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Routines are the key to reaching goals, being productive, and maintaining an organized home and life. I want to create routines that actually work. I know it will take discipline and perseverance. It’s what I want to do.
Talking, talking, and more talking
Do you feel like you are spinning your wheels? Are you moving in the direction you want to go?
We spend time talking (and talking and talking) about what we want, but we don’t get there. We don’t move towards that goal. Instead, we just keep talking (and maybe whining or complaining) about it.
Routines are the answer.
Habit domination is the key to success.
I’ll just let you know right off that I stink at routines.
I get things done either when I feel like it or because I have to. Usually if I have to it means there is a deadline and I have no other option.
I’ve realized one of the reasons is I’m an all-or-nothing kind of person. Once I get started I am great at a “program” for a specified period of time. But, when it is finished I go back to my previous ways. Because of my all-or-nothing mentality, I don’t succeed at making a lifestyle change – just a temporary change. Because when I fail I give up.
But I want to be a routine girl.
I want to have routines in place that are so ingrained I don’t even think about them.
Routines = Success
Successful people are routine people. Think of someone successful. They have routines established and because of this they get things done. Discipline reigns. I remember reading about a successful business owner and he said he doesn’t make any decisions before lunch. Meaning his routine is the same…He ate the same thing, wore similar clothes, did the same tasks in the same order.
Routines give a sense of purpose and ritual.
Routines = Habit Domination
A routine means the domination of habits. In a routine you do things over and over. They become habits. Eventually you don’t even think about them because they are ingrained in your muscle memory.
Routines = Less Decision Making
Making fewer decisions is freeing. When something is a habit, you do it without thinking about it. You skip making a decision. Making decisions takes a lot of energy and often causes stress. Routines free you from having to make decisions.
The simple act of planning your meals on Sunday frees you from feeling the stress every night at dinner time wondering what to make. Making decisions once a week is easier than 7 times a week.
Not making a decision each day on what to wear will give you energy to focus decisions on more important things.
Related Content: Decision Making is Exhausting
Steps to create a routine that works
The following steps outline the process I’ll use to make my routines. I tend to make everything complicated, so I am trying to keep things very SIMPLE with my new routines.
First, document your current routine.
Take a day and write down what you do, your current routine or lack of routine. How are you using the time available to you?
Next, brain dump your ideas for the habits you want to dominate.
Focus on one routine you want to develop and write a list of the tasks you want to do.
Then, estimate times for each of the items on your list.
Take a day or two and set a timer while doing these tasks. You might be surprised.
Decide when you will do the tasks/routine.
Now that you know what you want to do and how long it takes, schedule it into your day. Write it on your calendar! This is so important. Set reminders – Post-it notes, alarms on your phone. Set up your routine the night before. Do you need anything for it? A glass set out? A book or notebook by your bed? Workout clothes ready in your bathroom?
Test the routine for 10 days.
Document it on paper or on a note in your phone. Writing things down significantly impacts your results.
Finally, make adjustments.
If somethings not working, examine why. Wrong time of day? Lack of commitment? Unrealistic expectations?
Make adjustments. Be kind to yourself. Get accountability. Keep going. This is long-term change that will improve your life.
Reminder to self:
Don’t be an all-or-nothing person. Keep doing the routine even if you miss a day (or two or three) or don’t do it perfectly. Be kind.
Routines I want to develop
- Quiet time
- Being grateful
- Morning routine
- Evening routine
- Cleaning routine
- Meal planning (grocery shopping & meal prep)
- Eating healthy
- Organizing & maintain the whole house
- Drinking enough
- Blogging, business hours, etc.
Some of those may be combined.
I plan to pick one routine a month to work on. At the beginning of each month I will plan my routine. At the beginning of the next month I will report on last month’s routine and pick a new routine for the next month.
This month: Quiet Routine
I am going to start by working on a simple quiet time/gratefulness routine. For this routine I am doing two things. I want to keep this as simple as possible. (Do I keep repeating that?)
Spend time reading God’s Word.
I am trying to find an app with a plan that I like. One that is simple to use. I’m having a hard time so please leave me a suggestion if you have one you like. I want to start with a realistic amount of time, maybe 10 minutes, so I don’t feel overwhelmed. This Bible study is what I just started so I may just read and focus on it right now. I’ll continue looking for an app that reads a portion of scripture and then includes a little commentary with ideas for application, etc.
List 5 things I’m grateful for.
I’m using a simple journal. I just grabbed one I had but I love this one and this one is hilarious. Then I use my favorite pens. This pack is my favorite because it only has the darker colors. I write 5 things per day that I am grateful for. This habit started a couple weeks ago and am focusing on my husband and what I am grateful for about him. I’m planning to start writing four things for my husband and one over the scripture that I read.
I’d love it if you joined me. Please share a routine that works for you in the comment or a routine that you want to develop. And, don’t forget to let me know if you have an app you like.