A routine is a combination of actions and habits people do frequently. We have routines we didn’t even know we have. We do things out of habit without even realizing were creating a routine but not every routine we do is healthy for us. In my house our children wake up at the same time every day for school and they go to bed the same time every day. When they started school, we established a morning and night routine. They knew what time they had to get up and they knew what time they had to go to bed. When they were younger, they had a nap time during the day and then they went to sleep at normal bedtime. People often asked us how do we get our children to go to bed so early. My answer is they have a routine and we make sure they practice it daily, even when school is out. Once you establish a healthy routine you must practice it daily for efficiency. What I do on the weekdays I try not to stray away from during the weekends. When I do, I find myself having trouble getting back into routine during the week. When you are setting up healthy habits you must practice them daily because our body naturally adapts unhealthy habits.
When I started eating healthier, I would go long periods without having a cheat meal because I knew that if I had a cheat meal it would detour me from my healthy habits. I knew this would have a negative effect on me because I had a horrible addiction to sweets. I would eat them even when they made me feel sick afterwards. So, when I started eating better, I knew that I had to be strict with my diet. I couldn’t indulge in sweets until I was strong enough to not overindulge in them. Healthy routines are important because they help us achieve the goals we want in life. When we want to accomplish something, it starts with figuring out a plan, next comes action. Action is the routine we create to get us the goal that we are trying to obtain.
If you want to buy a car, you save money to buy the car, you eliminate impulse buys, eating out, and leisure time with your friends on the weekend. You put habits in place to get you the transportation you need. If you say you want to buy a car, but you continue to practice poor habits then its less likely that you will get a car. Anything we want can be achieved but it requires us to do things that we are not used to doing. Getting out of our comfort zone, getting up early, going to bed early, saying no to bad habits, and the list goes on. We must get rid of the old routines and start implementing new ones.
This is not easy because our body naturally does what it is used to, you must force it to do the opposite of what it’s used to. For example, I used to sleep in on Mondays but the rest of the week I would go to the gym at the same time. What I found out was it was better for me to go to the gym at the same time everyday instead of later time on Monday. I used to try to squeeze it into my schedule on Monday and often I wouldn’t go because I was so busy with everything else. The weeks I didn’t go on Monday I would have to squeeze it into Saturday or Sunday and then my workout routine was offset. Now I must remind myself every Monday this because when that alarm goes off, I can easily hit snooze and wait till later for my workout. I hear it go off and I have thoughts going through my head about what I have to do for the day and why it’s important to get up at that moment to complete my workout and then this is when I finally roll out of the bed and get dressed.
Sometimes when you are creating routines your body is going to try to reason with you on why you shouldn’t do the healthy habit but then you must tell yourself why it is important. Eventually the healthy habits will come naturally but it takes repetition, our body learns by what we are doing repeatedly, so if you repeatedly hit the snooze button you might do it without even realizing you’re doing it. Then you’ll wake up upset thinking you slept through your alarm, but your body silenced it out of habit. I can recall so many times that my husband said that I turned my alarm off in my sleep.
So, remember today that for you to achieve the things you want in life its going to require you to establish some healthy routines in your life. Each day you wake have a healthy routine when you start your day, rather it’s just having quiet time to reflect on your day, or listening to something inspirational, whatever you decide make sure you start your day with a healthy routine. Don’t reach for the phone to check your alerts, use it for something positive such as listening to a podcast to help kick start your day, or playing some music that makes you happy. This is what you need to help you get motivated to conquer anything that may try to ruin your day.
“The way you start your day determines how well you live your day.” -Robin Sharma