As a part of your daily life, you have certain routines without which the day doesn’t pass. Did you ever question if you were doing those routines in the right way?
Who doesn’t use toothpaste for brushing? All of us do. But do we ever question the amount of paste we need to apply on the toothbrush? We blindly follow what they show in toothpaste advertisement and fill the entire area of brush with the paste. But according to research, just a peanut size of paste is sufficient to clean the teeth. If you are a right hander, why don’t you use your left hand for brushing? Why should you do it only with right hand? By brushing with left hand, you will not only end up cleaning the parts of the mouth which can’t be reached by right hand but you will also be exercising the parts of the brain which are usually not activated when you use right hand.
Here are a few routines which I realized were bad:
1. Using an alarm for waking up: In today’s world, where there is no difference in day and night, I do agree that alarm has been one of the best inventions by mankind. But these alarms have been doing equal level of harm to human well being. When the alarm clock goes off in the morning, the day which has to start pleasantly, will start with release of stress/ fear. Because you are being woken up with an external force. This in result produces negative chemicals in the brain. It is not just about this. Sleep works in cycles of four stages. You will be in deep sleep in third and fourth stage. It is during this stage the muscle repairs and energy for the next day is built. If alarm rings when your sleep is in this stage, you feel fatigue the entire day even though you slept for entire 8 hours. It has been 2 years that I have stopped using alarm. I use it only on the days when I am afraid of not waking up early.
Start sleeping early. Try to tap into your subconscious mind and give instructions on when to wake up. Stop using alarm for a week and see if the consequences are really bad. If they are, probably your subconscious mind will start listening to you.
2. ‘I am tired’ excuse: After a long day at office, you go home and say this excuse everyday. We are not really tired. It is just an excuse we tell ourselves to not do any more productive work for the day. Do you feel the same when you have to go home and meet your best friend after a long time? You feel the energy which you never had on normal days. Have you seen a kid who jumps all the day plays all the day and will still have the same energy when you come back home? Because they are doing what they enjoy. Even I used to go home and rest on sofa everyday giving the I am tired excuse. One day, I came across an answer on Quora where the writer mentioned that he starts working as soon as he gets home. I implemented that and could come out of this excuse.
3. Letting others tell you that you can’t do it: There is a famous story of a few frogs who were accidentally slipped into a deep pit. All the frogs were trying to come out, but people outside were telling the frogs that the pit is deep and they can’t come out. All the frogs gave up except for one. It successfully came out. It came out because it was deaf and could not listen to what people were saying. Similarly in daily life, a lot of people will tell you that you can’t do a lot of things. It is you who should decide if it is worth trying and go for it even if people tell that you are not capable of it.
4. Using Mobile phones in bed:
Mobile phones are bad both before going to sleep and after waking up in the morning. The light emitted from the mobiles disrupts the sleep cycle. And the buzzing sound does not let you fall asleep. The awaiting of notification keeps your brain alert. On the whole, it is the worst thing to use if you plan on sleeping early.
When you wake up in the morning, your mind is fresh from a deep night’s sleep. The ideas you get in the morning can be life changing. Instead of letting the mind give you those thoughts, you dump it with notifications from your smart phone again.
I have been trying really hard to get rid of this but have been only partially successful. What worked for me is finishing up all the work an hour before sleep and not keeping anything for morning. But on the days I don’t I end up using mobile phone in bed. Also, doing meditation and zentangles before going to sleep helped me divert my attention from mobile phone and transitioning to calm mode before sleep.
Happy realizing the wrong things!