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The Habit of Being Who You Are

Two or three times a week, I make the short pilgrimage to this place:

My coffee cup and wallet outside of Seattle's Best Coffee on SW 5th and Main in Portland

then turn around and go back across the street to this place:

The Portland Building

and today it struck me that the number of times I'll be doing so in the future, though it has always been finite, is now really finite.

Countdown to DarkEm's retirement, showing 168 days 7 hours 25 minutes and 54 seconds
(Retirement countdown)

In 169 days, the nice people at Seattle's Best Coffee who know my name, my cup, and my two favorite drink orders, won't be part of my daily life anymore. On the plus side, I won't have to enter the portals of the World's Tallest Basement anymore either.

I'm reading a book called Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself which, while sadly full of pseudo-science, does contain one interesting idea: that a lot of what we are is habit, and that conscious application of mind can change habit, with the implication that we can change who we are.

It's not that I want to be someone different, particularly (mostly I'm reading the book on my sister's recommendation), but a whole bunch of my habits are shortly going to be changing considerably, with or without the conscious application of my consciousness, and I still don't have a clue what I'd like to replace them with.

Crossposted from Dreamwidth, where there are comment count unavailable comments.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 17th, 2013 06:44 am (UTC)
I'm afraid the thing that struck me most about this is: "I'm reading the book on my sister's recommendation". Is she trying to tell you something?!

More seriously - retirement is not only an opportunity to change yourself, it's almost forcing you to do so! You can make positive decisions about how you want to spend the rest of your life, both on a large scale (do you want to travel? return to further education? write one or more books?) and on a smaller scale (do you want your days to be structured, or do you want to get up when you feel like it and decide each day what you want to do?). Or you can just go with the flow, without any planning or goals.

But I suggest that you (literally) give yourself a break - allow some time to just enjoy being freed from work, to appreciate your garden and your books, to take some longer cycle rides, etc..
Jul. 18th, 2013 04:59 am (UTC)
Heh. I'll give my sister this: the only messages she's trying to foist on me are ones she's sincerely excited about on her own account.

You are so right about the decisions and plans for retirement. I've given it a lot of thought, and all I know for sure is that I will definitely need a longish break just to unwind before I start imposing any new structure on myself. I think I do need structure, but maybe not for the first month or two. How can anyone know what good large stretches of leisure time are if they've never had any?

Thank you for your thoughtful words.
Jul. 17th, 2013 11:46 am (UTC)
"In 169 days, the nice people at Seattle's Best Coffee who know my name, my cup, and my two favorite drink orders, won't be part of my daily life anymore." Why not? Why not start your new days there and like the ripples in a pond when a pebble is tossed into it, go outward from there?
Jul. 18th, 2013 05:01 am (UTC)
It's a lovely thought--and it has crossed my mind--but I know myself, and a four-mile bike ride is not generally likely to precede my first cup of coffee of the day.

However, there are coffee places closer to home that I wouldn't mind getting to know a bit better. I love the image of letting the ripples work out from a set center. That's a really good idea!
Jul. 17th, 2013 01:37 pm (UTC)
Jul. 18th, 2013 05:02 am (UTC)
:D I honestly am not complaining, either! I know what a fantastic situation I'm in. I'm just musing on the magnitude of the change.
Jul. 19th, 2013 06:02 pm (UTC)
Of course! But it's interesting to think about changing habits!
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )



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