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Tag: lent

A Month of Habits

Even before marathon training started back in December, I consider myself to be a very ambitious individual. I would read a lot of productivity blogs and read articles that promoted different habits that everyone should pursue or strive for. Some of the habits that I’ve been working on fell through, whereas others have stuck with me. When March came around, and lent was about to begin, I decided, out of nowhere, that I wanted to give up something. And so I gave up porn. But a couple of days later, I started, after reading different articles to see if I could last a month without other things as well. Here is my journey:

COLD SHOWERS – I started to take cold showers every morning. I would jump in the shower and the turn the knob to the coldest setting possible. The first few days were rough. I found myself shivering uncontrollably. The first day lasted for about one minute but as the days progressed, I stood longer and longer in the cold shower. I found myself being able to fight against the discomfort of the coldness of the water and fighting past the shivering. I was able to brace myself for the sensation of the cold and controlled my breath every time I stepped in. Controlling your breathing is definitely key to having a more relaxing experience but even on day 35, I still struggle with the cold. I found there are many benefits to the cold shower therapy. I became more alert in the initial hour I woke up (although my poor sleeping habits prevented me from being energized throughout the day). I feel refreshed and my skin looks great. However, lately, my back has become really stiff and in a lot of pain and my subconscious is telling me to attribute it to the cold shower and how its causing me to not be loose at all. So as of now, I’ve been doing the hot/cold combo and it’s been pretty awesome and a habit I will be keeping with me for the rest of my life.

LOGGING THE FOOD I EAT – I am on Day 217. I have this habit of writing everything I eat down, the mood I’m feeling and whether I did any form of exercise that day. I found this nice to track your life and your eating habits. It doesn’t necessarily make me change my eating my habits but it does allow me to reflect how my mood may differ from day to day depending on what I eat. I haven’t been able to find a correlation yet between exercise, food and my mood but this is because I haven’t analyzed it fully yet. It’s also nice to show doctors if I ever need to give them a log of some kind of what I’ve been eating. I use Evernote for this task and if you want a template of what I do, this is what it looks like:

Day 217 – 4/14

Breakfast –  Oatmeal
Snack 1 –
Lunch –
Snack 2 –
Dinner –


MOOD: Woke up groggy and not really wanting to get out of bed. Got to work and hammering out everything I needed to get done. Ambitious and motivated.

Day 216 – 4/13

Breakfast –  Ramen
Snack 1 –
Lunch – Pasta with avocado/eggs/mushrooms/peppers
Snack 2 –
Dinner – Turkey burger


MOOD: Rested, motivated to get things done. More awake than day before. Still anxious about hearing

NO FACEBOOK – I’m a huge fan of social media and I think it really connects you with people you don’t normally talk to. Facebook in particular is amazing to network and to find out about events happening in your area. But lately, especially with my marathon training promotion and fundraising, I had been overexposed and felt like I needed to back away for a little bit. And on March 13th, I decided to opt out of Facebook for an undisclosed amount of time. The month without FB has been amazing. I found myself more productive and not looking on FB every time I was bored. I found myself so reliant on it to feed the time that I don’t know what to do with myself, instead of actually focusing on my most important tasks. But the drawback was that I felt really out of the loop when it comes to my social network of friends and knowing what was up in the community. Friends would constantly say that they had photos of me that they couldn’t tag and that they had group messages I was part of and couldn’t respond to. I missed deadlines for social events and surprises and you know what I realized, all of these things didn’t phase me. It’s that phrase “out of sight, out of mind.” Of course I would react after the fact but when it was done and over with, I didn’t really care. Now that I’m back on FB, after a month of being off it, I found myself making a more conscious choice not to go on it every time I was bored. I will set aside a certain period of time to really go on the site and explore but then go back to my tasks at hand.

MEDITATION – This has been a habit that I have been consistently doing for nearly a year now. I only do 5 minutes a day and it is so refreshing to be able to clear my mind. However, it has gotten to the point where I need to improve the 5 minutes and make it 10 minutes or a great length of time. There are some days where I don’t have the time to sit physically in my pose so I decide to be mindful when I am traveling around the city, in my car or what not. I encourage everyone to take up this habit because it really does calm you down and make you more aware of the things around you. It helps relieve tension and forget about the worries of the future and the past. This is one of the lifelong habits that is positive for your health and well-being. Do this!

