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  • Writer's pictureSharon To

Welcome to my Weekly Rewind!

When I started off 2021, one of my main goals for the year was to be more reflective of my experiences and more introspective about myself. This was mainly driven by the fact that for a long time, I’ve been feeling like all I do is go through the motions of my everyday life. And even during big events like vacations or life milestones, it almost felt like I robotically got myself through them and didn’t even take a moment to breathe or reflect and think “that just happened” or “I just did that!” I look through my old photos on my phone and go months without a single memory. The days blend together and I can’t even remember what I’ve been through or how I felt about anything at nearly any given time in the past. And that makes me sad to think about. That years from now when I’m old and in the reminiscent mood, I’ll look back to my teens and twenties and not know anything about my state of mind at the time or the things that were significant to me. I want to know myself. I want to know that I lived and that I enjoyed things or didn’t enjoy things.

And of course, with the pandemic, we were all basically forced to stay indoors with ourselves, and what other choice do you really have but to take stock of your life up until now and figure out if you’re satisfied with it or on your way there? I’ve honestly felt this mental distance from myself for a VERY long time, like dating back to elementary school long time. All I can remember is always thinking about what needed to get done and not thinking about what I wanted or what I actually got done, and thinking that every milestone wasn’t an accomplishment to celebrate, but just another hurdle that I needed to jump in order to get to the next one. But with 2020 as an inflection point, it had me thinking. What am I racing towards? If everything is just an obstacle to get over, what’s my end goal? I’ve come to this revelation many many times over the past years, and with every realization I make a commitment to myself to be more present, to be more introspective, to be more appreciative and remember these moments. But each of these endeavors has fallen short up until now because other priorities just kept getting in the way. I kept getting distracted by everything else going on that all of this mental me stuff just kept taking a back seat.

I don’t know if this year will be any different. But I do know that I’ve been trying something new this time around. I committed this year to working on a 2021 bullet journal. I’m creating a spread for every week, and creating some other tracking spreads for the entirety of my year whether it’s the bobas I’ve had, books I’ve read, or the movies I’ve watched. I’m trying to remember what I did during these days throughout the year so that these moments don’t just pass me by unrecognized.

But. I’ve already noticed a problem here.

I’m literally treating my days like a bullet list of to-dos. Literally. To start remember all the things I’ve done on a daily basis, I have a bullet list that I go through every day so that I remember what I did. Exercise? Check. Read a chapter? Check. Drink water? Check. It’s great to help me keep track of tasks that I need to get done, but I realized that I’m literally treating my day like a checklist of things to get done. And wasn’t that my problem to begin with? Sure, now I have a literal account of it so I can look back and remember that on February 10, 2021 I slept for seven hours. But what good is that going to do for my actual goal which is to remember and reflect on the life that I’m living?

Because the bullet journal spreads that I’ve been making to motivate myself to keep up with this endeavor take a while, I basically keep a daily journal on my computer so I don’t forget what happened when I’m ready to fill out my spread at the end of the week. And so far that’s been working. But recently, I started looking at my checklists and my journal entries, and there all just once again...robotic. “This morning I woke up and had breakfast, then I worked, then I ate lunch, then I exercised, blah blah blah.” Yeah, maybe that does sum up my day. But does that really say anything about me today? No, it really doesn’t. I realized that I’m keeping track of what I’ve done, but I’m not taking stock of how I’m feeling or what my state of mind is, or what I care about, and at the end of all this, those are the things I actually want to remember, not what I ate for breakfast.

All of this to say that yes, I’m proud of myself for being able to keep up with journaling for the past 51 days of the year, which might be one of my longest streaks to date, but it’s not actually what I want it to be. Which brings me to these Weekly Rewinds.

I know myself, and I know that in the daily grind, I’m going to forget or simply just not want to think about how I felt today or whatever. But I do want to carve out some time, hopefully every week, to really think about the past week. To take the time to remember some of these moments, good or bad, that played a part in affecting me this week. Because going through the motions, living my life by a checklist, isn’t going to truly help me.

