By: Revanche

Weekend Reset, Part 2

March 10, 2008

As I said yesterday, I gave myself permission to have fun this weekend, and to start developing different habits.

Over the past several years, I’ve been overly responsible and highly critical of myself because I still haven’t resolved any long-term problems. Recognizing and admitting that I have limits was very difficult to do, but having done so, I’ve been working on some ways to incorporate actual living into my life and stop using my obligations as an excuse to hide in the BatCave that is my room. I intend to make these changes healthy habits, a few steps at a time!

A look at my typical week generally reveals that I: work, eat, read and sleep. Stress, work, eat, sleep. Rinse and repeat. When Friday rolls around, I go home, heaving a sigh of relief for Saturday mornings, and hide in my room from human interaction. Saturday mornings mean sleeping in and running errands or household chores most of the day. Again, hide from human interaction in the evening. Sundays might require more errands, perhaps more hiding. There’s not a whole lot of scope for say, fun or pleasure.

To change that, I have to change both why and when I get in my own way of having fun.

First, understand that having fun isn’t a zero-sum game. You can have fun, be frugal, and responsible.
Cost: I’m not sure yet, maybe approximately $20/week?

Second, the weekend is a pretty darn good time to do that, instead of working.
Cost: No OT income, but we’re very limited there right now anyway.

Third, I have a terrible habit of taking on extra responsibilities. Every time someone has a problem, runs short of money, can’t do their job, or is having a bad day, I always run to bail them out. No more. I’m going to wait to see if they really need my help, or if they just needed a shoulder, some advice, or nothing at all and are able to handle it themselves.

I’m not bailing out my brother anymore, and stand firm in my conviction that he needs to work out his problems that he’s created in his life.

My parents need to support themselves more, both for their sanity and dignity, and so I’m going to stop jumping to pay for every single thing, and allow them to carry as much of their own weight as they feel able. While my past actions were justified, ie: putting their credit card debt in my name because they didn’t qualify for 0% BT cards, I rarely looked for a better solution than just doing it myself. There wasn’t always one, but there might have been. I just didn’t look before, so I’m looking now.

I’ve taken the familial responsibilities and limited their effects on my life, and have to accept that they’ll remain very present in my daily life, but I don’t have to feel guilty that I’m not doing more. I’ll just do what I can, while still taking time out for me.

On Saturday, because I don’t want MaDucky driving, I used the morning to run my errands, and added her grocery list to my to-do list. Also, since PaDucky has started working some very long hours, I dropped off his lunch so that she wouldn’t have to. After that, the day was mine.

It’s been about 8 weeks since my last haircut, so it was more than time to get groomed. I made plans to spend two hours at the hair school (responsible), a bit of time with a friend in the area (fun), a couple hours at a free art gallery opening reception also in the area (fun), and plans to go out dancing with my friends and coworkers (more fun!).

Cost: $20, gas
$14, haircut
$0, art gallery
$5, parking in Chinatown

Coworker’s friend unexpectedly jumped to order and pay for our drinks as soon as we got to the bar, and we also chose a place with no cover charge, so I didn’t even spend the $20 that I budgeted.

Fourth, a couple hours of dancing was great exercise, and a pointed reminder that I’m woefully out of shape. We’ve made plans to go out next weekend because another coworker wanted to join us, and we’ll observe the same criteria: no cover, carpool if possible to avoid excessive parking fees, just one or two drinks.

Fifth, my friend, a massage therapist, has begun to come down once a week on Sundays to work on MaDucky and me. I opted to allocate a LOT of money for my FSA this year, and I wanted to make sure that I was getting use from that fund throughout the year, rather than waiting until the last second and buying 300 bottles of Tylenol. We’ll do weekly sessions for about two months, and taper off to twice a month, probably. Because she operates independently and she’s a good friend, she only charges us $80 for two 1-hour sessions. MaDucky is already starting to feel the benefits after one and a half sessions, and it’s great help in my quest to stop carrying all my stress in my neck and shoulders. That also means that my sleep will become much more restful. Win win win!
Cost: Paid for by FSA.

Sixth, my memory is starting to rejoin the cast of Mind, Body and Spirit here, and that means I’m slowly remembering my kung fu forms. I’m making it a point to work through them at least a few times a week.
Cost: Free!

2 Responses to “Weekend Reset, Part 2”

  1. I’m very glad to hear (read) that your weekend was relaxing and you are spreading/eliminating some of the stress you are under. I hope everything goes more smoothly this week, and from now on!

  2. ~Sense to dollars~ Thanks for the good wishes! My goal is to be much more proactive about creating good vibes.

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