Note: During my run 13 weeks ago, I broke my iPod Nano … again (See weeks 13 through 16). I decided not to fix it or purchase the iTouch. Instead, I’ll wait till this September for the latest generation of Apple iPod to be released until I can run with music again and log my exact time, pace, and mileage.
The shirt that never got worn
I had all my preparations to kill the road this morning.
Yesterday, my throat started to hurt. I felt the light dizziness all day long, and it all grew worse this morning.
When my temps rose and all I could do was lying on my bed all day, my dad hit me up on my phone right at about 17:30 and texted me, saying, “Papa will arrive home soon.”
Usually when I plan my dinners with him or for the whole family, I am the one reminding him and everyone else.
I shed a teardrop when I received this simple message. Then I said I’m sorry to him that I can’t go out. I don’t feel well.
When he got home he immediately went to my room and checked my temp, and immediately went out again to buy some meds.
It’s been a while since I feel this kind of intimacy with my dad.
Thereafter, he went into my room again and asked, with a sincere smile, “So when are we going to have the dinner? Perhaps next week?”
And so I nodded with a smile back and replied, “Yes, hopefully.”
The rest of the evening we were just in his room, catching up on what he’s been missing lately in my working life. I showed him the published issues of the magazine I work for. He flipped through the pages as I prattle on, occasionally reminding me to take the pills every single day for the next 8 days.
He cares, I thought to myself. After all these years, I finally feel cared for.
Suddenly, the fact that I didn’t run this morning, that I didn’t feel I’ve fulfilled my own expectations, that I hate myself for not taking care of my health well enough and therefore missing the opportunity to finally hit the streets in 2013 … they don’t matter so much anymore.
I love my family.
I’m gonna make them proud for as long as I live.
And that’s all that really matters.
Of all kinds of disability in the world, the mind needs the most attention right now. By 2020, as the World Health Organization predicts, mental illnesses such anxiety and depression are going to be among the most prevalent causes of disability worldwide, which will come right after the present number one-killers cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Guard yourself – Flex your brain to adapt and develop resilience over time. A recent survey from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign revealed that anxiety disorders are largely determined by how you choose to respond when faced with a challenge. As published on the journal Emotion, researchers presented questionnaires and interviewed 179 healthy men and women to study the ways they dealt with their emotions and how their answers relate to their anxiety levels in the workplace and social settings.
Reappraisal is a practical strategy of viewing tough situations as challenges rather than problems. The findings from the study revealed that those who tended to focus on positive ways of resolving difficult circumstances experienced less nervousness, tension, and negative emotions. These people control their emotions by reappraising challenges in a more positive way, agreeing to the statement, “I control my emotions by changing the way I think about the situation I am in,” reframing what was happening to them at that moment into viewing their situation in a better light. By putting their situations into perspective, they are able to plan ahead and consider how to respond positively to challenging situations. This thought-pattern allows them to be flexible enough and find new solutions to problems.
Subjects who leaned toward the suppressive approach, by internalizing all difficult thoughts and emotions and ignoring them, avoid challenging situations completely and experienced more negative feelings. This strategy may lead to symptoms of anxiety and stress more, which can have harmful effects on mental as well as overall health. Not a good strategy to handle frustration or fear, eh? Obviously, bottling up is not a productive outlet for negative emotions, and has the potential to make subjects even more vulnerable to anxiety by running away, hiding, or pretend that the problem isn’t there.
So what’s the best emotion-regulation practice for implementing the reappraisal theory (which translates to an enduring resilience against stress)?
GET THINGS DONE
MAKE GOOD THINGS HAPPEN
PREVENT BAD THINGS FROM HAPPENING
Though it often carries a negative connotation, anxiety isn’t an all-or-nothing state. With a little bit of anxiety, a worker may be motivated by worry, pushing him/her to direct his/her concentration and efficiency in the task at hand. Learning to be adaptive prevents you from work burnout and leads you to be more flexible when faced with challenging situations.
Prevention is always better than cure.
- EAT HEALTHY
- SLEEP WELL
- EXERCISE REGULARLY, AND
- GET ENOUGH REST.
LET IT ALL IN – BUT GO ALL OUT.
Always be able to give an account of yourself. You are not here to merely survive; you are here, now, present, to thrive for a purpose that only you and God alone know.
Always be aware of the things you are responsible to care for, but make sure you develop a strategy for sustainable development and prevent all the hard work you’ve done in the past to fall in vain. Progression requires accountability, that’s why I made the Making Miles worksheet.
View my weekly mileage progress here and my all-time PB (personal best) record here.
Remind yourself everyday, every week, every month and every year how far you’ve come to where you are today:
Set high standards, but never forget how far you’ve come to be where you are today. Take responsibility for your own health, because that’s the only way you’re going to get ahead. Be awesome! :)
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