I am not a competitive person. I do not have what one would consider an addictive personality, nor am I reward driven which is why I find it surprising at how many times I have allowed myself to be sucked into “streaks”.
I am a lifetime Weight Watchers member.. so if you are familiar with the program there is tracking involved.. which I do not do.. well I do it, but not in the sense it was created.
There was a reward program and you earned points for tracking. My goal was mostly altruistic, other than a set of stainless steel, stemless wine glasses and reusable plastic food storage bags, I have donated all my rewards to various causes. However, one day I logged in and my streak was back at day 1 due to a glitch in the program; I was very annoyed.
But why? I didn’t share the streaks with people. I was the only one who saw the data and truth be told it didn’t mean anything to me or do anything for me towards my goal to healthy living. I logged anything, just for the points. It was not at all a true reflection of my eating habits or tied to my success or struggles with a healthy lifestyle. I was doing it just for the sake of doing it.
Similar scenario with my bible app. I log in every morning (usually, every once in a while later in the day) and do the reflection. I had almost two years of non-stop logging in. This meant sometimes making myself a little crazy when we were on our mountain where there was no signal and I couldn’t log in. I would get in the car and drive somewhere with a signal so I would not break my streak.
Boy was I off the mark. Again, I didn’t share that streak anywhere. My prayer is supposed to be between me and God, but it obsessed me to the point that I lost sight of the purpose of logging into the app each day; to immerse myself in prayer and quiet reflection. I do not need an app to do that. I can do it on my own, not to mention I have several bibles, which I could open to a passage and reflect on without some person I’ve never met telling me what the “verse of the day was”. I have to say though, more often than not, it was spot on and exactly what I needed to hear that day. But I know it was not the app itself doing that since everyone sees the same verse each day.
Well on Sunday, it finally happened. I was rushing to get ready for my hike and forgot to log in. On the way home I remembered and said to myself, hot shower then I will log in and do my reflection. But after my shower, I instead plopped down on the couch and read more of my current book, then I flipped to Hallmark Channel for Chesapeake Shores and before you know it I was asleep. I awoke Monday morning and realized my blunder. As I opened up the app and saw the number “1” under streak, I was super bummed at first.
I soon realized the error of my ways. Logging into a bible app is not the only way to connect with my faith or live in my faith. I had the most amazing day. I was hiking in the Catskills, there were in-depth heart felt sharing conversations with friends. We stopped so many times and looked in awe and majesty and felt the presence of God’s beauty. I was in the moment and carrying my faith every step of the way. Yes it is great to remember to read a bible passage every day and reflect, however, if reading that becomes a routine and I am doing it for the sake of doing it, rather than being fully immersed in the moment, then shame on me.
Are there things in your life that you have found yourself doing just for the sake of doing? Have they lost their purpose and meaning? Have you lost your way? All it takes is an honest look at oneself to reprioritize and reset what is truly important in our lives.
Now that I have had this realization, my goal is to not allow myself to fall into that trap. I want to be present in the moment, whatever it is I am doing, and be certain of why I am actually doing it and the value and meaning it holds.
Be Kind. Be honest with yourself. Be aware of your motivation. Namaste.