Listen to everyone. Follow no one.

Habits are weird. They come and go; some last years, others a few days; some you hate, others you wish you had. I’m a sucker for habits – I get really excited about some daily task or lifestyle and do it for about three days, then I forget one time and it’s all over. I like to call these stints of certain behaviors my “flashes of brilliance” or moments where I think because some professional athlete or mentor or idol does something, then I should do it, too. Right now. Start this brilliant habit that will make me that much smarter or faster or healthier or friendlier or happier. But they never actually stick, and that flash of brilliance quickly dims to the subtle glimmer of yesterday’s obsession, and I’m back to my old ways. The ways that for some reason I rarely think are good enough, the ways that surely won’t get me to that next step, better grade, faster run. Habits have forced me to lose trust in the one thing that I can never get rid of, myself.

When you lose trust in yourself you lose your ability to see, think and live clearly. You begin to mindlessly perform tasks and foster habits that others deem “necessary,” and you’re left empty. You lose your ability to think for yourself, to listen to your inner voice telling you no, this doesn’t work for you. Stop.

I’m finally stopping.

“Listen to everyone; follow no one.” That is what I’ve come here to do. It’s time to break some “necessary” habits and begin experimenting. It’s time to do what feels right, to take the knowledge I have garnered from following so many other habits and form the best habits for me. Habits I can follow. Habits that won’t dim but will continue to shine with such brilliance that eventually, it will become a habit others emulate as well.

It’s time to break some habits. And experiment with some new ones. While I’m at it, I’ll post them here for all to see, then, in theory, I’ll hold myself accountable to follow them for more than 72 hours, right? Right.

Samantha’s greatest Flashes of Brilliance that she came up with all on her own and therefore cannot and will not dim (at least until Friday): 

Write a blog post everyday. Or at least post something, a philosophical essay, a picture of a bunny, mile by mile details of my run. Something.

Stretch after every run (and ride). After eight (or is it nine?) stress fractures, you’d think I already have this one down, but for some reason I think I’m just far too busy for such tedious activities as stretching, but 15 minutes of rolling around on the ground while scrolling twitter is better than three months of staring at my running shoes longingly.

Eat more dark chocolate. (As if that will be hard).

Get over the fact that I have as many supplements as an elderly woman and take my calcium, but not at the same time as my iron – then it’s as if I didn’t take anything. Again, eight stress fractures and you’d think I’d have this covered. It’s a work in progress.

Smile and take a deep breath three times a day, each. In other words, set aside six total seconds of sheer, uninterrupted happiness per day.

Okay, here goes. Time to eat some chocolate.

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