How to Stick to a New Daily Routine
There’s something to be said for a solid daily routine. It can ground your life in a rhythm that leads to maximum productivity and wellness. However, creating the ideal schedule and actually sticking to it are two totally different things. Developing habits that help you stick to your plan isn’t always easy.
Ready to set up and stick to daily routine for yourself? There are several benefits associated with a daily routine that can significantly improve your life. Check it out.
5 Benefits of a Daily Routine
1. Routine Lets You Control Your Day
While life is full of unexpected circumstances, having a daily routine allows you to better manage your day instead of allowing your day to control you. You can take the wheel and decide what direction you’ll take from the moment you wake up until you go to bed.
You can better handle the situations that arise throughout your day by committing to and sticking with your daily routine.
2. Routine Helps Prevent Stress
Feeling stressed and overwhelmed by the demands of daily life? You’re not alone. According to one Gallup Poll survey, about 8 in 10 Americans are affected by stress. A whopping 79% of people polled reported that they feel stress sometimes or frequently throughout the day.
If you’re one of this large group, sticking to a daily routine can help. Stress, anxiety and insomnia expert Dr. Steve Orma maintains that having a routine is excellent for stress management.
“Create a set schedule for doing chores, work tasks, meetings, exercise, paying bills, and all the usual things you need to do,” Orma says. “Once this becomes your normal routine, it’s easier to accomplish everything because it becomes habit.”
3. Routine Allows Us to Use Time to Our Advantage
When we regularly stick to a daily routine, it helps decrease our need to think about what comes next, which saves us the time of considering our next move.
When you establish a daily routine and stick to it, you know exactly what’s coming throughout the day. You’re not spending time each morning planning, you’re spending your time taking care of what needs to get done.
4. Routine Inspires Increased Productivity
If you’re interested in productivity and beating procrastination, having a daily routine will help. When we don’t have a clear direction of where each day is going to take us, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and give up completely.
If you want to be more productive, create a daily routine. You get done what you need to do because you know what to expect. A routine helps us prioritize and focus our attention on what’s needed most at that time, which can increase our productivity.
5. Routine Can Improve Your Sleep
One of the best benefits of a daily routine is better sleep! If you have trouble sleeping, you’re certainly not alone. Whether you have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep or simply can’t seem to sleep at all, a daily routine could help.
The National Sleep Foundation states that sticking to a sleep schedule of the same bedtime and wake time every day (even on weekends) can help regulate your body’s internal clock and help you fall asleep and stay asleep for the night.
Easy Tips to Help You Stick to a Daily Routine
As beneficial as following a daily routine might be, we can attest that it’s often much easier said than done.
Want to stick with a daily routine once and for all? There’s no better time to make it happen. Following are some easy tips that can help you embrace and stick to your daily routine:
- Be Aware of Why Past Routines Have Failed
Instead of throwing in the towel on developing a new plan, consider the reasons why past routines you’ve tried have failed. Think about how the habits you engage in on a daily basis may be keeping you from following the routine you’ve set out for yourself.
Are you putting too much pressure on yourself, trying to do more in one day than you can actually get done? Following someone else’s idea of what the “ideal routine” looks like or procrastinating rather than being proactive?
Establishing a daily routine takes determination and strong will, but if you’re not aware of why you’ve been unable to stick to a daily routine in the past, you could be sabotaging yourself in the present.
Einstein defined insanity as “doing the same thing over and over and expecting to get different results.” If you want different results, you’ve got to try different approaches. When creating a daily routine, identify what hasn’t worked for you in the past and adjust your daily routine to one that better fits your life.
- Start Your Daily Routine First Thing Each Morning
When you really want to stick to a daily routine, be sure to start first thing each morning. The way we start each day has a great deal to do with how the rest of our day unfolds. Creating an ideal morning routine lays the foundation for a stress-free and productive day.
Remember, your morning routine will be unique to you. Is there any way your daily morning routine might be improved?
Are you waking up early enough to quietly savor those precious moments in between the dream and waking state, or are you hitting snooze for 30 minutes and then rushing to get out the door? Do you lay your clothes out the night before or stand in front of your closet for 20 minutes deciding what to wear? Do you leave the house knowing you used the early hours to your advantage, or are you in panic mode because you’ve been rushing around just to get out the door on time?
If you really want to stick to a solid daily schedule, start with your morning routine. Some of the most successful people in the world swear by starting their mornings the same way every day, even on weekends and their days off. Start your morning with an established routine and you’ll have done wonders to wire your brain with the willpower it takes to follow the rest of your day according to schedule.
- Create an Ideal Daily Schedule
Does the word schedule make you cringe? You may have rebelled against routines in the past, but creating a daily schedule is an awesome way to help minimize distractions.
Take a moment to think about your life and everything that is a part of it on a daily or weekly basis. Work. Family. Friends. Fitness. Personal time. Make a list of everything that needs to get done daily, weekly and monthly and then ask yourself how you can best fit everything into your schedule. When your plan is tailored to your personal priorities, your daily routine will begin to fall into place.
- Focus on One Thing at a Time
The biggest difficulties of following through on a daily routine are distractions, and our modern world is full of them. Want to really embrace a schedule you’ll follow without fail? Turn off your phone. Stay off social media. Stop checking your inbox throughout the day. Resist the urge to do something else when your mind starts to wander.
By focusing on one task at a time, it’s much easier to stick to a regular routine. When you’re writing that important paper, write the paper. When you’re at the gym, be fully present at the gym. Doing more at once doesn’t make you more productive. In fact, it pulls your attention in too many directions to work efficiently.
Distractions are everywhere. Don’t let them dictate what does and doesn’t get done.
- Use Calendars and To-Do Lists to Your Advantage
Have you ever noticed how good it feels to cross something off your to-do list? When we experience even the smallest wins, the brain releases dopamine, a chemical associated with feelings of pleasure, reward and motivation. When we feel the effects of dopamine, we’re more likely to repeat the same action.
It’s easy to understand why using a calendar or to-do list could be an advantage when trying to stick to a new daily routine. There are countless apps available that are designed to help you better manage your day. Google calendar is a widely-available option.
If the thought of doing one more task online makes your head spin, however, an old fashioned to-do list written on paper will do just fine. Bullet journals are also another fun and creative method to help you keep track of your daily routine.
There’s no single “right” way to create a to-do list. When it comes to using a list, calendar or app to manage your daily routine, make sure it’s something that works for you.
Are You Ready to Commit to a New Daily Routine?
When it comes down to it, the only way to really stick to a new daily routine is to actually commit to it. Life coach Tony Robbins mentions that your daily behavior reflects your inner state. What does your daily routine tell you about your state of mind?
Your daily habits determine your happiness.
Get in the habit of committing to a daily routine and you’ll join the ranks of some of the happiest people.
It’s suggested that it takes 66 days to instill new habits. If you’re starting from scratch with a new daily routine, give yourself time! After 30 days, you’ll start to really see results. Keep going. In 66 days, the tasks that make up your daily routine will become ingrained habits.
It’s said that change is hard at first, messy in the middle and gorgeous at the end.
When it comes to committing to a new daily routine, you are limitless. With enough willpower and commitment can do absolutely anything you put your mind to.
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Todd Smith is Joy Organics Chief Partnerships Officer and Co-founder. Before Joy Organics, he worked in the wellness and nutritional industry for over three decades and helped generate over 1 billion dollars in supplement sales. He has applied that knowledge and experience to empower over 1000 businesses through Joy Organics’ partnership programs. Todd is also the author of a book, podcast, and blog titled Little Things Matter.