How are you? I was thinking about you this morning when I was cleaning the house. Not that you remind me of cleaning but mostly because I think about important ideas and people when I am cleaning and you are one of them.
I know sometimes the negative thoughts pop up and stand like roadblocks in your life, but please remember these thoughts are always distorted, tempered by tiredness, hunger, worry, and sometimes that old black dog.
Our brains have a bias toward negative thoughts because our brains are not wired to be happy; they’re wired to keep us alive. So check yourself when this happens. Is this worry real? Or are you just reacting to trying to control the uncontrollable? The trick to life is seeing which things we can control and which ones we can’t and being okay with that decision.
I have found that having some sort of routine helps, but also being flexible in the routine because life is dynamic and unpredictable. It is the daily effort in this routine that gives us something to hang onto when life is a little rocky. The first sip of coffee. The special face cream we apply. The tidying of the kitchen table to create a little bit of order in our world. The sweeping of leaves on the path that makes it slippery if left to rot. The switching on of lamps at evening time, warding off the dark thoughts. The walk to shake off the emotional dust. These routines help us cope through turmoil and through dark times.
Spend some time thinking about your routine, my love. Do you have one? Can you get one? I used to hate routines, as my brain was wired to want to be in chaos from childhood. Never knowing what the evening or night at home would be like, as it was dependent on the behaviour of adults. Now I love routine. I can set my watch by the feelings that the day brings me because I am an adult and I don’t want my adult life to be dictated by others and their moods.
The signposts of my routine are all about the feelings they bring.
The waking at 7am where I claim I need just five more minutes sleep.
The dropping off of kid to school at 8.20am where I tell him I love him and have a great day.
The sense of peace at 9.15am with the first coffee at my desk.
The dance the fat dog does at 10am for her breakfast.
The 11am second coffee when I assess the work I have done so far.
The 1pm tour of my little garden to see what needs what.
The 3pm slump.
The 3.30pm pickup of the kid from school and trip to store for stuff we might need.
The 5.30pm dinner preparations.
The 6pm lighting of the lamps.
The 6.30pm pickup of the husband and car chat.
The 7.30pm sit down with a cup of strong tea.
The call of my bed at 10.30pm.
Small signposts to get me through my day. Small sanctuaries of normality.
Life can be so lovely if we measured it by moments like this. Truly lovely but I will write about that next week, I promise.
Tell me about your routine if you want or you have some advice for others. Or simply read and enjoy and know that when you’re ready, your routine will find you.