On the Idea of Habits and Routines

Created: September 10th, 2021
Updated: September 10th, 2021
Topics: Personal Development

I think of routines in an analogous fashion to "foundations". They take time to build up, but once habits are properly set within an individual's life, the routine becomes a powerful tool for helping one achieve their goals. Over time I have gathered many ideas about habits and routines, and I fear that if all the ideas are not properly listed, and explored, I will either forget and, or misremeber certain ideas. So, for now, this seems like a good place as any to start tabulating all my thoughts.

  • People can often feel a negative connotation towards habits or routines but it doesn't have to be the case.
    • You don't only have to have bad habits. If planned well and executed properly, beneficial habits can be formed.
    • Routines may sound boring, but I believe that routines are only as boring as an individual makes them. A great example is a gym routine: If you only do the same things over and over again, there is a higher chance you will become bored over time. But if you decide to switch up exercises that still work the same muscles, you can keep things fresh, and interesting.
  • It's natural to idealize the habit forming process with our wants of immediate results, and temporal permanence. We want our sexy body now, and we want it forever. This is a perfect avenue for burnout. Good habits are formed when the focus on the journey of exploration, and iterative improvement. Our brains naturally enjoy learning new things, and seeing progress.

Exploring the Relapse Process

Created: September 30th, 2020
Updated: September 30th, 2020

Starting Questions

  • Why do I think some habits are "better" than others?
  • What does my relapse from developing habits look like?
    • I generally backslide from all of my developing habits, rather than just 1
    • Although, recently I was able to maintain working out while I backslid in other ways
  • What does my relapsed daily structure look like?
    • Wake up later than I would like, stay in bed distracting myself with media that doesn't feel rewarding, since rewarding media takes focus
    • Rush through self-care and daily prepatory tasks instead of being mindful and enjoying them, often times because I feel tired, anxious, and distracted
    • Feel incredibly guilty as I distract myself at work with easy media because I can't motivate myself to stay on task
      • I think a reason I've been going to isekai/re:life manga is because of how much it gives off that feeling of reward from progression
    • Take a guilt ridden and anxious nap after work because of the mental self pressure
    • Wake up feeling hungry, plop myself infront of the computer once more and play video games while watching anime, while waiting on delivery food
    • Order too much food, and generally unhealthy food: carbs, saturated fats, and sugar
    • Ignore as much social contact as I can that requires any responsibilities
    • Eat too much, get hopped up on sugar and play more videos games and watch more anime until very late at night
    • Go to sleep very late and very tired, but wake up a couple of hours later feeling restless, stay up even later, because I don't want to focus on sleeping
  • What things about the relapsed schedule makes me feel bad?
    • Guilt from not working as hard and best as I can
    • Physical discomfort from sitting too long
    • Anxiety from stress and not moving
    • Frustration from feeling tired, brain fogged, and distracted
    • Self-resentment from placing myself into these feelings
    • Fear and worry about not being able to escape this routine
      • Proven by experience that this is not the case
    • Fear and worry about not being able to escape the cycle
      • Proven by experience that this will always happen, but can be made less painful and should not be worried about.
  • What triggers my relapse?
    • "I need a break" is a thought that often comes to mind, but I don't know how accurate that thought is, nor a healthy way to interact with that thought
    • "I don't want to do anything"
    • Physical exhaustion from burnout, but this is rare and easy to stop from happening
      • Anxiety during rest days because I'm afraid I'll fall back into the relapse pattern
    • Mental exhaustion from burnout. I don't know how much this affects me, or if I even know how aware of it I am, or where it even comes from.
      • Perhaps some of it comes from my effort in resisting what is easy: video games and anime. Those things provide me with immediate pleasure, however they don't have much lasting reward.
    • Using friends as an excuse to binge over the healthy balanced range.
      • Such as going out to lunch 3 days in a row with coworkers rather than saying no and eating at home
    • Over stretching myself with social things when I should take a night to myself.
    • Anxiety from taking it easy rather than "doing the right thing"
    • This previous total-relapse may have been caused by a 3 week long relapse from healthy eating, which then triggered the tiredness and bad daily schedule.

Integrating the Shadow

Accepting Facets of our Repressed Self

Created: September 18th, 2020
Updated: September 18th, 2020


When I was a young boy I had a moment when when I came to the realization of the variety of facets that lay within myself. This realization came around the time of my puberty, where, having lived within a rather puritan household with very little experience of seeing positive sexual love between my parents, I learned of the pleasures of sex but also developed a deep fear and shame from the act of it because of my lack of natural normalicy. This also happened to be around the time when social interactions and beginning steps in developing social skills introduced a world of anger and jealousy towards those who happened to get lucky with certain situations, or had developed some of these skills previously.


Incubating Questions and Ideas

Created: September 8th, 2020
Updated: September 13th, 2020
Topics: All Topics


I lack knowledge. It's not as if I haven't been searching, but often times I have put myself in a situation where I've collected just enough information to get a fuzzy mental model, and then move on to implementation. I've often over looked finer details, to refine and shape, thus making the models mostly useful (specifically but with minor errors, and ubiquitously without true understanding), but lacking the specificity that is necessary for asking the deepest questions. Without the challenge of deeper questions, it's very easy to end up in a place of inaccurate self cognition. You think you know more than you do, and you can't even comprehend nor understand the knowledge you lack. That's why it's important to ask questions.