Why is consistency so hard?
Consistency is the key to mastering anything. We all know it.
I have the best of intentions but the initial enthusiasm often fades quickly and then things drift. As someone with ADHD (diagnosed just over a year ago), it can even be as soon as I’ve bought the stuff!
But I know it’s not just me and not just ADHD that make this a problem.
I have been watching Idris Elba’s Fight School. A group of young people with a range of challenges are given the opportunity to learn to box. At the start they were all enthusiastic about turning their lives around.
But as the weeks wore on some of them started to undermine their own progress. Being late, not wanting to take on some of the activities, being full of attitude towards those giving them the opportunity.
It’s easy to criticse and say we would be different. But we all struggle with consistency. It’s just easier to justify it when the stories are ours.
What I have concluded is that inconsistency is part of being human. That we set ourselves unrealistic expectations and then beat ourselves up for not following through. That it’s OK to be less than perfect.
So now, I see dealing with my inconsistency as part of my bigger journey to wards a mindful, grownup life. When I notice that I’m slipping — whether that’s my morning meditation, exercise, getting stuck to my chair without a break all day or not making time to be creative or connect with people — I evaluate whether it’s a habit I want, or if it was a bit of a whim.
And start again. Then rinse and repeat. So, after a while I am someone who meditates most days, who exercises regularly, who writes and paints and gardens.
So stop beating yourself up too. Congratulate yourself for noticing and begin again. Life is much better that way.
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