I have other habits that I am also working on but it hasn’t been consistent enough to write about. But in the next year or so, I hope to make this routine:


The Force Is Strong…

Okay, here’s the update in regards to me giving up porn for Lent. It’s been 27 days now and I have 19 days left I think. Let me begin by saying that although I verbally said I was giving up porn, I decided to give up on any form of sexual release as an added challenge, meaning no masturbation or orgasm. I wanted to see what my body could handle and how it felt mentally with the adaptation.

The first three weeks was surprisingly easy. I did not have any urges at all and I thought the challenge was going to be quite a breeze. These last few days however has been torture…to say the least. I found myself almost giving in to temptation consistently. There are so many attractive people around and I long for a connection to happen that would lead to an exciting scenario in the bedroom. But alas, I forced myself to change mindset as soon as I have stimulating thoughts. It’s still been a challenge this week but slowly I have been able to get my mind back on track to what it was like for the first three weeks.

I definitely feel like porn is not the challenge at all. I can probably live my life without having to see another video just because its so easily accessible. I would say that not being able to free myself of urges is the toughest thing to handle since it is such a natural thing for men and women to do. We live in a very sexually invigorated society and I think its extremely healthy for people to explore their sexuality in any means they prefer. But to withhold that desire can be really challenging for many and I am surprised at myself for being able to go through with this. There has been close-calls where I did end up engaged in sexual acts but ended up leaving before I lost my challenge, so to speak.

With about three weeks left, I do find myself thinking it’ll be the longest three weeks of my life. It’s funny because during week 3, I thought about pushing my limit to 80 days and even though I know I could do it, would I? I’m interested to see how I would reap the benefits only because I do feel that because I started watching porn at a young age, it really has affected my ability to connect in the bedroom. I’m intrigued to see if things would become more exciting after that length in time or if it will remain the same as ever before.

Nonetheless, I think this challenge has been very eye opening and I encourage everyone to be comfortable speaking freely about their life. There are so many taboo things in this world and things that are not discussed that it’s hard for many to open up about themselves. Luckily for me, throughout the past few years, I’ve been on a journey of self-discovery and talking about my feelings, my thoughts, my negative and positive qualities, and just being a human has encouraged me to convince others to talk freely as well. So speak up and say what your challenges are in your life and how are you trying to improve yourself!

What I’m Giving Up for Lent

Let me preface by saying I was not raised a Catholic. But over the past few years, I’ve been interested in the religion and the messages that it has brought. I would be considered a non-practicing Buddhist, going to temples from time to time and I find the spirituality of Buddhism refreshing. The teachings of Catholicism however has been really inspiring and I’m on a journey to seek out more information about the faith and their practices, partaking in many of the things that Catholics do.

One of these things is Lent. I have never sacrificed anything for a long period of time before and I find it mesmerizing that so many people during this time period are willing to give up something in the name of religion. It’s truly remarkable that one’s faith can surpass one’s addiction, habits, and routine behaviors. That said, this year, I want to give up something as well and it’s a little bit embarrassing to admit what it is. In fact, I don’t even know if its professional to write and/or admit this. My interpretation of lent is that you are supposed to give up something that is really difficult for you give up and that it teaches you to control your urges, your desires, all in the name for what Jesus himself has sacrificed.

I’ll begin by saying that I believe in the notion that men and women has urges, desires, and they needs different ways to release those urges. What I’m giving up is something that stimulates my urges and desires and is a medium I use, let’s say, to assist me. I’m talking about pornography. There’s a lot of taboo that surrounds this visual art and it’s something a lot of people do not feel comfortable talking about. My personal take on it is, what you watch and do in your private household, should be yours and yours alone (granted that it is legal). I don’t think there is anything wrong with men or women watching pornography and using that as a way to enhance their sex life. To a degree, I find it quite informative in terms of building sexual knowledge and allowing for more fun in the bedroom. However the issue with pornography lies in the fact that so many people rely on it too heavily and this results in a lack of intimacy between partners or may even create sexual frustration in those who don’t have sex as often. In addition, pornography provides a false reality to its observers and in effect can create envy, jealousy, and even perhaps a sense of inadequacy.

I admit that from time to time I have experienced all of these emotions and fault pornography. But is it really pornography’s fault or is it because an individual’s self esteem isn’t strong enough? I think everyone should be confident and proud of who they are and happy about their life and everything will fall in place as a result. However, I think watching pornography consistently derails people’s ability to think in a positive manner and that is why, like everything else in life, be seen or taken in moderation. That said, I want to give up pornography during this period of Lent, not only to experience the personal sense of sacrifice I am making for a religion, but to also see the impact it could have on my self esteem, behavior, sexuality, and in general, life.

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