We walked up the Water of Leith path and back down to The Shore. I wanted to keep going up the cycle path towards the wee waterfall but another dog-walker pointed out that Tango was “hurplin”. Although I’ve never heard that word before I knew he meant “limping”. Tango does have arthritis so I felt guilty about forcing him to keep walking and we turned back. Suddenly, his limp was gone and he was off in front of me sniffing for street snacks. He appears to hurple less when he’s going in a direction he fancies. It turns out that hurple is a Scottish word for an impediment similar to a limp. I like the sound of it.
A year ago, I began journaling using ‘365 Days of Self-Care’ by Jayne Hardy. This gave me a small space to write an entry following prompts. After a while, the space wasn’t sufficient, so I no longer write in the book but still use the prompts. Today’s prompt is ‘Move’.
Well, I’ve been moving physically through walking today and I’m also hoping to move to the Highlands soon. In November I signed up for http://www.houseexchange.org.uk. Two weeks ago, a lady from the Moray Coast came to view my flat and I viewed hers a week later. It was a Yes from both of us, so we’re through to the next round, of asking her council and my housing association for permission to swap. The lady will meet my housing officer next month so I doubt we’ll be moving until spring-time.
Following three months using the self-care journal, I purchased another journal-book called The Daily Stoic Journal by Ryan Holiday. The prompts here are a little more challenging. Yesterday’s was, “Good or bad, high or low, do I still have choices?” Today’s is, “How can I rekindle my principles and start living today?”
Yesterday I spent so much time setting up the blog that I didn’t get round to my self-care or Stoicism prompts, so I’ll try to deal with these two today.
I tend to wake up every morning feeling low. I have the choice to go for a longish walk with Tango, or just a short one for his toilet. Either way, physical movement outdoors raises my mood. There is a point to my getting up ever morning and it’s to take Tango out. So far we haven’t gotten further than 4,000 steps as something has either come up or he just can’t do it. I can’t leave him alone at home as he barks constantly and I live in a flat, so that would upset the neighbours. I did purchase a doggy-pram for him – so-called all-terrain – which broke when I pulled it up one step into a coffee shop. The next one was so big it wouldn’t fit through my front door. I’d prefer not to add another item to be moved in the potential house-move until we get to 5,000 steps. He definitely can’t manage more than that.
“How can I rekindle my principles and start living today?” Well, that kind of assumes that I wasn’t living yesterday, which I was, as is evident from my blog post. What are my principles? Well, what are principles? “A fundamental truth or proposition that serves as the foundation for a system of belief or behaviour or for a chain of reasoning”.
I focus on emotional and intellectual growth, and on trying to not grow physically larger as I’m curvy enough. I do what I enjoy. I’m committed to the house exchange. I have an attainable routine, but not a schedule. I have a clear vision of the house I want to live in, with gardens and a real fireplace, because I’ve already been there. I’m committed to journaling most days. I appreciate everything I already have in life (okay health, a lovely south-facing flat with floor-to-ceiling windows, nice places to walk in the city, a living income and, of course, I still have Tango at the grand age of 16).
So now I realise that I have more to get up for in the morning than Tango. This is why Stoicism is so good. It’s a philosophy that helps you to reflect on what you have, rather than what you lack; and it’s different from most other philosophies in that it engages you in taking action to improve your character and lifestyle.
I’m off now to see if I can add any widgets to this site.