I love mornings because I love the routine that comes with them – waking up, showering, getting dressed, eating breakfast, running to the metro, saying hello to everyone at work, drinking my cup of tea or coffee, and turning on my computer…
I crave routine. I like predictability and schedule, and knowing what’s coming next.
One of the hard things for me about living in Moscow is the unpredictability of it all. Weather, legislation, buildings, people, rules and friendships change frequently and violently. As city’s go, Moscow is pretty volatile and this makes for a huge amount of stress:
- FRIENDS: one day you meet your friend for coffee and deep conversation. The next week she tells you she’s moving to another country in just a few months. Our friends come and go every year. It’s incredibly stressful to be constantly losing your support network.
- LAWS: Russia is technically only about 20 years old, while things are much more stable than they were in the 1990’s, rules can be pretty fluid here. For someone whose ability to stay in the country is dependent on immigration laws, changes in legislation mean stressful, last-minute scrambles for paperwork.
- BUILDINGS: Moscow is in a constant state of construction. Since moving to this neighborhood a little over 2 years ago my route to the metro has changed about six times due to road construction. Picking your way through slippery, constantly shifting concrete barriers with giant holes in the ground and cranes swinging massive blocks of concrete over your head makes for stressful commuting.
- WEATHER: Russia’s dramatic shifts between hot and cold keep things interesting, but it also means a lot of changing clothes.
My job, even though its schedule is dependent on the whim of a breaking story, has been a fantastic constant for me. I love the routine of going into the office where I have a set role and understandable tasks. The work can be hard and stressful, but I love that the stress is all within a very contained framework known as my job.
Now that my job is changing, I’m finding that I’m less able to lean on it as a constant.
I’m a firm believer that routines and discipline are incredibly healthy. How do you make routines when your job, friends and geographic location are constantly in flux? Are discipline and time management the key?
What do you think? How can you be productive when you quite often don’t know what tomorrow or even the next few hours will bring? Any tips? Any advice? Any time management experts out there?
This is something I’m struggling with this week where I’m at, but what about you? Does your geographic location lend itself to any particular stresses? Do you struggle with the opposite, perhaps boredom with predictability? I’d love to hear your thoughts!