Many people take on each new day as a new adventure. This can be fun and exciting at times, but you risk stunting your productivity. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with being spontaneous and living life to the fullest, but a little structure is sometimes needed to get the most out of your life.
A common method individuals use to keep themselves on track is setting and following daily routines. Even if this is the only consistent part of your day, the consistency of a daily schedule sets the groundwork for success. You’re always going through the steps that adequately prepare you for whatever challenge you may face.
Something so simple and perceived to be tedious may not appear to be that beneficial at the surface level. The truth is quite the opposite. The most successful people in the world follow daily routines, even small ones, as part of their formula for success. To help you understand why daily routines can be so beneficial, let’s run through a few advantages this single addition to your day can provide:
1. Organizes Your Efforts
The main drawback of winging it every day is that you’re not frequently taking the most efficient route. Following a daily routine helps ensure that you start every day off on the right foot and that you don’t stray too far from the path.
Let’s say that one of the daily habits you decide to follow is to create a to-do list every evening of items to be completed the following day. With this list, you can start each day knowing what needs to be done and in what order. You never have to wonder what needs to be done, and you can begin each day with some set goals in mind.
This organization also helps tremendously with achieving a better work-life balance. Using daily planning and time-management techniques, you can make sure you’re leaving work at work and enjoying the time you have at home. A better work-life balance will open up more opportunities for you to keep your mental health at the optimal position.
2. Improves Your Sleep Schedule
Your day starts when you wake up and ends when your head hits the pillow. However, all that space in between sundown and sunrise is essential to how you function during your waking hours. If you’re not getting proper rest, you’re not going to have a very productive day.
A daily routine doesn’t have to be constrained to your nine-to-five schedule. In fact, you’ll get a lot of benefits from just following a short routine that helps improve your sleeping habits. For example, you can start by sticking to a short bedtime routine. It can help you with getting to bed on time and not being kept awake by distractions like food and electronics. Sleeping at a good time is the first step in feeling well-rested.
Next, you can work on developing a morning routine that perks you up each day. Not everyone is a morning person, so a little routine can help get you started when you don’t want to get out of bed. Try fitting in a short workout, reading the newspaper, or waiting to check your cell phone until after you’ve showered. Even setting an alarm to wake up at the same time each day can make a significant impact on your daily life.
3. Evens Out Your Bad Days
Even though you strive for consistency and improvement, you’ll inevitably have a bad day every once in a while. While it won’t eliminate them entirely, a daily routine can help even out those bad days. That way, they don’t feel quite as bad as they could be. A good routine provides a solid foundation that is not so easily shaken by setbacks and unexpected disturbances.
Perhaps you have a day soon where all of your appointments fall through, you realize you missed a deadline, and you have a flat tire on your way to the office. This certainly qualifies as a bad day in anyone’s book. However, it could be even worse if you didn’t have a daily routine that kept you grounded.
If you follow a good morning routine that consists of some light exercise and a healthy breakfast, you’ll be in much better shape mentally and physically when challenges arise. If you woke up late and only had a donut and half a cup of coffee to start the day, each problem would hit you that much harder.
4. Replaces Your Bad Habits
Bad habits and poor routines develop rather easily. Like weeds, they spring up without any effort on your part and can be difficult to get rid of once they’ve taken root. Much work must be done to rid yourself of the bad routines that have settled in. Creating a new daily routine can help you rip up those weeds and remove them once and for all.
Perhaps there is a popular fast-food restaurant that’s positioned right next to your office space. With delicious food in such close proximity, a habit of stopping there for breakfast or dinner can naturally develop. Unfortunately, eating fast food too often is unhealthy and expensive in the long run.
Think about what kind of daily routine you can implement to replace this one with a healthier alternative. Instead of swinging by a fast food restaurant, try your hand at meal prepping. If that doesn’t work, you could try making a sandwich first thing in the morning. Even adding extra hydration to your daily routine can help, as the additional water will stave off excess hunger.
5. Makes You a Better Leader
Not everyone was born for leadership or even wants to be in a position of responsibility. However, society as a whole is improved when people take individual measures to improve themselves and become an example to others. While this might not be your intention, creating and following a beneficial daily routine can make you a better leader.
You don’t need to be a CEO, politician, or even a shift manager for this to matter. Leadership qualities help with parenting, training coworkers, and even helping a child at the local parkland with his first skateboard trick. If someone asks you for advice on how to get more out of their day, you’ll have the personal experience to show them the ropes.
If you do hold a leadership position, all the more reason to ramp up your routine game. Inspire your workforce by showing up to the office 10 minutes early every day and following a schedule that gets your hard workers home on time. Your daily routine will create waves in your team and organization as well as in yourself.
The goal here isn’t to change your entire lifestyle while becoming a flawless productivity superstar. All it takes is adding in one new positive routine to make a difference in your daily life. Still not a believer? Just give it a try for yourself. Select a new daily routine to follow for a couple of weeks and pay attention to how you feel before, during, and after.
Remember, routines take time to develop, and you might not notice drastic changes immediately. Look at the little details, and give yourself some time to settle into a routine.
Featured Image Credit: Photo by Kate Trifo; Pexels; Thank you!