A Struggle With Consistency And All That We Know To Be True
Being consistent at failing to be consistent and how uncomplicated it might really be.
I have been slacking off.
Those were the words I had been repeating over and over again to myself for the past few weeks now. But who am I really kidding? I have repeated these words for the past few months and maybe even longer. I have been slacking off.
For days, I have wanted to write this article, okay maybe not this one but an article. I wanted to gain a streak on Duolingo or what about more pressing issues like starting my applications for my Master’s Degree. It wasn’t that I did not have enough reasons to do these things, au contraire, I did. Did I have people around me to hound me over their importance? Yes, I did. So why haven’t I? It is a big question I still ask myself.
Last night, after a long bothersome conversation with myself, I got up, took a bath, and decided I need to get right back to living, to do the things I need to do, and want to do. The things that call to me, like writing, traveling, building a business. I decided I didn’t want to live the reality of my dreams, it was getting rather tiring simply having these imaginations alone and when I finally got up to go back to do that, I didn’t feel any better or different than I had felt in the past few months, there wasn’t any special feeling that came with this resolution, not spiritual waves or earthly peace washed over me. If anything, I felt the resistance to them a whole lot more than ever. I wanted to do them but I didn’t really want to. I didn’t feel like it.
But there was something I kept telling myself, “Tolu, all you really need is some momentum”
I know who I am, I know the things I love, I know my heart bursts and bridles with passion at new ideas and possibilities, I know I absolutely love the things I love, reading, studying, writing, and working so I know I would do fine at them. But, I also know how hard it is to stay consistent, somewhere within me, I believe that consistency is a habit I lost somewhere along the way, but right inside of me, I know consistency is a habit I can gain right back. I needed to demystify it in my mind. To make it less complicated than it is.
Sure, it may be a bit tough but imagine what peace I would feel if I could do all that I have set out to do consistently. I didn’t want to believe it was that complicated anymore. I don’t want to believe anything is. Here are all some slightly unconventional lessons I have gleaned in my quest for consistency and my failures at it
1. Consistency is messy sometimes
A few minutes ago, I had to get up from my bed and the comfort of writing this article to make breakfast for my family, I didn’t really feel like it, nobody really asked for me to do that either, but it was something I have always wanted to do and be consistent at, so I did it anyway this morning. The quest for consistency isn’t always structured, sometimes it is messy, our plans and dreams meeting us at unusual times. Occurring at inconvenient times. Planning to jog by 5:30 am but hitting the snooze button on the alarm so many times that is it now 8:00 am but still going out to jog regardless. Consistency is messy sometimes and I tell myself to embrace the messiness of it.
2. Consistency is boring sometimes
It is sometimes the least favorite thing to do at the moment. Sometimes it is really really boring. All you can do is sit down at the table and surf the internet waiting for inspiration to hit, but maybe you don’t have to, maybe you just have to start anyway because the thing about consistency too is that it is about gathering momentum. It always gets better. It always gets better once that inertia moment has passed. I felt that way when I started writing this article but I decided to just do it anyway and write crap if I have to. Several lines in and I am in a flow. It is okay, no worries about being bored. Yeah! it is will definitely get boring sometimes, but it sure gets better several minutes in, all you really need is some momentum. All you need to do is gather some momentum.
3. Consistency is about being unprepared
We wait so much to be ready but we never are. I believe one of the ways I limit myself from being consistent is waiting to feel ready, waiting for a good structure, or laid-out plan. But if it is okay for consistency to hit us at weird times, it is okay for us to feel weird going in. It is okay to not be ready. Consistency never asked us to. Right now, you can do that thing that you always wanted to do. After writing this, I am going to prepare for my master’s applications and I sure don’t feel ready but, I don’t need to be. There is no law that says I have to be. Isn’t it amazing to know that right now we can do just about anything, record a video on our phone and upload it on youtube, record a podcast, anything… we can do anything without being ready. There is a law that says THIS is okay.
4. Consistency is not being afraid to fail
What if I am not good enough? This is the question that has plagued a first-class student of Electrical and Electronics Engineering for months, what if my favorite universities reject me. What if I don’t get the scholarships? I mean, I have sure seen my fair share of failures and they sucked enough to bring my Type A personality down. I wish I could say otherwise, but it did. Maybe though, I could fail, there is a real chance of that happening but something very interesting I found this morning talks about how we are sometimes not consistent because we focus too much on the results than the process or journey. Maybe, if I focused a little bit more on enjoying all I have to do to get into my dream school, maybe if I focus on what joy and fun it would be to steadily walk through that process, I wouldn’t be so focused on the results I do not yet know. Or maybe not? What I do know for sure is that fear plagues consistency, what if I stop being consistent, I fall back into old cycles or… Well, I guess you may, I guess I may too, but consistency doesn’t really care, consistency is just messy enough to want to know if you will keep going.
5. Consistency is late sometimes
Sure, you missed going to the gym this morning, will you simply go tonight? Consistency isn’t always early. I planned to write this article by 5:30 am but it is 8:56 am now and I am writing, consistency doesn’t really care. Sure, being early is good but where you can’t really be. No pressure, I remind myself to take the pressure off and just do what I know I will enjoy doing. Consistency doesn’t really care.
I wrote this article because it illustrates the junction I find myself at currently in my life, I told my friend yesterday that I was bothered that I would fail at my commitment to start being consistent now and he says to me over the phone “well, you can always try”. Yeah. I can always try. You can always try too, because the thing is, that is all consistency really wants from us.