At the end of 2017 I felt completely lost. I felt like I was waiting for this gap year to be over, just so I feel can feel like I have some sort of purpose again. I knew things had to change. I am still at the very beginning of this journey to getting my old life back, but slowly things are starting to change.
The first thing that I did was to create a morning and night routine. It was very important for me to have at least a few tasks to do on a day, so I felt like I had a purpose. I had no motivation in life at the end of 2017, but having at least one task a day sets me into a mindset of motivation. Which helps to get excited to do more in a day.
These tips can be implemented to any routine you want to create, morning, evening, studying, you name it.
Start with a few tasks first and work your way up
My biggest tip is to start small and add in only a few tasks at the beginning. I know that this can be really hard. I used to be so motivated the first few days to start a new routine, that I wanted to do everything at once. However, when you start implementing new things into your life, they aren’t yet a habit. It is hard to change your lifestyle, so make it easier for you to focus on a few things first. When they become a habit and you don’t need to put as much effort in it anymore, you can add some new tasks. I recommend spending about 15 minutes till an hour on your routine. You can see for yourself how many tasks you want to finish in that time.
Take time to master the task
Another reason why starting with a few tasks is great, is that it makes sure that you put some more effort into new habits. When I started a new morning routine with 6 tasks I would rush through the task, just for the sake of being able to tick of the box. However the reason that I started a routine in the first place was to get all the benefits from it. When you start with just a few tasks, you can really put all your attention to it and learn what works best for you within this task. This way you see results faster and you truly benefit from your routine.
Don’t be too hard on yourself
I knew that when having a routine, you have to be consistent to make it a habit and really a part of your life. I used to be super motivated to start a new routine and the first few days I could already feel the benefits. However, a few days later I had a long dance class at night and I just wasn’t able to finish all the tasks. I got disappointed in myself, the negative self talk starts to kick in and I feel like I am a weak person who can’t even stick to a routine. My motivation just drops to 0 and I am not very likely to stay consistent with my routine.
I can beat myself up really easily for the smallest things, so lately I have been working really hard to except the fact that life can’t be perfect all the time. This way I am actually much more productive and consistent because I don’t let myself down if something doesn’t really go according to a plan.
I have a list with all my morning and night routine tasks, which I look at before I start my routine. If there is a morning where I just don’t have a lot of time, I only do the things that are most beneficial for me that day and skip a few things that don’t feel like a need.
Reflect on your tasks
What I find such an important part of having a routine is to reflect on your tasks. See if what you are doing is actually working for you. We see so many morning, night and other routines on the Internet from all kind of people, but does it work for you? It is so easy to get influenced by other people on what to do, but not all things work for everyone. We are all so unique, so meditation might be something that I need in my life at the moment, but maybe you need more time writing down your feelings in your journal. When you have implemented a task for about 4 weeks, reflect, see if it is beneficial enough to keep in your routine or add something else and see if it works better.
I hope that these tips can help you to create a routine that works for you.
If you have any other tips you want to share, you can always leave them in the comments.