My personal philosophy towards life and leisure is founded in the belief that one should seek out those moments, events, people and attitudes that bring happiness to one’s life. I believe in spending time with the ones you love and the ones who love you in return as it is these people who help shape your reality, attitudes and life in turn. Since the truth is that no one cares if you are miserable except yourself, I make sure to surround myself with people who enrich my life; those who uplift me and help bring me higher and strive to better myself.
I believe it is important to take time to do activities that one loves doing. It doesn’t matter whether these activities are enjoyed alone, with friends or with family, just getting out and doing these activities is beneficial to one’s state of being. When a person takes time to do those things they love, a contentedness results and regardless of any hurt, pain, stress or struggles, they are able to enjoy themselves in that moment.
I believe attitude contributes a lot to one’s state of mind and also one’s physical being. All of my life experiences, good and bad alike, have taught me a lot and have helped me grow into the person I am today. I try to remain positive no matter what situation I find myself in. A major driving force in my life is my family. I am a firm believer that one of the most important aspects in life is family. I have a two year old daughter who has changed my life in a positive way and feel truly blessed to have her in my life.
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Life has changed since her arrival but it her presence that gives me that extra push to stay focused on my goals and on those aspects of life that really matters to me. If you had asked me what my personal philosophy toward leisure is 3 years ago, it would have been completely different to what it is now but with all my life experiences, knowledge learned and knowledge shared I can now say that while I am a young, I wouldn’t change a thing. Definition of Leisure
In our lecture notes leisure is defined as any activity or state of mind experience that is freely driven or happens spontaneously during work time, obligation time, and/or discretionary time; and is permissible by the norms of society and is culturally specific, meaning that it is derived according to the values, traditions, or more of a specific way or lifestyle of a particular cultural group(s) and Canada as a whole. (Karlis, 2004) My definition of leisure is a similar one.
I believe that leisure is the freedom to do those activities you desire to do with your free time. Leisure time is the time away from work and/or work related activities. It is the time and freedom from your responsibilities, whatever they maybe, and it varies for each individual. Leisure time encompasses those activities that help in reducing and relieving stress and those activities that result in positive contribution to an individual’s health. Every individual lives a different life and lifestyle thus the way a person spends their time will be different.
One individual may enjoy spending time with the important people in their life, while another may enjoy participating in activity’s that he/she enjoys partaking in alone and/or with those important people in their lives. Any activity that brings a sense of happiness or joy to an individual’s life is leisure. My Leisure Activities As I am now a mom, my leisure activities have changed since 2009, they are family orientated and child friendly activities.
I do not have the freedom to do everything and anything I would like however I have adapted and made changes to my life that result in fulfillment to both myself and my daughter. I do my best to ensure that both my daughter and I enjoy ourselves in whatever activity I choose for us to partake in. I am lucky that my daughter plays well both alone as well as in those moments where she has the opportunity to play with other children. I, along with most mothers, want my daughter to be happy, however I believe that in order for her to be so, she needs a happy mom.
With this in mind I try to take advantage of my alone time while she is in daycare and when she is asleep at night. In January, my daughter and I moved from Thompson, Mb. and her da (my spouse) stayed in Thompson to work. With this change in our lives our activities are usually consist of just her and I. We consider ourselves lucky when family comes to visit and take as much time to soak in these times when they do occur. My activities I enjoy with my daughter: * Visiting and playing with the extended family we do have here in Winnipeg (Cousins, both my age and her age) * Swimming for fun I try to take Mila to McDonald’s Play place once a week (while she does this I get time for myself to drink tea or catch up with a friend or family member) * We go for runs together and since she loves being outside I push her in the stroller and bundle her up nice and warm. * In the summer time we go to different parks, long walks/wagon rides to get ice cream or a slush, and/or go to the beach
* Watch movies together and cuddle * We Skype and Facetime a lot with our close family who are located in Thompson, Mb. * When her dad is visiting, we enjoy any activity so long as we are together * Family trips and traveling Dinner with family and friends * Read books, make crafts, color, and paint My activities: * Workout at my gym, go for a run or swim by myself when I can * Participating in a group workout class; group spin, yoga etc. * I like to go for a tan and relax after a hard workout * Going for tea and dessert with friends * I enjoy shopping with my close friends and family * Getting dressed up and going dancing with my girlfriends * Dinner and alone time with my boyfriend when he is in town * I enjoy Facebook and social networking * Getting my hair colored monthly Catching a movie with my boyfriend or friends Activities I do most often The activity I try to do the most is to go to the gym. I aim at going 5-6 times per week for about one hour and half to two hours and after a hard workout I enjoy a relaxing tan however as I am aware this can have long term effects on my health I do this only twice a week. The activities I do the most with my daughter would be: watching movies together, reading books (especially at bedtime), and Skyping and/or Facetiming with our family in Thompson.
