Getting Back on the Horse

So I had covid about 4 weeks ago. I was really really sick for about 36 hours. And then reasonably sick for about a week after that. I was also stuck at home with a disregulated not very sick but covid positive 8 year old. There’s also a lot going on in my household in terms of mental health with both of my kids. And thankfully, business is good. So I’ve been digging out of the covid hole for the 3 weeks since.

But I would be lying if I said that that was the only reason that it’s been a month since I posted a blog entry. If I’m completely honest, the further away I get from posting the harder it is to start again. I know this about myself, so I know that it’s not going to be a forever thing. But, there is a psychological barrier to coming back after not posting for a while and not putting in a particularly robust effort. So I make more of it than I need to and it gets a little harder to do. And then the longer I wait the better I feel it needs to be. And then it makes it harder to do. Quite the vicious cycle.

Many years ago, this is the kind of thing that would have derailed me for quite some time and could have been the thing that truly broke a habit. This is the kind of thing that plagues many of my clients when it comes to consistency on any number of topics, including writing, working out, self improvement, mindfulness, whatever else you can think of.

So I decided that the best way to get back into posting was to post about getting back into posting! Step one is to take the pressure off. I don’t have to write some epic, super insightful, mind-blowing post that’s the best I’ve ever done. I’m sitting in my car while my youngest is at dance class, just like I usually do. I’m dictating into my phone, just like I usually do. I picked the topic off my digital sticky note of potential blog post topics, just like I always do. And I’m talking about the topic. Just like I always do.

It’s no big deal. Any bit that I made it bigger than it was has already been washed away as I’ve started to do it. And you know what? I feel great. I legitimately couldn’t do it the week I had covid. I legitimately couldn’t do it the week after when I still didn’t feel great and was fighting to catch up. The last two weeks I was very busy but I probably could have found time to do this. But I’m not beating myself up for not doing it. I made other decisions I got other stuff done. I had productive weeks. But it was time to get back to it now. I’ve done it. Like I said, I feel great.

Here’s the takeaway. Don’t judge yourself by never falling off the horse. That’s not a realistic bar. We all fall off the horse. I’m so good at managing my ADHD, that I teach people to manage their ADHD. I’m pretty damn good at not falling off the horse. But sometimes it’s not my fault. It’s the horse. I got covid. But I got back on pretty quick. And that’s the metric you should be looking at. We all fall. How quick do you get back up. Because with a habit you have to look at the Long haul. Any small sample size can look either really great or really bad. But if you look at a month a year a decade a bad week or a bad two weeks is nothing. So just don’t let yourself stay down.