Sunday, February 17, 2013


Routine is something that various philosophers, educationalists and so on have claimed to be good for a persons hauora (well being). Routines and rituals provide the bedrock upon which so many of the worlds churches have been built as an organisation.

But so far this year any sense of an ongoing routine in my life has been lacking. The first few days of the year were very structured seeing as I was at Summer Gathering - mealtimes were set, daily worship and sessions were part and parcel of the day. Then came a few days of travel where the next departing bus or plane were what defined the shape of life. Once home it was fairly easy to slip into 'holiday mode' - no alarm clocks, take each day as it comes... the 'to do' list defined the day, what had reached the 'urgent' status or what looked like the most attractive alternative! Then came a couple more weeks of travel visiting F/friends and family in Melbourne and back here.

By this point (i.e. mid February) I was starting to feel the lack of consistency in my days so was quite glad to have lined up 5 days of lunch cover at the nearest kindergarten to home. Only a couple of hours each day but it provided a definition to the day that I'd been missing - plus lunchtimes are one of the most structured parts of the kindergarten day so it was easy to know what I should be doing when even amidst what were to start with a lot of unfamiliar children.

On facebook Deb shared something she'd learnt at the recent Webstock event "One big thing that I personally took away from this year's Webstock is: less passive consumption of information and more creative production. One of our speakers, Clay Johnson, said that the first thing he does in the morning, before he checks his email or Twitter or anything, is write 500 words. Every single morning. And that puts his brain into a creative, productive, active mode rather than starting off in a passive, reactive mode."  and it made me realise that I start every day very much in the passive mode, be it reading facebook or emails, listening to the radio etc. The idea of being creative first thing (beyond making breakfast - which is always the same so I don't have to even think about that) seemed like an anathema, definitely in the territory of 'here be dragons' and woe betide anyone who tried to convince me otherwise.

But it got me thinking. At the moment life is a bit different anyways as there is no way I can lie in bed and check facebook before breakfast as Rosie (the cat) comes to tell me she wants breakfast the minute she hears me stir. So rather than switch on the laptop this morning I switched on the kitchen radio and sat down with my porridge still not to emails but to the newspaper (yesterdays as we don't get a Sunday one), after all as it is turning up 6 days a week already paid for I should at least glance through it whilst I'm the only one home! As the computer wasn't already on it was far easier to then go and do something else constructive (a small amount of housework) before engaging with the online world.

I don't think I'll ever be the sort to leap straight into action every morning, I still need time to surface and just take in the world as a part of my morning routine. But whilst I 'have' to get up straight away each morning upon waking I'll see if I can get into a routine of leaving the laptop until later rather than letting it start my day.

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