Archives for posts with tag: Monday Monday

Today is a unique new perspective, a new start, a fresh beginning – and a Monday. Mondays get a raw deal. It’s not the fault of the day that it is the beginning of most work week’s, the hangover after the party that was the weekend, and the perpetual every-seven-day buzzkill. We made most of that up. We could do Monday differently, with some practice. 🙂 True on a Monday, true of a great many other circumstances, too. I sip my coffee, hearing jazz through the walls; my Traveling Partner is enjoying a Monday.

My work day will start soon. For now, it’s me, this cup of coffee, and this pleasant Monday morning. I enjoyed a walk through the neighborhood before dawn, getting some exercise, and appreciating again how much variety there is in the houses. I pass by one or two neighbors preparing to leave for work happening elsewhere. It’s been more than a year since I’ve had to commute to an office. I marvel at that, as I walk along; the walk in the mornings feels a bit like “heading to work” each day, although it’s a loop around the neighborhood of about a mile before returning home. Safe, convenient, but very predictable. I’m grateful for the walk on level pavement, though. It may be “predictable”, but it puts me at little risk of injury, which is a win, and I’m still in cell phone range (so my Traveling Partner needn’t worry).

This particular Monday begins with a lovely sunrise.

The gentle start to the day seems promising. I sip my coffee thinking about the day ahead. An errand to run. A task to complete. The work involved in the work day, itself. I think about “fueling the machine” – maybe a midday break, and a nice scramble for lunch? My thoughts drift back to the weekend. If I had finished my writing yesterday morning, I’d be posting something very different. It was a morning with some challenges, but the day was splendid. The entire weekend was a pleasant one, in my recollection. The sour notes in the music are lost in the beauty of the larger symphony. I’m okay with that. (There has to be some upside to having memory issues! 😀 )

The pandemic has prevented us from socializing much. We’ve been very strict with ourselves about it. Only two friends (and our son) had been to the new house before this past weekend (other than some socially distant contractors) – and in one case, we ended up catching colds from the visit, which discouraged any further visiting with people, frankly. Being sick sucks enough to practice social distancing if it means not having head colds. That’s my thought, anyway. My Traveling Partner invited friends up for dinner and hanging out. It was lovely – and I do miss entertaining. I was pretty emotionally exhausted from the surplus of human contact by the end of the evening, but it was a lot of fun, and a good night’s rest readied me for a new week.

I guess what I’m making a point of going on about is that sometimes it’s necessary to explicitly make room to succeed – perhaps differently than I planned. A challenging morning can become a splendid day, and lingering pleasant memories. “Monday” doesn’t have to be predictably awful. We have a crazy number of choices to make, every day, and the ones we leave “on autopilot” sometimes don’t leave room for new, better, outcomes. I remind myself to put myself on “pause” long enough, often enough, to consider my choices with care, and to leave room for success. I remind myself to consider what matters most, more often, and to choose my actions more deliberately, with greater care, eyes wide open, and a beginner’s mind.

Paths, moments, beginnings, journeys; choose your metaphor.

…So…here it is…Monday. 🙂 It’s time to begin again.

Monday stretches out ahead of me like some sort of… Monday. I’m okay with that. There have certainly been times in my life when each Monday (or, that is to say, the starting day of each work week) carried a very specific signature dread. It didn’t seem associated with the job I had, the boss I worked for, or the circumstances, generally. Mondays felt “cursed” in some way. It was reinforced, although I didn’t understand it for a long time, by the cultural jesting and aphorisms about Mondays. Thinking Mondays are any worse than any of the other days is an illusion, though.

Think of the mind’s eye as functioning mechanically; to see, it would need a lens, and a focal point, and one might well expect that adjusting the focus would bring things into view more clearly. It’s a pretty good analogy. We become what we practice, and by extension, we do tend to see what we are looking at, and it may not always be entirely obvious if our perspective is in some way “out of focus”. Is there dust on our mental lens? Are we focused more specifically on something outside the frame? A loose metaphor attempting to capture how thinking errors, and an unwillingness to allow our perspective to be well-informed by what we can see (when we observe) and understand (when we permit ourselves to be open to new information). Happy Monday – use it wisely. 🙂

Monday is Monday. It’s just a day. We gave it a name. Rotate the wheel a turn and it lands on another day – couldn’t that one have been “Monday”? It’s rather arbitrary labeling, and wholly fictitious; we made that shit up. Let it go. Let Monday be Monday, and also just be a day in your experience. Another new beginning. A new starting point to begin a new week. Let go of what is not now – past or future – and take a deep breath before you head to the office, the job site, the unemployment office, an interview, your studio, a wilderness trail, a retail outlet, a cafe, a library, a doctor’s office, a classroom, or whatever destination Monday might take you. Have your experience with an open mind, and an open heart. Choose to have your own experience, your way. Choose to be the person you most want to be – authentically. Make the choices that take you there, however slow the progress may seem to be.

