Another week, another inspirational nugget and technical article.
Inspirational Nugget of the Week
Maintain a Maintenance Schedule
If you have a car, you know that it needs maintenance every year or so. Now and then, it needs a change of oil, new brake discs, new air filters, more tire pressure, and so on.
Or think of buildings: what happens if we don't maintain a building? Plants will grow all over it, cracks appear in the walls, and it will collapse someday.
Now, cars and buildings are complex things, so it makes sense that we need a maintenance schedule for them. But what about us humans? We're more complex machines than a car or a building by orders of magnitude. We not only have a very complex body to take care of but also a mind that needs nourishment and purpose.
Do you have a maintenance schedule for yourself? Why not? Here are some inspirations for what you can do.
Know what maintenance you need: Take 10 minutes and write on a piece of paper what "maintenance" means to you. What do you need to keep going for the next week or two? And with "keep going" I don't mean just "going forward", but "going forward and have a great time doing it". Do you need some relaxation? Include some mindfulness or a visit to a spa into your maintenance schedule. Do you need motivation? Refresh your purpose (see below). Do you need company? Include some time with friends or family in your maintenance schedule.
Refresh your purpose: Without purpose, we're just living. Nothing is fun, everything is a chore. Only with purpose, we enjoy our lives and are motivated to do the things that need doing. If you regularly think about your life in general and your goals specifically, you can generate purpose to make your life more enjoyable. If you don't "refresh" your purpose now and then, your purpose will crack and crumble like an unmaintained building. To generate purpose, you can write down your latest achievements and the things you want to achieve in the future. Just scheduling some regular time for thinking may be enough.
Have something to look forward to: A maintenance schedule doesn't need to be all work and no fun. Personal maintenance should be something to look forward to. Treat yourself to a weekly "event" to recharge. My family and I order Pizza every Friday evening and eat it while watching a movie. It's such a small thing, really, but everyone is looking forward to it and we're talking excitedly about it all week. This scheduled event every Friday has helped us stay sane these last months of COVID lockdown here in Sydney. Whatever it is: have something to look forward to every week. It will keep your spirits and motivation up.
Block it in your calendar: This is probably the fifth time I'm writing this in one of my newsletters, but if it's not blocked in your calendar, it won't happen. Just adding a "Maintenance" session into your calendar will make it much more likely for you to follow through with your maintenance program.
Don't just let life happen. Take control of your life's maintenance schedule to control your enjoyment of life. If you don't keep your car maintained, it will break down at the worst possible time and place. If you don't keep yourself maintained, you're running the risk of breaking down yourself. Just thinking about it for 5 minutes now and then will help generate a feeling of purpose and well-being.