According to the socially-edited Wikipedia, Neophobia is:
“the persistent and abnormal fear of anything new. In its milder form, it can manifest as the unwillingness to try new things or break from routine”This just about sums up my life. I develop habits very slowly or not at all; I go from work to home and back again. Occasionally I’ll go to the pub quiz of a Sunday. More recently, Thursday nights have turned into my Saturday Big Night Out. And that’s about it.
I have a very hard time keeping up any habits. I frequently forget to put a ring on my finger that I’ve worn for ten years, or have to go back into the flat to pick up my glasses - things I need every day, and use every day, and notice are missing just as I’m waiting for the lift to open its doors. There are a few constants in my life that I can stick to without thinking; writing, my flat being home, and drinking. But even then: when there’s no more whisky in the freezer, I cannot make myself put shoes on and go out of the building to find the nearest bottle shop. I used to think it was laziness. Now I’m not so sure.
So how did I get any of these habits in the first place? Through sheer bloody ignorance or distraction. One of them worked a treat this morning, when struggling to get to my pilates class. I’ve been a member of a new (and expensive) private gym for three weeks, and I’ve only managed to attend three classes. Two of those were back to back on a Sunday. The other was this morning. So I’m sat there, my mind already racing on and deciding I didn’t really need to go, that I could put it off and go for a double whammy on Sunday, because hey, it’s a change to my day and it is clearly Not Right because of that, but another part of my brain is shouting OH FOR FUCK’S SAKE, WOMAN. JUST GO AND STOP GREETING ABOUT IT. After what was literally ten minutes of wandering and wondering, I finally decided to put my fingers actually in my ears and refuse to think about anything but Jeremy Renner. And I’m not even close to joking. Picture me standing by the lift with my fingers pushing my ear-buds blasting music into my ears, going LA LA LA LA LA I’M NOT LISTENING - OOH JEREMY RENNER SQUIRREL on the inside, and you’ll have a good idea.
It didn’t have to be Jeremy Renner. It could have been Christian Bale, or a fresh breakfast barm with bacon and brown sauce, or upgrades for Billy my MacBook Air, or a holiday to Honolulu next April. As long as it was loud and all-encompassing, it drowned out both my iPhone music and my neophobia and I could get to the gym without turning around and going straight home.
Now I know what to do, I hope it works a second time. Like tomorrow morning, when it’s Bootcamp for thirty minutes. If it doesn’t, I’m wasting my time. The classes I really want, Wing Chun, are not a problem - I’m too distracted by attraction of slapping elbows or protective pads about to not want to step out of my routine. I look forward to these hours of physical concentration - having to pay attention to how to move your limbs and NOT how people speak is so refreshing.
That’s about it. The mystery of why I can’t sleep for more than three hours at a time goes on. But hey, I don’t even care. There are other things more important to worry about - like trying to finish a book and also a Supernatural fanfic. For now, though, I’m taking today as a victory.
~ neophobia ~ fitness ~ OCD ~ Jeremy Renner