Friends and family, welcome!
Joining the “10 on the 10th” link-up party with Erin at Perfectly Port. First came across this series on my friend Sarah’s blog in June. Decided to follow her good lead and write my own “10 on the 10th” post. Last month we were listing 10 things we would like to try or do someday. Have a look, here. For July we are sharing “10 daily habits”. Been thinking about what I do every single day that would fall into the daily habit category. Without listing the obvious…waking up, going to sleep and a whole lot of going to the bathroom in between. Darn 59 year old bladder ain’t what it used to be.
After some deliberation, here’s what I came up with.
My 10 Daily Habits
Make the bed
Not exactly earth shattering or life changing but making the bed makes a huge difference in how my room looks. I give you Exhibit A, unmade king size bed. Makes the whole room look messy.
The bed is by far the largest piece of furniture in the room. My room looks so much neater when the bed is made. Plus just pulling up quilt sends the message to my mind and body that I am up for the day. It’s something, as a picky mom (more below), I insisted my girls do from an early age.
Best of all…it takes about 3 minutes of my time everyday.
Take meds for OCD
When my daughters were little, I was a pretty hard-to-live-with mommy at times. We always had a lot of crazy going on in our lives. And for several years I was a single mom after my divorce from their dad and later, after my divorce from their step-father. I am a borderline perfectionist (except maybe when it comes to exhusbands) and have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. My OCD doesn’t manifest itself in repeated actions like checking and rechecking to be sure the stove is off or the front door is locked. Nor do I wash my hands over and over again as some with OCD. I worry things to death…ruminate over things, can’t stop thinking about things. Fuss over having pictures line up perfectly on the wall, or area rugs exactly centered under furniture, the dining room table directly under the light fixture, the bedspread the same length on both sides of the bed, towels folded a certain way, etc., etc. Would stay up at night pairing my daughter’s Barbie shoes in the doll condo and then agonize if one of the shoes was missing.
Then I began taking Fluvoxamine. And it changed my life. One little pill every morning and 90% of the time (75%? give or take) I am able to worry and then let it go. I am able to straighten a picture on the wall and walk away. And I don’t have to mop everyday. So I added one daily habit and subtracted a dozen more.
Drink water before 8:00 a.m.
One of the first things I do, after dragging myself out of bed, is to fix myself 32 ounces of water in my Contigo insulated bottle.
Try to get it drunk and well on it’s way to running through my “pipes” before leaving for work (during school), so 8:00 a.m. Used to use artificially sweetened and colored drink mixes for flavor. But because the sweeteners and dyes are not good for me, I’ve switched my generic Crystal Light out for a generic water infuser similar to Mio. My goal is to drink half my body weight in water each day. So you figure, with 32 ounces, I’m done. Yeah, right. Times 2 plus another 10 ounces, on a skinny day.
Not always successful at doing this on mornings when I work. But if I don’t get it done before I leave for school, I will pack my workbook and copy of Jesus Calling to go. Now that it is summer and I am trying to make The Miracle Morning a habit, this practice is happening more regularly.
I believe in fueling my body before I get too far along in my day. Although, my nurse daughter Brennyn has shared that intermittent fasting can actually be better for our bodies than starting the day with a breakfast of champions. I found this article explained the fasting theory well. And while I am not going 16 hours without eating, I am trying to go longer in the morning before having my smoothie breakfast.
We finished dinner last night about 7:30. So 16 hours of fasting would be 11:30 a.m. today. It is now 10:30 a.m. and I’m drinking my shake. Not bad considering I’ve been up since 6:15 a.m.
Exercise of some sort
Formal exercise doesn’t happen every single day but I make a concentrated effort to move! I used a FitBit for over a year to track my steps. Found reaching my goal of 10K pretty achievable when I’m working and going to the gym. During the summer, I am not reaching 10K every day but I am swimming, bike riding, lifting weights more. And I have upped my game from a FitBit to a Samsung Gear for calculating my steps and activity. Wrote this blog post about working out in baby steps, here.
