In February I took a class on teaching Health, part of the class was creating a Behavior Change Contract then at the end of the course we reviewed our contracts and analyzed our progress.
The behavior I chose to "change" or work on was to de-stress and the tools I planned to use, or as noted, "mini-goals" were:
1. Set a time and space to sit, relax and meditate daily.
2. Keep a stress journal.
3. Create and stick to a time-management schedule.4. Walk 30 minutes 3x/week.
The one I expected to use the most was to meditate more. I don't care if it's done via taking a walk, sitting & staring into space while burning incense, prayer; whatever works for you, or me as the case may be. What I did not count on during this time was the extreme drama from Crackle/DS#2. He kind of wiped me out and I admit my final report was kind of dismal.
Here are my final reflections on this "experiment":
What is working?
I started handwriting journaling and this works for managing stress and an overloaded mind. I also spent more time in meditation, however I would like to spend more time.
What challenges have you encountered that were already anticipated in your contract?
I knew that I would encounter unforeseen crises because I always do. This is distracting and makes me feel like I am just putting out fires rather than actually accomplishing my tasks. I knew this would happen and allotted for those crises in my plan. My hope is to be able to stick to the/a schedule (time management) as closely as possible in spite of the/a current crisis.
Did the strategies you wrote work to solve these challenges? Explain.
Yes, and no. Yes, I was conscious of my schedule (time management), however, I had difficulty refocusing and staying motivated. I did not feel that this was different than before the contract as staying on the schedule is always a challenge for me.
What new challenges did you encounter?
One of my children (my special needs son) had his spring break and a mental health emergency during this period. The added stress of his behavior and resulting hospitalization was extremely stressful on some levels, while having him out of the home relieved other stressors. Also, as a result of this added stress my body responded poorly and I was unable to continue the physical activity that I started (walking daily).
What other strategies might help you with these new challenges?
I have learned that I have to forgive myself for my shortcomings. This does not mean that I accept failure, but that I recognize something as being beyond my capability at that time and accept that. I can then re-adapt my schedule or requirements; such as delegating household chores because I am too stressed out or tired.
What, if anything, about your mini-goals do you want to change or alter? Describe and explain..
I don’t know that I want to change any of my goals. I still want to stick to a schedule (although this is a work in progress), meditate and incorporate physical activity into my daily life. These are good goals for me in order to manage stress and stay focused on the things that are important (prioritize). When I am able to manage my stress my familial relationships thrive and the household runs more smoothly. It’s true that “When momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy!”