Day 298, Lowering Your Standards

Day 298, Lowering Your Standards

 
“What others think about us is really not that important.
What we think about ourselves means everything.”
 

Evening

 

Silent Assumptions

 
The day is winding down.  I am at peace.  I am learning so much from Dr. David Burns’ book Feeling Good.  He has asked us to drill down to our silent assumptions that can cause us depression, guilt, or other bad feelings.  I am being very vulnerable to reveal the assumption that causes me the most trouble.  I believed, perhaps even still believe, that it is necessary to be as perfect as possible, not only in one or two things, but in every major area of my life in order to obtain my parents’ approval or my own approval.
 

Unrealistic Standards

 
What a huge burden to put on myself!  My standards were unrealistic.  I believe my quest for perfection has contributed to intermittent depression, and has actually made me less able to obtain what I have sought.  So what is the solution?  Could it be lowering my standards?  Being happy with lower standards of performance?  Not asking so much of myself?
 
Typically when I run into a roadblock in my life, I react to it by raising rather than lowering my standards.  However, then I am faced with continual frustration when I do not meet my own requirements.
 
Recently, I set up a Progress record for Cronometer with a target range, rather than a single point.
 
Goal:
Complete Cronometer Record
 
Instructions:
  1. Add the food Completed to each day just before setting it to completed.  Completed is a food record that simply has 100 micrograms of Fluoride, a typically unused field.
  2. Run the Trends Nutrition Report and check Fluoride each week to determine the percentage so far (from June 22, 2019).
  3. Fill out the Progress Notes: and Accomplished: each week.
  4. Forward the Progress record to the next week.
  5. Keep the same Start Date and increase the End Date by one week each week.
  6. The goal is to achieve 60-90% of all days with a complete Cronometer record for a year.  If you can get more than 90%, so much the better.
  7. Add additional extrinsic rewards as you think of them.  You can specify interim, short-term rewards, if you wish.  Unless a date is specified, the rewards are for after one year.
  8. At the end of the year, if you have achieved at least 60% of all days, you have earned the rewards.
  9. Do this for another year, if you wish, with a different set of rewards.  You may use the same start date or specify a different one.
  10. Do this as long as you wish.  You can change the rules later, if you want.
  11. Have fun!
Points:
60-90%
Filter:
use Cronometer Fluoride to determine percentage
Start Date:
Saturday, June 22, 2019
End Date:
Friday, July 5, 2019
Trigger Event:
Whenever I Eat
Intrinsic Rewards:
  • Clarity
  • Consistency
  • Courage
  • Influence
  • Joy
  • Necessity
  • Productive creativity
  • Timeliness
  • Energetic vibrancy
  • Wisdom
Extrinsic Rewards:
  • Kirkland Signature Organic Pine Nuts 1.5 lbs (2-day delivery)
  • Black Friday 2019 – New International or Collector Barbie doll for myself or Jacque (eBay)–Consider an Irish doll for Jacque as she is Irish; Polish is also okay as she has been to Poland.
Progress Notes:
  • 06/25/19 – 100% so far!  I lost .4 kilos last night!
  • 06/26/19 – Still 100%, I lost .2 kilos last night, so that’s .6 kilos in two days!
  • 06/29/19 – 100%
 
 
Accomplished:
 
 
Why do I even want to do this?  Cronometer has a huge number of benefits, but most importantly, I need it as I cannot control my food intake without some help.  My antipsychotic medicine and lithium both cause weight gain through increasing the appetite and lowering the basal metabolism.
 

Weight

 
Today, I got my weight down to the lowest this year:  53.65 kg or 118.3 pounds.  This is almost surprising as I had decided to stop trying to get my weight down to a certain level, especially within a certain period of time.  With the help of Cronometer though, I can control many other nutritional factors that affect my health.
 

Lowering My Standards

 
So what does my Cronometer goal have to do with lowering my standards?
 
First, notice the target point level, 60-90%.  It is a range rather than being a single point.  For my first week into this, I am at 100%.  However, realistically I will not likely remain at 100% for an entire year.  60% is still a rather high requirement, so I may consider lowering it.  I think I will change it to 50%.
 
