Meditation, Rituals, and Schedules

Oct 11, 2018

Earlier today I thought that I might use a blog post to do my “morning pages” for the day (3 pages of freeform writing, non-stop, without editing, without any concern for any of it to “flow” properly; anything goes).  I didn’t get around to that in the morning and here I am at 3:34 in the morning, feeling compelled to do still do the daily exercise. So here we go. 3 pages (750 words-ish) of freeform writing at the tail end of my day.

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My original idea when I thought about writing on my blog was to do a general update for the “Order From Chaos” series/project. To basically talk about what I’ve been working on my life and doing a simple update on things. A lot (not all) of my blog posts are usually edited and tidied up, trying to ensure that I get the message out that I want. Most of them are written when I’m in a particular state of mind and being. These morning pages are not that, but they do have the potential to create that state. Especially when done after a meditation.

This bit of writing however, isn’t being done with any particular end goal in mind. I don’t even have a title for it: I’ll have to come up with one afterward once I find a theme or end-idea. But I don’t even know where I’ll be after ~750 words. We’re at about 230 right now. But 750 doesn’t seem like a lot when I’ve only written 2-3 paragraphs and I’m already a third done. I barely feel like I’ve started.

So, general updates and things.

I’ve been a little all over the place lately with my efforts to get “my stuff” going, pertaining to restarting my writing business, getting dance students, developing my dance, going through the Self Authoring Suite and the SLDM, etc.

I would say that right now, as of writing this, my attention is fixated on the following: restarting my writing business (requiring me to “face the danger”, which I did a Youtube video about – Day 084), getting dance students, working on my dance (which is the intent, I haven’t proactively worked on improving anywhere near the level I’d like to be focusing on it), doing video (and editing), minimalizing things, running the Fort Wayne Westies, feeling out how I want gaming to be situated in my life, getting my own place, and trying to “sort my life out” or bring order to the chaos of my life. (Among a ton of other stuff, but those are the ones that immediately come to mind.)

Most prominently lately has been:

  1. Doing meditation for at least an hour every single day. Ever since bumping up the “minimum” requirement to succeed (in relation to my 180 day commitment) from 5 minutes to 60 minutes, I’ve had much better success and commitment to it. It’s a combination of things, truthfully, but that did help. I’ve been doing it for almost 2 weeks straight now (minus one blip of a day).
  2. Having a very small morning routine has made a world’s difference: meditation is part of that, getting my shower first thing in the day (rather than waiting until later or before I might have to leave the house), and making my bed. Literally just those three are all I’m focusing on. (A weird part of me is frustrated that it’s not written down to focus on those things; I have a rough-sketch list of what I want my routines to look like. I haven’t looked at it – therefor I don’t use it – and I know it doesn’t have those 3 things in the order I do them in. Weird little thing that bugs me, but I’m focusing on what is actually happening and what I’m doing. I can change that page later.) — So: the order of those 3 is pretty inter-changeable, although I’m switching to doing a shower first, followed by meditation, and then making my bed. Or making my bed first followed by the other two. Just doing those three things alone sets up my day in an interestingly profound way. Those are all things I would avoid and didn’t prioritize, but now I don’t start my day until those are done. Even if it takes me 2-3 hours to get those three things done (1 hour of which is meditation, so that means I’m fiddling around for 30-120 minutes), it still makes a massive difference.
  3. “Making a schedule and sticking to it” as Jordan Peterson would say. I got a new journal book thing that I’m using for my agenda. I ran out of pages on the last one, so it was time for a new one: I got one with blank pages/lines in it, rather than having the days mapped out already. I debated on the format I wanted, but I think what I have no works well. — It’s basically 2 days per page. For each half-page for the day, I split it in half so that the top-right is my Top 3-5 tasks for the Day AKA the Agenda-5, and the bottom right is general notes, minor tasks I want to get done. The left-half is dedicated to the hours of the day, which is new that I’m trying. Ideally it’ll start at 8 or 9 in the morning, but since I’m using pencil instead of pen this time, I’m putting the first hours of when I actually wake up (until I’m waking up at 8-10 more consistently — 8 is my target, but I don’t know if I want that long term yet; still trying it out). So if I wake up at 11 am, the top hour starts at 11. Then from there I will literally schedule out my entire day. I’ll give myself some breathing room in between things, but I’m already seeing a big benefit out of this change (again, it’s a combination of things). I can better see how much time I realistically have in the day. I’m experiencing the contradiction that things take less and more time than I thought. I’m becoming more aware of how much time things take, rather than assuming that I can get so many big things done. … It took me almost 2 hours the other day just to clean my room and get things tidy because of how much stuff piled up, unprocessed projects were laying around, etc. — I’m getting on a tangent now, and I’m past the 750 words but. — I’m making a schedule of my day, sometimes in advance, sometimes it adapts as I go. It’s flexible, but I’m essentially creating my intent and raising my awareness of how much time I -really- have. — And now I am exercising and improving my willpower by forcing myself to work on that particular thing during that slot of time and to stop myself when I get to the end. (I can choose to extend it and re-arrange things, but I find that it’s not always best.)

Alight, rambles are done. At 1,000+ words now and it’s almost 4 in the morning (just an example of learning how much time things take; I thought writing this would only take 15 minutes at most). So I am going to finish up what I can, get things turned off and start getting myself tired so I can sleep — and gradually work myself to waking up early, again. I’ve been getting close and things are getting better. But it’s messy. But it’s progression. So I don’t mind.

Lots more that I want to say, but I don’t want to just keep writing because I feel like I need readers to know about it. Those experiences, those things in my head are no less valuable if I don’t talk about them. It’s okay to keep some things to myself. It’s okay to not talk about them. It doesn’t make them meaningless to not share them.

And that’s a hard thing for me to do with how my mind works on default. I almost always think about how I will explain things that I’m doing, or what I believe, to other people. And the opportunity almost never presents itself. And when it does, I almost always flub it — so it’s a reminder, as I’m writing this, to not focus so much on thinking about how I’m going to share things – at least, not -everything-, and get more experience with doing things in the moment.

Focus on what’s happening right now, not what I’m going to say (and that imaginary, perfect conversation that will never happen).

When I get into that “insular” mindset and state … that’s when things really start to move. Because I’m not thinking about what other people think. I’m focused on what’s right in front of me, what my soul is trying to tell me, and what I’m actually feeling.

// Photo by Keegan Houser on Unsplash