The Reluctant Journal

Where are you and where are you going?
1taskaday
Posts: 387
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Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Mon May 05, 2014 6:03 am

Thanks Jennypenny and Saving-10-years also for the advice and time taken to give it.

I don't know what has happened but it is all very clear to me now.
I just woke up this morning and I had my answer. This often happens... let the subconscious mind work on something for a few days and it will spurt out the answer. I also did a lot of outside physical work yesterday and I think that is the "secret to clarity of thought”. I must say that writing in this journal also makes things clearer for me, even though I’d say it’s a mess for anyone to decipher what is going on. I am paranoid about my privacy and try not to give any identifiable information about myself-which only adds to the complexity, I know.

I am staying on my original plan-the fastest route possible to early retirement. I am going to get myself in to a position to stop working for money in 53 months. I have thought about it all, long and hard and the thing that I want for myself more than anything else in the whole world is to be FREE!

When I know this clearly, I just have to implement the quickest and most effective plan to get me there. Everything else is just "noise" in the background trying to sway me off my path.

It's simple really...what do I want more than anything else...to be FREE of any constraints...well then...”Go Get There Girl” and do not let any temptations delay or “side blind” you.

I read Retired Syd's blog a lot and I want a life similar to the one she lives in retirement.

Everyone keeps warning me that "doing nothing" and just “passing time" while in retirement will kill me...you will die with nothing to do...you do not have the personality not to be working...Oh,it's fine for a while but then it gets very monotonous and boring...just trying to pass the hours in the days...Bla,Bla,Bla

Well I say "BRING IT ON”, let me reach the stage that "passing time” is killing me.
Let me reach the stage where I yearn to work and meet people there...

Then and only then, will I believe that being a "wage slave" is necessary to lead a fulfilling life!

Plan B sucks,stick to plan A

1taskaday
Posts: 387
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Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Mon May 05, 2014 6:56 am

Brave New Life has a great new article on The Working Dead,in "Corporations' Colonization of Human Life".

It reinforces my decision to get out the fastest way possible.

saving-10-years
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Location: Warwickshire, UK

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by saving-10-years » Mon May 05, 2014 7:21 am

Thanks for the link to Retired Syd - helps me to understand why money accumulation is going to be important and a focal point for you in a way it hasn't been for me. I'm a homebody all the way, so travel would be my least favourite form of retirement (or put another way if I wanted to do that I would have stayed in the job I had, as travel is a major 'perk' of that job).

I agree with Syd on the stay-at-home-husband making you want to retire too!

1taskaday
Posts: 387
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Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sat May 10, 2014 2:57 pm

My parents are fit, healthy and well, taking no medication in their early eighties.

The sad thing about their age is that death is taking their siblings, friends and neighbours one by one-ping, ping, another one gone...

I see the look of sadness in their eyes when they return from the funerals. I often wonder what it must be like to be that old losing all you know,one by one. Do they wonder if it will be them next, or does each partner look at the other and wonder which one will go first?

I know this is really morbid but I think I am just over-tired as the holiday rental season has begun and I have a lot of balls to keep in the air at once.

If I live as long as them, I will have at least 30 healthy years of freedom to enjoy, after I retire.

I was thinking, as I have the personality "type" that I have,- constantly thinking and organising-what will be my "irritations “when I am retired? (This is actually one of my favourite day dreams).

I often read retirement blogs and they say that when you retire you just replace one set of "stresses" for another. This is really intriguing ...as being a "realist”, I know that retirement is definitely not utopia and can well believe that there will be new hassles and challenges to overcome.

I often wonder what these will be for me? (excluding catastrophic events).
I really hope that a lot of my energy and time will not be spent on financial issues or bugeting.That will be FAILURE to me.

The challenge of having to motivate myself, add structure to my day and continue to self-develop will be challenges that I will relish-all involve self-discipline which I think is key in anybody's life.

This is the self-same self-discipline that I am using at the moment to get me to FI and eventually free.

