If you read the last blog (Having a Routine), then you’d have a little understand of why my routine is important to me. I didn’t go into too much depth because that’s what the next few posts will be about. To start with, I’m going to go through how you can create your own routine.
Depending on how organised your days are already, you don’t need to take onboard every single thing I say, feel free to pick and choose. But if you don’t know where to start, then feel free to adjust things to whatever works for you, and you can contact me if you need extra help. Throughout this post I’ll also be sharing parts my current routine.
I mentioned in the previous blog, your routine should be simple enough for anyone to pick up and follow. So to begin with make a list of what your days consist of (Not a to do list), there’s no need to order the list yet. Do this on the notes app on your phone or in a notebook. Avoid trying to keep a mental note.
My current list is:
- Meetings/Free Time
Stuff you might add:
- Brush my teeth
- Watch Love Island
- Take medicine
If you can’t remember your daily activities, what you can do is make the list as you go about your day. No task is too small, it could be something as small as ‘lock the door before bed’. Also make sure to add stuff you tend to forget to do on a regular basis I.e. take medication or take the bins out for bin day.
Break Your Day Down in to Segments
Morning – The way your day starts will set the pace for your entire day. So in my opinion this is the most important segment of your routine. I like to start my day with little tasks because one: I’ve only just woken up, I don’t want to do anything that requires a lot of thinking. Two: Starting with little tasks also gives you time to properly wake up and as well as that, completing minor tasks builds a kind of false sense of productivity in your mind.
For example: I empty the dish rack in morning because I doesn’t require much thought and by the end of it I can say, ‘Ahhh, that’s one thing done’. I can then transfer this momentum to the next set of tasks. Tasks that I know I won’t want to do later on in the day like sending emails or replying to texts. When this is done I know I won’t have to worry about them again, this is a good chance to the chunk of coursework you’ve been putting off.
Afternoon – If you drink coffee or some sort of caffeine in the morning, by this time your energy levels may have taken a dip, so in the afternoon do tasks that don’t require too much energy. But moretime, if you go to uni then the afternoon will probably consist of lectures, meetings, revision, assignments or similar. If not, this is a good time to do grocery shopping or do your weekly cooking. Use the afternoon to complete tasks that are specific to that day.
Evening – By this time, depending on how productive your day has been, you’ll probably be low on energy and ready to relax and settle down for the evening. That’s why I try to get all my tasks done during the day, because when I get home I want to wind down and have peace of mind. So the evening is best for tasks such as spreading the laundry you set on in the morning. Wash dishes, iron, read, plan the next day, journal, something that doesn’t require too much brain power or movement.
Specify the ting (Optional)
Once you have ordered your list into the different segments, you can be more specific using specific times. Personally, I prefer to use a more flexible approach – time blocks. I’ll give you an example of both using my morning routine.
5:30 – Wake Up
5:30 – 5:40 – Piss (Yes. Piss), Turn Kettle On, Brush Teeth
5:40 – 5:45 – Make Tea
5:45 – 6:30 – Meditate, Pray, Read Book, Read Bible
6:30 – 8:00 – Gym
8:00 – 8:40 – Breakfast
8:40 – 9:00 – Shower
9:00 – 9:30 – Clear Dish Rack / Go to Campus
9:00 – 10:00 – Uni/Work (Emails/Phone Calls/Messages)
5:30 – 6:30
Piss; Brush Teeth; Turn Kettle On; Make Tea; Meditate; Pray; Read Book; Read Bible
6:30 – 8:00
8:00 – 10:00
Breakfast; Shower; Dish Rack; Uni; Work
The reason I prefer time blocks is because firstly, I know my routine without looking at it so it’s just easier to see what I need to do in a set time. As well as this, different factors may alter the way you do things and what time you do them. For example: If you say, 5:40 – 5:45 – Make tea and for some reason something has happened and it’s now 5:50, having a specific routine may leave you confused on what to do next. But in time blocks you can cut into another task to make your tea because you know you have a set time to do the tasks within that time block.
But you decide what you want to start with. Most of you will start with time blocks, not because you want the flexibility, but more because you don’t yet have the discipline to stick to the times you’ve set for yourself.
Sometimes life gets in the way of your routine. Whether it’s you hitting the snooze button and waking up 30 minutes late, or you getting caught up at a social gathering cutting into the time you have for your night routine which might lead to sleeping late leading to waking up late. In times like this you need the strength to say, ’No, I need to sleep on time tonight to get back into my routine’. Many times you will fall out of routine and that’s fine, at the end of the day it’s your life and your productivity so if you fall out of it, no one is going to beg you to get back on it, it’s all up to you.
Practice makes Improvement
Like I said in the previous blog, routines don’t come overnight. So don’t think just because you wrote out your routine you will automatically be having the most productive days. It’s about being consistent and being disciplined enough to abide by the tasks you’ve set for yourself. Over some time, your body will adjust to the routine, and you won’t even need to follow it on a piece of paper, you’ll start doing it out of habit.
An effective way of adjusting to you routine is focusing on each segment for 7 days and getting yourself familiar with them before moving on. So spend 1 week focusing on completing your morning routine. Once you’re comfortable with that, do the same with your afternoon routine while maintaining the morning routine. Then do the same for your evening routine.
I hope you’ve taken something valuable from this. If you need any help constructing a routine or any questions regarding creating a routine, feel free to hit me up on socials or drop a comment.
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