Today’s Advice: Ban Toxicity from Your Life

This will be a short and sweet one today.

If I could give one piece of advice to everyone, it would be to ban toxicity from your life. Wherever that toxicity comes from, just give it a swift kick in the ass out of your life.

Sometimes, toxicity can come from overthinking things until they stress you out, but most of the time, it comes from others in your life. It can come from friends, family, coworkers, etc. You can’t always avoid being around toxic people in your life, but if you can then do it. If you can’t, try to at least adjust the amount of time your spending around them or how much they affect your life.

Anyone who talks down to you, doesn’t respect you, have YOU make all the effort in a relationship, makes you feel like you’re not worthy, makes judgements on you, tries to control your life, etc. is toxic. You may not even realize it’s happening or you may just ignore it. If you’re trying to live your “best life”, toxicity can’t be a part of it.

There is nothing more freeing than getting toxic people out of your life. It’s so much more peaceful to either surround yourself with people who appreciate you, lift you up. encourage you, etc. or if you don’t have anyone like that, being with just yourself is still a much better alternative than having toxic people in your life.

I’ll share a story later about this, but for now: take care of YOURSELF by eliminating toxicity. It’s a great first step.

Take care.

Wow! It’s been a minute…or 5 years

Hard to believe it’s been 5 years since I’ve written in this blog. Oddly enough, this post will be similar to the last post I wrote 5 years ago.

I won’t go through what’s gone on in the last 5 years because it’s really pretty boring and irrelevant. It’s been full of ups and down just like it seems to go with everyone. I have learned a lot about what and who I want and my life and what and who I don’t want it my life. Some lessons are hard and take time to finally “get”, but there’s not going back.

I won’t spend time in this post on the negative things in the past few years that have led to this point in my life. It’s the past and it has nothing to do with what’s going on today.

The most important thing I want to say in this post is don’t wait to take care of yourself. It’s OK to focus on yourself. You don’t need a “support team” or encouragement from anyone other than yourself to start focusing on YOU. I mentioned previously that I had previously lost weight then gained it back after my Dad passed away, and then I started to lose weight again, eventually. By 2016 around the time my nephew graduated, I had lost a good 50 pounds. Then, slowly but surely I gained it back. Eating Reese’s peanut butter cups will do that. 🙂

Some things transpired in the years in between that made me just reevaluate things in my life. There are just some behaviors from others that just aren’t acceptable and that I kept putting up with and there was a turning point in 2018 that just showed me I was putting up with it for nothing. Again, that’s another post for another time.

Then the pandemic happened, and I started working from home. It wasn’t until November 2021 that I got to thinking how I could take advantage of my time working from home to really start taking care of ME. I got back on a healthy eating regime. There was no specific diet or anything. I just started concentrating on not eating so many carbs. I didn’t restrict myself other than cutting on sugar (damn, I do miss those Reese’s). I also started focusing more on cooking at home instead of ordering in. Because there is diabetes in my family and my mom has really bad vision issues because of hers, that was one thing I wanted to start focusing on. I had already been borderline pre-diabetes back and forth over the last 8 years or so, but this time I really wanted to make sure I got ahead of it or on top of it.

In January 2022, I saw a telehealth doctor on Doctor on Demand that I had been seeing for a couple of years for refills and other things. I told her my concerns about diabetes, and I did lab work. By then, I had also lost about 25 pounds or so. My labs came back and my A1C was 10.6. Yikes! She put me on Glimepiride and Metformin Extended Release. Fast forward to this week when I redid my labs. My A1C was…ready for it…5.5! That is a NORMAL level. Even the doctor was shocked. She said in 20 years of her being a doctor, the most she has ever seen anyone drop their A1C within 4 months is by 2 points and mine jumped down by 5.1 points.

I have now, as of this writing, lost a total of 55 pounds. I’ll hit my personal “first” goal after I’ve lost another 10 pounds and then I’ll choose another goal after that. I am focusing on NOT restricting myself (minus sugar), but just watching portions and carbs. I’ve found substitutes for my sweets, which is working just fine. I don’t really even have cravings for sweets anymore. Oh, and I drink a LOT of water, at least a gallon a day. I also don’t let the scale get me down if the number goes up on it. I just keep pushing ahead.

In addition to these things, I’ve gotten some dental procedures done and went for my annual eye check (had to do that anyway since my glasses broke).

During all of this, I never had a support team or anyone I called or texted to “celebrate” these things with.

You can be your OWN cheerleader. You don’t need anyone else’s help or encouragement. You just have to get off your ass and decide to do it for YOURSELF.

Surviving Reality is what I named this blog many years ago when I started it, and that’s exactly what life is about.

Sidenote: Go see Top Gun: Maverick if you get a chance. It’s even better than the original! I saw it 3 times in the last 4 days. Haha

Take care of yourselves and God bless.

Unselfish Thinking

How To Experience the Satisfaction of Unselfish Thinking

1. Put Others First

2. Expose Yourself to Situations Where People Have Needs

3. Give Quietly or Anonymously

4. Invest in People Intentionally

5. Continually Check Your Motives

Source: Thinking For Change, John C. Maxwell

New Year…so what?

So, it’s a “new” year. A new year means nothing to me. Some people look at a new year as a way to start fresh. You can do that any day, though.

All a new year is to me is a new year for people to do the same things over and over again. People always talk about how they want something different, but they continue to do the same things they did before. That’s why New Year’s Resolutions don’t last. If people want to change, they will. If they don’t, they won’t. It’s that simple. The clock/calendar changing over to a new year is irrelevant.

