It is unfortunate that when we think of unintended consequences, they are generally bad. You wanted to hold the door open for the woman behind you and end up either being yelled at for assuming she's helpless or holding up traffic. You send an e-card to your grandchild and it opens a virus when they download it. And so forth.
But I've recently had two chances to reap positive unintended benefits from two regular- if not daily- activities.
First, as you might all guess, I blog more or less regularly. In the past season, it's been a rare week when I don't set down two or three of my thoughts into the blog format. Normally, if someone asks my why I blog, I'll answer something along the lines of "to develop my personal philosophy and sense of aesthetics." But so much writing has had another benefit.
On the last day of my manditory intro to Psych class, we had a paper do. I, in one of the flaws that I am in constant struggle with, procrastinated up until the last weekend. But, when I sat down to actually hammer something out, the words flowed much, much easier than they ever had before. I could express myself much more clearly. My sentences flowed more easily. I didn't become distracted by the siren call of the internet nearly as much. And I think this is all a result of blogging so often.
The practice of sitting down regularly and trying to make my jumbled thoughts somewhat orderly and understandable has translated into a greater skill when writing ten page papers as well as a blog post. I certainly never sat down to blog with the intention of improving my writing (if I did, nothing would be posted for fear of judgement) but the sheer volume that I have done has reaped tangible if not expected rewards.
The other unitended benefit is from my Blogilates work outs (which were going fine until finals week). I live on the top of a hill which makes biking to school each day a breeze, but when I find myself starting the long trek back home and reach the first incline, I'm as likely to hop off my bike and walk it up as I am to bike it. If I did bike it, I would end up a sweating, huffy mess by the top of the hill (yes, you can still be a Neo-Aristocrat when you're a sweating, huffy mess).
However, this past week I've been able to bike up the hill every day. Oh, it is still more fun to go down hill. And yes, I do have to tell myself "exercising my will, I'm exercising my will," as I pedal up. But I finish it. And I end up being less of a sweaty, huffy mess than usual- even after not stopping at any of the lights. This is a nice benefit of the Blogilates (and after only two weeks too!)
What unitended benefits have you had from regular practice?
Scheduling note: I'll be traveling for the rest of the month and won't be able to post or answer comments. I hope you all have a wonderful rest of your month.