30-Day Radical Rest Challenge: Day 10

Today’s Task: Switch Up Your Routine

Congratulations! You’ve already made it 30% of the way through the challenge. How does it feel? What’s coming up for you so far?

Today’s task is to switch up your routine. Ideally this would be done in the name of taking care of yourself, which is exactly what happened to me yesterday. I’m writing today’s post this morning because I needed a break from the screen after my last call ended at 9 p.m.

Those of you who have computer-based work know how mentally taxing it can be to spend your time on a screen all day and switch from one project to another, or even one Zoom call to the next.

I didn’t realize how exhausted I was from that kind of work until I started doing some caretaking for a woman connected to a dear friend and colleague of mine. It was amazing to get out of the house and help her run errands, go to the store, pick her up from her appointments, hang out at the apartment and chat, knit and watch TV, etc. I didn’t realize how much I missed human connection and switching up my schedule.

Since then, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I want connection to show up in my professional work. And how I will create that for myself as I move into these other spaces in the world. My yoga teacher training will definitely be a big shift for me, being around 14 other students daily for class and studying the philosophy and anatomy of yoga. My body feels all tingly inside just thinking about it!

Yesterday I had a rather full morning and worked on a specific project straight through 2:30 p.m. I had a later breakfast, so I didn’t even feel hungry until about then. And I slept in late, so I didn’t have time to exercise. I decided right then that I would be of greater service to others if I just took a break to allow my body to move, and to work outside of my apartment for the afternoon.

I ended up doing a rather intense upper body workout from Adrián Fit – One of my favorite YouTubers for fitness. For all of my Spanish-speaking readers out there, I highly recommend him! And then I took a quick shower, and decided to have a picnic at the park and visit one of the ‘adventure’ places that’s been on my list lately – a cupcake shop that offers gluten-free cupcakes.

It ended up being a lovely afternoon with my cupcake, laptop, and a spontaneous bubble tea at the park near the YMCA. I told myself as I walked inside and could hear only the whirr of vehicles outside – “Just keep getting out of your comfort zone, Emily. For many people, this is their reality. No judgement.”

Living in downtown Fargo has been a very interesting experience. I’m seeing a different side of the community. Sometimes when I drive to these big shopping center areas I feel a deep sense of resentment. Maybe it’s the lingering effect of having grown up in Lawrence, where the locals are die hard fans of protecting our main street businesses on Massachussets Street that fostered within me a deep appreciation for non-big box stores. Living in downtown Fargo, I forget that sometimes what I’m looking for is right on the perimeter of where I am. I went for potentially my last bike ride (before I sell it!) a couple of nights ago and found a trail that went right by the river and thought to myself – Why did it take so long for me to find this? Why have I not been doing this loop every day of the week?

There’s a lot of beauty that can be had from mixing things up – especially something that we often cherish so much as our own routines.

So here’s a little nudge and encouragement to do something different today. Drive home on a street you’e never taken. Treat a colleague to lunch unexpectedly. Go for a walk in a part of town you’ve never explored. Download an audiobook from a genre you don’t usually listen to. See what small magic you can create for yourself in these micro moments of life.

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