Spiraling Towards Habit

The beginning of May caught me by surprise. Which, in retrospect, shouldn’t have been too surprising since I felt the same way about the beginning of April.

Really everything since mid-February has caught me at least partially off-guard.

We hear a lot about New Year’s resolutions shortly before December 31st and for a little while after January 1st. Well, we’re now a little more than four months into 2017, and it seems like as good a time as any to take stock.

On the plus side, I’ve been doing better about posting here over the last couple weeks, which wasn’t really a big part of the plan.

I’ve also been doing better about eating lunch at work since the beginning of the year, which was a goal.

Dialing back on alcohol has been a bit tougher, although I’ve been better about caffeine than I was for most of 2016.

My heavy bag finally made it from my parents’ house to the basement of the place we live now, and I’ve clocked at least a couple sessions a week with it since the move, which has been good.

The past week at work hasn’t been great in terms of my ability to log multiple 15-minute walks a day, but most of the last month has been pretty good on that front. The last couple weeks in particular have been good about spending the 15-minute walks with wordless music instead of podcasts, which has improved my overall level of focus after walks. Maintaining consistency with that will be a bit of a challenge, but not an insurmountable one.

As always, there are challenges with building good habits and maintaining them while trying to build others. That, I suppose, is part of adulthood in a world filled with caffeine, alcohol, and several parts of the Internet clamoring for attention.

On the plus side, my supervisor at my day job just communicated their interest in helping me maintain a solid amount of deep work over the course of the week, which is very reassuring to hear. Especially in an organization which relies heavily on email and meetings, and where I’m involved in enough things that new projects get sent towards my plate with some frequency, it’s good to have an immediate supervisor who values my ability to focus. The rest is on me to make sure I’m (a) protecting my focus to the extent I can in terms of time management, and (b) letting my supervisor know when I need their help deflecting additional projects that would deflect from my ability to focus.

All told, the first third of 2017 has been quite a bit better on the habit front than the last third of 2016, which is good. Life is always a work in progress, and the last few months have afforded me the breathing space needed to begin building and sustaining the habits that 2016 disrupted with its combination of immediate issues and general societal crisis. Hooray for progress – now time to keep it going.