This is the self-discipline that enables me to see past this summer and the next three knowing that I will not be free to pursue whatever activity that takes my fancy, moment to moment.

This is the same self-discipline that enables me to see past tiredness and low energy levels to keep doing over-time even when this is the thing that drains me and prevents me from rejuvenating.

I hope the reward for this self-discipline will be FI and freedom and I am not just wasting these years-as so many other "well-intentioned" people keep telling me.

They say "Have a more balanced life, work less and spend more".

But alas their advice falls on deaf ears, only I know "myself" well... I will only feel balanced when I am free of paid work on somebody else's clock.

I just don't have the personality to be able to switch of my mind from thinking about my work. I really want to, but as it is the place that uses up most of my energy-(actually the best of my energy), what’s left to do any other major project or achieve any real lasting type of balance?

What is balance anyway...but feeling full of “vitality” and energy all the time...

1taskaday
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Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Tue May 13, 2014 1:58 pm

What a gorgeous, delicious, beautiful, perfect day I had to-day.

I was off work and the weather was perfect. Not too hot and not too cold with that beautiful warm summer breeze that makes the leaves rustle over head.

I had the day or most of it all to myself to do, or not do as I pleased.

I hit the woods with the dogs with the intention of drifting around until I felt like returning home. No deadlines, no efficiency and nothing to be achieved.

Dogs definitely could give a lesson to us humans on just "being”. They run, chase butterflies and birds to their heart’s content and then squelch around in bog holes never caring how they look or smell afterwards. Their energy is contagious and they are a joy to be with.

While walking I had a question on my favourite topic to contemplate, Jacob’s "what our understanding of ERE was”. I love contemplating with a relaxed mind.

Another thing that I thought about was an opinion a friend of mine gave me as a reason not to retire or give up work. She is of the opinion that if one was "free" all the time to do as they wished, then eventually they would tire of this, and place no value on days off or even holidays. She feels that the only reason that we enjoy our days off from work so much, is that they are such a contrast from our routine work days.

Basically this would mean that a day like to-day,(where I felt so relaxed that it must be the feeling similar to what people get when they are high on drugs-haven't a clue what this feels like really, but can't imagine being in a more relaxed state) would never have occurred only that I have so much rushing and stress in my work-life.

If this were to be true then maybe I will need more than a walk in the woods, when retired to get the "high" that I got from it to-day.

That would disappoint me as then, when I stop working I will need to search for other challenges to entertain myself, as simple things will eventually bore me. Maybe this is the warnings that people have been giving to me about "trying to fill my days and watching the clock go by, hour by hour".

Interesting stuff, as I will only find out after I quit...

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sun May 18, 2014 8:07 am

I read an article on Canadian Dream, Free at 45 where in essence he has accepted the fact,(with regards to his career),that he hates managing people. He has informed his superiors that he wishes to return to his old job after 6 months as a manager. He also accepts the fact that this has probably “defunct” his future career prospects and that he doesn't care.

I also hate doing my present "management” job and had to laugh when he compared it to "babysitting”. The amount of coaxing, persuasion and energy that has to be given to a lot of employees is the real pain-otherwise they can create chaos, (a thing an INTJ hates more than anything).I want the whole system to run smoothly (on my watch) and will do nearly anything to make sure that it does. I have only another 7 months doing it and then I can revert to my old job, with absolute certainty that "management" is definitely not for me.

Nearly every second day I have to deal with an irate employee about some issue that is caused mainly because of staff shortages. This will be ongoing and get worse during July and August. I then get annoyed that they are blaming me for not being able to help them, and usually bring it home in my head for hours and hours.

I have resorted to taking vitamins and Magnesium again in an effort to calm my mind from work-stress. I know that I am overworking and not relaxing enough, but will hang in there as my finances are progressing well.

I think I will make out some financial figures to show myself my future progress at this rate of earning(from overtime).This will keep me motivated to just keep my head down and get on with it.

