Time flies. I just turned 31! Who would have thought that I will reach this age especially for a sickly person like me. I was an overdue baby with a 50-50 chance of survival. I was confined twice because of Dengue Fever when I was a kid. I also grew up with asthma and allergies. I was diagnosed with a congenital heart disease back in highschool and I almost died because of a kidney problem due to over-exertion of muscles (because I want to prove that even though I have a heart problem, I can still manage to finish Spartan Race). My DNA contains cancer, hypertension and self diagnosed mental disorders. A few days before my birthday, I visited an Ophtalmologist, an Optometrist, an Orthopedic, a Surgeon, a Dermatologist and an Internist because of various aches in my body. Health and Life insurance agents avoid me. It was funny I received a huge calendar as a gift from an agent and with a post it note telling me, “I am sorry, your application to avail your insurance was declined. We can offer you our savings program instead”.
I am lucky I am still alive now. Or sometimes I am not. I have episodes of being jaded towards life in general. But come on, at the end of the day, life is still good. We just miss those chances where we can be grateful for every single gift from above and beyond.
So like every normal semi-functioning adult like me, when your birthday is near, the existential questions are magnified. It’s like the universe’s huge non-personal joke slash punishment to remind us that we are all just fucked ups but we need to pull our shit together. So my “pulling shit together” is a 100-day personal development project (don’t you dare cringe). Day 1 started a day after my birthday, and I am on my 10th day.
The major “activity” for this 100-day project is a social media detox. I will talk about this soon.
For now, let me tell you what I have been doing for the past 10 days of this project.
- Planned NEW habits.
The past few months of this year were quite depressing because I have lived an unconscious life (read more about this here). For the 100-day project, I decided to form new habits and reconnect with old ones who already went down the drain. I have a huge menu of habits to choose from and its quite tempting to do all of them, but I just chose 10 to work on during the 100-day challenge.
I even created a wallpaper for my phone to remind me of the habits I want to form.
One of the highlights of this 100-day challenge is to revive this blog again. I also challenged myself to at least write everyday even though I am not in the mood to write. This blog is already 2 years old, but I did not write here for almost a year. See the About Me page for details.
I have been spending my Sunday mornings now at church. If you know me, I have been exploring different religions and different faith systems since I started travelling. But volunteering at church is one of my strategies to keep myself busy, another defense mechanism for my anxiety. So I was tasked to handle the multimedia tech team or in short, the livestream team every Sunday.
It’s funny (in a good way) that I am in the tech team again. I was there when we started using those acetate papers for the good old projector. I was also there when we started using powerpoint presentations. Now I am still here as we use a more advanced and complicated tech.
But because of this, I finally felt that I am useful. There’s this unexplained fulfillment every time people appreciate what you do even though you felt you did nothing.
What I have been Consuming
- After the Ecstacy, the Laundry by Jack Kornfield
I have no idea who Jack Kornfield was except for the fact that people use his quotes a lot, more than people use quotes by Buddha. I started reading his book ” After the Ecstacy, the Laundry”. This is one of the books that you should read slowly. Basically the book is about the reality that after a spiritual “high” they still have to face the uncomfortable trials and tribulations of life. This book is mainly a record of stories of people from different religions and faith system. So far, I am enjoying the book because of the diversity of religious practices presented. Everything in the book is relatable especially if you experienced a spiritual high in your life
- Stranger Things and Hunger Games
On my birthday, I decided to do a Hunger Games marathon. It started when my friend and I talked about dystopian literature and how we are experiencing a dystopian-like society during this pandemic. I watched this series and I swear it felt like I am watching it for the first time. After Hunger Games, I tried watching Stranger Things again and like Hunger Games, it’s sweeter the second time around. Now I am obsessed with 80s music and a little bit of 80s fashion. What’s your favorite “geeky” film or tv series? Comment below
Bullet Journal Snippets:
One of the tools I am using this 100-day challenge is my bullet journal. It’s a physical notebook where I write almost everything—my tasks, my calendar, my habit trackers, and every thing that needs remembering. Of course, it’s also a diary.
Here are some snippets of what I have been writing on my journal:
- “One must not dwell even on happy memories” – September 21, 2020
- “Even after my lowest of lows, some things never changed, like my hunger for spiritual things, my intelligence, my smile and having an absorbent mind”- September 22, 2020
- “I also had realizations now on how I voluntarily stressed myself out the past months with unconscious activities: talking to people online while taking for granted the people around me, how I eat to just be full, how a day passes quickly without being able to enjoy it.”- September 23, 2020
- “Today, I can finally say that, ‘hey, I am ok!'” – September 24, 2020
- “This time I am not going to allow any external force to steal that joy away from me. I am going to be selfish in the best and worst possible way and I am going to do it for me!” – September 26, 2020.
- “Anxiety strikes again after mom complained about her stomach pains and her high blood pressure. I realized I have to put my trust in the Universe and stop putting pressure on everything. I should lighten up, worry about the things I can control and just enjoy life” – September 28, 2020
- “I just finished my 15-minute meditation session. I wanted to quit halfway because I remembered some strong, painful thoughts. But the voice inside me told me to finish it because it will be beneficial for me. I am going to to live and befriend these thoughts until they are gone. I can’t do anything about these things so I just need to show up everyday for meditation no matter how difficult it could get” – September 29, 2020
- “I woke up with all those memories, but this time I felt more powerful than ever. I still am weak, but not as weak as before.”- September 30, 2020
That’s it for Days 1-10. I hope 11-100 will be good!