I hate our current obsession with lists.
Well, maybe that’s too strong. Maybe some of you read “89 things to make your sex life better” or “57 tips to instantly become the most popular person ever” as inspirational. Maybe you think “Hey, if I pick one or two of these, I’ll do better” rather than “Oh, great, 89 more ways I’m a loser”, like I do.
But, in recent days, I have, without really trying, adopted a few simple habits that have made my life better. They haven’t revolutionized it, and they haven’t been able to chase away my minor case of the blues – caused by missing faraway friends/family and pretty much EVERYONE I know getting married, having kids, or taking glorious vacations with their incredible friends/family (and PS, I KNOW I shouldn’t compare myself to everyone else, and I usually do well, I really do, but sometimes…ugh.) Ahem. Anyway. – but they have made life just a little more enjoyable and sane.
So I share them with you, not because I want you to think I’m clever or witty with my 27 point list, but in the genuine hope that they might help you,
- I have started taking a walk in the morning. I’m not sure why this started, but for the last two weeks or so, I have managed to rouse myself out of bed and take the dog for a walk before work. I think this one sprang from guilt; I just feel bad for my dog who has to stay cooped up all day with only a visit from the dog walker to keep her from dying of boredom in our little apartment. And she loves walks so much! This one also requires that I try to go to bed a little earlier so I can still get my 7 to 8 hours. And bonus! It lessens my personal guilt if I don’t get out for a walk/run/swim at night, because at least I did SOMETHING other than sit on my butt all day. So, thumbs up for the morning walk. I realize this is not a big deal for most of you, but for those who know how much I love mornings, you get the monumentalness of this step.
- I try to pick up all my stuff before I go to bed. This one doesn’t always work. See, I think my default is to be a slob. A college roommate of mine once wrote an essay about how my slob tendencies made her crazy. However, I really do love my apartment when it’s picked up; it has great feng shui and is basically my haven, my bachelorette pad where I have no need for anything or anyone else. I am content in my woman-cave…when it’s clean. So, the picking up of things is kind of a satisfying way to get closer to clean. Even if it’s just putting the dog toys back in the bin, putting the couch cushions back, and moving all dishes to the sink to be washed at a later date (hey, don’t judge, I’m taking small steps here), it helps. It means fewer binge cleaning sessions on Sunday nights. And sometimes, I even make my bed in the morning. Someone get my mom some smelling salts, she just passed out after reading this.
- I turned off the little red email icon on my phone. Now this one may be revolutionary. For all you email addicts, don’t fret. You can still check your email on your phone, as I still do. But you don’t have to see the little red icon. You don’t have to get a buzz or a ding every time you get a new email. I am telling you, you do not need this distraction. Unless you are a NASA engineer or the President, or maybe a doctor, you don’t need to be distracted every time someone replies to an email about cake at the next birthday party. It takes a few steps on your phone to achieve this, and I’m happy to share them if anyone wants to know how, but seriously, y’all. DO THIS ONE. It makes a difference. It’s one less thing to look at when you pull out your phone. You have to CHOOSE to check email rather just do it by default. You can do it. I know you can. You will not be less important or valuable if you do this. I promise.
So, there you are. Let me know if you’ve tried any of these and how they work for you!