Searching for thin places, Safe side of habits

July 01, 2012

Safe side of habits

We have lots of interesting discussion, sometimes at tea breaks (yes, we take a tea break everyday) sometimes while working and always at staff meals. The topics range from creative to inspirational to deeply spiritual to completely off the wall. One of our conversations recently was about the safe side of habits. So it was this grown up version of truth or dare. Do you stay on the safe side of habits? It was the determination of the gathering, which while habits, had a place they could be limiting. They might have closed doors that should be opened and explored. While we might need, even require habits, that they could cause a false sense of security which might lure us into a sense of dullness. Some habits can be dangerous. Practicing some things which may cause us physical harm present us an irony in that we do need to step away from them back to the safe side, and then develop new habits. Some habits have a good purpose, for example, I have learned from years of going on missions that the best strategy is to always lay out your clothing for the next day (actually was on a mission where the best strategy was to sleep in your clothing). This provides two things; maximum sleep time when you are exhausted, so you do not loose any time to getting up and looking for what to wear, and the ability to simply grab and go when your time in the bathroom can be limited. I don’t practice this habit at home. It is interesting to observe the young people trying to manage their emerging habits. Some are challenging their long forced habit of picking up after themselves, including leaving all of their clothing on the floor to rummage through it each morning. Others are challenging the habit of taking care of themselves. They stay out until very early in the morning, and then sleep a little and then get up to work, with very little rest. Still others are pushing the boundaries of habits about how they should interact physically with one another. It’s a growing edge, learning the safe and not so safe side of habits. What habits do you have that may be holding you too close to the safe side?