live it active


Stepping back from Facebook

I quit Facebook 84 hours ago.

It’s not really been as dramatic as that sentence suggests; actually, not even close. I’ve had a few moments of weakness (e.g. clicking on the application on my phone, typing the words into the search bar), but for the most part, it’s been smooth sailing.

I have decided to quit one of my biggest social media habits in an attempt to determine its influence on my mood and spirit. I’ve felt like myself and everyone around me is on the brink of complete overload, but I haven’t been able to clearly ascertain why. For me, work has been busy, but a normal pace. Friends and family are relatively stable. Wedding planning is just fine. And yet, the feeling of stress has remained a constant. It is somewhat partly attributed to my nature; however, I know there is something else, other than my personality, influencing my mood. Hence, my reason for turning my attention to Facebook.

To me, Facebook is a wolf in a sheep’s clothing. It provides users with a sense of connection without any of the benefits. Human beings are hardwired for social (i.e. in-person) interaction. Even the most introverted enjoy and crave connection with others, they just want it with fewer people at one time (I’m marrying one, so I’ve begun to understand the way of the introvert). When we use Facebook to look at people’s most recent accomplishment, travel adventures, purchases (house, dog, baby stuff…you get the picture), we get the benefit of understanding what’s going on in someone’s life without the benefit of hearing from them in-person.The interaction leaves us feeling unsatisfied, but without an explanation of why.  As many of you will agree, we always prefer the book to the movie, so why then do we continue to watch the movie of our loved ones while rarely picking up the book and truly getting to know the characters.

So that’s why I’m quitting Facebook (don’t worry, I’ve only deactivated my account in the event I start to develop withdrawal symptoms). I don’t want to be a part of a false community anymore. I want to be a part of a living, breathing and loving community. I intend to use my recently acquired spare time to call my friends more, write them letters, engage in more in-person activities, read the books I’ve been putting off, and learn (maybe I’ll even blog more). I know there will be no issue staying in touch with the people I really want to stay in touch with.

While this is my journey and mine alone, I encourage you to think about the benefits of Facebook and social media. Ask yourself if they are truly enriching your life and making you a happier human.

Happy asking.

M

 

Advertisements

Re-igniting the 30 day challenge & yummy shake recipes

I’ve always been somewhat against challenges; however, this is my second round of the 250 squats; 100 leg lifts; 40 push-ups challenge, so obviously I’m a total flake.

The reason I tend to stay away from challenges (and diets) is because they’re not sustainable for the long haul. Yet, they can be excellent motivators. I also like the incredible structure they provide; everyday I know the minimum amount of activity I need to integrate into my workout.

I re-read my post-challenge post (ha; linked above) and noticed the self-created challenge mentioned at the end of the post. I have to be honest, that lasted approximately one week and the smoothies were never integrated. BUT, I am very pleased to let you know that while I still struggle to make yoga a regular part of my routine, I have started to have a shake everyday (yes, everyday). I’m proud to say, I’ve almost made it three weeks with the new fruit / veggie shake integration.

Thus, while the self-created challenge was WAY too ambitious, it has led to some modifications in my behaviour and diet (just not exactly when I said they would happen).

Here are a few of my favourite breakfast smoothies so far:

The Kaleo Cabana (I am just so creative; approximately 3 servings at 310 calories per serving; you’re going to want a food processor for this beast)

  • 4 cups of kale (use the leaves; leave those stems behind)
  • 2 bananas
  • 1 cup of sliced mango (or a whole one)
  • 1 cup of pineapple + some juiceGreen smoothie
  • 1.5 cups of coconut milk (I buy the 4 L cartons)
  • 1 cup of greek yogurt (I use vanilla, but you could use anything)
  • Sprinkle of nutmeg and cinnamon
  • 1 -2 tbsp of natural cashew or almond butter
  • Ice

 

The Berry Babe (1 serving; 390 calories per serving; use hand blender for this baby)

  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup of berries
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 1 tbsp natural nut butter
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg
  • Add ice cubes after if using a hand blender

Both are absolutely delicious, but the kale recipe makes me feel so good about all the added vitamins and fibre I’m adding to my diet (and you don’t even taste the kale). Also, you’d be surprised at how filling the shakes are. If you want to include protein powder as a replacement for the nut butter, please be my guest. The malleability of these smoothies is what makes them so fantastic. And while you can blend the berries and kale together, I must warn you, it does make for a very unappealing colour (I just finished drinking that brown batch yesterday).

If you wish to join me in the 30 day Guns, Buns and Abs challenge (I didn’t come up with that title, le sigh), let me know and I will send you the information. If you want more smoothie recipes, stay tuned. More will be developed over the coming weeks.

M

 


A reminder to those resolution-makers

We’re now entering the lovely month of April, where spring showers and new additions to our flower gardens are promised and often enjoyed…wait…what? That may be the reality in rainy / warm Vancouver, but we in the true great white north may have another month ahead of the horrible white stuff. On a positive note, we can actually see the sun today!

Lamenting about the weather is not the focus of this post, don’t worry. Instead I wanted to send a little reminder to all those individuals who made resolutions, but vowed to not tell anyone, to continue to work towards the resolutions you made (if you can remember them :)).

I just found my resolution list (thank goodness I wrote it down) and am pleased to note I’ve made a few small and positive changes in alignment with my resolutions; however, I definitely have some ground to cover over the next 9 months.

Take a look at yours and honestly ask yourself: 1) Are they working?; 2) Do I need to readjust then?; 3) How can I better support myself to keep moving forward?

Happy thinking.

M

 



%d bloggers like this: