I’m someone who loves a good routine. There’s just something about it that makes you feel like you’ve got your whole life together.
I’ve created and followed countless routines throughout the past few years. Everything from the Miracle Morning Routine (S.A.V.E.R.S.) to my own rendition of a productive ritual.
Before starting a new routine, there would always be a few things that I’d take note of.
So, if you’ve ever wondered how to create your own ideal routine, here’s my game plan for success.
1. Know your goal.
Before you jump into crafting a routine for yourself, you need to know what your goal is.
Why are you trying to build a routine? What’s motivating you? Driving you?
Identifying your goal is step one to creating a new routine because it holds the answer to what you should plan out.
It doesn’t just have to be one goal, either. If you have more than one, that works too!
Let’s say I have a goal to live a more active lifestyle. If I set out to create a routine that doesn’t make time for exercise or movement, that wouldn’t make much sense - would it?
So instead, I state my goal. Then, I select key habits that fit into my goal.
For example, my goal to live a more active lifestyle would be supported by: adding a daily walk to my routine & one 30-minute workout session.
Another example might be that you have a goal to write a book.
If you've set out on this mission to write a book, you’re obviously going to need to spend quite a bit of time researching, writing, and editing.
With that in mind, it might be a good idea to add in a work session to your morning or night routine.
Curate your routine to your goals.
Want to write a book —> have work time in your routine.
Want to eat healthier —> add meal prep to your weekly routine.
You get the idea.
Not only is this a great way to help yourself reach your goals, it also supports creating a routine that’s actually practical for your life instead of unrealistic.
Knowing your goal so you know what activities to choose is step one to creating your ideal routine.
2. Identify what works for you and what doesn’t.
Step 2 to creating your ideal routine is to identify what works for you and what doesn’t.
I’ll be upfront - I’m not really a runner. I don’t enjoy it much, and it doesn’t leave me feeling motivated or inspired.
So, why would I schedule in a morning run into my routine? It may be because I saw a millionaire’s morning routine, and they go on a run every morning.
But what works for one person might not work for another, and that’s an essential aspect of creating your ideal routine.
After all, it’s YOUR routine.
You need to recognize what works for you and what doesn’t. Instead of adding running into my routine, maybe I’ll add a pilates workout because that’s more my style.
By choosing tasks that leave you feeling good, you’ll be much more likely to complete the routine again the following day.
One of the biggest problems I ran into when first trying to create a routine was looking to others for example, instead of asking myself what I needed.
Yes, it’s inspiring to see others wake up at 4 AM, workout immediately, and go on a 5-mile hike by 6 AM. But that doesn’t have to be what you do.
Your routine can be just as fulfilling if you seek out things that bring you joy.
Select activities for your routine that mesh with the life you love and wish to create.
If I would have done this from the start, I would have saved myself lots of time and lots of energy.
3. Create a plan.
Now that we've identified our goals and figured out what works well for us, we can start the actual planning.
I would suggest creating a plan for your routine in a format similar to this:
7:00 AM: Wake Up
7:15 AM: Read + Journal
7:45 AM: Workout
8:30 AM: Get Ready
9:00 AM: Breakfast
Use timestamps to help you understand when you’ll be doing what. I recommend giving yourself a bit more time than you think you’ll need for each activity.
To begin, choose the activities you’d like to have in your routine. Some common ones are reading, journaling, working out, getting ready, cleaning, planning your day, etc.
There really is no specific way you need to do this, it truly is up to you.
Once you have your activities, budget out time for them in your routine.
If it’s your first time creating a routine like this, try doing a test run so you can see how long things will actually take you. That’s pretty helpful.
4. Be consistent and patient.
Congrats! At this point, you’ve created a plan for your routine and have started to implement it into your life.
It’s usually at this point where things can go south for me personally. I get super excited at the idea of a new routine, so the first few days go really well.
Then, I wake up late or I don’t follow the routine exactly how I wanted to.
If you’ve experienced something similar, I’m with you. I know how it feels, and it can be pretty discouraging.
That’s why step four to creating your ideal routine is to be consistent and patient.
A routine is something that should flow with your life - no day will ever look exactly the same, and that’s okay!
Accepting this fact up front is the best thing you can do for yourself if you’re in the process of implementing a new routine.
I started a general night routine about a year ago that I still follow to this day. But every day has slight variations.
While I’d love to start my night routine at 8 PM sharp every day, that doesn’t always happen.
The point of an ideal routine is not to make it idealistic, but rather situational for what your life looks like.
I have my routine written out with time increments, but I’m prepared to shake things up if I need to.
Eventually, you’ll view your punctual routine as a guideline for your real routine.
And that’s how you can create your ideal routine, whatever that might be.
I hope this helped provide you with a general idea of how you can get started.
Following a routine is something that really gives my life structure during those busy and hectic days, so I’d really recommend trying to create one for yourself.
Thanks for reading, and I’ll talk to you all again soon!