One of my favorite classes at Westmont was Rhetoric, a two semester course covering the five canons. I’m just going to be honest when I say–I don’t remember as much of the course as I wish. But, every once in awhile, something will trigger a memory that seems to float out from somewhere deep inside my being. Today, I had one of those moments.
Recently, life has felt very much the same. I get up at the same time, and trudge along on the same running route. I come home and eat the same breakfast cereal, and part my hair the same way. I run for the bus and miss the bus (and then cuss about missing the bus, and then ask to be forgiven). I tweet and email and write all day, then rush off to some type of networking/volunteering/biblestudying event. I come home tired, really tired, and go to bed way too late. And then, I get up. And I do it all again.
Today was not going to be another one of those ordinary days. No…today was going to be a frozen yogurt for dinner type of day, and no one was going to tell my otherwise. I packed up at 5:45pm, bundled in my warm coat, and started off on my brisk walk to Yogurtagogo. I slid in the doors just before their 6:00pm cut off for their $2 happy hour specials, piled up as much yogurt as the 4oz cup would hold, and confidently handed my $2 in bus money over to the cashier. I would have walked home if I had to. NOTHING would stop me from that yogurt.
As I walked the streets back towards the office, I found myself noticing the quiet. The bars and restaurants on L Street are closed on Mondays. Few cars rushed by. A person here or there walked a dog. It was just me, my yogurt, and the street lamps. All of a sudden, I heard my rhetoric professor’s words: “Break your habits.” He didn’t necessarily mean the bad and ugly habits-like smoking or drinking exorbitant amounts of coffee. While those habits could probably stand to be cut, I don’t think they were really what he was referring to. What he meant were the habits which are so normal, so accepted, that we don’t even think of them as habits anymore. Things like–always sleeping on the right hand side of the bed, or choosing the same seat in math class, or taking the same route to work every morning.
Sometimes, we need a change in perspective to see life a bit differently. Today, I needed frozen yogurt to remind me that life doesn’t have to be so routine. I don’t have to stay at work until all my tasks are done, or get home right on time to make dinner. I can eat ice cream instead and it really doesn’t matter.
What habits are hardest for you to break? What (good or bad) habits do you want to break the most?