I’ve talked about grocery shopping and meal planning in this post not long ago. And if you’ve been hanging around with me for any length of time, you know that my crock pot and I are connected at my hip. That being said, I try hard to have a plan of attack in place for dinner before I get too far along in my day. Sure makes life easier, on work days especially, when I can come home and know what I’m throwing together for supper.
Clean the kitchen
With help from my Fluvoxamine, I am learning to control my OCD but by the end of the day, my dosage is wearing thin!! I am pretty much still a stickler for cleaning the kitchen immediately after dinner. If the crockpot or a baking dish are unusually dirty with stuck-on food, I will fill it with water, throw in a dryer sheet and let it soak. Before going up to bed, I scrub the dish clean. My sink is almost always empty of dirty dishes.
I threw out my dish drying rack to avoid piling it high with dishes that I avoided putting away. Now use a dish drying pad instead and it never stays out more than a few hours.
Also use this time to pack lunches for the next day. Many times, I will just dish up leftovers for PC’s lunch, toss them in his lunch bag and put it in the frig overnight.
Pick up the den
This habit goes back to being a mom of young kids, pre-OCD meds. Before the girls would go up to bed every night, they had to pick up everything that belonged to them. They would put all their ‘stuff’ in a laundry basket I kept under the end table beside the couch. When the basket got too full, it would be time to put everything away. Usually once or twice a week. That way the living room stayed clean.
Now days, I have a formal(ish) living room and a den. For just my PC and me. Before bed, I will fold up my throw blanket, neaten the throw pillows, pick up glasses, shoes and put everything away so the den looks tidy to start the next day. The formal(ish) living room is never used except at Christmas, and is otherwise just the room we walk through to go out the front door.
Prepare for the next day
This was a biggie in my former life as a single mom. The girls had to lay out their clothes for the next day, hairs, sockies and shoes included. I still try to do the same thing myself on days when I work. Minus sockies and hair bows most days. As a substitute librarian, I am not always sure whether I will be working the following day. But try to have an outfit hanging ready just in case. Putting together outfits has become so much easier for me since I joined the Get Your Pretty On GYPO Style Challenges with Alison Lumbatis. I am not participating in every challenge now days but have learned a lot from those I joined in the past. Have shared my experiences with GYPO in a number of posts. I have an affiliate link and would be thrilled if you would register through me, if you decide to try a challenge yourself. The fall challenge is always my fav. Learn more here!
BONUS – Read before falling asleep
Have heard that using technology right up to bedtime can be overstimulating and cause sleeplessness issues. So I put the laptop away and cross stitch or read a few minutes before falling asleep. Sometimes I read a print book, sometimes on my Nook, but I have the settings for the background turned down low so the screen isn’t very bright at all. Nightly, I dream the craziest things. Cannot image what I would dream if I was on the laptop til lights out.
Turning Practices into Habits
When I first started my blogging journey, I wrote an article on the science of forming a new habit. You’ve probably heard, like I, that forming a new habit takes 30 days of repetition before the action or practice becomes a habit. Through my research, I discovered it is more likely to take 2-8 months to form a new habit. To read more, click here.
We’ve shared a little about how we begin our days in my recent “Miracle Morning” post. But what other daily habits do you follow? There are things I didn’t mention like feeding the kitties and cleaning the litter box, washing my face several times a day, using sunscreen on my face every day, brushing my teeth. But those things are fairly standard. And maybe so is drinking so many ounces of water and enjoying a devotional time. Is there a daily habit you have that might be outside the box? Please share with us below.
Need to get this post published and get on with my day. Decluttering and summer cleaning await. Ironing by the semi-truck load full. Running on the treadmill. Brushing the pool. Getting dinner put together in the crock pot. We are having my Salisbury steak tonight. If you haven’t tried it, sure wish you would. I think you will be glad you did.
Hope you are enjoying a kind and productive Monday. See you again soon, I hope!
Hugs and kisses,