Last week, my best friend randomly asked me about my routine. When I, confused, asked her to clarify, she said:
I then spent the next hour or so helping her formulate a routine she could follow each day. It wasn’t until the conversation that I realized how much I rely on routines. As a Taurus, I thrive on consistency and stability so it’s not surprising that I follow a steady daily schedule. For the most part, my days look like this:
7:00 a.m. — wake up and lie in bed, thinking about going back to sleep
8:00 a.m. — go to the gym
9:30 a.m. — get home, eat breakfast and do my bible devotion
10:30 a.m. — tackle research tasks
Noon — lunch
1:00-7:00 p.m. — work
8:00 p.m. — eat dinner
8:30 p.m. — tackle more research
After 10:30 p.m. — I’m supposed to be reading before sleep but I usually end up watching Netflix before I knock out
As much as I try, there are weeks when my life is in shambles and the routine is slightly tweaked or all out ignored. I like following a certain schedule but life happens sometimes. Working part-time as research assistant means that my schedule is flexible but, at the same time, I control my schedule. I determine whether or not I sleep all day or actually get my work done. If I ignore my tasks or procrastinate, I’m behind and won’t get paid. Maintaining a semblance of routine ensures I can get whatever I need to get done for the week. Like most things in life, there are pros and cons to setting your life to a certain pattern. Getting too caught up in maintaining the perfect routine is unrealistic — and can become boring at times. As it stands, even without a 9-5, my days are pretty full and repetitive. They aren’t starting to feel the same (thank God) but the second they do, I’ll find some way to spice things up. Finding small things to do out of your norm or comfort zone will keep the days from running together. Binge-watch that series you’ve been putting off, call a friend and be on the phone for 4 hours, eat out at your favorite restaurant or just create a spa day in the name of self-care. This past Friday I went Chelsea, arguably my favorite part of Manhattan, to see the exhibits at the Jack Shainman and David Zwirner galleries. I had a wonderful morning and didn’t feel like my day was completely unproductive.
There are only 24 hours in the day, and how you spend them can determine how your life looks next year or ten years from now. That may seem a bit dramatic, but often times, by ignoring or avoiding the little things that we can do each day, time flies past us. The future that we see for ourselves definitely won’t happen overnight but building towards it bit by bit will make sure it gets done.