As we miss our family, it is important to us to have regular contact with our immediate family. My Favorite Activity/Why? I am a certified personal trainer and thus my favorite activity which promotes happiness and balance in my life is my time at the gym. My aim during my workouts is to try to target every major muscle group. One of my fitness goals is to compete in a fitness competition within the next year. During my workouts I always workout with a friend, this enables me to time to work on our shared fitness goals and also provides me with social time where I can catch up with my girlfriend(s).
Previously, when I resided in Thompson, my favorite activity was working out with a friend and/or my spouse. I enjoy running and swimming and I like to change up my workout routine. I have found that participating in group spin class with other people who have similar fitness goals has been both beneficial and motivational to me. Working out and staying active is therapeutic and very important to my well-being. It improves my overall self-esteem and frame of mind and I have a fun time doing it. My favorite activity to do when my spouse is here visiting us is simply going out for dinner.
I enjoy being able to sit down together, the one on one time and of course a good meal. It is those times that I am most thankful and feel blessed for everything that I have. Motivation My daughter and my family are the driving forces that motivate me. The reason I moved here in January was to pursue a Kinesiology degree and I can say with honesty that it has been the hardest and most stressful thing I have done in my life. I left my comfortable lifestyle, my spouse, my family, and my friends in Thompson, Manitoba so that I could better my life and my daughter’s life.
This experience has made me a stronger person and I am thankful for every opportunity I get for myself to grow as an individual. I am always writing down my goals and ambitions and I re-evaluate these every two to three months, doing this helps keep me focused and motivated on what I want for my life. My goals vary from what I want in a year’s time, five years time, and what I’ll accomplish in ten years time. I have education goals, fitness goals, and relationship goals with my spouse, and my daughter. Being a good mom is my main priority and is very important to me.
My daughter deserves to be happy and I want to provide a good life for her, this is why she is the reason I stay focused, organized and goal orientated. Satisfaction I get so much pleasure from my leisure activities. When I work out, I feel happy, healthy and strong. As a mom my daughter needs me to be all those qualities that it takes to be a good mother to her. It is time I take time to myself to “not worry about being a mom” and all “the mom” responsibilities I have taken on in the past two years. I feel great about myself as a mom and a person and feel I am capable anything I put my mind too.
This attitude helps in all aspects of my life. The time I spend with my daughter and my spouse together as a family creates the ultimate happiness in my life and I feel blessed to have them. My family has been through a lot of up’s and down’s and I know we are a strong family unit. Constraints Constraints in our lecture notes was defined as barriers, inhibitor’s, obstacles, or restraining factor’s – perceived or real – that influence (preclude or limit) an individual’s participation, frequency, intensity, duration, quality, or freedom of choice in leisure activity. E. L Jackson, 1988) Having just moved here in January, away from my spouse and other immediate family, has been a constraint, both to my physical well-being as well as to my emotional well-being. I have found that being on a student salary with my daughter is very constraining of both time and money. All of these obstacles limit the activities that my daughter and I can do as we are limited by when, where and how often we can carry out our work and leisure activities. With a budget in mind this creates more barriers as I cannot afford a babysitter.
