It’s Saturday and I, like most everyone, have been avoiding human contact for the last week or so. Some parts of the world have been locked down for weeks already and some are just joining party. But it is clear now that this is the way of things for the foreseeable future.
One thing that is clear is that maintaining both consistency and constancy in these times is paramount to our physical and mental health. Consistency is steadfast adherence to the same principles, course, form, etc. My jiujitsu school, Sheridan BJJ, has “be consistent” as one of its core values. If you wish to improve in something, you need to practice consistently. Showing up day after day, rain or shine, is the key to long-term results. So what happens when we cannot train the way we did before or go to the dojo or the gym? How do we be consistent in the face of such adversity? That’s the eternal question.
Life has a way of screwing with us. We plan to go to the gym every day. We plan to go to jiujitsu every day. We plan to eat right. We make plans and then God laughs at us and life throws us a curve ball. In many ways, being forced to take time off is a blessing because now we can finally make time to take care of ourselves and do some of the things we’ve neglected. The cruel twist is that now that we have the time to train and eat right, the gyms are closed. The trick is that even though you cannot necessarily practice jiujitsu or lift the heavy weights are whatever is your normal practice you can still maintain the habit. Or if you have been trying to build the habit, now is the time.
A healthy routine is more important now, than ever. Even though you have nowhere to go, set your alarm every day and wake up and implement your morning routine. Be consistent in your daily practice. You have the ability to do some things that you may have been neglecting. Try to build those habits now while you can. Maybe you need consistency in your nutrition, or your workouts, or your stretching, or your meditation. You know you have been using the excuse, “I wish I could, but I just don’t have the time” too long. Get started. Do a little everyday and get the ball rolling. Momentum will build and you will start to see the fruits of your actions.
The other quality we must embrace is Constancy. Constancy is the quality of being faithful and dependable or enduring and unchanging. While we have the ability to create consistent habits that allow us to grow and ground us. We also must practice constancy and be faithful and dependable for those around us. We are charged now with trying to be our best and most optimistic selves for those that depend on us. We, all of us, need to do what we can to help stop the spread of the virus and to help our families and communities weather the extreme hardship that this pandemic is thrusting upon us. Panic is not justified, nor is indifference. Adherence to our core values and our moral code is what will allow us to get through this without losing our humanity. While we are physically isolated it is easy to become selfish, but that is the most insidious trap. We need to think communally even when alone. We need to fortify ourselves and our families so we can be our best for the greater communities that need us.
Stay safe and stay healthy.