I love routine. I find myself doing the same thing week after week. I have a workout routine, I have a weekly meal routine, I have a routine of when I go grocery shopping. For me this routine is comforting, I know what I have planned and I can fit it into my schedule accordingly. The downside of this is that it takes away the spontaneity of life. It is hard for me to wake up on a Saturday morning and say “Hey Derek lets go drive to some cool breakfast spot.” On Saturday morning, I wake up and I go to yoga. (This also is hard to do because I wake up like 3 hours before Derek does anyway.) As you can see, I am very predictable and some may even say boring.
Right now is a difficult point in my life because tons of things are changing. I have had to change up my diet, I have changed up my level of physical activity and also my hormones are changing. Now more than I ever I find myself clinging to the things in my life that I can keep the same. My day to day schedule can stay the same and I find myself even more resistant to changing it up. Monday mornings I go to Pilates so no I can’t join a friend for a walk instead. I know that being this rigid with my schedule isn’t a good thing. It creates unnecessary anxiety because life isn’t perfect and sometimes your plans have to change.
I am going on vacation with my family to Ireland next week. I am so excited to spend time with them and explore a new place (not super excited about the cold weather). The problem is my schedule and planning will be thrown out the window. When you are traveling with a group you have to be flexible, you have to go with the flow. The thought of this kind of stresses me out. After thinking it over I realized that this is the perfect opportunity to get out of my routine and get uncomfortable.
I am not going to be able to work out exactly how I want when I want. I am not going to be able to eat where I want to and when I want to. I am also not going to be able to go where I want to go at a specific planned time. And the best part of this is, I am going to be okay. Nothing terrible is going to happen if my routine is different. I am going to be in a beautiful place with the people I love the most and make amazing memories.
The concept of letting go of control is very hard for my type A personality. I will have a week of an inconsistent schedule and I am going to take that lesson with me when I return. I want to be more spontaneous, as Derek would say to live a little every once in a while. I know right now is a special situation because I am going through a lot of change but I don’t want to get so stuck in my ways that it causes me stress.
My intention when I return back from Ireland is to have less of a routine. Of course, there are certain aspects of life that need to be planned out and need to be done at certain times but there are way more parts of life that can have some wiggle room. I want to feel happy about the things I enjoy doing, not trapped by them. This is all easier said than done but I really want to stick to this intention. I have thought of a few things that may help me out along the way and can maybe help you if you feel the same way I do.
· If you start to feel anxious stop and breathe
· If a plan changes, find the positive in the new plan don’t focus on the negative
· If I get really stressed, take a short walk alone, giving yourself the feeling of control
· Just have fun, life is way too short and uncertain to not enjoy every moment of it
· Be open, you may find something you love/enjoy that you didn’t even know