in response to my post on patience, a reader asked what i do when trying to exercise that virtue. i told her i stare at people, which is completely accurate, but not the most inclusive response.
because i also review affirmations! let me explain. several years ago i read great books and wanted to remember their teachings.
so i did what any 21st century person in her late 20s would do—i grabbed a pile of index cards and fluorescent pens and wrote my favorite quotes on the cards.
somehow, i understood early that i learn best by repetition and frequency. so i’ve used the technique ever since, to master languages, ace AP Modern European History exams, and recall all manner of factoids about Baroque art.
the point for you is—if this is your method, too, congratulations. you now have a lightweight downtime activity for the rest of your life. because i’m assuming you have important ideas, quotes, and goals you want to remind yourself of, right? i hope so.
even if this doesn’t sound like your learning style, take a minute to find what suits you.
these days, instead of looking like a sketchy loiterer, i look like a sketchy loiterer reviewing cat burglary techniques.
people often ask, are you giving a speech?
and guys at yoga think it’s hilarious to say, “i didn’t know there was a test today!” when they see me reviewing them before class.
i’m up to 48 note cards, and while i do my best to get through all of them each day, i don't always make it. like the superstitious weirdo i sometimes am, i worry they won’t work if i’m not reviewing them daily.
but i secretly think they do, because i find myself reciting their contents unexpectedly. for example, when there’s no Creamy Salted Almond Butter on the shelf at Trader Joe’s, i think abundance is the way of the universe, (Ali Binazir) as i trot off to find an employee.
and when said employee tells me they’re out, instead of rhetorically asking if this is England during the Blitz and how can you run out of food in America? i think, when faced with a loss, immediately take one small action to support yourself (The Artist’s Way) and begin my search for a slab of dark chocolate.
see how useful? the repetition is crucial because it solidifies them in your subconscious, which is how you'll retrieve reassuring ideas when almond butter is suddenly removed from your life.
do you make a point of remembering quotes, inspiring ideas, and affirmations? how? would a system like this work for you? let me know in the comments!
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