So here we are! My first Weekly Rewind! And boy was it a TOUGH one.

Honestly, this week felt so long, even though it’s actually a shorter work week because of President’s Day. This whole month in general, I’ve been just a big ball of stress over one thing or another with the house. My memory is already lost on me when exactly it was that I was stressing over my homeowner’s insurance (I think that was a week or two ago) but all the house stuff is just compounding and it all feels like it’s happening at once. It kinda sucks that I couldn’t really spread out all of the action items I needed to address because basically nothing can happen until 60 days before closing, and then literally EVERYTHING needs to be done right away, and it’s absolutely horrible. It’d be a lot less stressful if I just went with the flow, and I get that, but because I’m always trying to get the best deal I can get, it makes everything a lot tougher, since I’m always stressing out about the prices of things and whether or not I can get a cheaper option somewhere else. I’ve come to terms with the fact that this whole house endeavor is going to be expensive no matter how I swing it, but it’s not making me freak out any less because financial security is so important to me, and I feel like I’m hanging by a thread. I actually had a huge freakout on Friday where I was suddenly just regretting everything about the house (okay, not suddenly, it’s been a slow burn basically since I committed to it...that’s how my indecisiveness works unfortunately...), but thankfully A knows just how to comfort me and got me off my mental ledge. I’m just frustrated over the fact that time and time again, the harder I work to save myself money, the more I end up in situations where I spend more than I otherwise would have if I just accepted things as they were to begin with.

The whole reason I jumped on getting a house to begin with was because mortgage loan rates were at an all-time low. This was back in August/September of last year when my sister encouraged me to look into getting a house to take advantage of the low rates. But OF COURSE I had to pick the house that wouldn’t be finished until April 2021 which leaves sooo much time for the interest rate to change...and change IT DID. Because of the way rate locks work, even though I got my conditional loan approval done last year, I couldn’t lock in my rate until about now. But anyway, my loan rate, even though it was still generally pretty good, wasn’t THAT great given that everyone was saying how low rates were. So as a last ditch effort, I tried to look elsewhere for a better rate, and I got some pretty promising leads that left me feeling so elated. I was like “yes, I made the right decision, I’m getting an awesome rate, this is going to be great”! But, thanks to Covid, there just simply wasn’t enough time from now until my closing date to finish up all the paperwork, so I got punted back to my original lender. And guess what...the rate JUMPED. LITERALLY. Over the course of the 5-10 days that I tried to look for a new lender, my rate jumped 0.26%! In the grand scheme of things, I get that this probably isn’t the end of the world, and I’ll still be okay. But what a disappointment. If I just accepted the rate initially and locked, I’d have saved myself from the stress of notifying all the relevant parties that I was thinking of switching, gathering additional documents, getting my credit checked multiple additional times, and so on and so forth. I could have just said yes, and had a pretty relaxing week because things would be moving forward smoothly, and because of the jump in rates I’d feel like a winner for locking in just in time. But nope. Missed my chance. And now I’m stuck with a higher rate that has no forecast of coming down in the short term. I know that the forces of the universe AREN’T colluding to make my life miserable and cause me stress, but sometimes it’s just hard not to feel like it actually is. And the most disappointing part about this for me was that the interest rate was the whole reason I got into this...and I didn’t even end up with a great one. But as A took the time and effort to remind me, it’s still a good long-term investment. That’s hard for me to see and truly accept right now because in the short-term it’s going to hurt like hell. But I’m still consciously working on getting myself to resign to the fact that it is what it is, and no amount of me being upset and crying over it is going to change the rate to what I want. I took my chances and it didn’t work in my favor. J was essentially right: the name of the game is just getting through closing.

And all this house stuff pretty much took up a majority of my mental capacity for the week, which left me with very little remaining for anything else.