My only (false) hope each year is that people finally grow up. That’s it. There are attention-whores who need to finally realize the truth about themselves. There are selfish people who need to realize their words and actions are contradictory & they can end up hurting calvinhobbsrespeople. There are people who just need to finally decide to put the changes they want to make into action.  Again, these are really decisions people can make ANY day.

I’m not perfect. I’m constantly re-examining myself. I know my faults and even I keep doing the same things every year. I put up with more than I should and let a lot of things/behaviors go that I shouldn’t. It’s not the new year that’s going to change anything. I, just like everyone else, have to decide for myself what’s worth putting up with and what’s not. Do I let people continue to get away with blowing me off, forgetting me, talking to me only when they want something, etc. or do I finally say I’ve had enough and actually put that into some kind of action? I don’t know the answers yet, but a new year doesn’t give me answers. I have to answer that myself on a daily basis. I like looking at the “big picture”, but it’s the little ones that are a daily struggle not a YEARLY struggle.

A new year is just a mere change in the calendar. It doesn’t change people. People change themselves…whenever they CHOOSE to.

Glory Days Part 2

There were two things during my high school years that surprised me: one in a good way, and the other in a bad:

When I was a freshman & had a class where I got to tutor a couple of classmates, there was a guy named Paul in my class. Paul was one of the tutors as well and was one of the “popular” kids. For whatever reason, he would make snide remarks about me to 2-3 other guys in the classroom and they would all laugh at me. I don’t even remember what exactly was said. I just remember being very uncomfortable every time I went to class and basically held my breath hoping the “mean” chatter would be held to a minimum. I have no clue why I was the target, but I survived it. Thank God I only had to deal with it for one semester.

I never had another class with Paul until our senior year when we had Speech class together. Paul became our Senior Student Council President and seemed to have “grown up” since freshman year. We didn’t have much chance to communicate during Speech class but I didn’t feel uneasy around him and he never said a bad word about me that year. At the end of the year, when everyone was passing around their Memory Books for others to sign, I remember he came over to me and asked if he could sign my book. Needless to say, I was shocked and a little wary. I gave it to him and when I got it back he had written that he was glad he got to know me better, told me I was a great person, and wished me the best. While I had never let the way Paul treated me freshman year affect me, nor did I think about him again until senior year when we were thrown together again, it was nice to see how he had not only changed, but in a way felt compelled to sort-of make amends, I guess. It meant a lot to me that he took that great of an effort. I saw him at our 10 year reunion and he remembered me and we had a nice chat. I hope he’s still doing well.

The “bad” surprise came in my senior year as well. There were 3 girls I waited at the bus stop with and we had become “friends” over the years. One of the girls, Barbara,  told me  a guy in her biology class “liked” me. How this guy knew who I was I had no clue. One day, she handed me a letter that he wrote to me. I’m no expert in handwriting, but it looked like ‘female’ handwriting, so I had a feeling something was off. All 3 girls kept talking about how ‘cool’ it was that this mystery guy liked me and that I should write him back. Having that feeling that something was off about this, I wrote “him” a letter.  I told “him” I appreciated his letter and maybe we could meet sometime. In the letter, I asked what class he had with Barbara (I knew what she had told me, but I TOLD “him” I couldn’t remember). When “he” wrote back, he stated he was in her Intro Geometry class. This is where Barbara screwed up her little game: she didn’t remember her own lies.  I went along with this game a little while longer, even though it hurt that people I thought were my friends would do that to me just so they could laugh at me behind my back. But, as I like to say even ’til the day: whether you’re laughing WITH me or AT me, at least you’re laughing. Once I told them I was on to their game, I stayed away from them as much as I could. They got mad at ME for foiling their game, which was hilarious and they didn’t see anything wrong with what they did. It was “just a joke” to them. Trying to make a fool out of a friend is no joke.

Glory Days Part 1

When I was growing up, I never cared what people thought of me. I was the nerdy girl in glasses who was basically a loner most of her life. I had friends I played with when I was younger and my Dad always said I never met a stranger, but nothing really ‘stuck’ much when it came to friends for me. I just always wanted to be nice to everyone whether we were friends or not.

As I got older, I was never a part of any cliques in school.  I was still the nerdy girl with glasses and the teacher’s pet. I liked being the teacher’s pet, although I wasn’t the teacher’s pet that kissed ass. I just liked grading papers and helping. I was always the helper. My 4th grade teacher was pregnant at the end of my 4th grade year and invited me to spend a week at her house that summer.  I remember spending it helping out with her new baby boy. She also bought me a yellow dress and shoes and took me to a children’s ballet. The next year, a teacher of mine heard me sing in the talent show and decided to start a school choir…because of me. When you’re that young, it feels really good to feel like adults respect you that much.

In high school, I was still a nerdy girl with glasses and became the girl the popular kids picked on. It was a little mean, but not in the way that some kids got picked on. I was the ugly, nerdy girl so most of it was as much of the popular guys embarrassing each other as it was about embarrassing me. One guy would say “Hey, Todd wants to go out with you”. Todd would blush and get upset and say “No, I don’t!”. Other ugly, awkward girls like me who were teased would go cower in a corner and cry.  I was NEVER going to be that girl. Honestly, the teasing didn’t make me want to cry anyway. I found it amusing for some reason.  I’m not going to lie and say it didn’t hurt my feelings, but I never felt like crying…not even when people I thought were actually friends of mine decided to get in on the joke.

To be continued….