Routines

January 1, 2011

A friend once told me that I should never be ‘used to’ things. In retrospect, he was trying to sound wise. In further retrospect, he was wrong. Not completely, but still wrong.

Routines, habits, patterns, being used to things: these are ways to live efficiently. One gets done what must be done, endures what must be endured without wasting time and energy. This allows us more time to do what we want to do.

I loathe getting up in the morning. I don’t function well. I can’t think clearly. So, I have a clear-set morning routine. And by the time I complete it, I’m dressed, fed, and ready to start the day. No time wasted, no prolonged debates. Simple, efficient. Routine at its best.

I used to have a commute that had two options: turn left, then straight; or straight, then left. Trying to save time, I kept debating over which light would change when. Finally I realized that, on average, it’d most likely work out even either way, so I made a choice and adhered to it. Mostly. Once in a while  it was clear that the lights favored the other route. But again, no more worrying about a stupid problem.

Maybe it’s laziness, maybe it’s lack of creativity, maybe it’s insight. No matter – for me, routines are liberating.

And, as I wrote this, I almost burned my morning oatmeal for not being in the kitchen as per routine!

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