Saturday, 4 July 2015

July Challenge

Last month, I set my self the challenge of looking after me. I have definitely improved my sleeping patterns; I now find it much easier to wake up at 7.30 and haven't had to nap during the day for a while! I (mostly) eat three meals a day, and my wardrobe is nicely sorted out to make it easier to get to all of my clothes. I haven't done as much exercise as I would have liked; I kept forgetting to do my stretches. I have, however, been for a 5 mile cycle ride with the family and gone for my first run for months. Well, run is a strong word. My step-dad has described it more aptly as "joggling", sort of half jogging, half walking and wobbling all over the place. It was quite a successful run though, no knee pain and it actually felt really good. I have plans to complete a Couch to 10K programme, which is supposed to take 14 weeks, but I may take longer than that to make sure I don't strain my knees too much. I have plenty of time until the next Market Drayton 10K though! Over the month I have done several things to help with my future as well.

It was my birthday on the 4th, and I spent a lovely day relaxing in the sunshine with family. I got some really nice gifts, including the first two series of Once Upon A Time (my boyfriend knows me so well!) and a really thoughtful gift of a bodyclock alarm from a family friend that will definitely help with my depression and sleeping when it comes to the darker months of winter. My mum took me shopping to buy what she calls "power clothes" to get ready for interviews. She bought me a nice suit and I had a really good time spending the day with her.

After my birthday I was supposed to be going to Portugal with Liberty to have a little holiday and spend some time with our father. Due to work commitments, he had to cancel, so we spent the week doing other things together. We went to Warwick Castle - purely for research purposes, honest - we picked up the boyfriend's sister from Uni and incorporated another shopping trip at the same time, and spent lots of time blitzing our way through Lego Lord of the Rings.

On 25th, I went with my mum back to Coventry to pick up the rest of my stuff, clean the house, move out and pick up my results. I took her to the Bread Oven on campus to get my favourite sandwich, a brie and salad baguette, and we ate it in the Piazza in the sunshine while we waited for the time to collect my results. It was beautifully symmetrical because we ate sandwiches from the Bread Oven in the Piazza on the open day I went to before I joined Warwick. It was a really lovely day, made better by the fact that I got a 2.1 for my degree!

The next day was spent at Alton Towers with the boyfriend, Liberty and her other half. It was brilliantly fun, and we even managed to convince the boyfriend to go on Oblivion. He was so scared that me might have passed out on the ride, but he survived! Just about... And I bought him the picture from the ride to keep as a trophy and proof that he was on it so he doesn't have to ever go on it again. I strangely enjoyed it this time, and I enjoyed the other roller coasters much more than I ever have previously. I think Liberty is right, once you have been on Oblivion, nothing is ever as scary as that. I didn't even cry this time!

I also have had some success with my job hunting. I haven't gotten a job yet, but I applied to Metaswitch, a company that I have liked the sound of for some time, and managed to make it through to the first round of interviews after completing an online aptitude test. The day of the interview I was so nervous that I was actually sick first thing after I woke up, but I managed to survive the day of travelling to London by myself and doing my first real interview. It was a really tough day, and I didn't make it through to the next round, but it was a really valuable experience. I have since applied for another two jobs, and have set up my own "Job finding process".

That brings me onto my July challenge. I have been looking for jobs in Software Engineering, but I don't have a great deal of experience with coding. I have been doing some online courses on Codecademy to try to learn some of the basics. It has been fun, but I learn best when I have an actual project to work on, so this month I am going to build a website. Liberty wants one for a mad project she wants to undertake, so we are going to do some designing this weekend, and hopefully I can start to put something together. This will also help towards my job search as I will have something concrete to talk about in terms of experience. Wish me luck :)