This post describes events leading to and including day 1 of module 2 of Duke IHCPT. To catch people up, I have referred to my current job and all activities related to it as Davey H 1.0. All activities related to my pursuit of a career in health and wellness coaching are called Davey H 2.0. When I’m between on site modules (at home or traveling for work) I’m straddling between 1.0 (maintenance during business hours) and 2.0 (product development on my own time). During the 3 onsite modules of IHCPT, I am (mostly 2.0). I use vacation time. This is a post that chronicles module 2. There is some but limited content on healthy lifestyles.
My attitude was not great as I left to drive to Durham yesterday. Because:
- Monday was President’s Day and a holiday for me. My wife was supposed to work because George Washington is kind of a big deal in the history business (which is her business). The good news was that the east coast was hit by really cold temperatures and so the city cancelled President’s Day events. So, we wee both off on Monday. The bad news was that the cold was going to be followed up by a snow and ice storm and this meant I felt compelled to hit the road earlier than I hoped. And…
- I knew that if the predicted weather didn’t come to fruition, it meant I skipped town early for no reason. But…
- If the predicted weather did happen, Durham, being in North Carolina, would basically shut down. This would mean that class would be delayed and my last experience with trying to cope with a class delay was not pretty. Dammit if class is going to start at 9, it should start at 9! It’s a rule!
- Not to mention the usual dread of being away from 1.0 work for a whole week which means I will have to pay once the week is over.
So I left early and it turned out to be the smart thing to do. Traffic was pretty gnarly and there was one stretch of road where the snow had started early and visibility was really bad. Just when I was thinking I needed to pull over, the storm broke and the last 90 minutes of driving was smooth sailing.
Soon after I arrived, the real snow started and then the word came…class will be delayed at least until 11:00 AM. Somehow this didn’t put me in the predictable funk. I was coping.
So I Went 1.0
I woke up early on Tuesday (like I always do when I travel) and went directly into 1.0 mode. I went to the hotel gym to do a caffeinated fasted workout (don’t worry I’ll explain in a future L4 content post). I had a backlog of 1.0 emails already from my friends in Belgium and worked my way through those. This saves the next week guy because it let’s me put out any potential fires before the flare up. I dialed into a 9 AM conference call because I knew they would discuss a difficult customer call I was on last week and didn’t want anyone else on my team to be stuck explaining what happened. Then I put 1.0 away and headed over to class.
Although I said I was coping with the delay earlier, my mood was still fragile. I knew we would start with mindfulness practice. Now I get the mindfulness thing. Even though I am constantly skeptical of its long-term value, I am bought into it for now. I’ve practiced everyday like clockwork and have every intent of keeping it up (another future post topic). But it’s such a solitary exercise. Do we really need to do it as a group? Couldn’t we just skip it for this day? We could use that time to cover some of the content we’re missing due to the delay. We’re all adults. Just ask us to practice on our own time.
But still I was coping.
Maybe it was getting together again with my fellow students that kept me in the right frame of mind. It is really great to hang with them again. Many were still trying to work their way into town because the weather really screwed up flights and driving. Did that make me more tolerant?
Lot’s of the cohort were sending out their travel statuses through social media, through text messages, and through phone calls. It was nice to see the compassion and concern everyone had for each other’s safety? Was I feeling more empathetic to the no-win situation for the poor people who have to mediate between concern for people’s safety and their wish to ensure we get everything out of this class that we can?
Had I grown that much since the last module? Doubtful.
Was the mindfulness practice finally providing those elusive long-term results that I need and want? Or maybe it is just that this is a completely different situation and so I should expect different results? That sounds about right. Maybe instead of over-analyzing why, I should accept that it just, is. Hmmmm, maybe that mindfulness practice is kicking in.
Other Random Observations of the Day
- In a post about the Wheel of Health I made kind of a throwaway comment about what I view as a dimension of health that we are not acknowledging in our studies. I’m still searching for the right term but it has to do with having a feeling of security or safety that you have control over your life. There are aspects of this that the wheel covers but there are aspects that we don’t really acknowledge. An example is a feeling of financial security. How many decisions do we make about our health based on whether we can afford to buy healthy food? Join a gym? Take a class? Not work 12 hour days? Besides finances, what other insecurities do we perceive that keep us from meeting our health goals? I’ve discussed this with other people in the class and I think there is something there. I just can’t put my finger on it.
- Today we switched triad partners. I’ll really miss working with my partners from between modules. But I’m getting the opportunity to work with people I haven’t interacted with before. As far as I can tell, I’ll miss working with them when we go our separate ways on Friday.
- I learned from a classmate that there is a technical term for what I describe as RTFM…nerdgasm.
- In the previous post I spoke about strategies for optimizing your exercise time. I want to confirm that I don’t just say this stuff but I live it to. Tonight after dinner, after some socializing, and before I started writing this post. I did 30 minutes on the elliptical. Iwas plugged into mysmartphone and alternated high intensity with resting pace as each song changed. The main reason I’m telling you this is to demonstrate another great technique for developing healthy habits. If I publicly announce I’m going to do something, that I did do something, or that I think people should do something, I’m more likely to actually do it. Because my choices are:
- To not do it and admit I didn’t do it, which is embarrassing
- To not do it and say that I did it, which is lying, or
- To do it and celebrate the win.
While not foolproof, that is some incentive to do the right thing. I speak from experience.