From the images above, you might conclude that “new things” look far more interesting and attractive than “routines.” That these new things bring all sorts of new opportunities for adventure and expanding one’s life experiences.
You might conclude that the spiral on the right is “better” than the plain, old, boring circle on the left. You might do that, and then you might be told, “Well, you’re wrong. The spiral is, in fact, spinning out of control and into the abyss of the unknown where danger lurks.”
Then you might think, “Why would that be the response to such a lovely ‘new things’ spiral?”
Because as much as we have the capacity to seek out new experiences, even visualize what those might hold, we are — truly –creatures of habit.
Take a minute to think about the last time you went out and tried something completely foreign to you, ventured into territory that could objectively be labeled “unknown.” Holding that image in your mind, try to recall the feelings you were having about the unknown short-term future you were pursuing.
In those instances, the vast majority of us feel unease, fear, and, despite the voluntary nature of the choice, anxiety. But why?
Because our very natures are rhythmic and circular in nature. We inhabit a planet that rotates not only on its own axis, causing days and nights but also around the sun, causing seasonal shifts for the majority of its residents.
And yet, we deny our intrinsic need for routine when we shun the “same old, same old.”
We do so to our detriment.
Routine is natural and essential for our lives to have an external experience that mirrors our internal structure. Take a minute to search out “arguments for routine” versus “arguments against routine.”
(For those of you who are uninterested in actually conducting those two searches, I’ll just tell you: The former yields articles supporting my above assertions; the latter deems “routine” an adjective describing “mastectomies” and “circumcisions” and questioning the merits of both procedures.)
There’s a lot out there that buttresses my sentiment and a lot suggesting that we need to be real sure about a choice to cut off parts of our own or others’ appendages.
But getting back to the value of “a routine,” for the next week, try this:
Get up at the same time every morning and go to bed at the same time.
Look ahead in your schedule to determine what is the absolute earliest you have to get up. That’ll be your waking time. Then look at when the absolute latest you might need to stay up. That’ll be your bedtime.
Do it for one week, regardless of whether it’s a work day or a play day. See if this simple change, which endorses a routine for sleep, makes any difference.
Then, come back and let me know how it went. I am interested in hearing all about it.