Title Card - Maintaining A Routine

Maintaining A Routine

There are some things we all think of when it comes to a routine we would like to keep but sometimes have trouble doing: flossing, going to the gym, or even writing a blog once a week. They’re type of thing that you know you should be doing but sometimes find you lack the motivation.

We all understand the reasons why. Perhaps the weather is bad and getting to the gym just doesn’t make logical sense, or you have writer’s block that makes coming up with a blog topic that much more challenging. Suddenly you miss the time you set aside to complete that task and you’ve set a precedent. You’ve missed one already, and what you did with that time instead felt great, because you were likely doing something you really enjoy instead, or got caught up on other chores. What’s to say you couldn’t do that again? And again?

Although it can seem overbearing, there are a few ways you can help your mindset to maintain your routine, even if you have the occasional gap.

1. Remove the pressure.

One of the biggest mistakes one can make when trying to keep a routine is letting some self-manifested dread set in that you missed a session. At the end of the day, it’s not a big deal that you had one blip in your otherwise “flawless record”, nobody is judging you for it. Accept that you missed a session and move on, no matter the reason. Remember your mindset after just completing a session and adopt it, as though you had just completed your session, and it will feel like nothing happened. You will be far more likely to pick it up again in the next session than if you let the self-imposed pressure get to you.

2. Take a break.

That’s right, it’s okay to have a break in your routine. Sometimes you just feel so spent that just thinking about continuing your routine fills you with dread, it is probably a good time to allow yourself some leeway. Everyone needs a mental health day from time to time, and recognizing that you need it is the first step to getting back to feeling yourself. As I mentioned above, it is best to take the pressure off your routine and get right back to it next session, refreshed and relieved.

3. Complete a light session.

If there are bits and pieces of your routine that you feel you can complete, do that instead and get back to it next time. Even a little is better than none, and it can still mark the mental checkbox in your head. Next session, you will be able to return to your normal scheduling far easier because there wasn’t actually a break in your routine.

Please take note if you find that you are repeatedly returning to your sessions on lighter workloads. This may be because you were actually pushing yourself too hard, and if this level of output feels natural to you, you were probably unintentionally burning yourself out. Listen to yourself and adjust accordingly.

These are just a few starting points for keeping a routine. For example, if time management is your main issue, setting an alarm might be all you need. Analyze what roadblocks lie in the way for you specifically and find strategies that work for you.