The pros and cons of living without rigidity
Take a minute to think about your typical day. Of course there will be some minor variations, but most likely you have some kind of outline from day to day, or week to week. For me, it used to go something like this:
- Wake up
- Eat breakfast
- Go on my computer
- Eat lunch
- Meet up with a friend or run errands
- Relax and listen to music
- Eat dinner
- Write a journal entry
- Go to sleep
However, during this first full week in Rosario, my daily schedule has been much more unique– in terms of eating, classes, going out and more. I’ve gone to sleep as early as 10:00 p.m. and as late as 4:30 a.m.; I’ve spent entire days walking around the city and entire days inside. I don’t think I’ve had the same meal since I got here. I am constantly surrounded by new sights, new people, new expressions.
Even my classes aren’t as structured as they might be in the U.S. In fact, there is no syllabus; if we don’t get to a certain part of the lesson plan because we get caught up talking about some other topic for 20 or 30 minutes, we simply do it the next day.
It’s important to recognize that routine is not inherently a bad thing. Many people, like me, are perfectly comfortable doing the same things every day. But after a certain point, becoming too comfortable and reliant upon the familiar can be limiting.
I feel that I have learned so much about myself in this week without a schedule. Always being in new situations not only makes you aware of your ability to adapt, but of what you’ve been missing. Back home in Oregon, I think my routine prevented me from opening my eyes to just how much life has to offer. I would probably never have decided to go see a local monument, or try a new dish at a restaurant, or start a conversation with someone next to me. But here, as ironic as it sounds, spontaneity has become the norm for me. And for the time being, I wouldn’t have it any other way.