Monday, March 3, 2014

Easy or hard? Why not both?

Lent starts on Wednesday.  I have done a lot of different things for Lent over the years, but the last few years I have really concentrated on trying to actually do something that affects my life.  Some things I have done:
  • Gave up sweets.
  • Gave up chocolate.
  • Wrote a letter per day to someone who touched my life.
  • Gave up one evening of television per week to read instead.
This year I'm giving up social media.  I'm not going to give up blogging because it is one thing that helps me stay somewhat accountable to myself, but I'm giving up Facebook (and similar sites), reading blogs, and sites like 9gag or happyplace...basically anything where I'm logging on to the internet for social reasons, not for education or work.  This decision was inspired by a comment I made about not having any time to read these days.  Sunday's homily at church was about priorities.  We all make time for the things that we want to do.  Whatever it is, if we TRULY want to do it, we will find the time.  If we don't want to do it or we are somewhat apathetic, we will make excuses or not work to find the time.

It is not true that I don't have time to read books.  The truth is that I spend a lot of time on the internet and don't use that time in a focused way.  I fully plan to be back into it (perhaps in a more focused way) after Easter, but after tomorrow until Easter, it is a solid break.  As much as I feel that social media and internet time suckers have become habits for me, I do not feel anxious about giving them up.  I would be more anxious if I only allowed myself 30 minutes in the evening (or something like that).  But a clean break for Lent causes no stress.

The more I started thinking about that, the less impressed I was with my decision.  Not that Lenten promises should cause you stress, that's not what I mean.  I'm typically very strong when it comes to these promises.  Perhaps I should do something that would help my weight loss issues.  I have many challenges there, why am I not choosing something that would help me with it?  I know why.  It is because it is scary and it will be hard.

One of my favorite JFK quotes, loosely quoted says that "we do not do [this] and the other things because they are easy, we do them because they are hard..."  So I have been thinking what would make sense to do to help toward my goals and it is apparent to me that daily food logging is what I need to do.  I always make the commitment to do it and Monday through Friday at lunch, I'm awesome!  But Saturday and Sunday come and go with no logging and consistently I have eaten enough on those days to negate all my hard work during the week.

So, I'm going to try something new.  I know that it isn't the same for everyone, and I totally respect that.  But I'm going to try making a six week promise to God.  I'm not promising that my eating will be perfect.  I'm just promising that I will track it every single day.  I believe that if I do that, I might be less likely to actually sabotage myself.  I know I can do this.  But I'm scared.  I'm scared that I will do the same thing I always do and just stop tracking.  Or I'm scared that I will track, but I will be appalled by my behavior. 

We do not do these things because they are easy...



Sarah Kopf said...

Good goal! Honestly- I'd love to see a mass push for that. Too many people are COMPLETELY invested in social media. It saddens me. People don't talk anymore...Nathan & I had dinner Friday night and he said every table had their phones out and were on them. We were the only ones who had them in our pockets...Scary.

I haven't decided what I'm giving up yet. I'm going to contemplate it today and figure it out though. I love this time of year!


Dawnya said...

Beth, Over the past several years I have watched you succeed with your Lent goals. I know this year will be no different. God does not demand us to be perfect. We can't be perfect...but we can be better.

Give it all you have in tracking your daily food intake. Remember we all fall down but we get back up again. A saint is just a sinner who fell down, but got back up.