Tuesday, March 27, 2012

post-holiday mentality

Hullo thur. I'm back from a bloody lovely week in Jamaica. I felt I really needed a week away to sort my head out and shake my habit of leaving college deadlines to the last minute and then disproportionately stressing myself out as a result. It was very satisfying to get into a good routine of bedtimes before midnight and then getting up for an early morning swim followed by a breakfast of ackee and saltfish and a day either exploring the St Elizabeth parish in the white Toyota we rented, or otherwise staying on the beach with Red Stripe and a book. 

I crave for routine in my everyday life-a structure that is nicely disciplined but not consuming. But I always find it is something much easier said than done and difficult to stick to. It's probably why I'm always interested in other people's routines; at which time of the day do they find it easiest to work, what do they eat or breakfast and do coffee breaks feel quite so vital when you've had over 8 hours of sleep the previous night? Ah, there is nothing like a relaxing holiday to induce new-season healthy lifestyle assessments. But it's all about erring on the right side of realistic and not coming back from holiday with an unattainable romance. After all, there ain't no clear blue sea for swimming in Western Massachusetts.

Now I'm back in Amherst there are however a couple of resolutions that I've set myself. I'm sticking to the bed before midnight resolution (so far, so good) and also trying to limit my laptop usage. I'm even dabbling with implementing a laptop-free day, a suggestion my Mum made a while ago (do other blogger's Mothers dare voice such advice?) Still, as someone who is permanently within arms reach of my laptop I think it might be healthy to give it a go. All 3 of us away in Jamaica turned off our phones and stayed away from the internet for the week. Only a week, a week is nothing, but it felt significant. And that a week should feel significant doesn't seem quite right in the big scheme of things. 

All food for thought. Are any of you lot having Spring lifestyle reassessments? I say this also with Ally's recent post in mind. She has cut sugar out of her diet and started a fantastic food blog chronicling all of the new meals she has been cooking. Ally's blog Through A Glass Darkly really is one of my favourites, it has been for ages, and she's constantly inspiring me both aesthetically and in terms of lifestyle philosophies. I will also have a lot of respect for people who cut sugar from their diets, it's a bloody tough one. Onwards and upwards, I hope you've all had a lovely week and I'd love to know what you've been doing/eating/watching/listening to/thinking (from the deep and profound to the premiere of Season 5 of Mad Men..)


Camille said...

I enjoy learning about other people's habits too, and reading about your new resolutions encourages me to follow mine (in the way that I don't feel like I'm alone in that whole university situation).

So--I've been striking against the hike of tuition fees, bringing lunches to work (and I work at a fine grocery store, so that's a really tough one: I have to compete with the chef so my lunches look more appealing than his menu), trying not to spend every day, going to bed before 1:30 (I'm giving myself realistic goals for now haha), watching all of Downton Abbey AND Sherlock, hoping to finish my final essays one day in advance, and not browse online while in the midst of consulting articles on JSTOR.

As for sugar: cutting it off completely would be really difficult for me as well (Ally's really brave!), although I feel I have much less sugar cravings the more I eat food cooked at home (including my lunches) for some reason. Also, I find licorice tea is a great help, if you need any!

Routine is hard to keep with uni and papers and all, so I wish you good luck with your resolutions!

elisabeth said...

i tend to have the same feelings around this time, never in the new year, spring tends to bring out the re-assessments in me! good idea for the laptop though!i tend to ignore my laptop for 1 or 2 days when i go back to visit the family but i dont know if i could do it in london!

also gave up chocolate and sugar for Lent and it made SUCH a difference!though i have the willpower of a child and thus only lasted 3 weeks lol. might actually try and start it up again though.

good luck with your resolutions!

Holly said...

I enjoy your idea of a laptop free day, I think that might be an idea for me to follow too. I am an avid reader and I always want to find time to read, I get into bed of a night pick my book up to start and then think 'oh let me just take a look on that site' and before you know it I'm falling asleep at my laptop.
I was actually thinking yesterday when I spent the day out how nice it was to not just sit at the laptop. I am currently an unemployed graduate so I sit at the laptop applying for jobs but then also blogging, twitter, facebook all falls into the mix as well and then I've lost half of the day.

I'm glad you had a lovely time in Jamaica, I love routine too. I miss returning after a holiday and unable to do my lengths in the pool of a morning.


Chuck said...

Good ideas. I could definitely do with a laptop free day. They're so addictive though and so much of my life/work depends on it. I also struggle to regularly get to bed before midnight. I'm rubbish generally! Jamaica sounds blissful.

tastes_like_disco said...

I am also very interested in other people`s routines, well, i guess curious in general - but arent we all? Lately, i ve been wondering what people do in the evening. My evening habits are normally so boring (telly, internet..? not much more i guess), are other people`s as well? Or is their life more exciting? One evening when there was nothing on telly i was wondering, what the heck ppl were doing when they didnt have tv?! still havent really figured out though =) wanted to ask my mum and dad =)
Structure and being a student - difficult indeed! Been experiencing that recently more than ever as i have less classes and more papers to write. There were many days when i was cursing self-discipline, and still are... right now i am also procrastinating from writing a paper...
But coming back from holiday with new plans and ideas and newly inspired & motivated is good, isnt it? Rather than just hating coming back due to the job/work awaiting, like lots of people do, i guess. So, good luck with your resolutions! (And back to work for me.)

Anonymous said...

Great ideas, and I totally adore your hair! It suits you a lot, you look really pretty with this blonde hair :)

Selina (Flying Saucer) said...

hope to see some snaps of your holiday if you can share any!! i can't even imagine how amazing and relaxing it must have been, i bet you met some incredible people.
i had more of a routine when i was a student than when i started working! at least you had time to plan a routine and then have all the term holidays to recuperate. i think in working you almost fight against your set routine intuitively as it will be something you can't change - i still can't get to bed on time even though i have to be up at the same time. and i wake up on saturdays in a mild panic! i guess habit is the key and finding rewards in the routine you set. great food for thought x

Anonymous said...

you look rough

Ally said...

Thanks again for the shout out!

Cutting out sugar was actually surprisingly easy once I decided to stop eating it altogether. I had been trying to cut back for a while, but it was all very half-hearted so I decided to take the plunge and I feel immeasurably better! I also did some reading about how bad sugar is and it was the perfect scare-tactic. It's very helpful to have that kind of information in the back of your head when faced with sweets/pastries/cakes, helps motivate me to say 'no thanks'.

As for going tech-free, I've been trying to have one day off the internet for a while but it is remarkably difficult especially having an iphone it is far too easy to browse blogs/twitter/facebook etc. It is such a great idea though I am going to keep trying to make it happen!

Anyway, good luck with your new goals!