There are certain things I should do every day that somehow or another I always seem to forget. None of them take a particularly long time, it’s just that somehow or another I find myself failing to do them. They are all simple things. I should stretch every morning. I should exercise every day to reduce chronic pain. I should take note of the blessings in my life and spend at least a few minutes writing.

More often than not I do each of these things intermittently. One day I remember to stretch and exercise but I forgot to spend a few minutes writing. Other days I write for thirty minutes, but forget to do everything else. It seems that I lack the steady determination and effort to perform each task every single day.

The other day my physical therapist said something so simple and straightforward that it stopped me dead in my tracks. He said I could keep paying him to work out my pain points or I could find the diligence to stretch and exercise every day. I wouldn’t be able to stop his treatments altogether, but with a fair amount of diligence I may be able to decrease the frequency of those treatments.

The truth is, whenever the pain becomes bearable again, I tend to fall back into my old ways. When things hurt I am reminded to exercise and stretch, because without doing those things I cannot function, but as soon as the pain begins to subside I fall back into my old patterns.

I am not certain how to fix this problem, but my goal for the remainder of the summer is to focus on the things in my life that really matter. To set aside time and energy to the diligence of simple, every day practices. If anyone has any words of wisdom to help me accomplish my goals… I’m all ears… I could really use some guidance.

5 thoughts on “Diligence”

  1. Not sure if it would work for you, but I find making myself a “to do” list works well. I write down all of what needs to be done, and throw a couple small, fun things on it as well. That way it doesn’t feel like it’s all work and I don’t get discouraged.

    If you like crossing things out and feeling a sense of accomplishment, it might work. Of course, if you could do this until it becomes a habit, you wouldn’t always need lists reminding you to do what you need to. Find a place to work it into the routine you already have, and it might just stick around for a while.

  2. I’m in the same boat .. but one thing I have heard is that it takes 30 days to create a habit. Perhaps if you made a list of the things you needed to do daily (or focused on one at a time – first month one thing, second month another ..), and used it the list to make sure they were done daily – then at the end of the 30 days some of them would stick?.

    I should try this myself ..

  3. Oh .. to add to foxie’s point, another thing I’ve heard is to find a regular time for the activity .. if you have a time when you usually do it, it’s less apt to be forgotten or skipped, but if you just do it whenever you find time in a day, it’s more likely to be missed ..

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  5. Foxie & Elizabeth — I created a short to-do list of things I want to accomplish every day and set aside specific time in my calendar to do them. Thanks for the suggestions. Two days in and so far I’ve accomplished the items listed. We’ll see if I can keep it up a week from now.

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