Armijo: Saying goodbye to the old routine |

Armijo: Saying goodbye to the old routine

Have we all begun to settle into our new reality? The fact is, we must learn to get used to this way of life … at least for the foreseeable future. Throughout the last few weeks, many of us have settled into a new way of life.

It was only a few weeks ago we were seeing images of people in China and Italy using masks and personal protective equipment. We may have even sniggered a bit at what seemed a little absurd and overboard and, now, here we are. Today it is recommended we wear masks and gloves while shopping at the market and out in public places.

Our levels of isolation have differed as well. Some of us have been surrounded by family or roommates, whereas others have been more isolated than normal due to our normal watering hole, gyms, and ski areas no longer being available. Some have completely cut off contact with the outside world, while others are reaching out to old friends and even starting new relationships via technology.

We are living in a new world. As the world around us has forced us to change, we have also been creating new habits in our lives. Studies have determined that it takes about 30-60 days to create a new habit and we are closing in on the 30-day mark. This means that some people have already begun programming their minds to accept this reality as their new normal.

So what new habits are you creating? Does your new reality include a midday nap or meditation? Does your new reality include more time connecting with loved ones? Or, does your new reality include more time watching TV or standing in front of the refrigerator? Remember, these habits tend to stick after 30-60 days of repetition.

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Each and every one of us is currently processing this time differently. We must be respectful of each other’s coping strategies and respectful to those who want more space or use a little more protective gear. Some people will be operating from a place of fear while others will see this as their time to step up and help. We will all need each other at some point so don’t feel as though you need to go it alone.

Fear is a completely normal response to this pandemic and time of uncertainty, but we must not let it consume us. Above all, do not let fear become our new normal. Habits will form either intentionally or unintentionally through repetition. It is important to manage the habits we are creating. If your current habit includes turning on the news in the morning and consuming a lot of negative news media, then you may be conditioning yourself for fear, anger, and/or frustration mindset.

If you have been waking up each day with a new perspective on life in which you are seeing all of the positive things taking place, you are creating a positive new habit. This new habit is appreciating all the time you have with yourself and/or your family.

Maybe this time has allowed you to connect with a past skill such as writing, cooking, woodworking, etc. Your new habit does not have to be anything strenuous. In fact, your new daily habit may include time for rest and relaxation … which is never a bad thing.

If you are at home with family or roommates, be sure to allow them to process all that is happening at their own pace and in their own way. When this first happened, I took to it like water. I was ready with a book in hand, I had planned my nightly Netflix queue, and I had created a “my time” slot in the calendar. My wife was completely the opposite. She began working more and more at the computer which drove me a little crazy because it made me feel as though I should be doing something more.

Realize that we are all creating new habits right now. For some, new habits will include working days from a home office instead of commuting. For others, it includes being a homeschool teacher as well as a parent. Some may just choose to shut out the outside world and live in fear. It is always our choice as to how we approach our situation.

If we continue to attach ourselves to who we once were, we will fail. As of now, we are no longer CEO of this or that, we are no longer a director, manager or personal trainer. We are no longer what we once thought we were. Now, we are just one.

We must set aside petty differences and focus on creating habits that will serve us going forward, or fail by making the same mistakes we did in the past. By focusing on something positive we can do each day, we can create a future we only previously dreamed of.

Change is something that is out of many people’s comfort zones and we have been forced to change in a manner none of us could have imagined. This means there are a lot of people who are experiencing a very challenging time at the moment. I invite anyone with questions or concerns to reach out to me. I am happy to help you any way I can. You may reach out through the email address or social media accounts below.

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