Insomnia tangents told through lists

Sooo it’s 4am right now and I’m wide awake. I’ve never been good at sleeping and at least once a week, I have insomniac nights like this where my mind wanders me awake for hours – does anyone have any tips for this??

Anywho, I figured I’d channel all my thoughts and energy into a midnight post…told in the form of lists! Because lists are my favorite.

6 things I’m excited for

  1. I’m going to Catalina Island this weekend!! This was a super last minute decision as I was scrambling to go out of town for MLK weekend (limited vacation days = need take advantage of every long weekend). I’ve been dying to go down to Catalina for their amazing diving, and what sealed the deal was when my new friend, Julian (who I met though Scott and who is a big diver) decided to join as well. I’m so excited to road trip down to SoCal, spend a weekend diving/hiking/relaxing, warm weather, and hang out with Julian 🙂
  2. Christine is visiting next week!!!!!!!!! I AM SOOOOO EXCITED!!!!! We just saw each other over New Years but I can never get enough of my NYC bestie. We will have 4 days and 4 nights together and I plan to fill every second with fun.
  3. Rene is back from her 6-month solo trip! She is an absolute inspiration. I’m so excited to catch up with her and hear all about her amazing adventures.
  4. Speaking of travel, what’s keeping me constantly inspired is planning my trips this year. I love the beginning-of-the-year blank canvas calendar to fill. I’m hoping to do two solo trips, and I’ve been lightly researching (ahem, scrolling through instagram) to marinate in different ideas…I probably won’t book for a while but it’s so refreshing to have something to look forward to!
  5. My marathon!! Need to pick a half marathon for Feb as well (halfway point of the cycle)!
  1. My redecorating project. I have shipments of furniture coming in tomorrow and I cannot wait to put it all together. Just need to craigslist a few more items and we’ll be set.

3 product discoveries

  1. Elta MD skincare products. Oh. My. God. I cannot say enough good things about this brand. I’ve dealt with acne my whole life and have always been a firm believer in “less-is-more”…just being gentle with your skin, not using many chemicals, and letting your skin take its natural course. I don’t even use foundation or any cover up. This is the first brand I’ve found that isn’t loaded with harsh chemicals and has actually improved my skin health – my pimples have gone down significantly! I was so happy when I saw Christine in December and she said my skin is glowing! I use THIS sunscreen and THIS facial wash.
  2. Dang sticky rice chips. Warning – these are highly addictive and may cause side effects including weight gain 😉 (But actually, these are such a yummy and light snack and I’ve been snacking on them non-stop at work.)
  3. I know I’ve been sounding like a broken record about how much I love my new kick-scooter, but in case you’re interested –> HERE it is. I cannot say enough good things about how it’s improved my happiness commuting around the city.

3 things on my mind

1. One of my priorities (which I haven’t been doing a good job at) is looking for ways to fill my evening time. Lately, I’ve just been coming home, cooking dinner, and watching tv…and I’d love to find something more productive to do. I’ve looked into social groups, volunteering, Spanish lessons…but nothing is really calling to me. I usually enjoy trying new things/meeting people, so I don’t know what’s holding me back… I think a large part is that I do need some down time each day to “recover” from work, which has been high energy. The days when I make plans in the evening, come home and rush to bed are definitely more difficult to wake up to the next morning, especially on training days. So I’m trying to figure out how to balance it all.

2. If I’m honest, since coming back to SF, I’ve been struggling with a bit of loneliness. I’m definitely spending more time alone these days between my anti-social evenings and low key weekends. I’m usually pretty good about being alone, but sometimes I get a little sad when I look back on this blog and see how social I use to be/how many more friends I had in SF. Also after being home in New York in December, it reminded me that my closest friends who I can truly turn to are still on the east coast, something I took for granted when I rushed to leave NYC 1.5 years ago!

I know that friendships need to be earned and also takes a bit of luck, and so I’m 1) trying not to be so hard on myself, 2) treasuring the time I spend with my current friends, even if it feels more distant than before, 3) being deliberate with only spending time with people who are net positive in my life, 4) trying to put myself out there to make new friends, little things like asking coworkers to lunch, and lastly 5) just be at peace with spending more time alone – I feel that becomes more important with age.

3. This is more for me to reflect than anything…but I feel like every two years I get into a cycle of having a nagging anxiety about a certain thing…and it builds and builds until I impulsively take action and change the entire course of my life.

Example: moving from NYC to SF; for two years after college I was really unhappy in NYC, and one day I just woke up and called my boss and told her I wanted to uproot my life across the country. Then Example #2: I started having anxiety about my career path as an actuary for the following 2 years. Time goes by and then I have a panic attack and switch careers.

Now that I’m settled with this life change, thoughts have been creeping up about my next set of worries…and that is, I’m really scared to settle down and live an “ordinary” life: 9-to-5 job that you work until you’re 65, raising kids in the same suburb for 20 years…what I thought I wanted for so long is recently sounding suffocating to me.

I was particularly inspired by a friend I met during my Colombia solo trip. He and his partner were both in the Peace Corps and raised their kids 1/3 the year in Colombia, 1/3 the year in Mexico, and 1/3 in the U.S. They have a bi-lingual family and make their income by renting out houses in Arizona, allowing them to devote their life to service and traveling the world. I was so inspired and it makes you realize how you can be creative with your finances in order to support these alternative lifestyles.

It’s probably an unhealthy habit that I’m constantly finding things to worry about…but at the same time, these past changes were 100% the best decisions in my life. I’m trying not to worry about this topic right now, since I just spent so much energy making this career change and I do want to enjoy what’s in front of me. But I’d be lying if I said I haven’t been thinking about ways to eventually live an “alternative” lifestyle, whether that be having a career where I can live in different countries, not work until typical retirement age, find a partner with this same sense of adventure, raise kids in unconventional environments…you name it.

I will say, this “worry” is much less burdensome than my past big worries…since 1) I trust myself more now that I’ve been through this before, and 2) this is the most exciting “worry” I’ve had yet, because the potential action/change that I will make down the road is something to look forward to…and I completely trust my life journey to get there when it’s time…does that make sense?

Okay it is 5am and I feel like I’m starting to ramble – until next time!

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