I’m not the same person I was last year. That chick was perfect. Anything she wanted to do, she just up and did it, no problem. And her routine was impeccable. For a month straight she woke up at 4:00 am and wrote and worked out. She had a fire for life. I am not that person.
This year I have a whole new routine. I wake up, then sit in my bed contemplating my past decisions. More specifically, why did I buy that 10-class hot yoga pass? You see, my past self was more ambitious about commitments than my 2018 self. My 2018 self feels totally disrespected.
On Black Friday 2017, I got an email that I didn’t delete quickly enough. It told me I could get twice the yoga classes for half the price. Even though this was slightly before Mercury went into retrograde, I swear there was a disconnect between the natural inhibitors I so dearly depend on and the part of my brain that likes buying things. I committed.
Two visits in, I realized I had eight classes, almost no motivation, and less than two months to go. What was I gonna do? This is what:
- Wait until it’s almost time to wash my hair and feel guilty for not scheduling a hot yoga session. If I sweat my hair out, it ought to be well-timed.
- Look at the schedule to note that there are about 15 convenient classes I could attend.
- Get mad about it.
- Sit and stare at the wall trying to will a good excuse upon myself. Maybe there’s a sore throat somewhere? The weight of a thousand men?
- Then, text someone I trust, “should I go to yoga today?,” read the reply, “yes,” and think “this is bullshit” as I get up and put on the cute new tights I got for Christmas.
- Thirty minutes later, find a space for myself among a bunch of strange yogis and wait for the moment I can see the sweat dripping from my face.
- Shortly after, feel good about the fact I did it but make no plans to do it again.
This scenario is almost metaphorical in its applications across my life right now. Bunches of plans were laid in 2017 that my new self broods over before subsequently enjoying them. This tells me that my interests are actually the same, just buried. I think this is what Steven Pressfield the author of The War of Art calls Resistance.
Today, I played the dance again and beat Resistance. I made it to yoga somehow and even to my computer to get my fingers moving again. But you know what else I did? Whined. Promised myself I wouldn’t get up no matter how my dogs begged for attention. Took a nap close to my bedtime.
I blame all the pressure to make each new year a better year. It’s got me growing backwards, but I can’t be alone, and hey, maybe we can help each other. The next time I ask, “should I get up and do that thing I don’t want to do,” it’d be great if you could just say “yes.”