I love reading. I was the girl who tried to sneak read a book on her lap during dinner. I read while I blow dry my hair (aha! Now you know why my hair looks the way it does). I listen to books on tape while I drive. The central problem in my life (well, not really, but the one I want to talk about today) is that there are too many good books and not enough time. What is a girl to do?
Figure out how to read more.
And so, I came up with a new little ritual at the beginning of this year. The TV is off in my bedroom at 10 pm. The light stays on until 10:30 so I can read. And I am loving it.
But now that I have been regularly scratching that reading itch, the book worm monster is getting greedier. It just wants more words on paper, please. It is a hungry little demon.
And so I’ve recently instituted a new little reading ritual. I typically wake each day between 5 and 5:30 to get some work in before working out and then getting the kid up and going. And I dive right into work when I wake up. I grab my laptop, pull it onto the bed, and start pounding out articles or emails. But, recently, I’ve delayed that work start a little bit and instead, first thing, I grab my book off my nightstand and I read for ten fast minutes. Just a little bit but it eases me awake, before I ever even look at my computer and get overwhelmed by the number of emails that have come through over tight, and it is just enough to give me a sense of satisfaction before anything else happens today. It is an awesome ritual.
For me, little rituals are a way of tuning into and responding to ourselves, of giving ourselves attention and love and care, even in tiny little ten minute doses, that make us feel like more than just a cog in a machine.
And today, I want you to examine your life and see if there is just one more little ritual– five or ten minutes is plenty- that you can add to your life to give yourself a sense of having been noticed and appreciated and loved by you.
Maybe it is a nightly gratitude list, a little mantra you recite in the shower, sipping your coffee in silence or while reading the paper. Just a little sliver of happy that you try to incorporate into your life on as many days as you can (For example, I don’t do my morning reading ritual on Fridays, the morning that I teach, or the weekend.) Because all of these little tiny moments add together in significant ways, shifting our energy with their baby burst of self-love, self-care, and self-acceptance.
What are some rituals you have in your life? What difference do they make to you? What is a little tiny ritual that you can add now?