I find that I do not have as much freedom as I did when I lived in Thompson, where my family was available to babysit at a moment’s notice. When I lived in Thompson, my spouse and I had 1 household and I was able to work. Being able to work enabled me to to afford a new vehicle, get my hair done when I wanted or shop online as I pleased. Things are different now, I am in a new city, in a new home (additional household), and I really have to watch what I spend my money on now. If my daughter is sick I miss school, a workout, or have to cancel any prior plans I had.
I also am unable to work since I cannot afford a babysitter. Ultimately, deciding move was a large constraint to my personal, leisure and financial life but it will be beneficial when I’m done school. What I can do to remove constraints Being a mom on my own, my daughter does take up a lot of my time. I try to find activities we can do together, and as she gets older I know she will be able to participate in more activities. I go to the gym when she is at daycare and if I want to go on the weekend my gym has a daycare where she enjoys it too.
If I want to go for a run I simply put her in her stroller and off we go together. If I want to go for tea with a friends we go to McDonald’s where Mila can play and where I am able to socialize. When her dad does come to visit I am able to get my free time in to do whatever I want. My daughter’s grandparents live in Lac Du Bonet and they are also willing to take her once in awhile. I believe if you really want something you can make it happen and with a few adaptations you can make any situation work.
My daughter isn’t going to be two years old forever so I’m going to enjoy the time we have now together. Stress in my life My current major stress issues are trying to get my finances in order. I have car payments and monthly rent and utility payments. This is my first time living on my own and is also the first time living alone with my two year old daughter. This change was a scary change not just for me but for her as well. Another major stressor in my life is my relationship with my spouse.
Our relationship has been an on and off relationship and not the healthiest relationship either. I have lost weight as a result of being hurt and stressed out, my education has suffered and my relationships with my other family members and friends have suffered. Another contributor of stress in my life is raising my two year old daughter by myself and with everything combined it can be overwhelming at times. Activities that reduce my stress When I upset or need time to myself I really enjoying swimming or going for a long run to help clear my head and sort out my thoughts.
If I need to talk to someone about something I usually workout with a good friend so I can get a workout in and another person’s perspective on my current problem or issue, whatever it may be. After a good workout I always feel great and it helps me to remember to think positive regardless the situation. I believe everything will always work out for the better in the end and it usually does. My mom, sister, and close friends are always a phone call away so it is comforting to know I can phone them and they will be there for me no matter the situation or problem.
Positive thinking while I’m engaging in any activity I enjoy is a great way for me dealing with stress and life in general. I always try to surround myself with positive people; people who are going to lift me higher and who help me cope with stress. When I am frustrated I cry, I have found that crying is a great release and that after doing so I always feel better. Rather than viewing crying as a weakness I view it as a strength, it takes more to admit one is overwhelmed than it does to always pretend to everything is ok and if it results in a happier me then it must be positive.
Activities that reduce my stress: * Working out with a close friend * Running or swimming alone * Talking to a close family member or close friend * Going for a tan * Going for a long walk with my daughter * Watching a movie and cuddling with my daughter * Crying when frustrated How can I use Leisure differently to reduce Stress? I feel that I have a good overall balance of how I control my stress. Managing stress is all about taking charge; taking charge of my thoughts, my emotions, my schedule, my environment, and the way I deal with my problems helps me cope with stress.
The ultimate goal is a balanced life, with time for work, relationships, relaxation, and fun, plus the strength to hold up under pressure and meet life’s challenges head on. I admit that there are moments where I may crack under pressure but I’m human and it is completely normal to have these moments. I know that I can improve on my time management when it comes to my daughter and my education time. I think that partaking in a yoga class once a week will help improve my stress levels. Also finding more free community family programs will be beneficial for daughter and me as well.
It will help us to meet more families who may possibly be in a similar situation as us. The influence of my Cultural background on my Leisure I am of Metis background, my mom is aboriginal and my dad is from Nova Scotia. My mom is a residential school survivor and raised me and my siblings the western Canadian way. We do not practice aboriginal culture and tradition. While I have participated in smudging before and I have been to a few pow wow’s, I can’t say that my cultural background has contributed to my leisure in a large way.
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