EdithKeeler
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by EdithKeeler » Sun May 18, 2014 11:10 am

[quote="1taskaday"]I read an article on Canadian Dream, Free at 45 where in essence he has accepted the fact,(with regards to his career),that he hates managing people. He has informed his superiors that he wishes to return to his old job after 6 months as a manager. He also accepts the fact that this has probably “defunct” his future career prospects and that he doesn't care.

I also hate doing my present "management” job and had to laugh when he compared it to "babysitting”. The amount of coaxing, persuasion and energy that has to be given to a lot of employees is the real pain-otherwise they can create chaos, (a thing an INTJ hates more than anything).I want the whole system to run smoothly (on my watch) and will do nearly anything to make sure that it does. I have only another 7 months doing it and then I can revert to my old job, with absolute certainty that "management" is definitely not for me.
[quote]

I stepped down from my management job 2 years ago. I didn't absolutely hate management, but I did absolutely hate it in the environment I was in, mostly due to an insane boss. (Not figuratively but literally crazy,. The stories I could tell...). Although there was a lot of babysitting of my employees, and a lot of crap to put up with; I used to think: why can't you just do what needs to be done? It's not freakin' rocket science to know that when something's due within 10 days, it's due in 10 goddamn days, not 15 and not 20, and they have these new-fangled inventions called "calendars" to help you track stuff.

However, most of the time I'm not sorry that I stepped down. Mostly when I am, it's my ego getting in the way, telling me I "should" be at a certain level. The fact is, I didn't take a cut in salary when I stepped down, and my hourly rate actually increased--the salary's the same, but no more 60 hour weeks. I've stopped biting my finger nails and I no longer have panic attacks, which I'd never had before that job (though I'd had other management jobs, I attribute the panic attacks down to the insane boss), and life's a lot better in a lot of ways.

I'm an ENTJ, by the way, which supposedly makes me good "management material." And I think I am, most of the time and have been in the past. However, there are just some situations where it just doesn't work. I think the times when I'm aggravated and frustrated in my current non-management job is when my ENTJ tendencies some out: I want to "fix" things, make them better, and I believe that I can do it, too. It's really hard for me sometimes to just sit back and say "Ok, whatever you say...."

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Tue May 20, 2014 1:31 am

One of my biggest fears when I went from part-time work to full-time plus overtime was that I would once again get sucked into the “work treadmill” where I would be so "institutionalised“ that I would find it difficult to plan or motivate myself to do any original projects outside of work.

It is a very tenuous feeling or "mind mentality" that I am trying to describe and most people that work full-time won’t even understand what I'm alluding to. It is basically the ability to be satisfied and content mentally, with very little or as near to nothing as possible.

When I was on part-time I had no money, (as I saved all excess of bills) but loads of free time. It took a good 6 months to adapt to this way of life when I decided that the “non-consumerist” path was the one for me. Before this change to an ERE lifestyle, I used to spend all I made entertaining myself with travel and shopping.

I loved my life on part-time travelling and shopping, but I had no savings and huge mortgage debt.
I then "made myself" love my life on part-time, saving most of my money. This was a tough "adaption period”, but I made it through.

The reason that I am analysing all this in my mind, is that I think I've flipped back again and this disappoints me.

I now, work full-time plus overtime, earning a lot more money and saving most of it. I really have no life outside of work and my family. This is all fine as it is short-term and will be worth it in the end, to reach FI and retirement by age 50.

But the issue is, that I think I have become "institutionalised" again and find it hard to have any interest on things outside of work. My work has consumed me again and I just fit everything in around it. I really hate this as I feel I have once again lost the ability to be creative or vital about anything outside of work. It just sucks up all my energy and creativity and puts me into on autopilot mode of being.

Now I know when I retire from work I will be able to make the transition back to the “contented state”while being a non-consumerist,and also, while breaking free of the auto-schedule of work, but it will be painful for a while and I just wish there had been a way to retain it while being a work-slave.

Hankaroundtheworld
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by Hankaroundtheworld » Tue May 20, 2014 3:41 am

"autopilot mode of being", that summarizes it quite nicely, but sorry that you felt back into this. Perhaps not helpful, but many have the same issue. Sometimes I got myself staring at the laptop, daydreaming, and wonder what I am doing (other than creating money from life-energy), but he, you have the same goal, ER at 50, and that is not bad at all, so cheer up :-)

Carlos
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by Carlos » Tue May 20, 2014 6:58 am

1taskaday wrote: But the issue is, that I think I have become "institutionalised" again and find it hard to have any interest on things outside of work. My work has consumed me again and I just fit everything in around it. I really hate this as I feel I have once again lost the ability to be creative or vital about anything outside of work. It just sucks up all my energy and creativity and puts me into on autopilot mode of being.

Now I know when I retire from work I will be able to make the transition back to the “contented state”while being a non-consumerist,and also, while breaking free of the auto-schedule of work, but it will be painful for a while and I just wish there had been a way to retain it while being a work-slave.
I really identify with this sentiment. This is exactly how I feel and why I think I need to FIRE (or FUME).

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sat May 24, 2014 4:22 pm

I finally got a chance to do out my figures and it really is all positive!!

If I keep the overtime hours up just as I have been doing, I should be mortgage free (my half) by December 2015.

This is really exciting as that is only 19 months away not the usual 2 years that I always carried in my head,(because I have not noticed time passing so quickly), nor have I had time for a while to do my figures.

Back when I job shared and earned and saved very little, I would never have dreamt that I could earn so much and hence save so much.

As Stephen Covey would say "I have just sharpened the saw”, with my financial deliberations and I am energised and motivated to keep slogging up the hill. The end is definitely nigh.

I have now set myself a target of over-paying my mortgage by 1,175 every 2 weeks. If I just stick to this I will be majorly celebrating on the 31st December 2015.

This target of 1,175/2 weeks or 2,350 every month will help me take overtime if it becomes available instead of thinking that I’ve done enough.

When this mortgage is gone I will be approx.350 richer every month for the 19 years after December 2015.I will then have monthly expenses of approx.1000, which includes my half of everything.

This new monthly expense will give me loads of OPTIONS, such as

1. I could go back job-sharing (half hours) with absolutely no overtime and every week-end off, and still save 1000 a month.

2. I could stay the same, (fulltime plus overtime) and build up a large lump sum to retire at 50.

3. I could save up 12,000 (would take about 5 months) and take a 1 year leave of absence, covering all my half of expenses.

The list of options will really be endless, so to anyone reading this journal, I would have to say "Bite the bullet hard and get to your goal the quickest way possible".

Stick to plan A plan B sucks ...

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Mon May 26, 2014 1:19 am

I have a large family of female siblings. They are "typical" female consumers and hence have a lot more clothes and shoes that they require. Lucky me!

As they all know of my "weird" goal -to stop working for money, as soon as I can, they pass their unwanted clothes and shoes on to me. Lucky we are all around the same size.

Yesterday I arrived up into our kitchen wearing a jumper that had been given to me by my sister. Straight away my DH asked "Where did I get the new Jumper?”

Straight away I thought maybe I could earn some "normality" brownie points here and pretend that I had actually gone shopping and bought it. So I told him it was new and that I had paid 80 pounds for it.

I thought this was so hilarious, I was trying to please him in some way by pretending that I was a "normal" female consumer.

For a while he looked confused, and couldn't register the fact that I may have gone out shopping and bought a new jumper. He then looked at me and of course I broke down laughing at the deception.

He then said, “I knew you would never buy it" and I thought how disappointing, am I that predictable...

DutchGirl
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by DutchGirl » Mon May 26, 2014 4:03 am

:-)

Congratulations on being so close to paying off the mortgage. And congratulations on having such wonderful clothes :-)

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sun Jun 08, 2014 3:16 pm

I can't believe that it has been 2 weeks since I updated this journal.

How time flies...I better be more diligent if I hope to hit my 200 goal.

I am obsessed (as only I can and do constantly get),with hitting my target of 1,175 overpayment on my mortgage every 2 weeks.I have put my name down for extra overtime to make sure this occurs-hope I don't regret it.

I think spreading out my annual leave weekly is a great idea instead of taking it in "weekly blocks".This will ensure that I do not get overloaded or exhausted in any one week.Really the options for taking advantage of overtime while still only working a normal total weekly work hours are huge whilst utilising annual leave on a weekly basis.

Maybe employees should take more advantage of this to maximise earnings.It probably would not suit long-term but will definitely increase my earning ability up until December 2015 when my mortgage will get paid off.I am also acutely aware that the opportunity to earn this much overtime may not always be available to me and I should grab it with both hands while I can.

Isn't this what people say before they retire,"Just 1 year more,I will need the money..."

I think it's called aligning my workplace goals with my own.I know most people at work think I'm a little crazy but I smile and just say "Everything is progressing perfectly well in my plan to retire by 50 and I could not be happier with my progress".

As can be gathered from above I talk openly to everyone about my goal to stop working by 50 (or before if possible).I also have conversations with younger students that pass through our workplace about ERE and feel even if my discussions only inspire 1 out of 10 of these,what a success...

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sat Jun 14, 2014 3:43 am

This has been an issue all through my life and still is and I’m just wondering is it a common “need” or compulsion with all INTJs.

I just HAVE to say the truth as I see it out loud to (mostly-even I have some political savvy) whoever is nearest to me at the moment I see it.

I have got to be authentic or it will eat me up inside.

Now as one can imagine this is a “sticky” issue depending on the circumstances... as everybody knows there really is no room for “truths” in the world we inhabit on a daily basis.

I think we can get away with telling the truth to family and even friends easily enough-they may not want to hear it but as they generally know your personality for years they kind of expect you to think and say as you do-they just accept that’s part and parcel of being around you.

But in a workplace to name the “GAME” that goes on, can be a problem.

The other problem with this is that you may call it as it is BUT really this is only your truth as you see it. And worst still as everybody sees it differently, what’s the POINT of being totally out of line and controversial? Nobody is going to change their mind,as they see things anyways.

I know I sound like Donald Rumsfeld’s known unknowns now ....

BUT what I’m really trying to get to is WHY CAN’T I JUST SHUT MY MOUTH AND PLAY THE GAME LIKE EVERYONE ELSE AT WORK?

Why do I need to tell the truth (as I see it) and upset the apple cart?

Is it because I’m on my ER plan and know that I won’t be there much longer and couldn’t give a crap about any type of promotion?

Am I just some type of idealist or worst still into “self destruction”? or is this an INTJ issue-have we an obsessional need to be authentic, even though on an intellectual basis we know that in certain places it is not welcome and will change absolutely nothing....

IlliniDave
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by IlliniDave » Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:10 am

1taskaday wrote:This has been an issue all through my life and still is and I’m just wondering is it a common “need” or compulsion with all INTJs.

I just HAVE to say the truth as I see it out loud to (mostly-even I have some political savvy) whoever is nearest to me at the moment I see it.

I have got to be authentic or it will eat me up inside.
Not among all, I am pretty much the opposite.

EdithKeeler
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by EdithKeeler » Sat Jun 14, 2014 7:38 am

This has been an issue all through my life and still is and I’m just wondering is it a common “need” or compulsion with all INTJs.

I just HAVE to say the truth as I see it out loud to (mostly-even I have some political savvy) whoever is nearest to me at the moment I see it.

