Day 16, Valuing Beauty and More

“Never be ashamed of a scar.”


After the horrific happenings at the Capitol and throughout the United States, I refocused on my values.  Happily, my eyesight is improving.  Project 2021 is progressing.  Please join the journey, and together we will have vibrant joy.


Three or four days ago, I started taking the antipsychotic drug Abilify.  I find it hard to stay awake and even harder to generate ideas.  Hopefully, these effects are temporary.  I forced myself to start writing, even though I cannot think of what to write.  Days ago, I was brimming with purpose.  Now I feel aimless.  How can a drug do that to me?


Fortunately, I have Vibractivity, a second copy of Cronometer I am using to log activities instead of food.  Since the insurrection on Capitol Hill, I have not exceeded my targets for my 15 values.
Yesterday, I added a sixteenth value, beauty, poise, grace.  Today, I even checked out Gracefully You:  Finding Beauty and Balance in the Everyday by Jenna Dewan.
I designated a field for beauty in my activities that 1) increase my personal beauty, 2) help me create it, or 3) expose me to the beautiful works of others.  Beauty is a companion to my other values of creativity, cleanliness, and health.
Now that I have started this entry, I feel more confident that I can still write.  Creativity is the value most neglected lately.  I am reminded of my blog post from last summer, I Walk in Beauty, which I hope you will revisit.  That is when I entered beauty into my Values to Action table.

Improving Vision

Gratefully, my vision is improving.  I had lost almost the whole upper-left quadrant of my left eye’s field.  It appears to be returning, and everything is less cloudy.  I scheduled an MRI for next week.  Whether it will show a problem, I do not know.  I am surprised to get this much improvement so quickly.

Gained Weight

I lost my focus earlier this month when the events on Capitol Hill distracted me.  Instead of doing Vibractivity, I watched television hour after hour.  Perhaps, those horrific happenings warranted my attention.  However, along with the news came overeating, and I gained a kilo.  There is no better time than now to start taking it off.  I started fasting earlier this afternoon and plan to continue until 8:30 tomorrow morning.  I get significant points in Vibractivity for my fasts, depending on their length.  My emotions can get on edge when I am going without food, however.  I hope to keep them in check.

Hope for the Future

If I did not take it for granted, good vision would be one of my top values.  I have thought about what it would be like to be blind.  I even wrote two novels about blindness, Lisa’s Light and Hope, and its sequel, Scarlet Night.  I wrote about young people overcoming the handicap.  What I have not considered is the plight of the elderly blind.  That may take another novel.
But what does this have to do about my future?  I may want to keep writing and perhaps even write more fiction.  I need to work on what I have already composed as well.  Hopefully, I will retain my eyesight and even improve it.  That looks promising so far.

Overcoming Tiredness

What else should I write about tonight?  I walked to the library and park this afternoon.  It was cold but not that cold.  I searched and found a comment on the Web about Abilify.  A daily session with a mood lamp invigorated him and overcame his drug-induced tiredness.  Realizing I have been indoors too much this year, I got out before dark, which gave me life.


My friend in Hawaii is wonderful.  However, on our last call, he tried to weaken my commitment to my Christian beliefs.  He made a valid point: we need to take care of ourselves rather than waiting for God to do it for us.  However, I believe we cannot do that without divine help.  I checked out The Journey by Billy Graham, a book about living by faith in an uncertain world.  I think I will enjoy what he has to say.  Faith is my top value.
I realize that not all of my readers are Christian.  Please, bear with me as I share according to my faith.  For a time, I disbelieved almost everything.  I tried to get along without God.  Emotionally, I did okay–I did not have any episodes.  However, it was lonely.  God does not always work as we expect.  However, God preserved me when it seemed impossible to have just happened on its own.


