I recently read that humans have between 50,000 and 70,000 thoughts each day. By the time we’re up in the morning to the time we go to bed at night we’re running on a barrage of ideas, thoughts, habits, all manner of bits and pieces – random and considered. Expert word is that by the end of the day, we do not make our best decisions as our brain is simply fatigued. Just ask my teenage kids the best time to ask me a question – or for permission to do something. Yep, after 9PM, for sure!
In order to stay as sharp as I can, as long as I can, I have learned to automate my day as much as I can.
If you knocked on my door right now, you would find me wearing yoga pants, a tunic length tank top/t-shirt and cardigan or duster. I spent most of my life in one uniform or another: a school uniform (tunic & blazer, ugh), a work uniform (power suit & pumps) and the mommy uniform (something clean at the start of the day). It makes life so much easier to know exactly what I’m going to wear.
A constant event. A load goes in every morning and the process just continues: wash, dry, fold, repeat. I have learned to use the folding time to meditate. It’s even more mindless now that I have the Sheldon-inspired flip-folds. It totally automates the process AND creates space. Love the efficiency. It was well worth the investment – and I bought one for each of the kids.
I have keyed into my iPhone every 50 minutes on the hour reminders: walk around the block, fold laundry, meditate, start dinner. Mundane but necessary. I’ve also recently added a few apps that are very helpful: Cozi for our family calendar; Mindfulness Daily to remind me to take time to breathe and iDrated to remind me to drink more water.
I am an eat to live type of person so I don’t like spending much time focused on food. I have automated the process as much as I can. I eat the same breakfast through the winter (oatmeal with blackberries) and something similar through the summer. Fortunately my kids eat lunch in the dining hall at school. The only big meal I have to concern myself with is dinner. Which is, of course, mapped on a calendar.
I’d like to think that by automating as much as possible, I’m freeing up my thinking time to do something wonderful, brilliant, worthy, revolutionary!
In order to stay focused on the things that are important to me, I had to sit back and come to terms with how I was spending my time. I realized I didn’t have to constantly think about things like: clothes, routine activities and food. I automate as much as I can in order to be open and observant enough to notice what is happening around me.
I’m an idea magpie jumping from one project to another, all the time thinking of the book I should be reading, the book I should be writing, or maybe taking a sculpting class, the movie to watch, the art show to attend, the latest and greatest whatever it is. Often it’s a wonder anything gets done! Goodness knows it would be less without the automation.
What do you do to make your life flow smoothly?