It’s that time of year again. Yep! Time for the #onebookjuly2021 Challenge. It’s also Viktor’s (my grandson) birthday month, my birthday month, #campnanowrimo, and #sharkweek month. WoW! We might need a bigger calendar…
Benjamin Franklin started his day out by asking himself, “What good shall I do today?” Part of this year’s focus for #onebookjuly are Routines and Habits. I’ll be reading, along with Carie Harling and many others, the book Atomic Habits. I’m also going to be working on the habit of creating art daily, so starting July 1st I’ll be participating in the 365 day art challenge, and I’m going to read Samantha Dion Baker’s new book “Draw Your World.”
July is always a really busy month. Not just because it’s the summer. It’s also around mid-year, it’s the start of the third quarter of the year, and it’s filled with all kinds of good stuff like holiday’s and birthdays, and projects.
I want to make creating art part of my daily routine–a daily habit. I also want to work on a few other habits I’d like to add to my routine. Speaking of routine, I need to improve mine. It’s all about self-improvement, organization, better self-care and health, better habits, nurturing my creative side, as well as my spirituality. Establishing a better routine, better habits, is an investment in myself. Oftentimes I spend quite a bit of time and energy on things that I shouldn’t, and not enough time on the things I probably should. Establishing a better routine will help me have more structure in my day, so that I can utilize the more “forward moving” habits, and that. momentum will also allow me to better utilize my time and energy, which are some days more precious than other days. If I do that, I’ll be able to have some leeway for the “one of those days” kind of days.
Habits are actions that we take on a repeated bases with little or no required effort or thought–a bit like how driving. In the beginning we’re uneasy, unsure, unpracticed, and overly cautious. After a few years, you’re used to it, it’s become ingrained, learned behavior, and we’re almost on auto-pilot when driving.
In order to make these habits actions, part of my every day routine, I need to change some things
- Optimize my energy by starting my day with an affirmation or mantra.
- Morning Pages: write to clear my mind, and clarify my thoughts.
- be Proactive: Focus on me so I can have a better state of mind, which means wait to check social media until after my morning Routine.
- Visualize (or Script) my day–this harnesses the power of your subconscious mind, which is what we want so that these things are manifested, so that we have a positive mindset, and it helps us focus our intentions on the things that matter most.
- Read 10-30 minutes in the morning, and then 10-30 minutes in the evenings, for a total of one chapter per day.
- be Accountable. Accountability might mean a chart with stars, a tracker; a buddy, friend or mentor; or creating blot posts or videos and updating each week…
- Priorities: Start your day with your main priorities, which means being more realistic with goals, creating manageable to-do lists–there’s only one of me, and only so much time in a day. Writing 15-20 things on my to-do list is not manageable. I’m less likely to procrastinate if I don’t overwhelm myself
- Take Breaks. and Break your day up into sections.
- Schedule time in your day for “creative day dreaming,” as well as time for a walk or some sort of movement–get out of the chair and move around. Mind and Body!
Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” If I am what I repeatedly do, then working on my routines and habits is definitely necessary, since there are days when I procrastinate, when the “resistance” I feel is overwhelming and I end up with analysis paralysis. Days when the fear and self-doubt are rampant. Things like getting up early so that I can get work done while it’s quiet and cool, or taking a break and walking around to not only stretch my legs, but clear my head–oftentimes we get really good ideas when our brains are relaxing–like when we’re in the shower or taking a walk.
One of the things I want to start doing on my daily pages is listing 3 good things that happened each day. A gratitude log doesn’t really work well for me, but if I list three good things, it might be a win, or something I’m grateful for, or something that happened, or all of the above. I also want to get back to setting intentions for the week, and for each day.
That’s a lot. SO I’m combining the “daily journaling, art journaling,” into my bullet journal pages, so it’s not separate notebooks. I’m also going to setup a chore list, which will include a cooking list (what night each person is responsible for dinner). Doing those things not only will lighten my load, but are part of the “boundaries” thing I’m working on, it’s really easy for me to slip into the “do everything myself” mode, which is not good for me or for my family–they need to do things themselves. I don’t want to enable, that’s not good. Tracking things like when I cook, when I do dishes, if someone else does things, etc is something I really need to keep up with.
Okay, that’s about it.. Here is the Intro video for this year for One Book July.