Back to work today and it was a struggle. Emulating Christmas, Geordie style at the weekend had switched on the “Switch off” programme in my brain and it had decided that given the recent events involving crackers, opening presents, spending time with family followed by more time off meant that its only work now was to watch Christmas movies and eat chocolate. Not do HR. My brain could just not compute with being forced onto a bus across London and then being hurled into hectic office environment. So part of my day was spent talking down and reprogramming my brain to focus on less fun but more healthy tasks instead.
How powerful is that kind of programming? The same type of behaviours reinforced year on year are really hard to shift!
Embarking on a life changing adventure such as ditching a semi-successful career to do something you’ve never done before involves a fair bit of deprogramming. The first step, for me, has been to start by being aware there is a programme running. Routine as I’ve mentioned but not yet explored can be a good thing but reinforced routine can also lead to repeating patterns and after a while those patterns can become unconscious. Like wanting to eat chocolate because it’s Christmas. Or a more serious example is needing to fill each day 9-5-with-a-lunch-break because that’s what “work” means.
Meditation was my next step. I cannot begin to express my gratitude for act of meditation. It has helped me break the programming where I need to. Focusing on breathing, non-thinking time has allowed me to take the role of the observer and step back and see the various programmes running.
I still have some way to go though. It’s early days in my journey and there’s a fair bit of reinforced routine around work (and lifestyle) which makes it tempting to fall back into what I know and is safe.
Today’s inertia was just my reminder that the struggle is worth it.