I am on a journey to live a life I love and to fill my life with the things that truly bring me joy... my dream job, loving relationships, financial abundance, a healthy mind and body, and a deep spiritual connection with all that is. I am living consciously to create a life filled with all the things I love.

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Sunday, December 20, 2009

The End of the First Semester

The time has come. The first semester is over. And boy, was this the most intense semester I have ever gone through! After all the all-nighters, prayers to help make it through, and getting in huge assignments in week after week just in the nick of time... I've made it. 9 classes, lots of new skills, and lots of lessons learned.

Lesson #1
Set up my schedule to be more conducive towards living a balanced life. When you're in your 30's, it really does not seem right to have to pull all-nighters again and again. I'm getting too old for that and need to really take care of my health. How I am making changes? I'm reducing my course load to make room for exercise, sleep, visiting museums, reading, exploring the city, finding inspiration, playing with my new pup, cooking, and time for an internship. This means I am extending my 1 year fast-track program by an extra semester. It gives me time to take all the electives that I am interested in taking beyond the bare minimum requirements to graduate. I am here to learn the skills after all, not just to get another degree.

Lesson #2
Be realistic about how much time it will take to get things done. I tend to let my ambition get the best of me and whenever I'm given an assignment, I shoot for the stars. Yes, with blood, sweat and tears I finish with success, but it's not without toil and torture (self-inflicted, might I add). What am I going to do to change this experience in the future? Leave my ambitions for projects that will really move me towards my ultimate goal of having my own business. In the meantime, for projects that are just exercises to teach me, simplify, simplify, simplify. Simple projects can be wonderful too. It's better to have beautifully executed simple projects rather than something that is not 100% complete.

Lesson #3
Be disciplined about my schedule. What I mean by this is... wake up at the same time every day and go to bed at the same time every day. This is a simple idea, but one I've never followed. I know it's helpful to keep my energy level high and it prevents myself from working until exhaustion. What will this take? Working extremely efficiently during the day and being committed to my bed time and waking up time. Somehow I thought our new pup would help with this one, but he's been flexible with his schedule to accommodate ours. What a great pup. Perhaps a committed workout schedule will also help with this one.

Ok, looking at this list so far, it seems that all of them talk about time. Living a balanced life is all about how much time you commit to each of the activities in your life. By skewing it all in one direction, all the other aspects of your life suffer. Just a little bit of time dedicated to each activity makes all the difference in the world, and some activities really take no time at all. It's the same concept of how cleaning up just a little bit every day takes very little effort or time compared to neglect that leads to a huge mess to deal with and lots of weekends to get things back into shape. This applies to exercise, eating right, watering plants, keeping up with mail, laundry, meditation and all the other things that need and deserve our attention.

I'm looking forward to a new year with a new me. This time I am not going to compromise on my yoga classes or sleep. If I have to drop a class to create more space in my life, I should just drop the class and not let the guilt of not getting the most out of my tuition dollars and length of time dedicated towards my degree stop me. After all, with less stress, I will learn more, expand more, and retain more. I am going to lead a simplified version of my current life... one where I get more fulfillment by being able to fully engage in and enjoy the process.

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