I would consider myself a pretty routine guy. I can look back to my baseball days and thank them for this. For those wondering, sports can be very superstitious, baseball in particular. I remember as a kid getting dressed the same exact way for each game. I was a big socks before pants kinda kid. Oh and if you had a great game, good luck washing that jersey mom. I could go weeks without washing a jersey.
So I’m not surprised some of those habits have stayed with me, even as my sporting days are long over. When it comes to routine, I’ve found that it’s normal for me to change mine. And the more I’ve reflected on this, the more I come to accept these changes. In the past, it was pretty normal for me to resist change, and try to keep my routine the same every day. Even at the expense of my own happiness. And while its become easier for me to let go, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t still find myself resisting change on occasion. What’s been so cool to see over these past few months, is the more I let go of this resistance, the more open I am to new routines.
Take for example my mindfulness practice. 6 months ago I was neck deep in Wim Hof breath work and writing in my journal. If I didn’t get to it one day, I would get pretty down on myself. Repeating some negative thoughts and having feelings that I had somehow failed that day. This is actually quite normal for all of us, and we can thank our ancestors for this negativity bias. Dating back many moons ago, our ancestors had to fight for survival, so their brains were hard wired to think the worst possible outcome. As we evolved over time, our environments became safer; however, those negative instincts remained.
So like I was saying earlier… when I began to let go of this resistance to change, my acceptance of whatever routine I was in grew larger. I think that’s the point with all of this. It’s that it’s okay to have a routine, because routines help us remain consistent in our practice. But just as important is to acknowledge that that routine can change, just as you do. Finding what works best for you in this moment is what truly matters, even if that means your routine changes with it.