2012, the Year of GTL

Painting by Shirley Kanyon, see: http://www.etsy.com/shop/ShirleyKanyon


Now, I don’t watch the Jersey Shore (really!  I don’t!  NB– I do suppose that I have other reality television guilty pleasures, so no real moral ground to stand on) — but sources tell me that one cast member, Mike “the Situation” Sorrentino uses the expression “GTL” or “gym tan laundry” that seems like a pretty useful topic for a New Year’s post.

For “the Situation”, “GTL” refers to an everyday routine that helps you stay in fresh, mint condition, and makes you feel optimized.  For him, this involves working on his abs, keeping his white shirts clean and making it to the tanning bed. Frankly, I’m inspired that a reality television star can be the source of such sage advice.  Now, I’m not advocating regular tanning, but I do see the good sense in identifying those habits which make you feel optimized and fresh, and then doing those things every single day.

Rather than gym-tan-laundry, I think I’m more about gym-sleep-schedule.  I feel best if I get a daily dose of endorphins, 8 (preferably 9!) hours of sleep, and if I discipline myself to abide by a scheduled routine in my day.

Speaking of routines, one term in college I roomed with a girl who was the master of her academic schedule.  On Saturday mornings, at an hour when most of our fellow classmates were still asleep and several hours from waking up to a raging hangover, my roommate sprung out of her bed and started loading her laundry hamper.  Why? “Because Saturday is laundry day”.  She measured her time out in poetical coffee spoons, slotting her days into study hours, work-out hours, social hours.  I was hardly surprised when, at graduation, her name was called and we stood and acknowledged her as salutatorian of our class.

My GTL could also be eat well-sleep well-read well — reading, especially reading novels — makes my brain feel more nimble.  It could also be clean well-gym-sleep well — how much better I feel when I know that my space is tidy and not slovenly.  Currently, after the joyful pitching of routine of my holidays and the great comfort in indulgent eating/drinking, I’m ready to strike up a balance and put a new framework to my day.  Welcome 2012!


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