I have never suffered lack, even though I have a severe mental health condition.  I believe that has been God’s Providence working.  Of course, I have worked towards my own survival.  However, I think I had help along the way.
We had an accident at home a week ago.  My husband fell in the bathtub while trying to lift himself out.  He scraped his knee and punched a hole large enough to keep the tub from holding water.  The miracle is that my husband accepted the rebuilding of his bath and shower to a walk-in tub without complaint.  I feel so grateful that we have the money for the construction.  Our neighbor, a retired facial surgeon, came over, lifted my husband out of the tub, looked at his knee, and said it did not require stitches.
Again, Providence has smiled on me.  Not only can we fix the tub, but we can also install something safer and better.  With a little hydrogen peroxide, the knee will heal.


Fourth on the list of my values is wisdom.  I get it from applying what I learn from books.
I returned three books to the library this afternoon.  I listed them for January 2021 in Works I’ve Read, an entry I have in my journal’s notebook portion.  In 2020, I read 28 books.  Here they are listed below.
  1. The Myths of Happiness, Sonja Lyubomirsky, Ph.D.
  1. Visual Intelligence:  Sharpen Your Perception, Change Your Life, Amy E. Herman
  1. The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload, Daniel Levitin
  1. The TMJ Solution, Christian Goodman
  1. The Circadian Code: Lose Weight, Supercharge Your Energy, and Transform Your Health from Morning to Midnight, Satchin Panda, Ph.D.
  1. The Trust Code, Robin Dreeke
  1. On the Future: Prospects for Humanity, Martin Rees
  1. The Motivation Myth: How High Achievers Really Set Themselves Up To Win, Jeff Haden
  1. The Four Tendencies, Gretchen Rubin
  1. Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation,  Daniel J. Siegel, M.D.
  1. The Motivation Manifesto, Brendan Burchard
12. The New Evidence That Demands a Verdict, (first half), Josh McDowell
13. A Brilliant Madness: Living with Manic Depressive Illness, Patty Duke
14.  Quiet Power, Susan Cain
15. The Happiness Trap, Russ Harris
16. A Course in Weight Loss, Marianne Williamson
17. Unshakable Hope: Building Our Lives on the Promises of God, Max Lucado
18. Stress Less, Accomplish More: Meditation For Extraordinary Performance, Emily Fletcher
20. Don’t Overthink It, Anne Bogel
21. Happiness by Design: change what you do, not how you think, Paul Dolan, Ph.D.
22. 400 Friends and No One to Call, Val Walker
23. Why Smart People Hurt, Eric Maisel
24. God-Breathed, Josh McDowell
25. Clearer, Closer, Better:  How Successful People See the World, Emily Balcetis
26. Make Your Brain Smarter, Sandra Bond Chapman, Ph.D.
27. Choose to Win, Tom Ziglar
28. Awaken The Giant Within, Anthony Robbins
They were all good.  My blog entries over the past year touch on them.  Or you can look them up on Amazon.  My counselor recommended Together by Dr. Vivek Murthy.  His book made me recognize my need for other people.  I thought something was wrong with me when I felt lonely.  Everyone experiences that if they do not have enough connection with others because togetherness is a biological need.
Love is one of my top values, topped only by faith and getting enough rest.


Evening PRAYER
Dear Lord,
Here is another chapter in Actions with Values.  Fortunately, I am back on track, logging my activities and linking them to my top values.
I am grateful that my vision is improving–already.
Lord, I am grateful that in 2020, I found the time to read 28 books.  What an expansive list I am sharing with my readers!  One of my neighbors suggested I start a book club and select the reading material.  I have not done that, but maybe this book selection will be of value to my readers.  Bill Gates publishes his reading lists.  I will, too.
Lord, please bless my readers with the ability to help themselves and give them something extra when they least expect it.
If you would like to join me on this journey from the beginning, please start with Day One.  If you wish to download a FREE copy of my ebook (with no need to enter your name or email), click on the book below.  Please continue this journey with me by clicking on the arrows at the right of the page.
Featured photo by Angelos Michalopoulos on Unsplash

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