The Beauty of Routine
I have never been one to have a solid morning routine, or any sort of routine for that matter. And I’ve always been so envious of those who manage to wake up at 5am and have already done earth shattering things - before I’ve even thought of waking up.
I recently went through a period of time where my thought processes were starting to change – the beliefs about myself were evolving, and I really felt like I was going through a period of personal growth. With that came the commitment to plan my week every Sunday so I know exactly what I’m doing, set up a habit chart which I tick off every day (more on that later), and every day I have a morning routine.
While I can’t say I’m part of the 5am club, my morning routine has certainly set the tone for my day, and really does shape and determine how the day ends up going. For instance, today, I woke up a little late, was rushing out, didn’t have time to do my morning routine, and ended up feeling quite nervous and flat for the rest of the day. Let's bare in mind that every day before I was doing it and was smashing my days, and my mood was glowing. Coincidence? I think not.
So what is it that I actually do?
Well, every Sunday, I sit with my boyfriend (he’s my anchor for the moral support) and write down all of the things that I want/need to do that week. Even things like going to the post office, or stocking up on toiletries. Next, I mark the ones which are priorities.
I then start to fill in the piece of paper with the pre-booked things that I’ve got that week (e.g. – doctor’s appointment, meeting, dinner with a friend). I then and start to fill in which things I’m going to do on which day - priorities go first. I do this on actual paper, not on my phone. I feel like it's more concrete and I’m more likely to take it seriously if it's on a piece of paper.
As I write everything down, I tick it off the other original list, which kind of makes me feel fulfilled in itself. Slowly I fill in everything, writing how long approximately each task is going to take. I try not to underestimate how long it will take me to do something – sometimes I can switch to superwoman mode and think I can do everything in one day. No. Be realistic and achievement will come.
I leave the big tasks for the morning, and the small tasks for the evening. For instance – research in the morning, social media post in the evening. Emails in the morning, admin in the evening. Once that’s done, I write my goals for that week and my priorities. I normally try narrow this down to 4 or 5 each so I don’t basically rewrite the same list again. Its so satisfying ticking these off, so make them realistic and achievable. Even if its going for a walk every day!
Now onto the morning routine.
I made a habit tracker. It’s basically a grid with every day of the week that can be ticked off, and a list of habits. Some of mine are – set intentions, visualise my ideal day, 5 minute morning meditation, 15 minutes of morning reading, work from my desk not my bed, go for a 15 minute walk, stretch for 10 minutes after work, evening skincare etc. Some of these might seem trivial and meaningless but honestly its stuff I just don’t normally do. I’m never consistent with skincare. I never read. I’m lazy and don’t walk or stretch. By having something to work towards – i.e. ticking all the boxes – it makes me want to actually do these things. And the more I do them, the more I enjoy doing them. And alas, the chain reaction begins.
For my morning routine, I do the following. I get up, take my pills, go do my skincare and brush my teeth etc. I try not to look at my phone during this time because I feel like it can suck me in and start my day on edge. So I go and light a Sababa candle (I find that Copacabana Ocean Breeze is just the best scent to kickstart the day – its positive and fresh) and I go straight to the 5 minute morning guided meditation. This is only 5 minutes (I’m aiming to do more as time goes by, I wanted to be realistic), but it really makes the difference. The particular one that I do makes you visualise your body going through a positive energetic cleanse. You essentially imagine positive energy flowing through you and pushing the negative energy out. Sounds weird, but it works.
I then get my pen and paper and write the following:
5 affirmations – e.g., I am successful, I am the creator of my dream life
Things that will make today incredible – e.g., going for a walk, getting X done, seeing my friend
What I am grateful for this morning?
The ideal version of myself that I visualise today – e.g. – being productive, laughing with my family, helping a friend.
Having this alone time with the pen and paper really calms me down and makes me feel more ready to take on the day. The combination of doing this with the meditation actually makes me feel confident that the day is going to be great.
Doing this along with ticking off the habits I have already achieved in the first few minutes of my day is just the loveliest way to start the day. I then do 15 minutes of reading. I’m not a reader but boy does this feel good!
I would really recommend trying this out. Having your Sababa candle by your side every morning will definitely help you, we promise!
A morning routine sets the tone for the whole day, and if you do each day right, you'll do life right.