I have a very complicated relationship with consistency.
And maybe some of you can relate to this.
Growing up, it felt like it was a very controlling, stressed, and strict atmosphere.
I hated how I was being told how to think, how to act, how to live – And if I did try to ask questions, I was either misunderstood or brushed off, so it was a very frustrating environment to be in.
And I didn’t have a counter to say, “Actually, can I be this way?” and as a kid, if you try to think for yourself and it’s discouraged, you give up.
I didn’t really know what else was out there – but somehow I knew that there had to be more to life, that people are too individually different and there’s too many of us to believe that this is the only way and I have to do it the way. Or else, I or my family would get sick and die or something really bad would happen to me or my family if I tried to live another way. They most likely didn’t MEAN to make it a life and death situation, but as a kid, that’s how I understood it – it was life and death and black and white.
I’ve always been a very literal person, and a can be a bit gullible. It’s taken me a long time to understand metaphors – if you say, “There’s an elephant in the room” I’ll look around and be like, “There is?? where?!”
On top of that, I’m the youngest of 4 sisters so I’ve always felt like everyone is at this level, and I am way down here at this level. They were all in middle school and highschool at the time I was like, learning how to sit up. I’m always feeling like I need to catch up with the world and should already know how to do “whatever” by now. This created a very deep seeded sense of self-doubt in myself. I’ve always looked for approval and definitely for impressing people.
And, another thing about being a baby – I don’t remember being a baby, but I’m pretty sure I hated it. Being completely helpless and dependent on other people is terrifying for me … which probably also bleeds into all the other reasons I’ve never wanted to have kids haha.
Back to my fear of consistency. I’m afraid that I fall into a routine – much like the one I was used to when I was growing up – I’ll never be able to break out of it. And I’ll miss out on something – something I could have experienced or learned or an opportunity.
And even more scary for me, that routine may be being controlled or manipulated by someone who doesn’t have my best interest in mind. Even just in part, like you hear of those stories of stalkers and thieves who know the exact time a girl goes out for a run Every Day and that’s the time they know is safest to rob or worse from her. I feel like having a routine or daily schedule will make me miss out on something because “I have to do this thing”.
Ok, all that is why I haven’t believed in schedules and routines. However, fairly recently, I discovered a term “Decision making Fatigue” and realized that this is the biggest problem for me. I’m a designer, I’m always deciding how big something should be, the color, the font, what it should say blah blah a TON of decisions. And then on top of that deciding which project to do next, how to proceed, and it is really overwhelming sometimes. THIS is where having a schedule and following it would come in handy.
So I do have a rough schedule to keep me on track, but I don’t like to make it rigid. Because once I start including things like times and dates, I lose focus. I just work as hard as I can, day by day, and anything I don’t finish that day, that’s priority one the next day (ironically, just like how I learned when I was growing up).
I want to encourage you guys to make your own routine and figure out the ways that being inconsistent may be hurting you or draining your energy.
I don’t believe routine and schedules are the end all be all, but I do believe they do have their place and value –