The Daily Grind
The Daily Grind – defined as “one’s daily work routine, especially when it is tiresome” . . . but it does not have to be! Spice it up with something innovative each day.
The Daily Grind is not a new expression having first appeared in print in the mid-1800s often referring to a hard day’s work, but for care partners, make it a day’s work well done. Regardless of one’s age, routines ground us and provide structure in our fast-moving days with predictability, expectations, accountability, anticipation, and discipline but do not think of them as a grind because creating a routine increases efficiency. What needs to be addressed is the focus and then completed because we have established a routine—no need to plan on the fly. By prioritizing the to-do list, the agenda items that must be accomplished are completed, and doesn’t that feel great? No procrastination: we know what we must do as we check off the agenda items.
The intrinsic value of a routine is that it reduces stress and thus, enables us to relax easing into our self-care rituals. Being flexible is especially important but with a routine, you will not feel as if you have shirked your responsibilities. Each of us is different so our days will look different; if your agenda is not working, I invite you to try something else but do not give up. Today is a great day to try something new.
Spicing up a Routine: Express ten things you are grateful for, either orally or written. A dear friend told me of their family ritual: she and her husband share their “highlight” of the day while eating dinner together . . . looking for the highlight throughout the day to share at dinner makes for a positive day. Eat a healthy diet by planning the evening meal or the week’s menu. One night each week set the table in a festive way, almost like “date night.” Set aside time to meditate, slowing you down. Love what needs loving; if you love gardening, make time for that, if you love reading, make time for that, if you love taking a walk, make time for that – no excuses and no apologies. Make time for joy and laughter in your daily routine to brightly spice up your day and you will discover that your daily grind will improve with time.
Self-care Ritual: reading poetry is a way to engage with language in new and unexpected ways but writing it enhances the experience. An easy way to slide into this art form is through Haiku which is Originally developed by Japanese poets, it may be inspired by nature, beauty, or a meaningful experience.
Examples: (How to write a Haiku poem)
As I walked one morning, I began to think of memories, and these are my Haiku poems.
My childhood backyard
Dad pushing me on the swing,
With each push, a kiss.
And then another thought: hope
Hope: four-letter word
Brings a much brighter today.
Hoping not coping!