Imagine your house without heat. I just had a visit from a longtime friend who did just that, and I was chilled by his description of what it was like inside his home last winter. At no time was it clearer to me that I am a huge pansy addicted to comfort. The intent was to find out “How low can I go?” As an avid environmentalist, he was experimenting and, yes… he lives alone. ha. His winters seldom get below 30°, but still. The house inside got down to 45°, and he had to dress like he was going to the snow everyday. Imagine the determination this takes. (Personally, I’m imagining the toilet seat first thing in the morning!)
His commitment to his passion got me wondering if there was anything I put that much effort into. No. But I really do want to live more thoughtfully and to stop living by default, where the days are either filled with whatever I’ve done before or what I SHOULD be doing. Separating the two will be a challenge.
I lead a pretty active life, but mostly it’s taking care of stuff that’s in front of me at the time. The yard needs weeding, the dishes need washing, the bills need to be paid, etc. etc. etc. One thing’s for darned sure; fewer activities mean fewer things to think about, and that means more time with things that matter. It was perfectly clear as we sat and talked that I was spending my life spinning multiple wheels getting nowhere. Let the whittling begin.
So, I need a plan. Wait, first I have to spend time thinking about how I want to fill my days. Work is a given, of course, but there’s the time in between. THEN comes THE PLAN.
First on the list: start the day with a short TED talk. I’m pretty sure these short little bursts of motivation will keep me moving in the right direction. I need a prod. Second: take better care of my body by putting healthier food into it and varying my exercise regimen to relieve boredom. A word about exercising: I’ve been focusing lately on what physical therapists refer to as “quality of movement”, which means putting your body in the right position and engaging the muscle group you’re working on before you begin the movement. At first it was hard. Minds wander. But the habit is finally sticking and making a happy difference. Each exercise seems easier when I pay strict attention to what I’m doing.