So what are these things and why. What is it about them that makes them not resolutions?
- Wear a watch
- Write at least a page of crap every day
- Do a very small amount of exercise every morning
- Do a very small amount of exercise every night
- Be on time for work
- Drink more water
- Get to bed early
I could probably add read instead of taking my phone to bed but that feels too resolution-y and so I didn’t write that down that is just something I am doing.
So lets start with the one that seems a little obscure ‘wear a watch’ how is this going to help me at all? Well I don’t have a very good relationship with time and as we get older our perception is that time is speeding up. Wearing a watch solves two of the problems that I have; my addiction to my phone and my odd perception of time.
Looking at my phone for the time is an exercise in failure, by the time I’ve realised what I’m doing I’ve opened up Instagram or youtube and I’ve lost another hour of my life… and I still don’t know what the time is.
I have my watch set to note the hour, I wish there was a quieter way to do this but on my watch there isn’t so it only goes on during the day. This really helps wake me out of the trance that I get into when I am procrastinating. If there is an outside influence every hour I can get a better sense of the passage of time.
The page of crap every day. I do this in the morning and often I could go on for hours writing once I start my one page, but I don’t. The page is another list item that is two fold. First it is a way to dump out some of the things that are rattling around in my head from the night before leaving me fresh to start the new day. The second is that it primes me for some creative practice, in The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck, the author talks about this. How action is not waiting for inspiration but we are inspired as we work. Often the creative block that we feel is down to not having started as opposed to not being able to start.
Do a very small amount of exercise every morning/night, why a very small amount. Have you ever done more than you intended to do on a task once you started? Often the barrier to starting somethings seems so high because we have an expectation, a goal or a resolution to have achieved something. Like with the crappy page of writing knowing that there is very little at stake makes starting a very easy proposition. Once you have started it is easy to get carried away because its not as hard as you though. It also means that on the days where you only do a very small amount you haven’t failed, this makes you feel better about the next attempt. With a big goal you are constantly failing because you aren’t there till you are there. If you intend to lose 12kg and every day you haven’t lost that weight yet you feel like you have failed - even if you might ultimately succeed. If your goal is to do a small amount every day you never fail.
Be on time for work. This paints me in a bad light but I'm not talking about meeting clients or going to shoots obviously my anxiety wouldn't let me be late for anything like that. Working from myself I split my time between the small studio space I have at home and the shared space I have at Islington mill. Sometimes I decide to go to the mill because I do editing there, but then I get carried away and edit sat at the kitchen table and that is far less efficient. Hence be on time for work.
Drink more water - this is obvious, we should all be doing this. I'm trying not to kill the environment this year so Im ditching these
and replacing them with this.
Go to bed early. This is the one that I care the least about sticking to but this was how I secretly added the book thing to the list. If I am in bed earlier I am more inclined to read. Its working so far I'm on book number 4 and we are only 9 days into the year.