By Poppy C Spain
The first few weeks of SCA have been emotional. For me, they’ve been filled with excitement, fear, laughter and, to be honest, there have been some tears too. We’re all getting to know each other, and ultimately trying to mold ourselves into the creatives (or people) we want to be. Part of this, of course, is learning to manage ourselves and our time.
Our circle time on habits and time management was certainly enlightening, but I know I speak for at least a few of us when I say that I came away from that circle feeling overwhelmed, inferior and a little disheartened. Feeling fed up of not having my shit together, even a little bit, I’ve spent the week reflecting on improvements that need to be made (and quick).
The conclusion? I have a lot of bad habits that need fixing (which I kind of already knew). I stay up too late and can’t get up early in the morning (I’m a serial snoozer). I like trash TV, junk food, alcohol and at times a fag or two. I can easily spend a day horizontal on the sofa and shut myself away from the outside world. My phone is a like an extra limb (although I lose it all the time, ironically) and I’d say mindlessly staring at social media is like breathing for me. I reward myself with fun things first in the hope that I’ll do the boring or necessary stuff afterward (this rarely happens); my rewards involve all of the bad things I’ve mentioned, rather than doing exercise or something else productive. I’m forgetful and annoyingly clumsy. I leave almost everything to the last minute. I’m easily overwhelmed, and anxiety means that I just shut down if things feel like too much.
And you know what the worst thing is? I break promises to myself ALL the time, which is a big deal for me. When I was three years old, my dad decided that in our household a promise would mean a promise and this rule remains sacredly upheld within our family (and I’ll continue it when I have kids one day). This was a highly useful parenting tool, but also very handy for a child with a wisecracker for a dad. I particularly relished applying this rule when it allowed me to suss out my dad’s white lie about a Pikachu figure I’d found which he had said DEFINITELY wasn’t a present for me. “Promise?” I said with glee, to which he responded “Doh!” because a promise is a promise. I wonder whatever happened to that Pikachu…
Anyway, the point is that I’m disappointed with myself. I’ve broken too many promises and have so many bad habits which (it seems) many manage to avoid or have broken altogether. We’ve spoken a lot recently about writing things down and saying things out loud to make them more concrete. So, along with buying one of those alarm clocks that runs away from you when you get up, I’ve decided to make a public contract with myself (in the hope that I stop breaking promises and become the person I want to be).
So, here are my promises:
- I promise to meditate every day AT LEAST once
- I promise to scab EVERY DAY FOR 15-30 MINUTES
- I promise to run THREE times a week
- I promise to do yoga EVERY MONDAY MORNING in SCA with the crew (everyone, please join us)
- I promise to continue teaching dance on a Thursday throughout SCA
- I promise to attend an event with the elderly AT LEAST once a month• I promise to attend CBT sessions
- I promise to speak to both of my parents EVERY week
- I promise to see both of my parents AT LEAST EVERY OTHER week
- I promise to limit my social media consumption (unless it’s for a school project) to outside the SCA building
- I promise to listen to a podcast EVERY DAY
- I promise to read for AT LEAST fifteen minutes every day (whether this a book or the news)
- I promise to go to bed before midnight when we don’t have a deadline the next day
Hopefully, I’ll keep adding to this list as time goes on, but there are some habits which I’m still too attached to (and I don’t want to set myself up for failure). If anyone fancies joining me on any or all of the above, or just reminding me of these promises if it looks like I’m slipping, please do!