Last week was a welcome change from the summer on the road. My calendar was completely blank from Saturday through Wednesday, and I relaxed and developed some new habits.
- Running - Vince and I are running every other day. I've fallen a bit out of shape, so it's nice to have running buddy who keeps me on track. The East Bay bike path is beautiful at all times of the day. In the afternoon it's hot, but yesterday I saw a great blue heron fly across my path. The sunsets are breathtaking, and I love looking out onto the bay, the 195 bridge, and the smokestacks. I've been trying to do yoga on the non-running days, but I haven't been as disciplined about this...
- Email once a day - Since I got a smartphone in 2010 I've been a slave to the thing, checking email all the time. It got to a point where I was needlessly anxious, so I took the days off to a develop the discipline of checking email once a day, and once a day only. I used to scoff at the idea, but so far it's been working out. I feel far more relaxed, and I've found a ton of time during the day that I didn't know I had. Whenever I feel like I need to start twiddling my phone, I either read an article on it, or I just read a book. My friend lent me a book called Americanah which I am enjoying a lot right now. Checking email once a day is far more efficient, and I've achieved inbox zero for a week straight. I'm shocked at how easy Inbox Zero is now, because when I was checking every ten minutes it felt like an impossible feat.
- Object Writing - To improve my lyric-writing inspiration and creative flow, I've been object writing every morning. It's an exercise that comes up in the first chapter of Pat Pattison's book Writing Better Lyrics. You write about an object for 10 minutes (set a timer!), using not just the visual sense, but smell, taste, hearing, touch, etc. I try to do it as soon as I wake up, because it helps wake-up my creative side.
- Achievement calendar - I've started keeping a simple calendar where I write in all the things I did that day that I'm proud of. I write-in the object writing (OW10), the running, yoga, Inbox Zero, etc. When I feel like slacking I look at it so I can keep at it.
Anyway, I'm feeling relaxed and confident, and ready for the fall. I start teaching today :)