Building a New Routine

Building a New Routine
Photo by Peter Lloyd / Unsplash

There’s much that needs doing. Always.

You could fill every moment of every day working toward any number of endeavors, and it seems almost impossible, sometimes, to stop and prioritize.

How do you stack rank the improvement of your health when compared to the possibility of retiring, for example? On the one hand, one might consider the health improvement less valuable when you will never have the opportunity to enjoy your good health. Conversely, an argument could be made that it's no value pushing toward retirement if your health won't let you enjoy it anyway? It feels almost paradoxical.

I have some goals, such as not dying any sooner than necessary, as well as re-branding myself and finding peace and community somewhere.

To that end, I intend on hiking more!

I am going to try to make my new routine elements Goal Based(tm)(laughing emoji) so that I can, ideally, measure their efficacy in some fashion. Almost like I've learned something from working in a scrum / agile environment for so long and now only know how to, at the very least, kanban to get things done.

A major new goal is to take a backpacking trip in September, a moderately strenuous guided group trip, if I'm selected and can prove my capabilities.

In regards to proving myself: my strategy is two hikes per week with more than 5 miles on Tuesday & Friday. I'll be working to get above 1,000 ft elev. gain per trip over time, averaging around 500 ft. elev. gain. today. I am working toward ultimately being able to handle multiple consecutive days of up to 3,000 ft. elevation. The idea of which is certainly thrilling (and a little scary).

I seem to be able to handle up to 1,000 feet a day right now today pretty well. I'm I seem to be building stamina. Things are certainly coming up Milhouse as I continue my practice.

I'm going to try to fit a couple of car camping / glamping trips this summer as well to make sure I'm back into the swing of spending time in the woods with fewer creature comforts. It's been a few years since I regularly went camping. I'm sure it will all come back to me, however. (Or perhaps those are famous last words)

What does this have to do with development, engineering, or people leadership?

Simply: I am trying to approach this process similarly to how I might tackle any other engineering challenge: by showing up and figuring it out.

The core to any successful endeavor is to make like Nike and Just Do It!

Building a routine can be difficult and uncomfortable at first, but as you progress it often becomes easier and easier through each iteration until it's practically second nature. Eventually it becomes so integrated into your life that you don't even need to think about it any longer. That's the goal.

That's generally how I have built skill historically. I don't have an innate ability related to computing, contrary to what people have actually said about me, instead I learned, poked, prodded, practiced, studied, and showed up over and over again until it was a part of me.

It might seem different to think about a parallel between learning how to spin up a docker environment and training to hike 40 miles in weekend with over twenty pounds on my back, but they're really not so different at a high level. Just like you might find yourself wanting to give up when meeting resistance when getting your containers to work together properly, you may want to give up when your legs feel like jelly having hiking over 10 miles and 2,000 feet in a day. Instead you must push through, build new muscle, and eventually what was challenging becomes easy.

In this case, my plan is to schedule regular trips, track my progress, increase the intensity over time, and ultimately succeed in my (lofty) goal!