“As long as habit and routine dictate the pattern of living, new dimensions of the soul will not emerge”
– Henry Van Dyke
A friend recently asked me to help her pick out a gift for her mother. After hours and hours of scouting, we found the perfect gift. Tired, we stood in the queue at the billing counter. I am usually a patient person, but today I admit I was getting quite antsy. The only thing I could think of was that it was 5 pm, and it was time for my break, when I get to enjoy an episode of “Orange is the New Black” or “Game of Thrones” and have my daily cup of coffee. This routine was something that I had been following for years. I was so used it now, that the thought of having an alternative never occurred to me.
This incident is a very good example of how all of us have a certain routine in our lives that we strive to stick to. We are like the needles of a clock, reliving the same motion again and again.
Isn’t it ironic though? We are creatures of routine, but still caught up in an incessant cycle of change. Yes, routine has helped give our lives a proper structure and a certain productivity depending on the kind one follows. But we get so used to this day to day monotony, that we forget we are also growing.
The truth is, we like stability, and will go to any ends to avoid a state of imbalance. Who wouldn’t want to lead a life full of happiness and good relationships? Truth be told, I am no different. Even I would like to avoid the inevitable ups and downs of life, which add a certain element of uncertainty, scaring me to my core. But these ups and downs are what motivates us, and what helps us grow. Without overcoming any obstacles, we could never discover our inner potential and abilities. We could never become aware of our power to become better and to do the impossible.
Every minute of our life, we are growing, constantly rectifying our flaws and modifying ourselves according to our personal experiences or thoughts. When we look back, we realize how nothing is the same anymore. We are very different from the people that we used to be. But how many times do we embrace this change instead of automatically opposing it? How often do we pause for a moment and appreciate how much we have changed?
Maybe it is just human tendency to want routine, to need it. But it is important that we take time out from this monotony. We need to stop and look how far we have come on this path of progress. Look at the people we used to be, and who we are now. Remember those trivial issues that were once considered major problems. It might be a long time before we achieve self-actualization, but we are trying and one day, we will get there. So maybe it’s time to stop for a moment and pat yourself on the back. You’ve done a good job, reader.
‘Why this Love for Monotony?’ has been edited by Aashna Kanuga.