Sometimes I hate to admit it, but I’m a creature of routine. I’d love to be the spontaneous type, living life on a whim, but when it comes to getting stuff done, routine is my friend.
Routine is the only reason I’ve managed to work out consistently for the last few years, despite growing up an overweight child who hated any form of exercise.
I know which days I need to exercise and if I miss them for any reason, the guilt sets in. Most of the time I’d rather be doing anything else – mostly sitting on the sofa – but routine drives me on.
Routine has kept me blogging for so many years, even when I had nothing to say, when I was busy, tired or overwhelmed.
I chose certain days to publish a post, and I was strict with myself. Even when inspiration was nowhere to be found, I always managed to share something, because I’d set myself a deadline.
Routine helps to keep my house (fairly) clean, it ensures there’s food in the fridge and clean clothes to wear.
Routine isn’t always fun, but it’s necessary.
So what happens when routines change, or fall away completely?
Over the last few months, things in my life have shifted. I work at a challenging job that demands much more of my time and my mental capacity. I bought a puppy, who needs to be walked and fed and fussed on a regular basis.
Suddenly I don’t have the time or the space in my life that I had before. My routines have begun to slip.
As someone who has done well on routine, it’s been difficult. I’ve gone from posting on this blog four times a week to five times in a month. I’m missing workouts all over the place and my house is not as tidy as it was.
I can’t remember the last time I worked on my novel.
Change can be a fantastic thing: some of the changes in my life recently have been amazing. I love getting home from work and taking the dog out for a walk in the fields by our house. It’s great to get outside in the fresh air after a day at my office computer.
But the changes haven’t made things better. I don’t miss my routine as such, but I miss the results.
I miss spending more time creating content for this blog, and feeling the satisfaction of a good workout. I miss reading and writing, and feeling that I’m in my element.
Life feels very full in some ways, and emptier in others. There’s such a lot to fit into the few hours we get each day and I’ve never been very flexible in my routines, but I hope things settle into a pattern somehow, and it gets easier to find time for the things I’ve been neglecting.