It seems as though habit, either good or bad, has been a constantly running theme for me. We all have them; they’re necessary for accomplishing anything. It took me a while to develop my studio habit of working consistently and not getting up and doing something just because it flitted through my monkey brain. Keeping a notepad handy and writing down the thought helped with that. I have read books, listened to books, thought about articles…you know how that goes. Plus, and I’m really excited about this, I am doing the finish work on pieces as soon as they’re cut off. This is a really big change for me–patting myself on the back.
One thing that seems to be consistent with habit change is to identify the cue and to substitute an new activity for the old one. The habit that I am working on now is to walk and work in the yard on a consistent basis. I have been setting the alarm, getting out of bed, getting dressed, and walking out the door every morning. 6:15 and I’m on the street. Every night I ask myself if I really want that alarm to go off so early, but I know that if I miss one day, that will be it. No more walking. I’m such an all or nothing person! So the alarm stays.
Before heading outside, I do allow myself to have my coffee and newspaper after my walk. But the shoes do not come off, because that will mean that I don’t go outside and do whatever tasks I’ve set for myself. Coming up, my outside chores are to learn how to use a chain saw. The tree branches overhanging the roof have been trimmed, but the wood is too good not to cut up for firewood. To say nothing about how heavy they are to drag anywhere! My makeshift wagon is a tarp, on which I pile the smaller brush and drag to the street for disposal. Why didn’t I think of this years ago!