Hello, Everyone! It’s a fairly warm weekend. Instead of coffee, I am feeling for some mango lassis.

Where to begin…

Tomorrow will be my first Mother’s Day. My husband and my dad are putting together a brunch lunch thing tomorrow at our house. My husband initially wanted to go out and dine and extend the invitation to my parents, but my parents still don’t want to dine in a restaurant.

Also, as promised I gave myself a Mother’s Day gift. That was my 21 in 2021 goal. I decided to give myself the gift of getting some help of getting my yard done. I hired these gardeners who don’t live too far from my house helping me get my yard into shape. I knew without help I would never get any garden projects done. They’ve done good work and I would like to continue hiring them. Plus, I get to keep my dollars local.

In the beginning of the week, I was extremely exhausted. I worked at the COVID clinic on Saturday. On Sunday, my husband and I met up with friends. On Sunday evening, I crashed well into Monday. Thankfully Monday was my day off. I felt so burnt out that I almost felt ill. I feel it’s a common things for me nowadays — I guess that’s what happens when you have a newborn, two dogs, a full-time job, mortgage, home projects, keep up with friends and family, goals, etc. “Maybe you should get more sleep.” I’m not quite sure if it needing more sleep is the answer to solving my burn out. Sleeping too much leaves me groggy.

I think for me, it’s having so much on my plate. I know I have the tendency to take too much on. One experiment I am doing is reviewing my planner and work bullet journal where I write no more than three things I need to accomplish per day. I write three tasks on my planner for personal stuff and three tasks on my work bullet journal for work-related and no more than that. I remembered this tip from a TEDx talk I attended in UCSD many years ago. I thought I’d give it a try for the next few weeks.

Starting Monday I am participating in the Bout of Books challenge. I know I can do all three reading sprints on Tuesday, Saturday, and Sunday at the times listed. The other days would be a little difficult since I’ll be working on getting my kid ready for daycare at 7AM. Though 1PM is my lunch break, my scheduled lunch time tends to be pushed back a little later in the day if I am occupied with something else. Maybe I could shift my 30-minute reading sprints. Instead of a 7AM and 1PM reading sprint, I could do a 30 minute sprint at 8AM listening to an audiobook on the way to work and a 6PM 30-minute sprint when I leave work. After dinner, I usually read a short story to Lana and before bed I read for about 20-30 minutes before falling asleep.

Mango Lassi at Southern Spices Cafe in Lawndale

Happier Hacks updates

I’ve been listening to Happier by Gretchen Rubin podcasts since the beginning of the month to explore ways to help improve my wellbeing when I am burnt out, tired, or just not having a good day. Over the past year, I’ve felt like my wellbeing has been challenged at every step and I am determined to not let it stop me. My favorite part is when Gretchen and her co-host/sister share quick, easy happiness tips to carry into our lives.

In the first post, I shared the One-Minute rule where if a task takes a minute or less to complete, I should get around to it. Small things include responding to an e-mail that requires and yes or no answer, washing the dishes, putting away my jacket in the closet, packing lunch, etc. I think it’s is a small step to make your house less cluttered. Plus, since I have been packing lunch for work because it only takes a minute (really), I save money on buying takeout for lunch. Verdict: Still following this hack.

That’s where I left off on the blog last time. Now on to the other tips:

Week 2: Set an alarm for your bedtime.  I’ve been terrible at this. I set my alarm at 9:15 to get ready to go to bed at 10 PM. But consistently, I’ve been going to bed past my bedtime. When I do get to bed, it takes me a while to fall asleep. I really do not sleep until 11 PM or even midnight. Verdict: Believe it or not, I still set an alarm for my bedtime. The benefit I’ve gotten through this hack is that I do my school work early in the evening until that bedtime alarm goes off. It’s allowed me to better manage my time around meal prep, exercising the dogs, and getting ready for tomorrow. But out of all things, it’s just not helping me sleep at an earlier time. There is undoubtedly some underlying stress that I take to bed which I’ll eventually share. 

Week 3: Make your bed each morning. I know some people just can’t go on with their day without getting the bed made. If those people saw our bed, they’d freak. I know I don’t make the bed every morning. But I do make the bed when I am on vacation to make sure we don’t leave anything behind in the hotel room. Verdict: I did this quick tip to expecting I would sleep better since I struggled in the previous week. It did not. Anyways, I’ll keep this tip in my life. I do have to say if I do not have time to make the bed in the morning, I make it when I come home from work. One of the top reasons to make your bed every morning is that it gives them a sense of accomplishment.  I thought, “really?” My sense of accomplishment is hitting 10,000 steps on my FitBit because I spend a lot of my day sitting on my desk or in my car.

Week 4: Make a power hour.  Power hour is where you set one hour per week to tackle nagging tasks. Verdict: I am definitely keeping this tip. However, I did modify it. For work, I do a power hour every day where I set an hour out of my workday to get around nagging tasks. At my work, there are a lot of distractions and requests asking you to “get around to it when you have the chance.” Now those are compartmentalized into power hour. I could not figure out what to do for power hour at home; I would be left off with Saturday or Sunday. Plus, I feel I already do some home tasks throughout the week even if it’s only a few minutes per day.