Do you make a pot of coffee the same time very morning out of habit or necessity? or both? Do you take the same route to work every day? Do you floss right after you brush or do you mix it up some and brush right after you floss? Does the warm bubble bath at night signal your body to start winding down for the night ahead? Or perhaps a cup of tea or glass or milk?
Do you eat the same cereal for breakfast then take the same route on your drive to work and park in the same spot…
after day? .
Routine is a tricky thing. It can offer solace because of its familiarity minimizing the chance of unpleasant surprise. I teach. And most days I stick to a basic route of class prayer, attendance, review from the day before, the “plan” for the class written on the board. And my students always know what is expected, from me, as well as from themselves.
And for some, it’s the only time in the day they don’t have to be guarded and cautious.
It’s not that I believe a person should to do the same thing every day for the rest of their life.
when life gets wrinkly and itchy and the edges seem to be cracking,the routine of the day can act as a glue keeping the craziness together.
But, routine can also be limiting. Suppressing creativity. Rote as opposed to revelatory.
For example, if you’re out of milk, or there is a train in your path, or *gasp* someone parked in your spot at work you’re catastrophically thrown for the entire day.
And it feels like the entire world is going to hell in a hand cart.
If this is the case than maybe it’s not routine that gives you comfort, maybe it’s an unjustified sense of entitlement and you should be gentle jostled out of the padding of your pattern.
Or so I think,
as I safely sit in the exact same spot I always sit when I write.