Habits (and a Snow Storm)

There’s a snow storm happening, and I’m pleased as punch. I love the insulating feeling of the snow all around, the guilt-free knowledge that I actually can’t go anywhere today (even though I probably wasn’t) and the free pass I feel I have to wrap my afghan around me like a poncho and read on the couch.

No, I don't think I'll be driving anywhere.
No, I don’t think I’ll be driving anywhere.

But unfortunately, as snowstorms do, this messes me up a little. Not in a terrible way — I’ve got a roof, food, as well as blankets and flashlights a plenty. No, my only issue is that I can’t go to my 9:00 am Wednesday Bikram Yoga class.

This is a non-issue, I’m totally aware. These classes are every day, several times. I can just go Thursday before work, easy-peasy. And I will. But it’s not my habit. For months, maybe a full year, I’ve been going to yoga Wednesday morning once a week, unless extra work or an absence from town prevented me. And I haven’t even skipped for more than an extra half a week in a long time since my body’s sort of become addicted to sweating buckets. I used to do either Wednesday or Thursday depending on my mood, but not since I started working Thursday afternoons. So basically, I’m used to doing yoga on this specific day, and changing it up almost makes me more uncomfortable than skipping an entire week.

I’m gonna bring this back to writing now, since that’s sort of what this blog is about. I mentioned in my last post that something that makes me feel unproductive is that I can generally only get real writing done in the morning.  Over the past few years, writing in the morning has become a deeply ingrained habit. So, when something comes up that interrupts morning writing time, I kind of flail around and feel uncomfortable, like I had an important task but I missed my window. But maybe I didn’t miss my window, maybe it just moved to a different time, but because it wasn’t the time I told myself is right, I let it slide by again.

Habits are good for writing, and for yoga. It gets me used to doing something specific for a certain period of time, so even when I’m having a bad writing day (or a bad yoga day) I still sit down on the chair (mat) and write (sweat) it out, and come out feeling great. I just have to remind myself that sometimes, there are snow storms that won’t work around my habits, so if I don’t want to lose my momentum I have to step out of my comfort zone and get my stuff done in the time that’s granted me, even if it’s not ideal.

4 thoughts on “Habits (and a Snow Storm)

  1. Angela-I find that the rhythm is important, too. And I have a very difficult time transitioning between work mode and other things like cleaning my house or running errands. I get on a roll with one and neglect the other. Working from home isn’t very conducive for setting routines to begin with, and it becomes very easy to push thongs aside, especially when you are making progress on one thing. Thanks for the post!

    • Yes! One problem is when people come over, and I have to spend the morning cleaning. I need to separate myself from that for at least 30 minutes and write if I don’t want to feel anxious about it all day.

  2. I hear that! Last year, I was going to the gym consistently 3 times a week. The holiday season disrupted that. Once I lose momentum, it takes a lot of effort to get going again. You
    just need to remind yourself that these are special circumstances. Just don’t go making an excuse next week or the week after or the week after…

    • Absolutely. I almost lost my momentum a couple times over the summer, when I missed yoga a week or two at a time because of travel and work, and I had to drag myself back there. I need to get better at going on weird days or different times when that happens.

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