To a 20-something learning to navigate their new found freedom, the thought of a daily routine can sound quite stifling. There’s something attractive about the idea of waking up whenever you want and going wherever the day takes you.
That is, until you actually realize just how stressful it is to live with this whimsical disposition (and how much time you’re wasting).
“Wait, what did I even accomplish today?”
Sure, the spontaneity sounds appealing at first, but it just ends up being a tense, taxing mess. The harsh reality is, the lack of a pre-planned schedule can make you feel overwhelmed and anxious as you let the day run you. It can leave you feeling like you missed the mark.
Since I’ve made the effort to reign in my chaotic life and adopt a daily routine for myself, I’ve found that there are some serious benefits in sticking to a set schedule. I end each day with clearer wins and takeaways and I feel significantly more accomplished.
In fact, the more I come and go between following a set schedule vs. letting the day determine it, the more I realize just how necessary it is.
Here are a few reasons why we could all be better off with a daily routine:
A Daily Routine Provides Structure
Have you ever been sitting in your room, staring into the distance thinking, “I have so much to do. But what in the world should I be doing right now?”
First of all, giiiirl… let me tell you… i’ve been there too often. And when faced with this situation, I usually shut down and choose the easiest route: mindlessly scrolling through Pinterest. (Which, ironically, is not at all on my list of things that need to get accomplished for the day).
If you’re like me and you struggle with a lack of direction, a daily routine is a wonderful solution. It keeps you from having to guess what you need to be working on. Your day has a logical sequence; when one task is finished, you know what to move on to next.
A Daily Routine Increases Efficiency and Combats Procrastination
I’m about to make a really bold statement but hear me out: the structure of a daily routine gives you the tools you need to 10x your productivity. 😲
I KNOW that’s bold, BUT lemme tell you why this is so…
As you continue to live out your daily routine over and over (and over) again, it will eventually become a habit—something you do not need to put much thought into. It becomes ingrained in your brain and you almost do it subconsciously (think: your brain won’t have the opportunity to procrastinate). As a result, you become more efficient.
I’m sure you know this, but you only have a certain amount of brainpower available to you each day. A predetermined schedule helps you minimize the amount of energy that is used to figure out simple, recurring tasks. This leaves more focused brainpower for the things that really matter (i.e. the things that will help you move toward your future goals).
Another point that’s worth mentioning is, the more you get into a standardized routine, the more on top of things you will be; when you go to start a new task, you will have already thought out and set aside the tools you need to accomplish it. This will be a major help, as you won’t have to stop in the middle of a productive block of work to figure out what instruments or gadgets you need and where to grab x, y, and z.
A Daily Routine Eliminates Confusion
Because routines help us streamline our day-to-day activities, they also help us recall what to do, how to do it, and when to get it done.
Do you know what this means???
You won’t have to stress about dropping the ball! The automation of a set schedule cuts out the guesswork and allows you to wake up and get stuff done instead of spending time planning out the details. This will eliminate the need to remind yourself a thousand times to get something done. You put it on your daily agenda and, boom, it gets done in its allotted time. This means you don’t waste time figuring out the details of who, what, when, where, why and how. It’s already been predetermined, you already have the tools you need, and you’re just here, casually (but intentionally) livin’ it up in the land of maximum productivity.
A Daily Routine Extinguishes the Need to Rely on Motivation
If you’ve been living for any amount of time, I’m sure you can boldly concur with me stating the fact that motivation comes in limited quantities.
That is, your willpower is absolutely finite.
Here’s the deal: I’m sure you have lofty goals and aspirations, but the truth of the matter is this: it takes work to accomplish goals. Yes, even for things you’re really passionate about.
Success requires that you make a conscious effort day in and day out to work toward it.
This is why it is essential that you rely on a daily routine (instead of your fixed motivation) to accomplish an important task. It negates the act of having to muster up the willpower to convince yourself to do something.
I know what you’re thinking and you’re right, it does take willpower to adhere to a routine. But once it’s set, you’re sorta on autopilot. You just do what you know to do without having to consciously make an effort to talk yourself into it. Think of it like brushing your teeth in the morning; no one has to convince you to do this, it’s just something you automatically get up and do each day. So, let this be your motivation; as you work to establish your daily routine, know that (if you stick with it) it will soon become as effortless as getting up to wet your toothbrush in the a.m.
A Daily Routine Gives You the Confidence You Need to Achieve Goals
By creating a set schedule of tasks, you have something to measure your day against. If you’ve closely followed the list and checked the boxes next to each ‘chore’, you will end your day feelin’ rather accomplished (like, I deserve the whole flippin’ sheet of gold stars, y’all).
This is positive reinforcement because, as you reap the benefits of adhering to a routine, the satisfaction you feel will be the fuel you need to continue powering through your days.
So, what do you think, friend? Will you be adopting a daily routine? Share your answer in the comments below!
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Thank you for reading and joining the conversation!