I was thinking about habits recently and generally how I spend my time. How I love to go get a cup of coffee in the morning. How I read news articles on my phone and hover in and out of sleep when I just wake up. I’ve thought a lot about breaking habits recently. For example, I don’t have email setup on my phone to prevent myself from being notified and to better help myself disengage. Funny thing is that I still check my email thanks to Safari. Even better – it auto-logs me in so I might as well just have email set up but push notifications turned off.
My new solution for this was to move Safari into my “distractions” group along with Apple News, Podcasts, and Instagram. Now when I go to check my email, there’s an extra step that gives me just enough time to think “wait – what am I doing?”. We’ll see if it works.
On further reflection, I realized the absolutely best habit that I have is exercising and generally just putting my body to use. When I was in Dublin for 3 weeks, I ended up not working out. I realized then that that was the longest period of time I’ve gone without working out other than when I had mono my senior year of college when I stopped working out for the same amount of time. Other than those two times, I’ve always been active multiple times/week if not per day. It’s a habit that I want to make sure I continue for as long as I can. Some reasons why I think it’s been the absolute best habit:
- Exercising makes you more in tune with your body
- Exercising challenges you
- Exercising teaches you the value of pushing through even if it’s something you may not be up for doing
- Exercising teaches you that repeated actions lead to progress
- Exercising puts this shell of a body to use in a way that most of us don’t get enough of anymore. I know for me my job is never physical and just requires me to type essentially. To be able to actually use my body is fabulous.
- Exercising can help you do new things with your body
- Exercising has numerous health benefits
Notice that I left the health benefits as the last item. I don’t think exercise is just about health benefits or how you look. To me, it’s so much more than that mainly because I also see it as such a huge part of maintaining my mental health. It’s by far the best habit I’ve created and, today, I realized is a top priority for my life.
Wherever I travel and whatever I do with my life, I want to put my body to good use. I don’t want to just live inside this shell – I want to see what it can do. Being in tune with my body to me is the first step to being in tune with what’s outside of it.