Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Zen {without Zanax}

Isn't it curious to see the traits that you've inherited from your family? I've got my dad's curly hair and his keen eye for photography. From my mom I got my green eyes and my intense desire to hide behind corners and jump out and scare my children (don't worry they love it, right mom?). I've passed some of these traits down myself to my hair, green eyes, curly hair...and a bit of a fiery temper and more than a smidge of anxiety.
That's my rents. Aren't they suuuper cute? They were living in Canada, eh.
Which segues nicely to this month's Be Inspired topic...zen {without zanax}. Life with three kids is pretty crazy. Hell, life is probably crazy without three kids, but for me it's the three kids bit that's harshing up my zen. Top that off with a daily dose of not having enough money and constant worry about how to make more money makes for one anxiety-riddled little poppy. It means that I snap more than I should, that I sleep less than I should, and that, in general, I am a nervous nellie.

So, this month I am going to be inspired by my grandma Fran. My Franma.
That's her on the left with the red lipstick and nice rack.

I loved my little Franma so much that I named my son after her. Well, his middle name. I don't think that he'd forgive me if I made his first name be Francis.

Franma was always  calm. Intense psychotherapy may have helped that case, but I like to think that it was her nature. She did crossword puzzles, smoked a lot of cigarettes, and loved talk radio. She ate tofu before tofu was cool, and worked well into her 70s because she liked it.
Franma making her famous oven fried pearls.
Now, I'm sure there were times that I wasn't around where Grandma wasn't completely cool, but as far as I know she was the epitome of cool and collected. I wish THAT was something that I could have inherited.
My dad apparently got that gene.
I remember talking with her when I was in high school and suffering through one of my many bouts of depression. She told me that when she was feeling down, or out of control, she pictured herself floating above the chaos and the sadness. Sort of on a cloud of well being. I thought that was beautiful. And sort of hippy dippy, but whatev. Still a nice thought.

A few action points on my plan for zenness (I can't get zen all willy nilly at once. Baby steps, remember?)
  • Yoga. I've been an on again off again practicer of yoga, but this month I promise to try to actually concentrate on my breathing and the poses instead of mentally going through my grocery list.
  • Exercise. Check that one off the list. I'm still going strong on my Kendra plan, but experts say that 30 minutes of exercise is enough to get you an endorphin boost to help fight anxiety and depression.
  • Scale. I've been toying with this one for a few days now. I obviously have a bit of an unhealthy addiction to the scale. In order to "trust in the process" and accept that I am doing what I need to do to make my body healthy I am not going to get on the scale this month. This process has been made easier since my manfriend broke our scale yesterday. I'm pretty sure that's kismet, or maybe my grandma telling me to stop obsessing. In a month I'll buy a new scale, and will hopefully be in a better place with myself and the number the scale tells me.
  • Yelling. None of it. This is going to be a doozie. I am a yeller, but this month, instead of yelling at my kids, I am going to sing at them. That's right. If I want to shout, "Put your boots on! You're going to be late!" I'm going to sing it to the tune of...well, whatever pops into my head at the time.
  • Cloud. Floating cloud of well being. I'm going to try floating above my problems for the month. Not avoid them, but not allow myself to become bogged down by them.
Also, unrelated to achieving zen, but more on the getting a smoking hot body, I am also participating in the Fab Ab February plan shown below. My manfriend is playing along as well. Join us and on the leap year we shall bounce quarters off our abs.


  1. Gramma Fran had the best philosophy when it came to problems. She also had a very Christian scientist way of dealing with sickness, your not sick is what she would say. If you admit to it you surcome to it. I have used this all my life and I have to say I get sick mayby once every couple years and even then I ignore it and push on. I'm going to try your methods and see if bringing a bit of evazen into my home works. As for scales sod them they are BS! I'm gonna Plank! Miss my gran Fran! Miss my familia too! Love my baby cuz's blogX

    1. Love you too Jess. I wish you were stateside again :(