Saturday, March 10, 2012

Routine

My days in Savannah so far have centered around finding a routine. When I was teaching elementary school, I found that the kids were able to find freedom to think, create, explore and try new things when all of these things took place within the safe boundaries of a routine.  Adults aren't that different, especially when in a new place. Ironically, it's as if there's safety in it and that "security" allows for risk taking.

So what do I do with my days? I started off my time here by studying as soon as I woke up because I was waking with a feeling of panic, thinking that I had to use every single second to work on my thesis and that I was behind!  But then I realized that it isn't healthy to start a day that way. I was here in beautiful Savannah but I wasn't experiencing life. I also had a hard time focusing. I was just sitting in my apartment in front of the computer.  So I decided to start every morning with some kind of exercise.  Now I go to yoga or walk around the park first thing every morning.  This allows for me to see some of Savannah's beauty and release some natural, stress reducing endorphins.  This helps! Not only do I feel better, but my focus lasts longer when I'm studying. And really, you can't work all day long without breaks.  Your work will suffer and you will too.

Scene from Forsyth Park

I've also been cooking more.  This apartment has come with the most beautiful kitchen! It makes me want to cook and clean! Haha! Also, I know that what I put in my mouth has an impact on my energy level and my ability to work longer hours. So I've been eating lots of fruits, veggies and lean meats. 

"Sandwich Cam" Haha!


Of course, I've also visited some of the great restaurants around here.  My sweet landlady took me to dinner the other night at The Bohemian Hotel. The restaurant, Rocks, is delicious! Their rooftop bar is where I took this image of the sunset.  I love it!

View from Rocks on the Rooftop

And when I'm done for the day, I usually try to either get some rest or find something fun to do at night. Sometimes I'll keep working if I'm in the flow, but it's different every day and I try to be sensitive to what I need. Last night my friend Suzy, whom I've known since the 8th grade, arrived.  She drove up from Miami to see me and I'm so happy she's here. It was great to have a girlfriend here to talk to and we had some fun last night.  The Savannah Stopover Music Festival is happening here this weekend.  It's a place for bands to stop and perform on their way to South by Southwest in Austin.  I hadn't heard of any of them except for Grimes. Grimes is Claire Boucher, who plays keys, sings and plays programmed electronic music.  She has a band, Born Gold, that backs her up as well. The event took place in the Jepson Center on their interior steps.  The lights, fog, music, and movement, all set against a pretty stark and contemporary setting, made for one incredibly modern and surreal experience.  It was a perfect stress release! It was also fun to stand amongst all of the SCAD students who I knew were loving the music.  There was one girl getting down with her bad self right in front of us and I just had to soak in all of the fun energy. Here's a picture from last night and a video of one of her songs that I think will represent the performance better than my words can.

Grimes


I have to say that claiming my time and being sensitive to the ebb and flow of my motivation/energy has helped me to be more productive. And not feeling like I have anything to apologize for is great too. I have a feeling that when I'm finished with this thesis, I will find that I'm more in control of my time and, in turn, my life. I like the slower pace that I have here and I'm realizing that there is nothing that says I have to live my life any differently when I get home.  In an effort to do what I can for my community, I've given up time that I should have been taking for my own health and mental peace. I understand that starting the business after I graduate is going to mean long hours and really hard work, but I think there's something to the idea of taking it slowly and working methodically so that I can still enjoy life and feel good.  Because in the end, what we do with our lives is important. It's the gift we give to the world, but I don't believe that you have to stress yourself out and worry in order to give your best.  In fact, I believe the opposite. 

I think that a gift given with love, peace and self-control are the best. That's what I want to give. And I think you have to slow down and live more simply in order to do that.  I'm working on it!

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