I’ve been home for a week from my leave of absence, and it hasn’t been as easy to keep up with my habit list as it was at college. Part of this is that some of my habits have changed; new ones such as “do something for others” are harder than last month’s, the hardest of which was probably to meditate. I still have trouble with meditating, so I’ll need to set out a time to meditate, or meditate before I go outside. Even the habit “smile at a passerby” I’m having trouble with. One thing that has helped me in these situations is not thinking about how many days “debt” I have on a habit and instead think about starting fresh.
One reason I think it is harder to disrupt my routine here than in college is that I’ve established the routine over several years, so it feels natural to me. My routine I’m talking about is basically staying inside all day or going out once for a walk. It’s physically unhealthy, and it makes me feel pretty unhappy. It’s one of the things that kept me depressed in high school and made me feel down during my college breaks. The problem was mainly that I didn’t know how to change or thought I couldn’t. Over the past couple of days, especially the ones where I couldn’t exercise, I began to feel a bit helpless. Although learning about and recognizing cognitive distortions such as learned helplessness have definitely helped me overcome them, it doesn’t make me immune. Sometimes everyone needs external help and a bit of a push. So, I told my parents that I want to see a therapist while I’m here. However, even before I came home I knew I wanted to see a therapist, and it was actually the first goal on my apocalyst. The way I see it, it’s better to go to therapy when you don’t really “need” it than not going when you do.
Even though it’s been hard to motivate myself, I haven’t done nothing this past week. I joined a gym, contacted a therapist, donated blood, volunteered by carrying food to a shelter, and continued recording my habits every day, even if I didn’t do them every day. As for tomorrow, I’m going to go on a run and then hopefully explore a new neighborhood.
In other news, my sister Flavi and her fiance Jeremy are coming in a few days, which I am pretty excited about.