“Habits are not a finish line to be crossed, they are a lifestyle to be lived.” James Clear
The Current Situation of Quarantine 2020
Time slowed as the world shut down during quarantine, but it also marched on. We all found ourselves feeling a bit stuck and the rhythms of the days past slipped away. It didn’t take long for us to realize that we needed to form new daily routines, which is where most of daily life is lived. The truth is that we become what we repeatedly do and we weren’t looking to become professional Netflix viewers. Habit, good or bad, has a profound effect on our daily lives.
What is involved in creating a habit?
James Clear describes a 3 step process to habit formation. Cue-the trigger in your brain to initiate a behavior. Craving-the motivational force behind the habit. Response-the actual habit you perform either through thought or action. You can read more about the process here.
Below are listed a few habits we have developed in our household during the quarantine that we hope to cling to as we move forward toward a new normal. We have no idea at this point when anything will change. There isn’t really any precedent in coping and adapting to a global pandemic, so we are deep into our habits and hope to continue as we crawl toward the next new things.
We have all consistently gotten 8 hours of sleep each night. It has changed the entire mood within the household. We’ve all read how important sleep is, but we saw this firsthand through the spring months while school was still going. There is no question that we will fight for this as we approach whatever school looks like first semester.
The Habit of Saying No
There has been an emphasis on discerning what is necessary and what is not these past few months. It’s been a natural shift with the current COVID-19 restrictions and having to decide as a family what we are comfortable with. Too much of what we were saying yes to was merely convenience and what was presented to us in the moment. We have all learned how to say a healthy, happy no, which has lead to saying yes to the meaningful things.
Time Blocking Strategy
each of us has found bliss in time blocking as a way to order our days and meet our individual goals including work, school, fun, reading, and social. I imagine this will become particularly helpful as our teenagers cope with what will likely be in and out of the classroom this year. Our oldest is beginning to look at colleges and studying for the SAT.
Making Family Meals a Habit
If you have teenagers, you get this. We have MADE time to include everyone in meal planning, preparing, and enjoying. New recipes have come to light, and I’m delighted as a mom to see my kids have skills I never knew about!
with little else to actually do for the past 5 months, this has come most naturally. We have all benefited from more intentional time outside no matter the weather. The discovery of nearby places to adventure has been icing on the cake. Working toward 1000 hours outside for the year 2020…and thanks to COVID-19, I think we will be successful.
Practicing Contentment & Gratitude as a Habit
We are speaking out loud what we are grateful for and what we are finding contentment in when things aren’t going the way we want them to. Saying it out loud to one another holds us accountable and bonds us together even more. To be honest, it also makes us more pleasant people to be around, which is important to community. When we come out of this quarantine time, we want to be better and stronger than when we entered it.
None of this has or will happen perfectly and some will be adjusted slightly as the circumstances change, but we are making the choices and putting in the effort. Consistency has been everything to keep us on track.