What one thing could you choose to do, or change, that nudges you gently in the direction of your goals? Are you doing that, today? No? Something smaller? Incremental change over time is built on small choices – millions of those, over hours, days, weeks… until we have transformed ourselves. I’m just saying – you have amazing power over your experience, even when you feel you have little power over your circumstances.

I’ve just started reading “After the Ecstasy, the Laundry“.  I’m ready for this one, now. I wasn’t, earlier. The new commute provides me with more time to read, since I take the train. I’d been very much wanting to refocus my attention on the written word, and really make more time – take more time – to read. Study has great value, and I find that reading from printed works seems a more effective learning strategy for me, personally, than most video material can actually compete with. It’s not a given that a medium that grabs my attention in a visceral way (like tv, movies, and YouTube content) will also teach me; hasn’t seemed to be the case, at all, in practice. Books work. Your results may vary. Perhaps it is to do with something about me, as an individual (likely not, honestly, we’re all very similar in most ways), or something to do with how the mental process of reading works in human brains? Anyway – I read. It works for me. I talk about what I read, which reinforces what I’ve learned and runs it through all manner of critical thinking drills, to validate that new information. I never regret the time I spend reading. 🙂 Maybe that’s enough reason to read?

So… I’ve got Monday ahead of me, a book in my backpack, and… I think I’m ready to begin again. 🙂

Morning again? I sip my coffee. Definitely morning. I could let it go at that, this morning, and feel content I’d said enough. 🙂

There’s a day and a week ahead. Q4 still ahead. The year is, however, half over, a bit more, really. There are months with holidays to plan in them, months without much going on, all will involved one or more weekends making the drive down south. I’m already tired thinking about that. lol I take a breath and pull my consciousness back to “now”. “Today” is quite enough to deal with today. lol I expect it to be a hot one, based on the weather reports. I take a moment to appreciate air conditioning – at home, and at the office. I am fortunate.

I continue to sip my coffee and let my brain finish waking up. Funny that I manage this in spite of not yet being fully awake. I spend a moment or two musing about brain function, generally. I refill my (iced) coffee glass with water. Hot day ahead; it just makes sense to drink plenty of water.

I think back on the lovely weekend. Restful. Productive. Healthy. A good one in general, full of fun moments, and good times. I went my own way after brunch with friends. Walked through the Saturday Market (on Sunday) on my way home. Talked to artists. Enjoyed the sunshine a while, happy that it was not stiflingly hot.  I smile and return my consciousness to “now”, again.

It’s a Monday morning. Monday mornings are great for beginning again. 🙂 I wonder where the day – and week – will take me?

I’m not the only one who does it – who lives a fairly different life during the work week, than I do on the weekends. It’s not the frequent road trips, or the specific nature of the job, or even the art. It is a difference in thinking, and a difference in context. Much of the work week is consumed by employment; hours spent wholly on someone else’s agenda, rather than on my own. This leave, often, only the weekend “for me”. Such is the way of our exploitative labor-culture. :-\

…Yeah, I’m bitching about it. It’s pretty crap-tacular, and does not benefit the laboring wage-earner nearly as much as it benefits the wealthiest citizens in the shareholder and executive classes. Early on a Monday morning, thoughts still tangled up on art, I feel more than a little inconvenienced by having to maintain “gainful employment”, no lie.

I sip my coffee and consider the 10 canvases that resulted from a great weekend in the studio. I needed that. 🙂

I spent time in the garden, too. Another living metaphor.

So this morning, after waking too early, after checking off a small handful of self-care tasks, I check the weather. I dress. I check traffic. Right; new highway closures, lasting through August. Fuuuuuuuuuuck. Well, so far the traffic map is all green. That’s promising… I keep half an eye on that, attempting to determine whether I’ll benefit from earlier hours for a few weeks. (An easy solution.)

…I end up “exploring the world” via Google Maps, and lose about 20 minutes of life time to that. lol I did find a couple nearby parks and trails to explore in the process…so… I guess, potentially worth the investment in time. 🙂

I listen to the Monday morning commuter traffic begin, just beyond the window…

…It’s already time to shift gears. The start of a new work week. It’s time to begin again. 😉

I drag myself from bed with the alarm clock still in my hand. I slept poorly, and only for about 5 hours. The sleep I got was interrupted, restless, and not all that restful. I groggily take my morning medication, entirely forgetting I’d promised myself to take it a bit later to ease the transition to living an hour out of sync with the past many months since the last time the government arbitrarily put us all through this ludicrous bullshit that has no benefit I can single out as an obvious reason to do this weird thing twice a year. Why the hell do we mess around with time? You just know who ever had this idea in the first place thought it was awesome… I always wonder how they convinced everyone else.

I yawn over my coffee, feeling uninspired, and looking for a moment on which to build the day…something small to delight me… something to motivate me to continue on and begin again, however many times it is necessary to do so… I’m not quite there, yet, and feeling very human.

I’ve got quite a few tools in my toolkit these days. I put on my headphones, cue up a playlist, and tackle the morning from another perspective. There is, after all, an entire day ahead of me…and so many choices.