I followed my plans yesterday. It was the first time in a while.
When I think of my habits, it's less like falling off the horse as it is letting a giant flywheel lose momentum. It takes a tremendous amount of effort to get it moving again, but when it reaches momentum, it's almost effortless to maintain.
Momentum is building again.
I was prepared enough for everything that came my way.
The things I completed were the most important things.
I made trade offs that I was ok with:
- I was 15 minutes late to something so that I could finish a lunch meeting without having to rush
- I skipped a few sets of my strength ritual (aka physio exercises) so that I could save some strength for the dance classes that came after
- I went to bed 5 minutes after bedtime so that I could set up tomorrow
- I bought dinner instead of making it so that I could have a slow evening to recover
Reflecting back, it was a good day. I cleared the inbox, I did significant work for 3 clients, I performed the strength ritual, I did two dance classes (in 90% humidity and no air con). I ate mostly great food.
And I even felt like it was good.
When I'm off the horse and the flywheel is still, it almost feels like despair. Even if the circumstances are objectively ok. I have no choice but to be reactive and cater to my whims as they arise. My habits are as much boundaries to keep me from spilling over as they are positive actions that move me forward.
Another turn today.
(Thanks, infinitely, to the great Jim Collins for introducing me to the flywheel analogy. I heartily recommend anyone have a listen to his interview with Tim Ferriss.)
(Thanks also to Ryan Holiday for the journalling format--loosely followed above--that got me writing about and noticing my life. I followed the format in a handwritten journal for months. In fact, it was when this habit dropped that the flywheel started slowing. I'll start the practice again tonight.)