Week 41/2022: Doing the morning ritual

Week of 10 October 2022

Doing the morning ritual

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been reading Laura Vanderkam’s book Tranquility by Tuesday.  This week I started thinking about rebuilding my morning ritual as Laura suggests in the first chapter. It’s the logical extension of going to bed on time.

In the end, my morning ritual, which I wrote about last time, was a lot easier to fix than I was making it.

  • Get up, get dressed, drink water.
  • Do my posture exercise, doing deep breathing for the first couple of minutes.
  • Do 10 minutes of meditation (I reset the introductory course in the Waking Up app for this).
  • Make coffee and start writing.

I reckon that ticks all the boxes for the suggestions in Laura’s book: two or three small activities that take about 15-30 minutes and that I enjoy doing.

I’m working my way slowly through the book, which, as I said a couple of posts ago, outlines Laura’s nine rules for “achieving tranquility even when life is complicated, challenging and occasionally chaotic”. In terms of calling them rules, Laura says one of the participants in her research for the book said, “If calling them rules will make them seem too rigid, think of them as guidelines and don’t worry if they don’t all work great for you. Adding a few good guidelines is much better than none at all.”

Guidelines sounds way more appealing than rules.

Laura says you could also call the rules ‘experiments’ and simply try them out as part of designing your life. She says, “You aren’t committing to anything. You can play with the concept for a week and move on. It might not help at all. Or you might be surprised. You won’t know until you try.”

Since my blog is all about experimenting with different ideas and seeing how they work, I have no problem with this approach at all.

The next two experiments are about planning and moving, and I’ll look at them next.

A blue sky with whispy white clouds above the beach
Spring days

22 for 2022 update

Last week, I said I was going to do these things:

  • Sort out my morning ritual
  • Keep up with my 6.00 am writing now that the creative writing bootcamp is over.
  • Do some more work on the veggie garden (thing 6).
  • Explore more of what I can do to reduce food waste (thing 3).

The first two things I did.

I didn’t look at the veggie bed this week, but I did set up a time with the nutritionist (thing 2) for next week. And the book The Food-Saver’s A-Z appeared in my social media feed, courtesy of one of the local bookshops. This is written by the same authors as Use It All and it’s a directory of how to use leftovers of more than 150 common vegetables, fruits and kitchen staples.

Black book cover with the title "Food Saver's A to Z The Essential Cornersmith Kitchen Companion"
Food Saver’s A to Z

Instant purchase!

Bacon is one of the items covered in the book. I’m not sure I know anyone who would ever use the terms “left over” and “bacon” in the same sentence, but there it is if I were ever to need to know this. Celery and herbs are my major stumbling blocks and the book has sections on both of those, so I’m going to flick through and get some ideas I can (and will) use.

22 for 2022 summary

  • Things completed to date: 9 (8, 10, 11, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 22)
  • Things completed this week: –
  • Things I worked on this week: 3: (2, 3, 21)
  • Things in progress: 7 (1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 12, 21)
  • Things not started: 2 (14, 16)
  • Things I’m not going to do: 4 (4, 7, 9, 15)

What do I want to do next week?

I’ll have my appointment with the nutritionist (thing 2) and have a look at The Food Saver’s A to Z (thing 3). And keep writing.

Weekly summary

What was the best thing about this week?

I had two days off work this week. That was pretty wonderful.

What did I learn this week?

A point on planning from Tranquility by Tuesday. “When you have only and hour here and an hour there, it means you have to go into those hours with a goal in mind. Or else an hour gets frittered away.”

I know this, really I do, and yet I continue to fritter away hours in exactly in this way.

What I’m reading this week

  • The Little Red Writing Book by Mark Tredinnick
  • Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth
  • Tranquility by Tuesday by Laura Vanderkam
  • The Wild Girl by Kate Forsyth

    A hand holding a book title Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth with a close up of a woman's face and red hair
    This week’s reading

Habit tracker

  • Writing Bootcamp (Goal = 2): 2
  • Morning writing (Goal = 5): 5
  • The Little Red Writing Book exercises (Goal = 5): 2
  • Listened to writing podcasts (Goal = 2): 2
  • Controlled breathing (Goal = 7): 7
  • All four physiotherapy exercises (Goal = 7): 7
  • Mental health break outside during my work days in the office (1 day): 1
  • Finish work by 5.30 (Goal = 2): 2
  • Daily gratitude (Goal = 7): 7
  • Shut my computer down before 9.15 (Goal = 6): 7
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