A well-crafted routine is the key to well-being and success. Especially with modern society being as fast-paced as it is, a good routine is a foundational pillar for improved mental well-being, enhanced productivity and overall, an enriched quality of life. While it might seem daunting to design a routine and stick to it, it’s not as hard as it sounds to be consistent. By delving into the psychology of routines, aligning daily activities with our major life goals and embracing the power of starting small, everyone can create a routine that works for them. Dive in and let’s find out more!!
1. Understanding the Need for a Routine
Many people see routines as a way to manage time but they are so much more! Studies have shown that routines offer psychological benefits too. With structure in place, stress is reduced and this improves our overall sense of well-being. A well-crafted routine is hence needed to prevent stress, as well as alleviate existing stress and foster a positive mindset.
Without a structure in place, time is often squandered wondering what to do next or where to go. A routine helps you have a clear idea of the day and this results in you having a more productive day and feeling more at peace. Now that you understand the need for a routine in the first place, let’s get on it!
2. Identifying Personal Goals
3. Start Small
Embrace micro-habits! These small, manageable changes may not seem much at that point in time, but they help pave the way for significant transformations. By starting small, you are giving yourself room for gradual adjustments and this also makes it easier to integrate new habits into daily life. For example, consider a short morning stretch routine as your initial micro-habit. It doesn’t sound too daunting and once you have gotten used to doing it, it’s much easier to build on this to incorporate a short yoga workout (for example!) into your morning routine.
The trick is to never underestimate the power of starting small. By giving yourself tiny goals to start with, you are more likely to be successful as these changes are more sustainable to maintain!
4. Creating a Daily Schedule
Creating a daily schedule is key to effective routine management. By allocating dedicated time for work, self-care and leisure activities, you can ensure you’ll lead a well-balanced and purposeful day. You can also leverage productivity tools and apps in this process as it’s easier to manage tasks and maximise your efficiency.
For starters, try and get into the habit of scheduling meetings with friends and family on your Google Calendar so you have a better overview of how your week looks like. Once you know what days you’re more free/busy, you can then adjust your schedule accordingly as no one wants to pack their day too full!
Note: it doesn’t have to be too specific. Something like this would also work to begin with:
- 8am: Morning stretch & breakfast
- 9am: Work
- 12-1pm: Lunchbreak
- 3pm: Mid-work coffee
- 6pm: Dinner
- 8-10pm: Leisure Activities
5. Overcoming Challenges
Life is dynamic and routines should also evolve to meet changing circumstances. By embracing change and adjusting your routine accordingly, you can maintain a positive and supportive daily structure. Try not to feel defeated when life doesn’t go to plan. It may also help to look at the bigger picture in terms of how effective you’ve been at following your schedule. For starters, hitting your fitness goals around 60-80% of the time is a strong start and something you can already be proud of. Try and focus on the little wins, and not the times you’ve missed the mark. From here, it’s then easy to build up and increase your schedule productivity accordingly e.g. going from 70% to 80% and later on to 90% or even 100%.
6. Adjust When Necessary
Flexibility is the key to long-term success when it comes to developing routines. Keep yourself open to adapting and modifying your routines as and when. If the initial goal you set out for yourself was too ambitious, try and scale it down. If you find that you’ve been more than achieving your goals, then you can try and push yourself even more. Adapt and modify based on how successful you’ve been, or even set new goals so you can ensure that your routine is a constant positive and supportive force in your life.
The important thing is to ensure you roughly keep to the structure you set out initially. If you planned to workout 3 times a week, do not go from this to every day in a week for example, as being over-ambitious may set you up for failure.
7. Technology Tools and Apps
In the digital age, technology can be a valuable tool as we try and navigate effective routine management. By integrating technology into daily life, it’s easy to manage your time efficiently and optimise your routine for greater success. Whether it’s Slack, Asana or Monday, try and find an app that works well for you and leverage on digital support to make your routine a success!
In conclusion, creating a routine is a powerful tool for personal development and well-being. By incorporating these tips into your daily life, you can easily design a schedule that aligns with your goals and enhances your overall quality of life. Now, let’s get going and all the best with your new routine!