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project333

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Seasonal Transitions

CC Image courtesy of Tim Sackton

CC Image courtesy of Tim Sackton

Fall is my favorite season!!  It reminds me that we all go through transitions and transformation each year. I love the changing of the leaves, and the crisp air in the morning and evening. I look forward to switching out my clothes for cooler temperatures (I follow a Project 333 model), and this morning I made butternut squash soup with sage - a soup I have not made in a long time that is perfect for the cooler temps. I know some people go pumpkin crazy and while I enjoy carving pumpkins, I'm not one that does pumpkin-flavored-everything during this time of year. I do love the winter squashes though - in fact we had roasted Kabocha squash last night too!

It's also the time of year that most people get bogged down with colds, flus and sniffles. For the most part, my body is more resilient than it ever has been in the cooler months, but I have too many memories of being sick, so I do what ever I can to avoid the flu and colds in the cooler months. Around here, that includes fitting in bone broth where ever I can: it was the base for my butternut squash soup today, or I'll sip it like tea, or use it as a braise liquid. I commonly spike my mineral water with some elderberry syrup or tea. It also means more usage of essential oils like Thieves, Lemon and Frankincense either diffused, applied topically or used in my home cleaning products. I also make sure I am staying clear of sugar and dairy this time of year. That helps me keep my immune system in top shape. If you want to learn more about how I use essential oils in the home and for fall/winter, I'm co-hosting a webinar with my pal Arsy Vartanian on the basics this coming Tuesday 21 Oct at 6pm PT.


Upcoming Online Events

In other news, there are two really great online summits happening. The first event, the Women's Only Weight Loss Summit, begins October 21, and will be FREE to watch while the event is going on. Now while you might immediately think its a bunch of fad gimmicks, its really not. The speakers are all very knowledgable about health and wellness and emphasize true health as a means to weight loss. I know this was certainly true for me, I did not loose the weight until I was able to correct hormone imbalance, and GI health. And lets face it, from exercise, to hormones, and even macronutrients & calories – women have different requirements than men when it comes to losing weight. I'm excited that this group of health professionals are coming together to lay it all out in one place. If you can't keep up with the schedule you can always purchase lifetime access to the event.

The next one after that is going to be awesome - The Digestion Sessions. For me, it was one of the last key pillars in getting my health back which was really looking at digestion and GI health. Sean Croxton runs amazing summits and this one is no different, I mean just watch the trailer! It starts on November 9th and covers all aspects of digestive health. Early registration is live now. And I will be writing more in the coming weeks detailing my own digestion health and healing journey.

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Project 333 Update

Image courtesy of Toréa Rodriguez

Image courtesy of Toréa Rodriguez

So its been 3 months (well nearly so) and I have managed to work just fine with a closet that has limited items. It's funny, in the beginning, I thought it might be hard, but then in reality it was super easy - almost as if having less items to choose from was how it was always meant to be. 

I did find some additional insights from my first round of Project 333 that I wanted to share with you:

  1. Who is that person? Found that I still have clothes that I am saving for a person who I am not these days. Its funny how we hang on to these ideas. I used to be in an office on a regular basis and now I work from home almost exclusively. But yet I hang on to a few pieces that are "appropriate for the office" - yet they continue to collect dust and take up item counts :)
  2. Clothes not appropriate for season. I thought I would layer more over the winter. So I kept some items from summer to use in layering. However, I never needed to layer that much due to our mild winter. So those items, I will keep in the summer rounds, but put away for next winter. 
  3. Unexpected joy! I felt great joy in not having to pick out what to wear! In someone who is looking for ways to minimize stress in her life, this is a godsend. I used to belabor about what to wear, how to put together outfits, but what I realized is that choosing and creating outfits became more obvious with fewer choices. I have really noticed a difference from the mental stresses that I used to carry regarding clothing decisions.
  4. The confidence discovery! Im not sure where I picked up the idea that if I fit in a smaller size, I will be more confident. This is so far from the truth! This last round, I held on to a few too many pairs of pants that I thought I "sorta" fit into and found that I was increasingly uncomfortable wearing them. You know, the ones that fit in the early morning, but by the afternoon you are so uncomfortable you are mildly agitated with the rest of the world? Those. I swapped them out for a single pair of pants (purchase) that actually fit the body I have right now. Ah! How pleasurable it is to spend your day not subconsciously aware that your pants don't fit well. Without that nagging irritation of ill-fitting pants, I have discovered much more confidence in the body that I have now rather than literally trying to shove myself into a "box" that doesn't fit me!
Image courtesy of  Toréa Rodriguez