Goal:
Complete Cronometer Record
 
Instructions:
  1. Add the food Completed to each day just before setting it to completed.  Completed is a food record that simply has 100 micrograms of Fluoride, a typically unused field.
  2. Run the Trends Nutrition Report and check Fluoride each week to determine the percentage so far (from June 22, 2019).
  3. Fill out the Progress Notes: and Accomplished: each week.
  4. Forward the Progress record to the next week.
  5. Keep the same Start Date and increase the End Date by one week each week.
  6. The goal is to achieve 50-90% of all days with a complete Cronometer record for a year. If you can get more than 90%, so much the better.
  7. Add additional extrinsic rewards as you think of them.  You can specify interim, short-term rewards, if you wish.  Unless a date is specified, the rewards are for after one year.
  8. At the end of the year, if you have achieved at least 50% of all days, you have earned the rewards.
  9. Do this for another year, if you wish, with a different set of rewards.  You may use the same start date or specify a different one.
  10. Do this as long as you wish.  You can change the rules later, if you want.
  11. Have fun!
Points:
50-90%
Filter:
use Cronometer Fluoride to determine percentage
Start Date:
Saturday, June 22, 2019
End Date:
Friday, July 5, 2019
Trigger Event:
Whenever I Eat
Intrinsic Rewards:
  • Clarity
  • Consistency
  • Courage
  • Influence
  • Joy
  • Necessity
  • Productive creativity
  • Timeliness
  • Energetic vibrancy
  • Wisdom
Extrinsic Rewards:
  • Kirkland Signature Organic Pine Nuts 1.5 lbs (2-day delivery)
  • Black Friday 2019 – New International or Collector Barbie doll for myself or Jacque (eBay)–Consider an Irish doll for Jacque as she is Irish; Polish is also okay as she has been to Poland.
Progress Notes:
  • 06/25/19 – 100% so far!  I lost .4 kilos last night!
  • 06/26/19 – Still 100%, I lost .2 kilos last night, so that’s .6 kilos in two days!
  • 06/29/19 – 100%
 
 
Accomplished:
 
 

Lowered My Standards

 
There.  I just lowered one of my standards.  However, I may actually score higher than I would have otherwise, now that the pressure is down.  More importantly, I am not going to pressure myself to do a lot of extra things that will keep me from working on Cronometer.
 
There are areas of my life that are somewhat neglected.  Guess what?  That is okay.  I do not need to stress over what I am not.  For instance, I am not an avid Facebook fan.  I do it occasionally but not for hours per day.  You know what?  That is perfectly okay.
 

Focus

 
What I want to do is focus on my Big Four.  They are: my blog, Cronometer, JV Life Tracker, and meditation.  I had these activities going pretty well, and then I tried to do too many things.  We may think we can get a finger in every pie, but we really can not.
 
Each of us is quite powerful.  We can do anything.  However, we cannot do everything.  It really is okay to not be expert in everything.  That is what we need other people for.
 
What we think of ourselves makes all the difference.  If we dwell on what we cannot do, we can get depressed.  If we focus on the things we can do, we have a life.
 

Prayer

 
 
 
EVENING Prayer
 
Lord,
 
I have been taught to set high standards for myself and to not neglect the perfection of the whole while achieving in one or two areas of life.
 
I thought this was going to work for me.  However, life is too complex for that.  I have suffered intermittent bouts of depression, some very serious.  I have even had shock treatments to prevent suicide.
 
Dr. David Burns says that having high standards makes you vulnerable to depression and guilt.  Perhaps it is time to take his advice seriously and shore myself up against future relapses in my mental health.
 
I have not decided to go goal-less as some people advocate.  However, I am choosing to have fewer goals.  I am protecting the time I need to work on those things that are the most important
to me.
 
Lord, bless me in my studies so I can overcome depression and live a joyfully vibrant life.  I am so glad that my weight is now down to 118.3 pounds.  I would like it to go down more, but instead let me concentrate on keeping a complete food diary, so I can manage many nutritional factors that contribute to good health.  
 
Help me with my chiropractic adjustments.  I am glad I have been able to do them, and they are helping me a great deal.
 
Bless my readers with their own mental health.  Even though not everyone has clinical depression, many people have depressed feelings from time to time.  Perhaps lowering their standards is a tidbit that will help.
 
Amen.
 
If you would like to join me in this journey from the beginning, please start with Day One.
 
KaeLyn Morrill
 
 

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