I’m curious—what was your initial reaction to the title of this post? Was it positive or negative? Does routine sound like a death sentence to you? Does an anchor weigh you down. Or keep you from floating away?
Nine months ago I would have answered yes to the death sentence. But when the meter pegs to the other side of the spectrum against your own will or plans and in spite of your Herculean efforts, you start to recalibrate. Because there’s a a Goldilocks zone when it comes to basically everything in life. Routine is no different.
If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine. It is lethal.Paulo Coehlo
Something to count on
Our situation has been in flux to say the least. And while that famous “quote” above has so much truth to it, there is such a thing as not enough routine. I use the quote term loosely given how many mangled iterations there are out there and my inability to nail down the original. But for all of the variants, the message is still the same. Yes indeed, a crushingly rigid routine can be death to the soul.
But if you don’t have enough routine and structure, you can feel frazzled, distracted, and uncertain. Hence, our lives of late. When your livelihood requires vast amounts of time to create, the complete absence of routine is extremely problematic.
When it comes to creative pursuits, protecting and prioritizing the time to focus is crucial. It requires a hefty amount of discipline and, yes, routine. Obviously we’ve struggled to achieve under the duress of the last six months. And when your livelihood is at stake, shit gets real. Fast.
To keep things on track, you need to know you can count on having time to do your work. And we haven’t been able to count on much of anything lately, much less having the time and space to create.
Every day in our transition to full-time RVers has presented new surprises that required our full attention, mental bandwidth, and emotions. A strange combination of edginess and weariness became a normal state for us, waiting for the next bomb to drop, every day.
Staying anchored in the storm
What we have been able to hold on to in all of this is each other and the routines we had well-established before we set out on this precarious adventure. Our walks and happy hours aren’t indulgences. They’re our anchor in all of this. The good kind of anchor. The kind that keep us steady as life whips up a tempest around us.
We stay connected through them. And we solve a lot of our problems in those times—talking, processing, deciding—away from the distractions of computers and phones.
Without that foundation and the shared values of them, we would have imploded from the challenges and pressures we’ve been under. They give us something to count on. Having control over a few things keeps us from drifting helplessly out to sea.
Adventure on, friends!