Nick F. Stanley

Ramblings of a New Author

Personal Growth – Shifting In a New Direction

So I’ve decided I’m transitioning this blog more into a personal growth type deal. With an emphasis on personal. This means mostly the things I’ve been doing to better my own life, what I’ve found works for me, what I find interesting, and what is holding my attention for the time being. I hope the things I write about help other people too, but really, I want a platform for exploring my ideas, thoughts, and journey in another environment outside my regular friend groups (who are awesome by the way).

Why the shift? Well, aside from what I wrote above, I haven’t written a new ebook in a couple years now. And looking back on it, while I’m glad I wrote the ones I did, I’m not as proud of them now as I was then. But, it was something new to try, so I tried it out to see if it could work for me. Maybe I’ll write another one in the future. But I’m not holding my breath on that, and I want to do something fun with this site in the meantime.

When I got on this train, I was feeling motivated, I was writing a lot, and writing those ebooks was also a way to give myself a goal and pull myself back on track. I’m still feeling motivated, but my motivation is in a completely different direction. And what I’ve learned is that I need a way to harness that motivation in a way that fits who I am as a person. One week I’m playing Dark Souls, another week I’m reading everything I can about fitness, then the next I’m thinking about personality psychology and reading about the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and Kiersey’s Temperament Sorter. Then another week my friends dragged me out camping. In short, I’m growth oriented, but I’m scattered and tend to focus on things for short bursts of time since that works for me. Obviously, I have to keep to certain good habits to meet my goals in different areas of life, but my focus is ever changing. It’s just who I am.

So I’m experimenting with this blog a bit now. Taking it in a new direction, which is basically the direction the wind of my life is blowing at any given moment. I plan to update my sidebar links shortly with links to resources I’ve found helpful on my journey. Many are to specific Reddit communities, because quite frankly, they were the biggest help to me getting started on just about everything. Others will be to sites that were fantastic resources when it was time for me to start expanding. And I don’t necessarily agree with everything said by the resources I link to; rather, those resources will be ones that provided something useful and unique to my journey, and at least felt reasonably accurate to me based on my current understanding of the subject matter they cover. But I’m not a professional, unless Dabbler of Internet Studies – Jack of Some Trades, Master of None can be considered a professional thing.

That said, for anyone who’s stuck around hoping for something new (I’d be surprised, it’s been years since my last post), as well as anyone joining up now, I hope to bring a valuable perspective to the things I write about, and that it somehow helps you or points you in the right direction on your own journey.

Eating Vegetarian for a Week

I just spent the last week eating vegetarian. I don’t have any immediate moral qualms about eating meat, though I’ve debated how I feel about eating meat. On the one hand, meat does come from living and conscious animals. On the other hand, it’s perfectly natural for animals to eat other animals in nature, and part of how we survive. Are we supposed to rise above this as people, or are we supposed to embrace it as part of who we are? Frankly, I don’t know, and that’s about as much as I’m going to wax philosophical on this one. What’s more important today is discussing how easy it was.

And let me tell you, for me, it was easy. It would be hard to do it forever; fish at Christmas is big in my family, as is pasta with meatballs and sausage, and I don’t intend to give these up. But for a week? Although meat is a major part of some meals for me, it’s not integral to every meal. There’s lots of good fruits and veggies out there, after all, and it pays to get to know them better. Plus, if we’re being honest, it’s cheap too.

So, how easy and cheap was it? Well, it was 30 dollars cheap (and would have been 20 dollars cheap if I didn’t opt to spring for some chicken substitute for a night). This covered lettuce, cucumbers, and carrots for salads. Mixed peppers, onions, mushrooms, frozen strawberries, and beans. And a few other items I may remember as I go over things.

So first thing’s first. I ate a lot of salad. Every lunch was salad, in fact. Because I love salads. Just toss the veggies together, add some italian dressing or, if you prefer, oil, vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper, and done. I also did two salads for dinner; for these, I tossed in some chick peas as well to make them a bit more filling. Can’t go to bed hungry after all.

I also cooked up some mixed veggies. Onions, peppers, and mushrooms, fried up in butter, with some salt and pepper is also easy to put together, and quite tasty.  Another night, I did brocolli, onion, and peppers, with a stir fry sauce, and it was just as easy to throw together and enjoy.

Now, I also mentioned some fake chicken above. I was craving some pasta, and I wanted something meaty, so I made a sauce with the chicken substitute, peppers, and tomatoes, and that easily hit the spot. I can’t imagine I’ll use the fake chicken again, as it would really be better to use the real deal or just go without, but it was worth trying to see how it was and stick to remaining vegetarian for the week.

You may wonder about breakfast though. To be honest, I’m terrible about eating breakfast, so I skipped it most mornings. But when I didn’t, strawberries, grapes, and oranges were my go to options.

As I said above, I wouldn’t eat like this forever. But most of these meals are easy to put together: just grab the veggies you want and mix them together. Then fry them in butter or oil, eat them raw with salad dressing, or toss them in a sauce of some kind and you have something to eat in about ten minutes. It’s definitely convenient, fills you up plenty if you remember to add beans when needed, and is cheap if you don’t splurge on the meat substitutes. It also allows you to buy a bunch of whatever vegetables are on sale and throw together what you like, so there’s plenty of variety, though it wouldn’t seem so at first.

Tomorrow though, I think I’m going to go for some orange chicken or some tacos.


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