Did You Lock The Door?
Earlier this week, a friend told a story about her husband accidentally locking her out of the house. They were both outside, her phone was inside, and he was leaving for work. He locked the door to the house like he always did and got in his car to leave. Thankfully, my friend realized what was happening before he left. Her point in sharing that story was that when we aren’t present, we can create some chaos pretty quickly. Which is SO true, but that’s her lesson to teach.
But I starting thinking about what she said. About mundane routines.
You know how you can sometimes get lost in thought while driving and end up at your destination with no memory of driving there?
Do you actually remember brushing your teeth this morning or was it so routine, your body just knew what to do without you thinking about it?
How many things do you do in your day that you don’t even have to think about? You wake up, check your phone, use the bathroom, brush your teeth, make the coffee, pick up your keys, lock the door…
Why do we resist creating routines that make us better? Healthier? Happier?
How many times do you have to consciously remember to lock the door before you don’t have to remember anymore? Let’s say it takes 20 times, just for fun. Word on the street is that it takes 3 weeks to create a habit, but I have faith we can do it a day sooner…For twenty days straight, you lock the door before going to work and around number 21, you don’t have to think about it anymore. And why do we do this? To protect our homes, right? For the one in a million chance that the bad guy picks our house.
So… what else could you do in 20 days?
Create a healthy breakfast/lunch/dinner routine.
Create a daily workout routine.
Create a daily meditation or prayer or journaling routine.
Create a daily self-care routine.
Y’all. These things are more important than locking your doors. The likelihood that your house is going to be broken into on the one day you forget to lock the door is like 0.0000004%. The likelihood that the above routines could create a healthier and happier person is ONE MILLION PERCENT.
My blog, my math.
You know why you don’t do these things? Because you keep telling yourself that you can’t. Or you don’t have time.
Here is one of my favorites: “My body just doesn’t get up that early.” That came out of MY mouth. Let’s file that under “Lies That Come Out Of Our Mouths When We Really Just Don’t Wanna And Other Excuses We Let Ourselves Believe.” One day I set my alarm for 4:25am, got up, did a workout, and didn’t die. Then I did it again the next day. Guess what! I didn’t die again. Before I knew it, I was no longer crying all the way downstairs each morning. I was just getting up and working out. Because it’s just what I DID everyday. Like locking my door. But better.
One day, while making my coffee, I put in a cup less than what I had been in the habit of doing for years. Y’all, it was a medical miracle, but I made it through the WHOLE day. In fact, I’ve made it a whole year on one and a half cups of coffee versus my old habit of three.
Did I want to do any of that? Not necessarily. But what I DID want was to feel strong, have a healthy body, and not be totally dependent on caffeine to live my life. And now that those things are routine, I don’t even think about it. It’s just my life. Kind of like natural peanut butter, whole grain bread, and almond milk. I’ve been eating those things so long that I’ve forgotten what the alternatives taste like.
I challenge you to take some time after reading this to pick just one small thing you could change this week to create a new, healthier routine to help create a happier YOU. Don’t try to do ALL the healthy things at once. That’s proven to backfire every time. Start with one thing.
Here are some ideas:
- Drink 12 ounces of water as soon as you wake up
- Pick up a journal or book instead of your phone when your alarm goes off
- Instead of running for coffee at 3:00, try a few minutes of deep breathing and a healthy snack
- Put down your phone and pick up a book. Even better, pick up a journal
- Go for a walk. There are many days my nerves are vibrating at a frequency I feel like dogs can hear, but once I move my body for about 30 minutes, I feel like myself again
- Throw out the Cokes (here in the South we call all sodas/pop Coke. Yep, Sprite is Coke. It’s all Coke. So throw out the Coke).
- Replace your drive-thru habit with a salad
- Try a new recipe
- Take a deep breath with your eyes closed before disciplining children or reacting to negativity
- Start a gratitude journal
- Unfollow negative/argumentative people on social media
- Stand outside barefoot in the grass (this one is courtesy of my friend, Lauren Danner, and it’s an awesome way to calm anxiety)
I would love to know what healthy routine you plan on creating in your life. I’ll be keeping you all updated on mine…
And now, every time you lock your door, I hope you think of this post and it reminds you that changing your life is just one little tweak away.