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I remember when I was a young girl, and my parents lectured me about the importance of structure and creating a consistent, healthy routine. Being a child, I didn’t pay too much attention to the inner workings of ‘why’ routines were helpful and did what most children did on the weekdays: wake up, partake in my hygiene routine, eat breakfast, put my clothes on, packed my book bag, and got in the car for school.
When I got home, I had a snack, recollected myself, and started on my homework. This routine would go on for five days out of the week and repeat itself until the end of the school year.
This routine that was implemented for me as a child was actually a way for me to form healthy habits. Efficient systems helped be at my best to succeed in school and other activities.
Similarly, as an adult, I often think about how easy it is for us to lose those good habits just as we have formed them.
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The key to sticking to a healthy routine is forming one that brings joy and harmony into your life.
Every Friday, I routinely put together fresh, floral arrangements to place in my dwelling for the week. This is something I look forward to, and it motivates me to stay on schedule with everything else so that I can fill my home with fragrant petals.
This past Friday, Bell Lexus North Scottsdale allowed me to try out the Lexus NX for a few days, and it only made my daily routines that much sweeter. Honestly, rolling around in a sleek, sexy vehicle will significantly improve your mood! (I currently own a sedan, so the perks of sitting high in an S.U.V. without feeling like you’re on a bus are priceless.)
There is a book that I previously mentioned in past blog posts and a master book list that I compiled called, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown. A quote that sticks out to me is:
“It is about making the wisest possible investment of your time and energy in order to operate at our highest point of contribution by doing only what is essential.”
When you are trying to form a routine that you will be able to stick to, it is vital to include in that routine only what will serve as a valuable time and energy investment. It’s not about keeping busy; it’s about implementing what is essential into your life. With every form of investment comes a trade-off.
Ask yourself this: Are you doing away with what doesn’t serve you to implement the essential aspects that will be more beneficial? If yes, then you’re on the right path! If not, you’re not making the proper trade-offs.
Journal Prompt: In a journal or on a notepad, draw two columns. Title the first column, “What Serves Me,” and entitle the second column, “What Doesn’t Serve Me.” Think of all the things you enjoy that would be considered essential to your desires and goals in the first column. In the second column, think of all the thoughts, activities, and situations you engage in that do not serve you. This point of this exercise is to figure out what you’re trading off for your own happiness.
For example, it is essential for me to spend my Friday’s picking out flowers for my home because it places me in a healthy mindset for the week and enhances my environment. Fresh floral arrangements also help me channel my femininity more effortlessly and keep me grounded.
You don’t have to go to the florist every week to have a healthy routine, but there are some tips that you can perform to stick to a beneficial system.
Tips for Forming (And Sticking To) a Healthy Routine
- Learn better time management. Procrastination is the #1 cause of poor habits, from my experience. Practice better time management by prioritizing productivity over ‘busy work.’
- Learn to say, “no.” You don’t have to be a slave to your lack of boundaries. Let your no mean no, and don’t be afraid to turn down something because it does not fit into the category of what serves you.
- Implement habits that bring you joy and don’t just feel like a chore. Putting practices in place that is pleasurable is a great way to keep up with other tasks that are more necessary and not as enjoyable. This will serve as an incentive because you understand that to experience more of those pleasurable activities, you must complete other essential tasks.
- Reward yourself. Don’t punish yourself. Celebrating the small wins with rewards will give you the positive reinforcement your well-being needs. If you met your goal of going to the gym 4x a week, reward yourself with a shopping trip.
- Make yourself accountable. The best way to ensure that you stay on a healthy routine is by making yourself accountable. Find an accountability partner, or add a responsibility into your life that can help motivate you. For example, I have a dog that I have to walk, feed, and be there for every day. She helps me get out of the house more and keep a sense of structure because she depends on me.
- Write it down. Journaling, or simple jotting, helps provide clarity for your to-do list and routine. How can you make this more efficient for you? Is it realistic? See #11 for more details on building a S.M.A.R.T. Goal Routine.
- Combat procrastination with the 5-second rule. Mel Robbins’ book, The 5 Second Rule, details this rule that helps you stay on tasks and get going in the morning by making your decisions in 5 seconds or less.
- Create a better environment for yourself. Studies show that our physical environment can primarily affect productivity and performance. Enhance your environment by making sure that it is free of clutter, ignites your 5 senses, and keeps you balanced and happy.
- Give yourself grace. Not everyone was taught to have structure or proper routines, and it’s not always an easy feat. Understand that every morning, or even hour, is a new opportunity to try again.
- Keep track of your mental diet and hygiene. Sometimes, what we consume daily can positively or negatively affect a healthy routine. Warrant that you aren’t being hindered by your social media or other information that you engage in.
- Get clear on your goals. Having a S.M.A.R.T. Goal Routine is a way to grant more clarity on how this routine will serve you and measure your success metrics. Is this routine realistic? Can I complete these tasks within a reasonable time? Am I specific with what I want to accomplish with this? Is this routine achievable in a day, or should it be spread out over multiple days?
Whether you are trying to recapture the ease of old routines from your childhood or find your footing as an adult, it is always possible! Holistic development requires time, patience, and action. Make sure that your healthy routine is one that brings you peace and genuine fulfillment.