Whew! Just over a month in, and Gaming Inspirations has had some super-positive effects on my life. Now that we’re at the halfway point, I’m going to do a quick recap of the characters we’ve covered, hey they’ve inspired me, and how successful I’ve been in incorporating their lessons into my day-to-day:

Steiner: Morning gym sessions, increasing my sense of accomplishment early in the day and improving my physical health

So far, this has been a MODERATE SUCCESS. I haven’t kept up with my four-day-a-week 5:00-AM gym sessions, but I’m going at least 4 times a week still, which is good. I’ve been floundering a bit; a lot of my friends are moving to my new city, so there’s been a lot of partying/staying out late/not going to the gym in the morning, but after being pretty consistent for about a month, I’m confident I can get back on the horse pretty easily, starting today.

If you want to join me, pick up some running shoes. Really, that’s all you need to get started, along with some t-shirts and shorts/sweatpants. Personally, I use Saucony Cohesion 7 running shoes. They’re super-duper comfy, never had a problem, and relatively inexpensive. If you think you had to drop three figures on running shoes, you don’t! Pick up some shoes and get runnin’!

Vivi: Reading books, trying new things

I’m going to say that I’ve had SUCCESS with this, as well. I still don’t ask as many questions as I’d like, mostly due to my fear of looking stupid. However, I’ve been doing a lot of reading, and I think that the fear of asking questions/looking stupid will ease as I continue to try new things and have new experiences.

A few of the books I’ve read this month are As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of the Princess Bride and You’re Never Weird on the Internet… Almost by Felicia Day. If you love the Princess Bride as much as I do, or if you’re interested in reading about Felicia Day’s transformation from deep-south home-schooled geek into internet superstar, then I’d highly recommend those books.

Amarant: Self-confidence, skepticism

Again, my lack of confidence rears its ugly head. I think I’m good at entertaining views without accepting them, and I’m good at hearing others out who have differing opinions on things, but I am still not confident enough to truly do and say what I feel is right most of the time. I’ve had some level of success with this, but not much. As I said in the Steiner recap, the more confident I get with the things I’m good at will have a positive effect on the things that are difficult for me.

Princess Garnet: Taking notes, having patience with myself and others

I’ve been killin’ it with the taking notes recently, which is a cornerstone of any sustained success. For money-budgeting, I use You Need a Budget 4. It may not seem to make much sense to spend money on budgeting software, but if you stick with it, I guarantee it’s worth the one-time $60 payment. There’s also a 34-day demo and free classes to help you get started (it’s also available on steam for you gamers out there!)

For my diet, I use the MyFitnessPal app on my iPhone. I’ve only scratched the surface of what it can do; but even simply making an educated guess at my calories consumed each day has helped me to lose 10 pounds in the past month and a half. It’s a great piece of software that helped me a lot.

I’ve also used a free app that has started to help me with my patience. It’s called Headspace, and it’s a guided-meditation app. The first ten 10-minute sessions are free, and the technique I used has helped me to calm down in situations of high stress. Check it out!

Out of all this, though, one of the most positive effects I’ve seen is the reaction from my readers. I’ve got some great feedback, and I look forward to what you guys will have to say about my upcoming posts. I know I haven’t strictly kept to the Thursday/Sunday schedule, but I’m gonna try my darnedest to get back on the horse; if it’s too much of a strain, it might become a Sunday-only thing. I’ll keep y’all posted.

Thanks for reading! Take care, and feel free to tell me how I’m doing/share your stories in the comments below!

(Also, side note: I just started playing Kingdom Hearts 2 HD on my PS3, and that shit looks incredible. It’s only 20 bucks on Amazon right now. Very worth it, imo.)

Gaming Inspirations VII: Eiko Carol