vrijdag 11 juli 2014

Stress-free month

After six exhausting months of working five days a week and travelling two hours a day on average, I am overjoyed to have the intire month off! From one of my two jobs, anyway. That's all I could afford, but I'm thrilled. I am finally sleeping well and I have time to clean my appartment, answer e-mails, reorganize things and plan ahead for September, when I'll be going back to college. No travel for me this month - it would cost too much energy. 

Working five days a week and having to perform tough psysical tasks all the time put too much pressure on my neck and back. It has been very painful for me to work the last couple of weeks and especially my neck was completely cramped. I had trouble sleeping and moving my head from left to right had become almost impossible. Fortunately the company doctor decided that I should be put to different tasks until my vacation would arrive, which helped a great deal. Now that I'm home for a week, the pain has almost completely vanished and I feel so much better. I wouldn't have worked so much if I had had a different choice. But I need to save as much money as I can to be able to execute my new plans for studying how to restore and conserve artifacts. Studying in the Netherlands has become insanely expensive, espcially when one already has an MA degree. 

I have decided to focus on a couple of things I have been neglecting somewhat:

- My health: I still aim to loose a considerable amount of weight and to get in better shape altogether. With Irritable Bowel Syndrome, this is not an easy task. But I am determined to work harder this time. I am even working out every day now, if only for 15 or 30 minutes, at home. This way, 'having no time' will not be an excuse anymore!
- Writing: Not just blogging, but keeping a private diary as well. It's therapeutic and just like reading, it is a way for me to relief stress. 
- Being involved again in archaeology and cultural heritage, both as a warming-up to my new study trajectory as well as to keep my mind active and my CV interesting to have more chances of finding a job that suits me. This however also includes experiencing the 'fun' aspect of those fiels of interest again, like I used to do naturally, before facing the difficulties of the economic crisis and not being able to find a job in the field. 
- De-cluttering: My boyfriend and I already improved our tiny living space a lot by buying lots of storage furniture at Ikea a couple of months ago, creating so much more space. But I still feel that we own too much stuff. So many things aren't used and just take up space. Of course it's never easy to part with one's belongings, but it would be a relief to have a decent set of basic things to own and not all of the time and space consuming 'extras'. For me, the main problem must be clothes and accessories. I have much more than I need and some things I never wear because I don't feel comfortable in them. 
- Practicing my arts and crafts skills: I need to compose a portfolio of personal projects, so I can prove next year that I am able to work well with my hands and with different materials, in order to get admitted to the MA trajectory I would like to follow.
- Practising different hair styles for long hair. When I'm working, I tend to always wear my hair the same way for practical reasons (usually a side braid). Although I like it, I would love to be a bit more creative once in a while. So I intend to look for practical, fast but fun hairstyles that look good on me. It would be a pity not to make use of my long hair, while there are such amazing hairstyles around to choose from! 
My go-to hairstyle
- Relaxing! Taking my time to do nothing at all for a change...or just reading a book, watching a movie, playing a game or reading magazines.
     Panda bear at Pairi Daiza zoo, Belgium, 2014

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