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Well Planned Day – Busy Gal

January Planning Tip

What is My Routine?

Anytime we’re introduced to a new concept, implementing it can be a little overwhelming. We want to make sure we’re doing it the right way and getting the full benefit from our new habit. 

Routines are one example. We briefly touched on routines in the “Incorporate S.P.O.T.” article in your planner. But if you’re new to this concept, you might want a bit more information to help you get started. 

What is a Routine?

A routine is simply a set of tasks that you repeat every single day, typically around the same time each day. For instance, a morning routine would involve all of the things you do right after you get up in the morning, such as make the bed, exercise, shower, eat breakfast, and brush your teeth. 

Because you know that you do each of these things every morning, you don’t have to list them on your to-do list. But, it’s still important to set aside time for them in your schedule so that you don’t overbook your day. 

So, as you build your schedule, you’d just put “Morning Routine” in the spot where you complete all of these tasks. The same would apply for an evening routine or any other segment of your day where you have a series of repeated tasks. 

What about the Weekly “My Routine” Space?

The awesome thing about routines is that they are a perfect vehicle for adding new habits. This is referred to as habit stacking. If you already have one habit, it’s much easier to start a new one if you let it piggyback on an existing habit. 

For instance, let’s say that your morning routine involves getting up and either starting the coffee maker or putting on water to heat so you can make coffee in your French press. But, you’d like to add a habit of drinking 16 ounces of water first thing in the morning. 

A great way to build that habit is to add grabbing a glass of water to the morning routine right after you get the coffee started. You can drink it while you’re waiting for that coffee!

But, here’s the kicker: it’s not a habit yet. If you’re used to starting the coffee then going in to make the bed, it’s easy to forget to grab that cup of water since it’s not yet an established part of your routine. 

This is where the My Routine space comes in very handy. Every time you want to add a new habit, use the My Routine column on the weekly spread to write down the routine it will fit into. Write down each task, adding the new habit in the spot where it should fit into the flow. 

Now it’s in front of you! You’ll see it every day (because you’ll have your planner out and visible!), and you’ll be reminded on a regular basis to add in that habit. When things are written down and visible, we’re much more likely to actually get them done. A new habit is no exception!

Obviously, there are a variety of other ways to use this space – and to use routines. So be creative! But, remember that the key is to keep it in front of you so that you can build solid and healthy habits and routines.

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