Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Well, I've managed to fall out of the habit of blogging again for a while.  It's easy to do, especially this time of year.  We're busy at the residency program saying good-byes toour graduates, and we're busy orienting the new interns who will start next week.  We're reassessing curricula, tallying patient numbers, and trying to prepare for what the Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education will throw at us next.

Getting and staying in the habit of blogging on a regular basis has been tough for me.  I don't think I've ever had more than a 3-4 month stretch of regular blogging since I first started doing this 2 and 1/2 years ago.  And, yes, academic medicine is not for the faint of heart, but why can't I stay in the habit of blogging consistently?

The noun "habit" has several definitions, but here are the ones of interest to me lately:
* a settled tendency or usual manner of behavior <her habit of taking a morning walk>
* a behavior pattern acquired by frequent repetition or physiologic exposure that shows itself in regularity or increased facility of performance
*an acquired mode of behavior that has become nearly or completely involuntary <got up early from force of habit>
(Thanks, Merriam-Webster!)

For me, at least, I think my failure to maintain a regular blogging habit all comes down to how I use the hours of each day.  So, I've been seeking out advice about how to better manage my time.  I recently read a book called Early to Rise, and the author challenges readers to consider how waking up an hour or two earlier every day (and then going to bed earlier, too) enables better use of the 16 or so hours we're awake each day.

After reading it, I had to admit that, despite my best intentions, I often lack motivation to do the things I promise to myself to do in the evenings - exercise, writing, connecting with family and friends.  I also have been consistently sleeping in until the last possible minute before rushing through my morning to get to work on time.

So, I figured I'd give it a try for 30 days.  I'm currently on day 8 of waking at 5:30 am to allow time for prayer, writing, and exercise most mornings before work.  Ungh.  (My bedtime has shifted back to 9:30 pm.  Double ungh.)  It is not fun, but I have to admit that I am getting a very satisfying start to my day by accomplishing so much even before I leave the house - not to mention that my evenings are more relaxing instead of a guilt-fest regarding what I "should" be doing.

Do I miss sleeping until 6:30-7 every morning?  You betcha.  Will this 5:30 thing become a habit?  I'm not sure yet.

But here's a new post, at least, that suggests it's might be doing me some good.