Self-Care

Productivity and Predictability

routine

I’ve been thinking a lot about my routine lately, in particular how I spend my time.  Before I was sober, I spent most of my free time drinking, recovering from drinking or thinking about drinking. During the first month of my sobriety I then spent most of my free time thinking about not drinking.  I also took part in a minimalist challenge and ended up cleaning out many things from my house.  I figured I had to keep busy somehow. I was amazed at the time I had now that I wasn’t drinking.

Month two brought time spent thinking about not drinking and thinking about all the things I was suddenly feeling, like how my marriage was at a breaking point.  This is when my husband and I separated. Besides thinking and feeling I started doing yoga at home with my kids. And I sort of just wandered around, lost.

After the separation and into month 3 I still spent a lot of time thinking about not drinking and what would become of my marriage but I also started doing more.  Once my husband moved out, I took charge and for a few weeks I took on every single household task and began getting rid of more and trying to get organized in some way.  As I sifted through all of the stuff we had accumulated it became very clear that 1) we seriously had way too much fucking stuff and 2) I clearly did not keep up with cleaning and organizing well while I was actively in my addiction. Gross.

Month 4 I got a little lazy because I was thinking and feeling a lot. Loneliness, anger, resentment, fear, anxiety would often paralyze me.  So I thought, felt and read in order to try to make sense of everything. Then I started writing as I needed an outlet for all these feelings and a way to share my story and feel less alone.

I’m in month 5 now and I’m still thinking but back to doing more. I’m cooking meals and baking bread which I had previously given up as being in the kitchen preparing meals was a trigger for me early on in my sobriety.

bread
Two fresh homemade loaves of bread made by yours truly!

 I signed up for yoga classes that will begin soon in May.  (Question:  Why does it seem like people in recovery always do yoga?)  My mom helped me begin to spring clean and I’ve gotten rid of even more unnecessary stuff. (How do we end up with so. much. stuff?) I’ve completely rearranged my dining room and I’m halfway through reorganizing my kitchen. I deep cleaned my freezer (which I’m fairly sure I’ve never done considering all I found).  I even felt secure enough in my sobriety to start selling all of my alcohol paraphernalia:  wine glasses galore, a rolling bar, a wine bottle holder, bartending tools…and let me tell you, that is so freeing. 

All of this productivity has made me reflect more on my daily schedule as well.  It is extremely important to me currently to practice daily self-care. I read about these people who swear by getting up at 5:00 am to meditate and do yoga and journal to start their day.  They claim it just sets the right tone for the day. Frankly, I’ve always believed that sleeping as late as possible is the best way to start my day.  However, now that I’m more in tune with myself and I want to stay that way and continue healing and “doing the work” I wonder if I should try something like this. (Calm down – I’m just in the wondering stage. Hell may have to freeze over first before I start willingly giving up an extra hour of sleep.)

I’ve also analyzed the time I have in the evenings after packing tomorrow’s lunches and making dinner and ensuring that homework has been completed.  Some of it I’ve spent reading, some of it I’ve spent cleaning and organizing, some of it I’ve spent writing and sometimes I spend it just resting.

I wonder though if I should have more of a defined schedule for myself. Up at 5 for meditating (which would probably just put me back to sleep), off to work by 7, home for the evening by 5:30, dinner, then this on Mondays, that on Tuesdays, that on Wednesdays…

I’m not even really sure what that would accomplish. Maybe more productivity. I think mostly it would just satiate my desire for control. Isn’t that what it boils down to? If I have a strict routine then I know what to expect, life is predictable and I’m in control. As we all know though, life is anything but predictable.

17 thoughts on “Productivity and Predictability

  1. Love love love your post!!!!
    Firstly, THAT BREAD LOOKS AMAAAAZING!!! seriously impressive!
    Secondly, yay in the yoga – it’s been a huge part of my sobriety journey. Keep me posted!
    Finally, I laughed out loud when I read about the crazy people who get up at 5am… I’m one of those people!!!!! Totally subscribe to the 5am Miracle podcast, the early morning meditation, gratitude journal, breakfast and plan for the day is such a helpful change to my day. Liked he yoga I’m dead keen to keep in touch with you about this.
    All the best, love your work! 🦋💙🌏🌴

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How do you get up at 5am?!? Tell me the secret!!! LOL
      Let’s definitely keep in touch about the yoga! I just found a class being offered once a week over the summer that’s affordable that I plan on registering for soon. I know next to nothing about yoga but I want to learn!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I learned how from listening to Jeff Saunders podcast called the 5am miracle…. here’s a link to one you might like 😀 https://itunes.apple.com/nz/podcast/5-am-miracle-jeff-sanders-healthy-habits-personal-development/id668541939?mt=2&i=1000356737775
        What time do you normally get up? It takes a few weeks to slowly work backwards… going to bed earlier so that you can get up earlier without being tired. Tricking the body, in a way!
        Yay I’m excited for your yoga, can’t wait to hear how you find it. Way to go 🙋🏽👍🏼🦋

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I can relate to so much of this. I’m sorry you’re dealing with a separation, it does become harder to overlook things in relationships and lives when we aren’t drinking our awareness away. Although it’s hard I think it’s probably a good thing for us in the long term. Why keep things the way they were when we needed to blot it all out? Minimising stuff is great, I’m on that mission too. As for yoga, and meditation, I do it but I’ve done it on and off since my 20s so I did it while drinking too. I hate having a full diary, it takes very little to make me feel overbooked. I do like having little mini routines in my day though. Sorry, I’m a bit scatty, rambly today. Enjoy your lovely bread 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I get up early to run on the treadmill. I have a hard time dragging myself out of bed in the morning but I found after a month of running I was really looking forward to it each morning. I only run for about 20 minutes but hard enough to work up a good sweat and my mood, endurance and energy levels have all improved a LOT.
    Congrats on getting rid of the “stuff” (especially the alcohol related stuff!) 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I have always read that a good schedule is really important in early sobriety.
    You can try the early morning routine, and see if it fits you.

    There are many people at my yoga studio who are in recovery.
    Some of my yoga teachers are, too.
    You have made some really good choices here!
    xo
    Wendy

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I think that a good routine will be the answer to all my problems:) No seriously, I listening to the Shair podcast and the thing that most people that are in successful long term recovery have in common is a morning routine. So I think its a great idea, now how to actually put that into practice, I have no idea! Perhaps the secret in in small achievable steps? Let me know if you find something that works.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m an early riser but I’ve got someone at my feet and hard to find a place to hide. Plus I keep reading sleep is imperative for our health 🙂
    and then I’d love more free hours in a day especially since I’m in early recovery. Can’t wait to hear about yoga… I’m so fat, introverted and out of shape can get myself to walk thru the door again. I know it will be so good…baby steps. Loving your blog!!

    Liked by 1 person

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