We may have to force ourselves to do not-yet-habitual activities, even if we enjoy them greatly.
When I first started this website, I found great enjoyment in writing. But there came sprees of days where I wouldn’t write— Not because I wouldn’t have enjoyed it, not because I didn’t have ideas, not because I didn’t think it was important, and not even because I had gotten busy— but because I had forgotten. Writing wasn’t yet a habit; instead, my default spare time activity was to watch science youtube videos.
While I concluded after every time I wrote, “Wow! That was great! I need to do this more often!”, I still failed to automatically, habitually, and spontaneously decide to write in my spare time.
Only after months of scheduling writing into my everyday morning schedule did I begin to spend extra my spare time writing. Finally, writing clicked, and then came the delightful moments of quickly writing between classes, or writing when I knew I should’ve gone to sleep an hour ago.
I don’t know why it took as long as it did, but now I know to expect this. We won’t automatically do the worthwhile, far-sighted activites that we know will fulfill us. Not until they come habit.
Drawing © Ariana Dyer.