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Newbie Noelle: How I Incorporate New, Fun Challenges Into My Week

Newbie Noelle

Newbie Noelle: How I Incorporate New, Fun Challenges Into My Week

Health and Wellness Task: Follow a 10 minute yoga instruction video each day.

Pre Task Thoughts: 

I used to be a gymnast, but after sustaining a significant injury to my elbow, I was forced to quit. The injury prevents me from participating in many common sports and athletic activities, so over the years, I’ve lost a lot of motivation to exercise and stay in shape. I can’t remember the last time I went to the gym or did a simple workout at home. Since I have no idea where to start, I thought an easy yoga routine every morning could help with the transition back into an active lifestyle. 

I’ve never tried yoga before, so I’m excited to see if it’s worth the hype. I picked yoga specifically because it not only stretches your muscles, but aims to put your mind at ease. Hopefully, if all goes well, it can put me in a more relaxed mood to start the day and give me the motivation I need to get back to the gym.

Post-Task Thoughts: 

Yoga with Kassandra on Youtube has a great morning yoga video that is easy to follow. 

I found this task to be easiest when I didn’t have an early class to get to that day. On the days I had my 9:15 a.m. class, I would wait to do the yoga routine until after my classes ended. 

I admit, I was not expecting this yoga routine to have much of an effect on my week, but I felt so refreshed after each routine! I had no idea one could conform their body into the positions depicted in the video (I’m not sure I did them entirely correct), but I did my best. This wasn’t the equivalent of a high-intensity workout, so I’m still lacking in some motivation to go to the gym, but I did like how I felt following these workouts. I can only imagine how I would feel after a longer session with yoga beyond the basics for beginners like me. 

Overall, I would definitely try out this routine again if I’m feeling groggy. I’m considering signing up for a legitimate yoga class. There isn’t as much strain on my injury with these stretches compared to other workouts, which is always a bonus.

Why Not? Task: Discover a good song every day and make a playlist at the end of the week.

Pre-task thoughts: 

Finding good music can be so challenging, even with access to streaming services like Spotify. The alternative and indie music I love listening to is especially difficult to sort through, as there are many extremes within the genre. One of the problems I face with discovering indie music is the bands are not consistent. I’ll often find one great song but the rest of the artist’s music is not what I’m looking for. 

I’ve been listening to an indie band called Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever and love everything they have put out so far. In starting this musical journey, I decided to listen to the song radio for this band on Spotify. I think it’s one of the best options Spotify has for discovering new music. I’ve compiled all the songs I discovered this week into a playlist on Spotify, and also included a few of my other favorite songs that have a similar sound. 

Post-task Thoughts: 

Here are the songs featured on the Spotify playlist: 

Song 1: In the Air

Artist:  DMA’s

Album:For Now

Song 2: Out of Mind

Artist: DIIV

Album: Is the Is Are

Song 3: Pish

Artist: The Brian Jonestown Massacre

Album: Mini Album Thingy Wingy

Song 4: Step up the Morphine

Artist: DMA’s

Album: Hills End

Song 5: Under the Sun

Artist: DIIV

Album: Is the Is Are

Song 6: Plainclothes Man

Artist: Heatmiser

Album: Mic City Sons

Song 7: I Got a Name

Artist: Jim Croce

Album: I Got a Name

*This one is a great oldie but goodie; it reminds me of the Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack

Extras:

Junk Bond Trader by Elliot Smith, Read my Mind by Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever, and Every Nerve Alert by Fine China. These were the artists that I wanted this playlist to be inspired by. I had a blast creating this playlist and discovering some new artists! 

I found all of these songs through Spotify’s song radio. Whenever I discovered a song I really liked, I’d go to that song’s radio and dig even deeper. I found a lot of great tunes this week and finally have some new music to listen to. 

Mindfulness Task: Improve language; avoid saying the word “like” all week

Pre-task Thoughts: 

Have you ever heard yourself speaking in a recording or a video and you wanted to crawl in a hole out of embarrassment? The word “like” has become so commonly used in our everyday language that we usually don’t even realize how much we say it. I recently heard myself speaking in a video, and I was baffled by how I used this word as a crutch! 

I don’t know why it has become so heavily used in our culture, but when used excessively, it can make us sound–sorry to be blunt–uneducated. I want to change this, and I’m curious if just one week of focusing hard on the way I speak will make a difference in my use of the word. 

Post-task Thoughts:

I had not thought of this when creating this task for myself, but as I put myself to the challenge of deeply thinking about my language, I caught myself trying to put the word in text messages, too! It’s easier to spot and erase in written language when you are crafting text messages, but this task was more difficult in everyday speaking.

It took me a few days to really focus on what I was saying to other people. My use of the word, as I’m sure most people would agree, is done without my conscious awareness. It’s hard enough to break a physical habit, but I felt like I was tricking my brain. 

I found it was harder to stick to this challenge when I was surrounded by my friends. Using “like” in everyday language makes you appear more conversational; therefore, I almost felt too formal when avoiding the word in this casual context. I also noticed the word comes out when I’m feeling anxious. It’s a subconscious habit no different than a nervous fidget.

By the end of the week, I had a better grasp on the task. I can’t say I’ve completely eliminated my use of the word, but if I continue to focus on this challenge, I believe I can make a significant improvement in the future. Try it out for a week! You won’t believe how much you rely on the word. 

Featured image by Kaboompics .com from Pexels

SUPPORT STUDENT MEDIA

Hi, I’m Sara Crawford, a senior journalism student from Cleveland. I’m also the editor in chief of The Burr and the opinions editor for KentWired this semester. My staff and I are committed to bringing you interesting, humorous and hard-hitting stories that tap into current events, trends and the lives of those who have made a home in Kent, Ohio. We are full-time students and hard-working journalists. While we get support from the student media fee and earned revenue such as advertising, both of those continue to decline. Your generous gift of any amount will help enhance our student experience as we grow into working professionals. Please go here to donate.

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