Sunday, February 26, 2012

Routine or Rut?

I have given serious thought to my earlier blog, “Things Seniors Need” from October 15, 2011 when I wrote that Seniors need a schedule, things to do, they need to keep busy.  My schedule then consisted of going to work, going to the health club a few times during the week, Friday night dinners out and weekends of whatever came up.  More of a rut than a routine.

Over the last several months I have unconsciously developed a more productive routine.  The dictionary definitions of routine could apply to my activities a few months ago or now.  Merriam Webster defines routine in an ordinary way: regular, repeatable, and mechanical.  My thought then and now is that developing a life routine would give purpose and pleasure to my activities, allow them to be productive and be flexible to accommodate change.  Both results and the activity should be productive and satisfying.

Yes, going to work everyday can be a rut to some degree.  Shopping Saturdays is an activity that I avoid whenever I can.  Getting up early on a Saturday morning to write a personal blog doesn’t seem important.  Getting up early on Sunday mornings to take a long walk can be difficult at times.  But each activity produces a meaningful end result. 

Work gives me a chance to be productive in an organization that provides a meaningful service.  I get to interact with my co-workers and clients, use years of experience from several previous careers, and derive a feeling of self worth.  Did I mention I get paid which allows me to go on vacations, enjoy my family, have dinners out on Friday night and feel secure for the years ahead?

My after work and weekend walks make me feel young, energetic and healthy.  While moving on the treadmill or on a path I tune out the distractions and the problems of the week seem to slip away.  I just know it is good for me.  During the walk I can calm my mind of the noise of life (no music or TV sound allowed) and think.  Thinking is actually part of my writing process.  Thinking time without a computer, pen or paper is essential.  While I walk I am focusing my mind on a specific concept or idea.  Random thoughts work their way in and out.  A word or idea rattles around for the later process of expanding the idea into more than just a few sentences.

Shopping must have some worth, but I find that shopping it is not pleasant.  Perhaps if I give it a lot of thought I might be able to put a positive twist on shopping, a LOT of thought.  Not today.  Today is for the blog; more accurately this morning is for the blog and watching the birds swarm around the feeders that hang on my patio.

Rather than try to squeeze in time whenever I can to blog I have gravitated to getting up at 6:30 am on Saturday to put the idea of the week onto paper (actually a computer), but paper sounds more “writer-like.”  The Saturday morning routine is working.  A scheduled item has priority.  Of course, I fed the dog and enjoy a fresh brewed cup of coffee first.  I am at the kitchen table now with my laptop; the blinds are open letting the light of a gray morning seep in and fleshing out whether I am in a routine or a rut. 

Ruts have no value or purpose.  Routines produce results.  This morning I drafted the blog and then went to a local farmer’s market to people and dog watch with Iris.  Later we located and photographed a wonderful example of public art in San Antonio, a large outdoor mural gracing a church featuring Martin Luther King. 

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As usual we found an old time Mexican restaurant and enjoyed migas and huevos rancheros.  Three activities (blogging, eating Mexican breakfast and photography) enjoyed in one morning, what more can I guy ask for? 

Last minute update:  I went to the health club late Saturday afternoon on the spur of the moment and walked 5K at a fast past.  We went out to dinner with friends.  We stayed up late, slept late and I missed my Sunday morning walk.  My routine is flexible.  But one thing I do know is that we’ll go out again for huevos rancheros this morning after I post this blog.  

Life is great if going for out Mexican breakfast on weekends is a rut.

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1 comment:

  1. Having a routine down pat is really good and the fact that you are flexible with it is great.