It is perhaps no secret that most humans are ‘creatures of habit’, and a series of habits strung together can be said to form the framework of our daily routines of living. More often than not, our habit-strings are influenced by the roles and responsibilities that we have assumed, or are often thrust upon us, in the particular stage of our life. If we reflect on our routines from the past few years, what would we discover? How many of our routines from a decade ago still exist today?
In asking that question, I realize that very few routines from ten years ago still exist for me. Many old routines have been replaced with new routines to align with the current state of my life. One key routine that doesn’t exist any more is the ‘going to work’ ritual. I don’t know if that daily ritual will ever return, particularly to the state that it existed in before the pandemic. Like all things that are brought about by planetary scale change, the old ‘work’ routines have been replaced by new ones for me. The ‘future of work’ is fluid, evolving and uncertain. What new routines will emerge to replace the old ones? What element of the old ‘work rituals’ would I like to bring forward into the new routines? What opportunities do changes or disruptions in routine present to me?
As is often the case, we don’t fully appreciate the inner stability and harmony that some routines create for us, until they are removed from our life. It wasn’t until I re-established the ‘return to work’ routine that I realized how much good my often daily routine of ‘walking before working’ was doing for my creativity at work. It isn’t until an occasional disruption happens, say due to travel or hosting visitors in the home, that the power of the silence and stillness of the morning meditation routine is re-realized by me. What are some routines or rituals that are essential for your inner harmony? What makes them so powerful?
Some may argue, and rightfully so, that habits and rituals can put us in a state where we become increasingly resistant to growth and change. That may be true, so it is perhaps worthwhile to examine the influence of our routines on our quality of life, external and internal. Which of our routines serve to increase our ‘fear of missing out’, feeding our sense of ‘falling behind the joneses’, and such? Which of our habits invite us to higher existence, increasing our awareness, raising our level of inner bliss?
In asking some questions of our routines, we can choose the extent of their influence on us. We can then, with guidance, re-design our rituals and habits to enhance the quality of our journey. With new design, we can eventually realize that we influence our routines as much, if not more, than they influence us.
We are now one step closer to freedom.
P.S. Join us for our weekly community gathering and twitter chat, Sunday Aug 21 at 9amET / 1pm GMT / 630pm India. Yes, it’s a weekly ritual of sorts for some of us; a routine that brings us together in sharing and caring. Namaste – @AjmaniK
The first week of school… and I return to the routine of walking one of my favorite trails on the school premises…