Every Day Is A New Day

New day, new me.

I was going to write this at the end of last year, but I thought,” Who am I fooling?”. The turning of a page on a  calendar does not make me a different person. I do not change, or at least I don’t feel myself changing. I have never changed as much during a year as I wanted to. 

But, I received some new insight, on a Fitbit app, of all places. This is not an advertisement for Fitbit. I don’t own any stock, they have not sent me a check. My insurance company paid for this weight loss, diabetes prevention program I am doing, and a Fitbit came with the plan.  

This week, we are working on stress management: identifying and recognizing sources of stress, identifying the things we do when we are stressed, especially as they pertain to food, and weight gain, and exploring ways to reduce stress and eliminate stress-related eating habits. 

Interesting stuff. I am always surprised by how much I learn when I read about stress. For instance, when people feel stressed, they may snack compulsively, drink more caffeine than normal, procrastinate, watch more TV, and spend more time on the internet than usual. I do all of these things, all of the time, but I did not connect any of them with stress. I like the taste of my coffee (Colombian Supremo, try it) and the internet has become my primary source of entertainment. I have not been using them as coping mechanism, as far as I am aware. But, I am going to think about it more in the coming weeks. 

I have drifted a little off topic. One of the stress-reduction tactics we are trying is mindfulness. I’ll be honest. Words like mindfulness and self-care have put me off for some time now. Maybe it’s the people who use those words, or the way they say it, or the context in which the words and ideas were presented. But, something about the word mindfulness has me reaching for the remote control or mouse, every time.

so, I was not happy to see it was a major part of this program, but like I said before, I need to lose weight, and they gave me a free digital scale and Fitbit. So here I am.

And, it’s not bad. Mindfulness – at least the stage I am a – is just sitting quietly, listening to a recording of a person with a very pleasant and soothing voice, as they walk you calmly and leisurely through ways to become (and be) mindful – of yourself, your surroundings, your breath, your emotions, your thoughts. It is not bad at all, and certainly not what I thought I was going to be, something horrid and soul-changing that would have me acting smug and patronizing by the end of the program. It is relaxing, effective, and easy. 

Today, I did a 5-minute mindfulness session called Fresh Start provided free on the Fitbit app. 

Yesterday is the past. What has happened has happened. Can you find a way to wipe the slate clean, to make a new start today? With a clean slate, a new day, a fresh start, anything is possible. Now, do you feel a sense of possibility when you think about today? 

That was the purpose of the session, to encourage us how to start off each day with hope, with a sense of the day’s possibility, not trapped by the pull of all the yesterdays that proceed it, free to consider a new direction. 

I liked this lesson, liked where my thoughts went, how it got me to reassess the idea of “yesterday is past”, not as some overused platitude, but as a fundamental home truth and an important life lesson – one of many lessons that I have been ignoring for too long.

So, I am starting off each day, this week, and the next, at least, with this mindfulness session, and a clean slate. I want to see where it takes me.

Photo by Anastase Maragos on Unsplash

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