But on a much lighter note, this week was also the week I finally submitted my Popflex Active application! I’ve been following Blogilates for years and I’ve been such a huge fan of hers. Pilates is literally the only workout I feel comfortable and almost in my element doing, probably mostly because I can do it in the privacy of my own room, which removes the distraction of self-consciousness that usually comes with going to the gym or going out for a run. And her athletic clothing brand is so so cute and I love how all of her stuff is literally designed by her to function the way she needs it to. Especially coming off of reading Invisible Women, which was a book about how almost all the data in the world is based on studies done by men for men and how our world was essentially designed for the comfort and function of men while ignoring women’s needs, I just love that her brand is exactly NOT that. I love that her dumbbell handles have a smaller girth which is so much more comfortable for a woman’s hands, that her leggings have pockets that actually fit useful stuff because most women’s clothing don’t. But anyway, Popflex gushing aside, because I’ve been doing my content creating stuff for a while now, and I own a decent amount of Popflex stuff already, I really wanted to try and see if the Popflex Powergirl thing would be something I could actually do. I’m trying to steel myself already from thinking that if I don’t get it, I’m any less worthy or my pictures aren’t as great as whoever is picked, because I know in the back of my head that those feelings will probably come, but I’m trying to remain hopeful that what I shared stands out enough. I’ve been applying to the past couple Popflex casting calls and haven’t been chosen for any of those, so I’m not counting my chickens just yet, but who knows? The application deadline just ended a couple days ago so it’s only a matter of time before we hear back!

A also introduced me to this audiobook basically about trading psychology. Since we started trying to learn to trade the stock market together, he’s been really good about trying to share resources with me to help me improve, and while his growth has been absolutely stellar, I continue to believe that this just isn’t my thing. Yes, I do want to be successful at it because I want to be successful at everything I do, but I also recognize that where effort is required, I’m pretty much half-assing it (as I tend to do with most things...) But this audiobook has been a pretty good listen so far. Nothing revolutionary, but it’s still good to be able to understand the different mentalities at play? Like I already know that my mindset in trading is not a good one because the overwhelming emotion for me is fear of losing money, which pretty much already sets me up to fail. But the thing I’m liking so far about the audiobook is that the whole idea of a winning and losing mentality that it talks about doesn’t just apply to trading, but it’s just about life in general. So this is almost like a self-help book of sorts about altering or adjusting your perspective to see things as opportunities and recognize that nothing is owed to you. This really hits a chord with me right now given all the emotions I’ve been going through with the house stuff. This is me recognizing that a lot of my frustration and disappointment over my mortgage loan rate has to do with a big part of me feeling like because I tried so hard to get a lower rate, I deserved one. But the universe doesn’t owe me anything, and I know that. So the logical side of me knows this and knows that I need to work on getting myself to that acceptance point, but the emotional side of me is hanging on tight. Hopefully we’ll get her out of there someday.

As has been the case for a while now, I’ve been feeling pretty ineffectual at work lately. I actually dealt with this super hard to pin down bug from last week that’s been just absolutely frustrating to deal with. I’m still seeing occurrences of it and am tempted to just give up, but I think I addressed some interesting issues in the interim? We’ll see how right it actually is since it’s so hard to reproduce. But anyway, aside from that one bug I didn’t really get much done. I don’t know if it’s just the lengthy work from home-ness that’s making me less and less motivated, but I’ve just been at my peak of distraction and am just not doing what I think I should be doing. We’re doing a hackathon soon so hopefully that’ll kick start some of my motivation to focus.

As far as temperature check for the week goes, I’m pretty exhausted - all my stressing and worrying over the house really took a lot out of me the past couple weeks. I’m really looking forward to having all of this over and done with and I’m trying really hard not to think about all the stress that’s going to come after, which is pretty much getting the house set up and then managing and upkeep... I’m trying to remain hopeful and send out good vibes to the universe hoping for good news on the Popflex front, and trying to continue to stay motivated with my bounding to make sure I continue to create. I noticed I’ve been less motivated lately to draw my own backgrounds in as much detail as I did at first, but I’m not sure if it’s general lack of motivation or if it’s because I’ve just been dealing with other stuff. But next week is a new week, and even though I feel like I have a lot of weight to carry right now, I’m hoping that with each week I can shed some of it in manageable ways.


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