Friday, November 04, 2011

The Week of the Blue T-Shirt: Wrap-up

Howdy friends, welcome back.

So, my father passed away last week. It wasn't too unexpected and we are very happy that he didn't have to suffer too much. He was an incredible man and I'm so proud of the person he was and the way he lived his life. I'm at peace knowing he's feeling better now and that he's doing good work. I will miss him. I hope to be the kind of man that he was.

Because of that, the week of the blue T-shirt was cut short, and I think I'm going to let it lie like that. I wanted to come back and review some of the highlights before I moved on to some other cool posts.

I had a blast with the Week of the Blue T-shirt. I had been writing myself to-do lists for a long time with varied success, but this was a completely different experience. Instead of focusing on things I had to do in order to not fail school, I was focusing on little things I could do to improve myself and raise my over-all level of happiness. This change was pretty significant for me.

I discovered that being social is something that makes me really happy despite being entirely unnatural for me. Without considerable effort on my part I tend to keep to myself on campus and everywhere else. One of the first goals I set was the goal to talk to a new girl on campus every day. This was a huge stretch for me but really paid off. I was proud of myself for doing something difficult for me. As with all things, I get better at it as I keep doing it, and I've already seen progress. It's becoming more normal for me. Today I talked to three girls on campus. I know that sounds entirely lame, but it's a big old deal for me. If this experiment were good for nothing else, that alone would have made it worth it for me.

I rediscovered the simple truth that working out makes me feel better. There's this inherent feeling of progress whenever I work out. I've got this theory that every mile counts. When it is cross country time, as the theory goes, the kid that runs 1000 miles during the summer is going to have an edge on the kid that only ran 999. Likewise, the kid that runs 1001 has an edge on the kid that only ran the 1000. Even though I haven't been very consistent and even though my workout program is anything but awesome, I feel great about making progress. I'll tell you that my abs, arms, and mile time feel better this week about themselves because of what I did last week. I can't guarantee that there is any measurable improvement over last week, but I am confident that deep down inside I'm stronger for having done those little things. The good news is that as I continue to do these little things I will continue to improve. Baby steps back into good shape, w00t.

I rediscovered that I absolutely love blogging and I love trying to influence others to do good stuff. Consistency has always been my issue. True to form, I wasn't able to complete the week like I wanted to, but I feel like the blogging experience made me a better person and gave a little nudge to other people. This is something I'd like to continue to do.

So what's the take-home message from the week? Certain choices lead to a happier me, and those choices are absolutely worth making. Most of them don't come naturally. Working out, talking to girls, programming, etc. aren't things that I just find myself doing. Every single time I did them last week they made me feel good and like I was making progress. If I can identify these things and continue to do them I will continue to improve. That's great news.

That's it for the Week of the Blue T-shirt. Thanks for being part of it, friends.

Final Score: 135/350 points (38.6% complete)
I'm calling it a success :) Stay tuned for more awesome posts.


Rachel Frost said...

I'm glad that this has been a positive experience for you, and that you can focus on the bigger picture with your dad, that you know he's somewhere safe, watching out for you even if you can't see him.

You should try this achievement thing again in a month or so.

Valerie said...

Ditto what Rachel said.

Also, I just wanted to add that your posting about the achievements made me realise what a slacker I have been on doing the things that I wanted to do. This week I've been doing much better than I have been for the last couple weeks. So thanks for giving me some motivation to stop being lazy.