finding the rhythm of your day

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before i retired, the rhythm of the day usually involved waking up early, reading something motivational, look over my planner and plot out the day and week, and then off i went. i as many people do, had more things to do, than time to do it. and i enjoyed it. i felt productive, busy, important, and always had the next project or goal in mind. 

i also had the luxury of retiring over a period of time, giving me space to slowly get used to the pace of my new life. even with that, it has taken some time to find the daily routine that fits my current lifestyle. the physical and cognitive changes from my parkinson's including fatigue, and trying to reduce stress also play a part of how i spend my day. lastly i had to make a mind shift that the things that i do now have tremendous value, even though they don’t involve earning a living or adding to my career path. but enough time has passed and with the help of family and friends and the extraordinary PD community, i have transitioned from seeing what i can’t do but what i can do.

so i started with listing all the things that i could do during a day.

gardening

home maintenance

exercise

cook

read

listen to music

meditate

practice a 2nd language

research family history

volunteer

blog

journal

advocate for PD

meals or time with family or friends- whether that means in person, by phone, email, text, or social media

that’s 14 things and some items can be broken down further into sub categories. then i decided on the ones that i’d like to do daily, or at whatever interval is appropriate. then i tried experimenting throughout the day to see what worked out best for me.

i found that still getting a good morning routine helped me set the rest of the day in a more positive tone. i also found that i exercise much more if i do it first thing in the morning before i get too fatigued. i have coffee and read something inspirational or motivational whether it’s a book or podcast, and sometimes it’s reading a story from the davis phinney foundation website called moments of victory. then i review and plan my day, read my emails. then do some exercise, have breakfast, and some gardening.

after the sweaty work is done i like to get cleaned up and dressed. even if i’m staying home all day i find that showering, putting on makeup, and getting dressed (even if it’s shorts and a t-shirt, we are in hawaii after all) i feel better and ready for the next stage of the day. i try to make my appointments in the late morning to early afternoon. in the afternoon when i’m back home i pick one or two things from my list to do depending on how i feel.

i’m sure that rhythm will change over time and I’ll make adjustments as needed. i’d love to hear what the rhythm of your day is like. oh, and i forgot there is one more thing to add to my list when needed. a nap!