With just days left before I close one door and open another, career-wise, I’ve been thinking a lot about the concept of change….particularly when it comes to routine, something I gravitate towards, crave, even.
With my new job will come some work travel, not a ton, but enough that it’ll get me out of my comfort zone a bit, and well, WAY out of my routine.
My normal response to lack of routine is to get anxious and annoyed that my nice little happy routine is flying out the door. But instead of going that route – and in the name of my no limits mantra for 2012 – I’m going to embrace un-routine.
…which is a huge about-face for me – a self-professed Type-A die hard and someone who loves structure and schedules and plans.
So what’s a girl to do when faced with un-routine?
Well, you guessed it: I’m going to create an un-routine that will become my go-to when I’m traveling for work. So I’m kind of *still* being my usual Type A/plan-y self, but I’m doing it in a new place, with very few familiar faces, and no boundaries.
What I’m digging about this new job is that it’ll force me to go into uncomfortable situations and just go for it, as fearlessly as I can. So to me that means trying new things, avoiding reverting back to comfortable habits and meeting new people.
And, here are a few ways I plan to do just that, un-routine style:
Stick to my running ways, but in a different format – Maybe I’ll use the gym at the office in CA after I’m done with work for the day vs. hiding out at the gym at my hotel. Might be a great way to interact with my new co-workers in more casual environment, and it’ll give me a chance to try out what I hear are some pretty swank gym digs at that office! Plus, this coming year will be huge for me in terms of keeping up my run-durance, even when traveling. I’ll be in half marathon, and soon, marathon training mode and can’t let work travel interfere with that…at least as much as I can avoid it. So that may mean more treadmill running than I’d like, and maybe even exploring some running routes in a foreign (to me) city…which scares the pants off me…but, again – this is me embracing un-routine, right?
Explore the studios in the area – Sure, I can feed my barre obsession with Core Fusion DVDs in my room, or self-made barre n9ne workouts, but they don’t compare at ALL to the in-studio experience, let’s be honest. But why not explore a few area studios to see what they’re about? There’s a Pure Barre and Dailey Method studio nearby the office – I’ve never tried either…but when in Rome, right? Plus, it’ll give me an excuse to make dates at the barre with blog friend Naomi (the one familiar face I know I’ll see a lot of when I visit the area!!) – bonus!!
Put my food logging ways to the test – This will be a tough one for me. Work travel invariably means far less control over your food – but it can still be in my control if I plan for it. For the plane rides to/from – I’ll be packing lots of healthy snack options (think: 1 oz baggies of almonds, apples with packets of single-serve PB, homemade trail mix, etc.). For the hotel, I’ll hit the grocery store once I’m settled for lots of water, fruit, quick breakfast options (I’m not usually a fan of protein bars but in this situation, it works), etc. It would be a dream come true if the hotel room had a fridge in it so I could buy yogurt and stuff, but I’m not holding my breath on that one. Lunch and dinner will be more difficult to plan for, but again, not impossible. The office café will no doubt have a salad bar where I can create a healthy and yummy lunch and I’ve already google mapped my hotel to see how far Whole Foods and/or Trader Joes is, as an option for lunch or dinner too. And I’ll be damned, there will be one night per trip where I’ll order a glass of wine for the room – or even be a rebel and drink a glass all alone at the hotel bar…that would be a huge step for me, so this one may take baby steps.
Of course – I will do my best not to be antisocial when traveling to the office in Cali – if co-workers want to go out to dinner while I’m there, I won’t turn down the offer. I want to get to know these people as much as I can especially since much of our interaction when I’m remote will be on the phone or via email. But, there’s also something to be said for a quiet night in my hotel room with my homemade dinner from Whole Foods, a glass of wine, and my laptop for blogging fun, right?
And yes, all of these un-routine tips, tricks and ideas largely stem from what my sis has learned and experienced while she’s been at this work travel thing in a much bigger way than me this past year. She has some awesome tips I know I’ll be referring to OFTEN in the next few months. I hope she doesn’t mind.
But all in all? Despite the lack of routine that comes with travel, I’m oddly really excited for this change of pace (aside from the sad goodbyes with Scott at the airport…I can’t help it, I love him so!!). I know I need this stage of “discomfort” to grow and change and evolve. And, given that this is my year of no limits, I may as well put it to the test as often as possible, in as many scenarios as possible. So this is me, hanging on for dear life, for what will be a wild ride, but one that I am more than ready for, embracing un-routine and all.