Why routine isn’t boring…
For me, routine is the thing that keeps me motivated. It inspires my creativity, boosts productivity, and keeps me feeling energised and happy. My question to anyone that finds routine boring would be, ‘is it the routine you’re bored of or the things that make up that routine?’
Don’t get me wrong, we all have daily tasks that are a little mundane, but for the most part, my daily routine brings me joy. Yes, that’s right, it brings me joy. Why? Well, quite simply I fill my day with things I enjoy doing. I have created a routine and habits that help me to achieve the goals I have, incorporate the simple things that I love doing and I make time to prioritise self-care. I understand that life can be hectic. I know that days fall apart, unexpected things happen and sometimes everything just goes a little wrong. And that’s okay. However, I truly do believe that we all have time for self-care. We all have time to do the things that bring us joy. We have time to invest in people. We have the time, but are we making the best use of it? When you make things a priority you get them done, I just don’t think we always prioritise the things that matter the most. I don’t think I’m alone in saying that we have probably spent more time worrying or stressing about getting things done, then the time it takes to do them. Have you ever put off doing a task, let it build up in your head for weeks or months and then when the time comes it’s over in 10 minutes? It’s quite scary to think how much of our time we spend thinking about doing stuff instead of just doing it. Get it done and then use the rest of the time to prioritise YOU. I don’t mean to sound preachy here, we’re all different. For some people, routine isn’t that important but for me it is. Here’s why…
Routine helps to manage my anxiety. Developing a routine (and sticking to it) has been crucial in helping me to manage my anxiety. My mind and body know what to expect most days and this is a comfort to me. I get anxious when I’m feeling uncertain or trying to navigate the ‘unknown’. It’s actually one of my biggest ‘triggers’ (for want of a better word) I guess repetitive predictability works for me and I’m ok with that.
Routine has helped me to develop healthy habits. Creating a routine has allowed me to prioritise my physical health as well as my mental health. Overtime, I noticed the benefit of keeping active, exercising, practicing self-care techniques and getting adequate sleep. I don’t hit the snooze button (ever). I work hard, but I don’t overwork. I take breaks throughout the working day. I take breaks from people (when needed) I get fresh air. I keep myself hydrated and feeling nourished with good food and when I fancy it, a doughnut or two. I take time to rest. It’s a priority.
Routine makes me creative! I mentioned this above and it’s something I really believe to be true. When I’m in a good routine, I feel more inspired. My thoughts are clear. I’m more motivated and more productive. I set goals and get excited about them. I have lots of ideas and curiosities about anything and everything. It feels great.
Routine makes me prioritise the things I enjoy. Sometimes I feel like fun and joy are the things we make the least time for. They are seen as a luxury or a leisure activity, but I really don’t understand that. Life is for living. We should be spending our time doing the things we love. I know that’s not always easy, but that’s why I build it into my routine. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to theme parks, music festivals or climbing mountains everyday BUT I’m doing small things each day that I love. Things like cooking, going to a gym class, seeing a friend and something as simple as listening to a podcast in a bubble bath. Without fail, I do something everyday that brings me joy.
To be perfectly honest, without a routine I don’t really cope that well. I eat crappy food, I’m lethargic, unmotivated, unhappy and generally feel a little all over the place. I’m not saying I can’t have holidays or time off routine. I’m not super strict with myself and my life isn’t lived with regimented structure. I enjoy spontaneity just as much as anyone else, just not all the time. Sure, we have all been inspired by films or people that drop everything to travel the world, become a spy or whatever it is that people do. But in my reality, that just wouldn’t work for me. At least not permanently. I like routine and routine likes me. If you don’t have one, why not give it a try. You may be surprised with how much it can benefit you.