We are creatures of habit and love routine. Routine enables us to achieve consistent results in many areas of our lives like exercise and work. For good sleep and nutrition, routine is our best friend.
But when does routine become a rut? It’s an individual thing of course but if you feel yourself lacking in drive, energy or excitement then a change to your routine can be the shake up you need.
I turn 40 this year (I pause for the gasps of astonishment relating to my youthful appearance 😉) and taking inspiration from my friend’s blog 40at40.com, I decided that I would challenge myself a little as well as break out of routine to do some things that I enjoy but haven’t done in a while. This includes
concerts and live music. At Christmas I asked my husband for tickets to the Country to Country festival and last night we went to the show at the O2. It was amazing! The acts were brilliant, the atmosphere was great and we enjoyed a beer beforehand, people watching and debating if a baseball cap was a better look than a cowboy hat. (Hubby thinks baseball, I go with cowboy, although I personally don’t think I could get away with pink).
I hadn’t planned it but there was also a challenge on the way to the O2 as hubby wanted to go on the Emirates Air Line. I am not fond of heights, but said I’d give it a go. When we set off, I felt ok. I actually thought to myself, this isn't too bad. It’s just like a ski lift, I thought.
Then about 2 minutes in I realised, um, no it’s not. The ground continues up with you with a ski lift. This was just climbing and climbing while the ground and water stayed below. Far below. This was pretty scary for me. (I feel like I shouldn’t use the word terrifying but it was close.) My particular issue was when we stopped and the car was bouncing up and down in the wind. I think my husband still has my handprint embedded on his hand from where I was squeezing so hard. The little boy opposite was having a great time while his mum smiled sympathetically at me (or maybe she was grinning at my discomfort - I opt for the former interpretation!). I heard the guys next to me mutter ‘tourist’ as I let out a particularly loud squeal as we dropped about 5 foot. (Ok. Probably less than a foot. But it felt like more). Yes, I’m sure when you do that trip on a regular basis or if you aren’t bothered by heights, it’s no big deal. But to me it really was! And I survived. Getting off it was a massive feeling of relief and satisfaction that I had challenged myself and even though I didn’t enjoy it, I enjoyed having done it!
I have a few more out-of-the-ordinary things coming up later this year which I’m really looking forward to. Breaking out of routine, doing things we enjoy but often ‘don’t get round to’ and challenging ourselves is a great way to shake things up and get out of a rut. Sometimes we all need a little reminder that life is not just about surviving but thriving.