2022 Intentions – January Reflections

I wrote about my 2022 Intentions (as an alternative to resolutions) during the new year. After wrapping up January it’s time to reflect. As a reminder, “intentions” are the behaviors and attitudes that I intend to promote and champion within myself each day. The intent is to do (be) my best on any given day…in any given moment. There are no rules. No broken promises. Just good intentions.

#1 Intention: Rise and Shine

My first 2022 Intention was to ”Rise and Shine”. To get up when I (first) wake up. Given my normal sleep patterns I decided to wake and get up at 5 a.m. (with a 9-9:30 sleep target to ensure I got enough sleep to feel rested). In January, I awoke at or before 5 a.m. every day and my average time asleep was just over 7 hours. So I’ve been living into this intention quite well.

How do I feel? GREAT! My energy and motivation is way up. I get done with my morning routine by 6am and am ready to face the day without any rush. If I feel tired during the day, I take a nap (naps are great too!).

#2 Intention: Move

My second 2022 Intention was to “Move”. To get my body moving daily whether it be doing yoga, or taking a walk, or going for a bike ride or swim it’s all good. The idea here was whether I feel fresh or tired, I‘ll choose to move. In January, I made significant improvement in my movement. I exercised every day at least once and sometimes twice. Yoga was part of my morning routine so I did it everyday (I increased from 10 minutes to 15 minutes over the course of the month and did several 30 minute sessions as well). I also started walking. When working from home and the weather was favorable I took a ~6km walk when I had a free block in between meetings. When at work I took a shorter lunch time walk. I got major blisters the first time as I walked in my work shoes so I bought an extra pair of sneakers to keep at the office just so I could walk. I walked 16 times this month. On average I worked out for an average of 1 hour a day since I started tracking mid-month.

How do I feel? GREAT! I’m feeling much better about myself. I’m still well below average in cardio fitness level (I invested in an Apple Watch to help me better understand and track my heart health), but I’m slowly improving and most importantly I feel highly motivated to continue.

#3 Intention: Be

My third 2022 Intention was to “Be”. To meditate each day. In January, I meditated every morning for about 10 minutes depending on the length of my preferred guided meditation length. I did my meditation after my yoga practice so I was awake enough not to fall asleep. I got myself a meditation cushion with back support which has been good support and I’ve been able to really get into the flow this month. I also sprinkled in some additional meditations during the month when I needed to give my mind a break.

How do I feel? GREAT! I know. I know. It’s getting repetitive, but it’s the truth. I’ve had a number of stressful situations this month at work and they sometimes got me a bit off kilter, but I was able to use meditation to recalibrate myself and my priorities each time.

#4 Intention: Create

My fourth 2022 Intention was to “Create”. To write and or create art each day. In January, I wrote every day at least once and often created an illustration as well. I participated in a blogging event called #bloganuary that provided a writing prompt every day. Here’s a recap. In total, I posted 48 times in January on my blog. I also started to try to learn how to sketch this month and spent a lot of time working on basic skills.

How do I feel? Inspired! (Thought I was going to say great, didn’t you?). There is nothing like creating something from nothing. I love it. I also moved my blog onto WordPress this month which allowed for much more interaction via comments, which I found very rewarding and motivating.

Well there they are. My 2022 January reflections. I’m feeling very positive about my intentions and I don’t have any adjustments to make at this time. I do want to get a smart exercise bike so I can do some more cardio besides walking (especially when the weather is not cooperative). I’m waiting for my annual bonus to come in then will make the splurge.

With #bloganuary over, I’m not sure how I will approach February yet for the blog. I’m open to posting daily again if I’m inspired (if you’re aware of any February daily prompts, please let me know). But I can always write and draw for myself without feeling the need to post. Posting and getting some feedback and interaction is a bonus, but the true value is in the creating.

How about you?

Be well,


The 6am Job Interview

14th post for #bloganuary (a WordPress event)

The Prompt: Write about a challenge you faced and overcame.

Facing challenges, overcoming some, learning from all, has been a central theme in my writing. Earlier this month, I wrote about my journey of recovery from chronic pain and living with depression (Discovering Hope). I won’t repeat myself. So, I’ll share with a you a simple story about the challenge I faced this morning and how I approached it. Life is not always about the big challenges and events, sometimes its just about meeting the little challenges of the day.

At 6am this morning I had a job interview. I’ve got a good job already, and this company had reached out to me, so it wasn’t a high pressure situation. However, this was my second interview with them and the during the first interview I kinda started to get my hopes up about the potential opportunity. I really liked the line manager and, if there is one thing I’ve learned after a quarter century of working in industry, a line manager can make or break a job experience. There is nothing worse than having to go to work everyday and face someone that doesn’t trust you (or you them). Anyway, I started to get excited about working for this new company/line manager and it got my mind speeding up, building up expectations, and stress.

Last night I tried to calm my mind by jotting down a few key points that I wanted to make during the interview, but I still slept restlessly and awoke at 5am tired. What to do?

I did the same thing I’ve done every day for the past 30 days and off-and-on for the past few years. First, I rolled out the mat and did a simple 20-minute yoga session to wake my body up. Starting the day with a self-care activity is the best way for me to remind myself about my priorities. Starting off today, like any other day, helped remind myself to keep the day ahead in perspective.

Following the yoga session, I sat for a 10-minute guided meditation to get my mind in synch with my body (doing the yoga first is key for me as otherwise I’ll tend to fall back asleep when I try to meditate first thing in the morning). This morning, my mind was on fast-forward and I really struggled with staying present. I was so fidgety that I laughed out loud at myself at one point. But I sat and did my practice. It’s more important for me to do the work, than how well it goes on any given day. In fact, I would say that the practices that are more rough tend to be the most valuable for building my emotional resilience.

At this point, it was about 5:40am and I only had a bit of time before my interview. Not enough time to take my coffee, but too much time to just wait. I decided to try something to release my nerves. There was an exercise offered on my meditation app (Calm) called “Daily Move” and today’s movement was focused on dealing with strong emotions such as anger and fear. While I wasn’t feeling these emotions, I thought it could still release some of my nervous energy. The guide had me in horse position punching the air. I really got into it. Maybe I was feeling a bit of anger after all? Haha. Not sure, but it felt great.

With 10 minutes left, I needed to get set up and take a quick look at my notes. I logged onto the video conference at 5:59am. I felt energized. I felt calm. I felt confident. While it will be some time before I know the results of the interview, it doesn’t really matter for today. Today, I took care of myself. Today, I’m feeling good. I’m ready to face the next challenge of the day.

“Namaste” by Monty Vern

Be well,