Other,  Tips & Tricks

7 Ways to Form a Routine

Hey guys! This is just my simple suggestions for creating a routine, all of these have personally worked for me so I thought I’d write everything out and offer it to you as a suggestion! I hope you guys enjoy and find something helpful, good luck!

1. List what you want in your routine

To begin a routine you obviously need to know exactly what you want in your routine.
This could be your morning, night or after work routine, so this is subjective to each individual.
It needs to be personal, focused around your needs and desires as well as being legitimate and functional.

First, you need to think long and hard about what you want in it, whether it is 200 situps before a brisk jog or cooking your favourite breakfast.

Now, the easiest way to decide what you want in this routine is to create a physical or digital list. You can do this with pen and paper, in a booklist or you can buy To-Do-List’s and your local $2 or art and craft store.

For this example I used Word, but you can also use free software such as Office or Excel.

As you can see, I have provided one empty example, and a suggested example for the type of tasks you would want to do it your routine. This is in no particular order, and I listed them as I thought about them. This is a perfect way to get started on forming a routine.

You can do it in any way you want, of course, but this worked perfectly for me. I created this in word using an insert table format.

2. Set goals for your routine

Of course, to have a routine it is necessary to define the goals you want to accomplish by having this routine.

Whether it is to get your house cleaner, work out more or to just sleep better, you need to clearly outline the desired outcomes.

Now, again, this can be done with a simple pen and paper or can be done digitally.

Like most examples in this list, I have used Word. Which is why the lists are so simple, however, if you prefer a more desirable or motivational looking table, you can create your own. I, unfortunately, am not that skilled.

Once you have completed the desired goal achieved with the current routine, simply check it off and move on. I could not example it simpler!

3. Section your tasks into levels

When you’re beginning a new routine, it is going to seem overwhelming at first, with all the tasks you want to accomplish with not a lot of time. Because of this, I suggest breaking your tasks into sections, for better achievement and progress as you can along.

This works best if you section it into easy, medium and hard tasks. Easy tasks such as brushing your teeth, to medium tasks such as cleaning the house or hard tasks such as mowing the lawn or changing a tie (this is obviously subjective, and examples).

Once you have broken the tasks into the sections, work out how you want to complete the tasks. Whether it is all the hard activities first, or doing one easy, one medium and one hard and back again. Whichever works best for you.

Make sure you don’t overwork yourself, as scheduling too many difficult tasks in one day can make it seem daunting or undoable.
Not only this, but you still need to have enough time during the day for downtime (personal relaxing or time for hobbies). This is essential for your mental health.

4. Set a suggested time for activities

To do this, all you have to do it gather the desired list of activities you want to complete during the day and fill it in. However, keep in mind you need to allow time for regular activities such as bathroom breaks, eating, sleeping or socialisation (don’t forget hobbies!).

Now, this works best if you carve out a significant amount of time (as much as possible) to complete the task. To this at first, you need to mentally determine how long an activity is going to take, with standard deviation. Keep in mind, some times you are going to feel slower or lethargic. Perhaps you might be sick some days.

With this, you need to allow as much time as possible, while keeping it in the schedule. This table below is a rough outline, giving an hour for each activity, however, if you need more than an hour, you can just cross out the amount you will need.

This actually works best if you print out a schedule, buy a schedule or even create it yourself.

With creating it yourself on pen and paper, it doesn’t come out as legitimate or as easy to follow.

However, if you are still wanting to do this, go for it.

5. Plan for the longterm

The best routine is a routine prepared for the longterm. This works best if you set goals you wish to accomplish for the day, week, month and year. So, when you come to creating your routine, you can form it around the goals you wish to accomplish, or the other way ’round. This is done for goals such as reading, writing, working out or even mental health goals.

I personally use this time of scheduling, informally. Which you can probably determine from my previous posts. I am all about scheduling as it really structures the day, allowing unstructured, careless fun.

Again, this was creating using a table in Word, however, unlike the previous suggestions, you can use a calendar to determine this. Setting a goal for each day, or each week and check it off as you complete them.

6. Set a three-week evaluation goal

Now, this might seem like a rather odd amount of time. But, three weeks is 21 days and, studies have demonstrated that it takes only 21 days for a habit or routine to be formed. Now, this is added to the list, despite the list being about forming a routine, it is still rather important.

Once you have attempted the routine for three weeks, take a step back and evaluate. Evaluate whether certain items in the routine is aiding, fueling or supporting you in your daily life.
Not only that, but you need to consider whether it is worthwhile or manageable to continue this task for longer than three weeks. If not, ditch it.

A perfect way to evaluate it is by writing it out on a simple two-column list. Disliked tasks, and tasks you will continue.

This table I easily created in word. However, you can google simple tables if you do not want to create your own, or use an Excel spreadsheet. Whichever works best for you.

7. Check and reward yourself when you complete

Finally, if you have read through the entire list, you are probably realizing it takes quite a bit effort to create a structured routine. However, with this, comes the rewards! Woo!

If you haven’t heard of him, the famous Psychologist is B.F Skinner, renowned for his theory of operant conditioning. This is also known as positive/negative reinforcement or reward stimuli. Skinner created the famous rat experiment which led society to understanding part of the brain’s mechanism. One such mechanism is the reward reaction. Which, in simple words, is that our brain is reinforced every time we complete an action, if we are rewarded for such action.
Example: The rat experiment- every time the rat pushed/pulled a lever, he was rewarded with food. Thus, he learned that if he wanted food/treats, he had to activate the lever.

This is applied here because the best way to form a routine is if you reward yourself for completing each goal or activity. It doesn’t even have to be food, it can be anything that positively affects you- hobbies, activities, shows, people etc.

For this, you don’t actually need to write anything down. I just thought it would be visually easier to understand what I am trying to explain if you saw an example.

This is all subjective and personalised, but it works really well for me.
I especially use this when I have to study. For each section I complete- I can read a chapter, or watch thirty minutes of my show/movie.

This is honestly everything I can think of for creating a routine!
If you have any suggestions or feedback, feel free to comment down below. If this doesn’t work for you, you can go to my Instagram at @in_another_realm or my twitter at @inanotherrealm1.
Thank you all for reading, I hope you enjoyed! See you next time πŸ˜‰

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