Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Good intentions

 I often find myself saying the same thing to several people at work, suggesting that there are messages that lots of people need to hear. One of them is this: If you want to build a new habit, the first step is to make it as easy as possible. You basically want it to be easier to do the new thing than to keep doing the old thing. So for example, when I wanted to work out in the mornings, I slept in my gym clothes. At that point it was easier to just go than to justify sleeping in a sports bra for no reason. It's weird, but it works!

I'm not doing resolutions, but I have decided on a few personal challenges The first is that I want to work on reducing my use of disposable things. I've got reusuable silverware in my office and my purse, so that's easy. I'd really like though to get away from plastic shopping bags. It's so dumb  that I pay .10 to crumple it up under my sink, occasionally use one, and then throw them all away in a giant fit. I own lots of bags. I have a laundry basket in the backseat of my car for the sole purpose of corralling purchases. I don't even do my own shopping that much anymore, so why, why, why is it so hard?! If anyone has any tips, I could really use them. In the meantime I'm embracing my inner abstainer and only allowing myself a store bag if it's paper, since I use those for recycling. Which is how you found me walking out of the drugstore this morning juggling a handful of sinus meds and tampons. 

My other intentions, I hope, are easier (and less cringy). 

I'm giving myself a challenge for January to spend the couple of minutes before class working on my handstands. I'd LOVE to be able to do a full handstand at the end of the month, but even if I don't I will definitely be more comfortable upside down. 

I am challenging myself to back into parking spots (so far so good!) 

I'd like to work on reducing my orders from Amazon and I think I have a plan. My goal isn't really morally driven (Jeff Bezos created a brilliant company and I guess if he wants to be an asshole he can) but it hurts my wallet and my soul to get packages on a near daily basis. My thought is that if I have a designated "check out day" that I will be less inclined to hit the "Buy it now" button and maybe make more thoughtful purchases while also reducing the number of boxes that get delivered since the orders will be combined. 

And a goal. I would really like to publish an article. About something. Somewhere. I don't have anything more specific than that yet, but I do have an accountability partner and some ideas of what I might write and...that's about it. But I've now stated it out loud so my chances of success just went up and hopefully it'll be easier to keep moving forward than to justify why I didn't. 

I'm definitely only making eye contact with 2022 out of my peripheral vision, for fear of inciting something that none of us are prepared for (see: welcoming 2021 ridiculously and where that got us). But if you are setting any goals or challenges for yourself I would love to hear them and support them in any way that I can! I don't have a word for 2022 but if I did, I think I'd want it to be "Encouraging." 


  1. Advice on re-using bags from a lurker: When I get home and empty them I set them next to the door to the garage, so the next time I go out to the car I take them out with me. I am more likely to remember to bring them into the store if I have them in the front of the car, so that's my default if I don't have any of the kids with me. Otherwise back seat, which usually works since kid 1 is off at college this year. If I forget to bring the bag in with me I just tell the bagger to put stuff back in the cart and I transfer from from cart to bag in the back of the car. It did take a little while to get in the habit of remembering to talk to the bagger, but I'm at about 95% now.

  2. Love your short and do-able list. It feels like you're prioritizing being kind to yourself. But there's lots of challenging yourself (handstands) and branching out (publishing an article) too. All best wishes for making these realities in 2022!

    P.S. I just reread your "Advice from a Stranger" post and took away lots of things for myself.