I’m all about goals and challenges. It’s exciting to make a decision to do something, and then to look back at the results! It’s also a really interesting way to practice patience and discipline… which I think makes us stronger!
My goal for August doesn’t have much to do with food (though I’ll still be sticking to my strict Paleo plan). It does, however, have to do with some other health-related goals that I’ve set in the past.
First of all, one of my favorite parts of this past month was turning off my computer by 9 PM and settling down to relax until bedtime. I took epsom salt baths, read a few nutrition books (reviews here and here), journaled, etc. It was really nice!
Second, I have really taken seriously the goal to stress less. It makes a world of difference when I actually focus on this effort, and when I make choices to promote a more relaxed state of mind.
In an effort to maintain and enhance both of these goals, I’m doing a fun little challenge for the month of August.
It all started last week when I had dinner with two of my friends, Erienne and Loren. These two ladies have been very influential in my life. Erienne is actually the person who originally introduced me to Paleo eating over a year ago. She is a librarian, and I love talking to her because she is always honest, and she is very smart. Loren has been a personal mentor for me in the past, and has always been a person on whom I have leaned during difficult times. She is also one of the most genuine people I know… she tells it like it is, and that is an uncommon trait these days.
These girls are readers. During our time together, Erienne and Loren talked about all the books they’d been reading, and Erienne (the librarian, who is AMAZING at recommending books that different personalities will enjoy) gave Loren a long list of books she should read next. I was inspired!
I am not a reader. Well, not in the traditional sense, at least. I read nutrition books. I read blogs. I write my own blog. And that’s about it. However, all the conversations between Loren and Erienne the other night brought back memories of getting lost in a good book. It is such a relaxing experience… it takes you out of your current circumstances and puts you in a different world. It allows you to forget your stresses, if only for a little while, and use your imagination. At Erienne’s suggestion, I am incorporating this into my nightly routine for the month of August, and I am so excited about it!
Instead of turning off the computer at 9 PM, I’m planning to shut down at 8:30 to allow a little more time for reading. This has already been so enjoyable! Since just last week I have read 2.5 books that were recommended by Erienne and Loren. Well, I actually only read (book in hand) one book (Garden Spells - very good!)… the other 2.5 I have heard using Audible.com (The Night Circus and I’m half-way through Delirium). I love listening to books because I can hear them while I’m cooking, driving, lying in bed with my eyes closed, etc., but there truly is nothing like holding a good book in your hands, turning the pages, and appreciating structure and style of the published work.
Fun, huh? I will see Erienne again this weekend, so I’ll be getting more recommendations from her. She knows the types I like to read, so it’s really fun to get her suggestions (she’s a true librarian!).
By the way, if you are a reader, you should really check out Erienne’s blog, Fiction Finders. She reviews each of the books she reads, good or bad, and provides her honest opinions on each. She also provides some excellent recommendations.
Do you have any fun August goals? Have you read any great books lately? I’d love to hear about either!
Happy reading. :)