Self-Freedom … the 3M’s

For the past few months, I’ve felt like a prisoner in my own home, and I’m thinking I may not be alone in this feeling.

I took the threat of Covid very seriously and pulled in by having little to no contact outside the home. Gradually, I began to veer outside my bubble just a little, being the role model for mask-wearing and social distancing.

Then, came that moment when the “crazies” kicked in! I can remember thinking I’ve just got to get out of here. A weekend trip to the beach, where I made time to read for pleasure and to feel the ocean breeze on my face brought me some relief, albeit temporary.

After a few weeks back home, I could feel those “crazies” swelling up from deep within. In one of my lucid moments, I told myself that I couldn’t go running off every time I felt like this.

I began to think about what was really important to me.

The obvious things came quickly like friends, family and health. A deeper look surfaced the realization that being in my best shape, regardless of age, is really important to me.

I don’t have fantasies about looking like or weighing what I did when I was twenty years old. There are more important things now, like being flexible and mobile, having good blood work results, and peace of mind. These are key elements of me being the best I can be for as long as I can.

So, what was I to do?  Hence, the birth of the 3M’s: Movement, Meditation and Meals!

I’ve mentioned in a prior blog that I have not been the exercise type, that I have been guilty of either/or thinking, and prone to being a workaholic! (It’s true.) I wanted to set myself up for success, so I knew that rigidity and a “have to” mentality was not the way to go.

I started with a reasonable time frame of eight weeks, knowing I can do anything for eight weeks! I made the commitment of 30 minutes of Movement each day, which could be anything I wanted it to be: spinning, walking, water aerobics, etc.

I decided that I would do 30 minutes of Meditation a day to free my mind, be inspired and listen for the guidance of that still internal voice. Again, this could be through podcasts, music, or silence – my choice.

Ah, the dreaded category of Meals. Remember, I wanted to set myself up for success. So, I chose to avoid sugar, and healthier eating through more fruits and vegetables.

Usually a daily weigher, I’ve only been weighing twice a week because this isn’t about weight – it’s about building good habits and staying healthy.

I’m five weeks in and doing GREAT!

I set the alarm for my 30 minutes of movement and if I choose to, I keep going. My walking time ranges from 30-75 minutes. I am no longer a prisoner in my home. I speak to others who are walking, play with dogs in the park, and see the latest neighborhood improvements. I stop and smell the flowers (really). I watch for and listen to the birds. I take delight in little things like an unexpected[chalk smiley face, or a star left on the sidewalk by a child.

Some days I combine Movement and Meditation. Time flies and I come back with a spring in my step, a song in my heart, and a smile on my face. There’s only one condition, the music or podcasts that I listen to have to be healthy, just like what I am putting in my body. The biggest joy of all? I feel like this is MY time, that I am doing something for me. Doing it, not because I have to but, because I want to.  (I actually get aggravated now if anything or anyone interferes with my walk time, haha!)

My days are going better, I am more centered and calmer.  I no longer feel like a prisoner in my own home. So, why didn’t I do this months ago?  Because I was focused on what I lost, and how things were different – instead of allowing myself to see the possibilities.

I think this is one of the biggest AHA’s for me from the pandemic. We can sit and cry over what was, or we can use that same energy to create what will BE. I for one, am thrilled with what I am creating.

Think about your life:

  • Are you focused on what you’ve lost or what isn’t like it used to be?
  • What is important to you?
  • What’s one small thing you can do to move toward the life you want to create?

I’d love to hear what your one small thing is, what kind of habits you are building and what results you are seeing because of it.  Drop me a note at

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  1. Larry Schultz

    Thank you Joan for sharing your 3Ms and your pandemic experience. Many of us can relate all too well. As “social animals” we are not designed to be hunkered down in our homes, we needed human interaction & the outdoors. Thanks goodness, we now have our vaccines, greater freedom of movements, ability to go to gyms, and much more. For us we will start venturing out even more with our trip in the next few weeks to the DFW area to visit our daughter’s family, and see our two little grand daughters. As always, I appreciate your wise thoughts and helpful insights.

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