I have got to be authentic or it will eat me up inside.
I'm an ENTJ, but I can relate. I don't have "to be authentic" all the time, and I certain recognize that "truth" is relative and can be quite a slippery thing. But the cognitive dissonance required sometimes of the workplace gets to me sometimes. I'm an ENTJ: we have a problem, let's get together, talk it and solve it. That's how I approach most everything, but I've realized (finally) that sometimes the Emperor doesn't like to be told he is naked, that sometimes "solving the problem" is really telling someone the current way is great and nothing needs to be changed, even though the culture says it believes in constant improvement. Well, we do... except when we don't.

I find age and having more money socked away makes me less crazy about this stuff. I've learned to pick my battles, and to say "OK, we'll do it that way," and moving on. I think a lot of it has to do with making work less of a focus in my life. When it's the main thing in your life (for me anyway), it's SO IMPORTANT. When it's not the main thing in your life, I've found it's easier to let stuff go. (Not all the time, but more).

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Tue Jun 24, 2014 11:29 am

Financials still going to plan with extra income sucked up by dental bills.

This type of life style probably really sucks where health is concerned BUT I never give up until I achieve my goal.A negative in my personality...

Anyway I just accept that as part of me along with all my other quirks,especially at this age of my life.

Sometimes the dream of ER seems so far away that I wonder the following questions:

1. Is it really even possible?
2. Even if I think the figures could stack up,will I really leave my well-paid job when the time comes?
3. Will it be worth all the effort when I do get there?
4. Am I a crazy woman with a mad plan just because I love plans and reaching goals?
5. Why have I never met ANYONE ever (in real life) that thinks this is either possible or worth the effort?
6. Will the effects of this style of living in some way scar my kids-am I in some way isolating them from their peers with my "strange"views on consuming etc.,
7. Am I in some way limiting myself or my life while trying to reach this goal?

These are just some of the thoughts that keep circling around and around in my head.Even though all the financials are still on track I seem to have hit a plateau as regards motivation or envisioning the life I will lead while retired.

I read Simple Living in Suffolk's latest post-describing his 2 years since retirement.It was a joy to read,so honest and descriptive of his personal journey to and since retirement.


When I read stuff like this it motivates me,that it will be worth it but I have definitely hit a plateau and need to sharpen that saw again...

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Thu Jul 03, 2014 3:29 am

It's been a while since I updated this journal.

I suppose nothing earth shattering to report.

Still sticking to the financial plan-kind of on automatic now.

I will keep it going (if possible) until Dec 2015 and then take a rain check.

Getting more involved with giving teens grinds on maths etc,love it.

It really is amazing how our educational system can induce a hatred of learning.
Found loads of free videos on youtube covering all aspects of their maths course for free by excellent teachers.He loves to learn this way and I love sitting beside him learning as well.

Really there is no excuse for not being able to learn at a very high level anymore-it's all on the internet.

I would love to be able to teach my son to code or programme as this is where I think his passion lies.As I know nothing about it,yet-I will just keep searching through the Youtube videos for good basic lessons on it.

Such a joke that they don't teach this at school when supposedly there are loads of jobs that can't be filled due to lack of expertise in this area.

Anyway enjoying life teaching and learning-what more could one want...

1taskaday
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Fri Jul 11, 2014 11:59 am

Life is good at the moment-just after a week off work and feeling energetic and relaxed.

Still teaching maths but a little impatient at our speed.Must remember it is summer holidays and all normal kids are not studying.Must be satisfied with the progress and when and how it happens.

Thinking a lot about home schooling and how quickly a whole course could be covered.
A lot to be said for it.

Kind of nervous about going back to work and losing this lovely relaxed feeling.
I know no matter what I plan there will always be some crap to sort out.

That's just work isn't it...

I have started a new(ish) fitness routine-really a muscle building one.

I was reading Arthur de Vany's stuff again-he makes so much sense.

I am trying to use really fast swimming to build up fast twitch muscle.I love the fact that de Vany's workout's last only 20-30 mins.I think that this is the ultimate in fitness as you never get bored.

Often when I don't feel like exercising I just jump in the pool-I have always loved the water so this is so easy for me.I can do bursts of face paced swimming taking breaks in between.

We will see how it goes.

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