2023 Q3 Reflections
Entering the last quarter of the year. Q3 was... summery.
July brought with it a trip to California to get some kiteboarding, kitesurfing and kitefoiling in. After learning earlier this year I've gotten more comfortable on the foil, though I'm looking forward to switch to the wing instead of kite for safety. Got back into PT and I was nervous going into it, how my body would take it, but things have gotten even better since - my knees are almost back to their January levels, and it's encouraged me to keep getting stronger.
Work started getting busier and in August things picked up even more. August is a great month to celebrate in my personal life - family time was very sweet. Enjoyed a very fancy meal at the Wolf's Taylor in Denver. Some projects didn't work out and had to navigate losing a team member. Got to see Ed Sheeran at the Broncos stadium, setting a new record 85K people. Also got to see beatiful parts of Wyoming and enjoy some (super hot) hot springs while fully disconnecting (no cell coverage!).
In September a lot happened! Won a project. Enjoyed the Taste Walkabout, sampling lots of restaurants in Fort Collins. Went to a chocolate festival that was wayy too crowded, attended TEDx and played board games with friends. Paddle boarding was a big theme this quarter overall, went several times and loved it. Also went kiteboarding in Wyoming every couple of weeks, it was a very good year for it!
Q3 also brought a garden harvest, Tomatoes, bell peppers.
Here were my topics for the year:
- Physical: Bolster and Balance
- Emotional: Kindness and Support
- Mental: Guide and Surrender
- Spiritual: Float and Observe
Physical: Bolster and Balance
My knees have been doing better, while my posture feels like it's gotten a bit worse. Things have also gotten busier at work and some weeks were busy overall. I felt this weight at times. I'd say my knees are closer to 90% now, while my posture is maybe at 60% - I'll be looking for some new types of PT and returning to a favorite past massage therapist.
I managed to grow more muscle mass again in September, with a 30-day workout challenge. My sleep suffered a bit as a result, but I managed to keep my weight relatively steady while building muscle, and my measurements returned to peaks of 2022!
My digestion had its ups and downs, but is overall steady. After many months break, I used a CGM again and confirmed that my average glucose has really dropped, and likely other metrics have improved as well. I got a mineral analysis and the implications were digestive as well - low stomach acid, not absorbing magnesium. I look forward to addressing these next. Sleep has gotten much better and a key factor was vitamin D - sun, milk, and more.
- Solid workout, kiting, awareness of posture changes
- Digestive improvements, reduced bloat, lower average glucose and more balanced blood sugar
- Inversion table, neck pillow and daily stretches are still on track (with hip hinges, glute bridges and lunges)
- Soaking the sun
- Walked a lot and plan to continue this
- Used weights, though not the kettlebell
- Got back into trampolining, though still only 2x/week
- Still no punching back, but I got it mounted at a better height, which should be easier.
- Still want to get back into swimming. Did a bit here and there, but very inconsistent
- Digestive bitters and minerals, should help adrenals too (high-ish cortisol mornings)
Emotional: Kindness and Support
Emotionally I'm feeling optimistic. I'm writing this just coming off a beach vacation in Jamaica (more on this next quarter), so I may be a bit biased, but I was feeling relief a few weeks ago before starting the trip.
Things are getting busier, but I'm managing to disconnect from work, and be aware when my body talks to me and my stress levels rise. I've been keeping up the habit of tracking my levels, except now I only write when it's a 4 or above, or I notice substantial change (like today I wrote a 3 because it feels busy, but I'm not stressed yet).
Having the punching bag installed should help me release some additional frustrations :)
- Continued to see therapist
- Kitties got even sweeter, feels like, and they turned 1 in Q3!
- I feel I've been kinder to myself, and others. Maybe it's the kitties being so darn cute.
- Played board games with friends
- Handled more difficult professional situations well. Found some exciting people and connections to grow with into the future and feeling most optimistic since about a year ago!
- Continued to socialize kiting, took a trip with one of my closest friends, and attended lots of events that lifted spirits - concerts, TEDx, food, hot springs... ahh, therapy!
Room for improvement:
- Talk to current friends more, I miss them
- Find new friends, meetup/group.
- Being kinder, especially to myself. I self blame a bit less, but still feel like I'm running behind or stress about time.
- Could feel more giving and give more
Mental: Guide and Surrender
I'm still practicing stress rating and am glad it's a habit when stress arises. I've definitely felt less frustrated towards the end of the quarter, but the middle had some tough moments and late nights.
I do feel more aware of my thoughts and not beating myself up as much. Lately, stress has been more from difficult situations. Feeling less panic, more worry and concern.
An example challenge was losing a team member unexpectedly. I wondered if there's much I could have done to change it. And other things happened that felt outside of my control, I went through a phase where I felt that people are just not reliable or not following through - things just weren't working out. After a few weeks though, the momentum shifted.
I'm also working on "My story" and assembling fragments of my family tree, family history. It's been fun, and quite a project.
- Awareness of stress, body
- More breaks, more walks, managed to recover from longer days
- Continuing to use the Daily Doc
- Surrendered more to things as they unfolded, less self-blame
- Less panic, though still stress
- Being present. For those hot springs. For nature. For kiteboarding by myself and managing to stay safe and enjoy whatever comes.
Room for improvement:
- Use that punching bag, now that it has a dedicated mount there's no excuse when I need a release
- Be present more instead of getting caught up in thoughts/urgency - this has improved especially in September and October, and I want to keep the momentum going
- Use passion planner the night before a busy day
Spiritual: Float and Observe
I feel like a lot of beautiful things happened in Q3 - enjoying nature, walks, summer, paddle boarding, kiting, friends. I loved this summer so much.
I still spend a bit more time on my phone than I'd like, mostly in community groups. I did take a look at how much and I'd like to cut it in half, but it's also easier to do more on my phone than it used to be.
- Be present with nature - kiting, garden, walking, sun, water
- Continued meditation, fewer baths
- Workouts, especially 22 of 30 day challenge
- Contributing in the kitchen more
Room for improvement
- Been less consistent about meditation lately
- Reduce phone time, at least first thing in the morning try and avoid it
- Accept doing nothing, leave space
- Listen more in biz, Pay attention if I talk most of the meeting.
- Act more caring with my partner
Present and future
The end of the year is looking very promising and also more relaxing. October starts out fairly busy with work and a vacation (funny how vacations feel busy around the time).
I'm not fully ready for winter, so good thing it's not here yet. Enjoying a beautiful fall, slow transition with lots of colorful trees and bushes. Halloween, more holidays.
As winter comes, I look to sleeping and resting a bit more, and also staying active. I'm inspired to collaborate more at work.
I'll wrap up this post with the top 5 things I'd like to focus more on in Q4:
- Care. Be caring
- Business development
- Be present. Meditate daily
- Make friends