’m not just talking to myself on here.
So I had a bad evening last night. I don’t want to go into any details, since this is not what this blog is about. Before I start this blog, I want to bring your attention to something called #20PercentCounts. Women in the workforce on average don’t make as much as men. If you’re a woman of color, you make less on average. Is it fair that a white man without a degree makes more than a woman of color in the same field with a degree? Hell no. Here’s a video called #20PercentCounts: See what 20% less looks like that shows you what 20% less of anything looks like.
Now to get to why I’m posting. I was wondering what I should blog about next when I had an idea at work: list some things about what I currently am, and what things I want to be. I feel like it’s important to know about how I currently am before I start trying to discover who I truly am.
Things I currently am:
- I am obsessive. When I was in sixth grade and first heard of the word “obsessed”, I thought it was a good thing. It wasn’t until sometime during eighth grade when I realized that the word has a negative connotation. I was first described as obsessed in the sixth grade and I was in tenth grade when that term was used about me again (not a good thing when your crush writes a letter to you saying that you’re an obsessive person and that he quit photography club in ninth grade because of you…)
- I am someone who stands up for what I believe in. Yeah, people see it as a bad thing now. Even some people in my family try to stop me from standing up for what I believe in! However, standing up for my beliefs is how I saved someone from bullying when everyone else in the lunch group were either the bullies or bystanders.
- I am someone who questions themselves a lot. I question myself due to comments people say after I make a decision, I question myself about my identity, and I question myself a lot when it comes to whether I made the right choice or not.
- I am someone who has broadened their food choices. Even at my age, I’m a picky eater. However, I’m not as picky with food and am a little more willing to try new foods. However, it wasn’t until two years ago that people stopped making a big deal of trying new foods.
- I am a cuddler. No seriously. I love cuddling. Get me a blanket and we’re golden.
Things I want to be:
- I want to be a better activist. Right now, I’m just signing petitions and raising awareness of stuff in forum posts. People call that “slacktivism” while some people define slactivism as doing “activist” work only by complaining and not taking action. I want to march in rallies. I want to be a part of protests. I just wish that the nearest big city wasn’t dangerous…
- I want to be less angry. I get angry very easily and people online can probably describe me as an angry bitch. I embrace that label, but it probably isn’t a good idea to get angry easily when you’re training in kickboxing. Hook kick to the face!
- I want to pick up an instrument again. Maybe an instrument that I already have. Maybe it can be good for music therapy. I’m thinking about playing the clarinet again, but I need to buy new reeds (pretty sure my reeds are dry-rotted from not being used in seven years) and my clarinet is in the laundry room possibly near a mouse trap.
- I want to gain skills to be more independent. I’ve been told by the same person many times that I’m sheltered. Having an anxiety disorder pretty much prevents my parents from giving me more independence. I didn’t see myself as sheltered until a few people at my old job told me that I’m sheltered.
- I want to stop being afraid of who I am and who I may be. Maybe I don’t accept some aspects of who I am because I know what my family’s reaction would be or because I internalize society’s reactions to who I am.
Okay, now that I know what I want to be and some positive and negative things about myself, I think I can get started on my journey to figuring out who I am. Until next time!