Image courtesy of  Toréa Rodriguez

So seasons are starting to change, we see signs of spring everywhere around here. We've had some unseasonably warm days so I did a mini-swap out of a few items in my winter P333. I took out the heavier wool sweaters and introduced a few light cardigans to replace them with. Those non-fitting pants are put away now. The deal I made with myself is this: If I don't fit into them (comfortably) in the next 4 rounds of P333, then they are getting donated. Im giving myself a year because I know I have some work to do with weight and size. But I'm not going to go on some crazy diet just to fit in jeans for 2 weeks and then gain it back! Diets don't work anyway!

As founder Courtney Carver puts it

This isn’t about how cute your shoes are or how beautiful that cashmere sweater you got on clearance looks hanging in your closet. This minimalist fashion project reveals your true beauty. The beauty that shines from your heart and soul; your core, because nothing is getting in the way.

Result of this N=1 experiment: Success & Continue. I'll be starting a new P333 round in about a month or so (when temps start to be more consistently warm). We'll see if I can get closer to or under 33 items in the next round. 

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My Project 333

CC Image courtesy of Steve A Johnson

CC Image courtesy of Steve A Johnson

Project 333 is a mini course that has been broken down into 6 distinct action steps to set up for the coming 3 months. The premise is to pare down your clothing & accessories to 33 items and use those for the next 3 months. Some call this creating a capsule wardrobe.

Why am I doing this? I wanted to do this mainly to focus on some clutter that was oozing out of my closet. I know from past sessions of decluttering how freeing the activity can be. We surround ourselves by things and stuff mainly for function, but also entertainment, sentimentality. Sometimes we even define who we are by those things around us. It's an interesting relationship to explore with ourselves. This time I wanted to really explore the relationship around clothing. 

Courtney's mini course is great because it breaks things down into easy steps. What I wasn't expecting was the first step which was writing down answers to some questions about our relationship with clothing. It was fun to use this time of reflection, and out of that I had some epiphanies.

I realized that over the years I have let myself be distracted by magazines, by admiration of others, by mistaken ideas of self, into thinking that the clothing that we wear somehow makes up who we are, or who we project ourselves to be. I realized that I have dressed a certain way to gain acceptance of others. We all do this to some extent, I think. Some of us even dress a certain way to prove a point to others.

Then there is the case of the Skinny Jeans! And im not talking about the cut of the jeans that are all the rage right now, but those jeans we all have in the back of the closet that we've not been able to fit into in years. I was half afraid that my old jeans might have an acid wash! Let's face it, I need clothes that fit who I am right now, not a body from years ago. And even when I lose weight, will my body be shaped exactly the way it was when I wore those jeans last? Probably not. So out they went - so relieved they didnt have acid wash!

What resonated for me, however, was, “is the persona I am trying to project, the person I am right now?”. There was a large donation of clothing today of items that were for a future self, or a past self - for someone whom I am not, right now, in the present. While not quite pared to 33 yet, I am very excited to focus on defining my core Self. Even better is simplifying a wardrobe to accentuate that core Self. The one that is present. Right now.

As I complete the rest of the course steps, I will share about any insights or learnings from this self-experiment. Have any of you tried Project 333 or a capsule wardrobe? What were your insights? Share in the comments below.

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