As those of you who have been with me for awhile know and to those who are newer to the scene, I put out an MQ (Monday Quote) every other week and follow it up with a blogette, as I like to call it, on Thursday. As I looked at our MQ this week I wasn't sure where to begin since there seemed to be so many directions I could take. Here goes with a few that came up ... First, the quote:
"Rather than focusing on Old Habits Die Hard,
I'd rather relish the thought that
New Habits Come On Strongly and With Excitement."
My first thought was how perhaps we create repetitive practices because on some level we understand how every day holds the promise (threat?!?) of something new. It might feel more comfortable to return to the same old same old because it's familiar, even it it isn't something that serves us. We might say that "old habits die hard", but it might be more that we hang onto them like a security blanket.
The next thing that came to mind is how I believe that my lifestyle, for the last five years, has made it very hard to create habits. I haven't had any one place I call "home" for more than a few months at a time. My annual cross-country drives are probably the one arena where I have patterns ... things like making sure I find a gas station/truck stop when I have a half-full (half-empty?) gas tank and usually stopping at a particular one because I have a rewards card and they feel friendly.
Then, I started to question how well it serves me to fly by the seat of my pants. I began thinking about how some routines might serve and support me, even with my gypsy lifestyle or maybe especially because of it.
Last winter, from December through March, I lived in Florida. Since both my father and sister have moved there, it seemed like a good idea to get away from the cold. It wasn't all bad, however I didn't enjoy my time there very much for many reasons. Toward the end of my stay there were a few things that I liked a lot. I found a couple of group exercise classes, I found a Unity Church and I started taking some of the courses they offered during the week, and I started creating routines. As I look back, instead of seeking out right from the start what I ultimately found, I kinda' languished and dilly dally'd (those are the technical terms). Hmmmm, maybe that's an old habit of mine! Maybe I use the excuse that I'm just "going with the flow", when I'm really just dawdling, wasting time and being indecisive. To be truthful, it does feel easier to fall back on that. It also feels invigorating to imagine myself doing something new!
To that end, I am taking stock of what my day-to-day looks like. Many philosophers have followed Socrates' proclamation that "an unexamined life is not worth living" and I have mine under scrutiny. I'm currently in the Pacific Northwest for at least the next couple of months and asking myself the following:
What is it that I like about my existence and for what can I be grateful? The
answer is that I have a sense of freedom and my gratitude list is long. In fact, it's time to once again write down at least three things for which I'm grateful every morning and/or night.
Where would I like to see some changes? Ah, so many areas that could use my attention. Eating more mindfully and getting back into an exercise routine are at the top of the list.
I'm aware that I could tread water for a bit and tell myself that I'm getting a "feel for the lay of the land", but I know that would be supporting an old habit. Instead, I'm embracing making the most of what I've got and looking for the new and it's exhilarating. This is what I wish for you!
Speaking of what's new, retreats are really on my mind. I've attended many over the years and I simply love them. Now I'm feeling a strong tug to run one. I've been asking what YOU might like if you thought of going on a retreat. I'd really like to hear from you on that subject. Since you read my quotes and blogettes, what is it that you like about them? Maybe there's something there that would translate to spending a long weekend with me and other like-minded souls? Let me know! Either reply to this or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sparkles and Love,