Baby, You’ve become a Habit to Me

How many days does it take to stop a habit or create a new one?  My friend, Paul, says 30 days.  With a Google search, it seems that the majority of sites claim 21 (probably one person on Google said it and everyone has just repeated it).

Well, according to Phillippa Lally of University College (I recommend Googling her – this girl does not look like she’s old enough to attend college), who has done a ton of research on the subject, it takes an average of 66 days to start or break a habit.

66 days.  Holy crap.

I’ve been tracking  my (lack of) contact with my ex in hopes that, after 30 days, it would become habit and I wouldn’t have to think about it anymore.

It’s been 26 days.  I have 40 more to go.  I’m only 39% there.  It’s a long road.

STATS:

Days since I’ve contacted my ex:  26

Days since I’ve searched for my ex: 6

What I am grateful for: Losing my appetite from the heartbreak.  I’m 14 pounds lighter.

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You don’t sleep here anymore

source: Calvinklein.com

I’m in the middle of a complete bedroom overhaul. I’ve stripped the bed of every pillow where he may have laid his head.  I’ve thrown away the plum duvet and sheets that he stained with his desires.  More than washing away his morning scent, it now resides in the garbage, where I’ve placed it. The throw pillows that we joked were too numerous are now in the trash bin.

I’ve exchanged them for slate grey-green bedding flecked with gold, brown and terra cotta – simple, deep, and beautiful; More masculine than my last set.

I’ve removed the thin, golden drapes that used to seep in sunlight to wake him, the drapes he used to pull aside to spy on the backyard.  I’ve swapped them for thick, chocolate-brown, pleated, blackout drapes that fool me into thinking it’s midnight when it’s twilight. Their weight makes them difficult to pull back.  I’m still looking for replacements for the chair, the mirror, the lamp – and the vase that he could see from his side of the bed.

I’ve replaced his side of the bed. My room feels like a cave, a cocoon, now.  I haven’t slept more soundly.

STATS:

Days since I’ve contacted my ex:  16

Days since I’ve searched for my ex: 5

What I am grateful for:  Mornings when I open my bedroom door and there isn’t cat barf on the hall carpet, when there’s coffee waiting for me in the pot, when my sick kitty eats his breakfast and I have the motivation to take my morning walk.

Of Butter, Bacon and Grit

During my yoga retreat in Montana, part of our “required reading” was an article about the research of Stanford professor, Carol Dweck, Ph.D., on motivation, achievement, and success in learning. Dr. Dweck categorizes learners into two camps: those with a fixed mindset and those with a growth mindset. In a nutshell, those with a fixed mindset believe intelligence and talent and predetermined  – and those with a growth mindset believe, with enough effort, anything is possible.  Growthies aren’t afraid to try, fail, try, fail, try, fail, fail, fail.  Growthies have “grit”. Growthies are concerned with the process and the effort.  Fixies are focused on the outcome.  Most of us fall somewhere on the continuum, but I must admit,  I’m from the Fixie tribe – not the Growthies. Sure, practice will make improvements, but only so much.  I “know” intelligence isn’t malleable. And that, according to Dr. Dweck, is my problem.

Is this why my culinary aspirations have stalled?  Is this why I’m jealous of my fellow chef’s accomplishments while I look on from the sidelines?  In the kitchen, I’m focused on the final dish, the finished product,  what the other chefs are doing, and how I don’t measure up.  What if I gave myself permission to play in the kitchen, if I tried to make a dozen awful dishes, if I cooked like no one was watching?


Like Clouds

“Aparigraha”.  The concept came to me in the middle of yoga class, when I was supposed to be focused on my breathing.  “Aparigraha”.  There was my answer.

Aparigraha is the yogic Sanskrit term for “non-grasping”.  Non-grasping, letting go, or “non-attachment” for the Buddhists out there.  All of this pain associated with my new work situation and the uncertain relationship status with the guy are a result of my grasping, my attachment.

In this life, nothing is FOREVER.  People, jobs and things come and go in our lives.  It may be a marriage for 20 year – or even 50 years, a relationship that’s 9 months new, or a career of 10 years, but at some point, change happens.

In life, forever doesn’t exist – we die, we change, they change, things wear out, get lost – things get broken.   We should delight in what we have NOW (its OK to hope that the good things lasts a very, very, very long time) – and temper our mourning when things must change and move on across the sky.

Adoration

I haven’t dawdled here for some time.  Where do I begin?  So many days seem to have past, and yet so much seems the same as my last post.  Perhaps my life isn’t as rich and varied as I’d like to believe.

Yes, I’m still together with the guy, but our relationship seems to have stalled.  The excitement is gone.  It hasn’t even been six months and the spark is sputtering.  I cooked dinner for us last night – a Hawaiian pork dish with rice and sautéed cabbage.  We watched a movie – The Fighter.  Then he went home. Is this what I signed up for?

I don’t feel adored by him.

He is such a good man and I really do like him tons, but I’m worried that we don’t have enough (fill in blank here) to keep it going. I’m worried I don’t have enough to keep him interested.

I feel as though I’ve been too wrapped up in him, in the relationship, in making him feel loved.  I spend too many Saturday nights on a stool in a dive bar listening to his band.  I’ve lost myself, but then again, I didn’t have much to lose.

So, I’ve started yoga again.  Well, at least I practiced on Monday.  I’m practicing at home tonight – I’m convincing myself I must as I write this.  If I’m not too sore, I’m going to class on Thursday as well.  I want to begin scribbling in this blog again.  I want to start cooking again.  I want my life outside of him back.

I’m not pushing him out, just rolling him over a bit to make room for me.