“More than 40% of the actions people perform each day aren’t actual decisions, but habits.”The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
There are so. many. things. we do on a daily basis without even thinking about it.
Driving, for instance. You don’t stop to think about every single action you need to take to get the car down the driveway. It just happens. And that is all thanks to habits.
This tidbit of information, other insight from The Power of Habit, and simply a desire to use my time effectively, grew in me a need to establish intentional routines.
Creating My Morning Routine
I started by creating a morning routine.
Over the past four months, I’ve been fine tuning it to figure out what works for me and what doesn’t. And now, I love it. Maybe that sounds silly to love a morning routine, but hear out my why.
When creating my morning routine, I had one main priority: ensure I started each day doing what mattered most to me. I didn’t want to just create a routine, I wanted to develop intentional habits.
I can confidently say that each day I “complete” my morning routine (more on that below), I feel fulfilled. It gets me started on the right foot ready to tackle whatever comes my way.
The Actual Routine
Before you read though my routine below, I challenge you to think about what matters most to you. Take into account the season of life you are in and what you’ve found does and doesn’t work for you.
Morning routines are personal, so be sure it meets your individual needs.
Without further adieu, my routine (complete with emoji encouragement).
⏰🌞🧖🏼♀️ Morning Routine:
- [No phone📱, email 📧, social media until after quiet time 🙏🏼🙌🏼 ✅]
- Up and moving by 8 AM 👣
- Drink 12 oz. water 💦
- Make breakfast 🥞 🍳 🥓 🍌🥤
- Load of laundry
- Turn on diffuser 👃🏼🌱
- Braces ✔️
- Devotional / gratitude / prayer ✝️🙌🏼🙏🏼
- Set 1-3 intentions for the day (aka to dos) 📒
- Workout 🧘🏻♀️🤸🏻♀️🏊🏻♀️
- One water bottle done (25 oz.) 💦
- Shower 🚿
- Apply essential oils 🌱💕
In total, my routine takes between two and two-and-a-half hours. But it’s mostly due to the time requirements of my leg braces. In my current season, it’s not only necessary but completely doable.
Recommendations and Lessons Learned
When building your routine, I encourage you to start small and build on your routine. Four months in and I am still making tweaks.
My Biggest Takeaway
The most important takeaway I can share related to my morning routine is this: I don’t perfectly complete my routine every single morning. And you shouldn’t expect that you will either. It is all about progress, not perfection. Every time you complete even one step, you are working toward building intentional habits – and that is celebration worthy!
Ask yourself what is most important to you on your list. If you know it’s not feasible to do it all, do what matters most. For me, my must dos are water, braces, and quiet time.
Where to Keep Your List
I’m one of those people who loves to physically cross off items on a to do list. It’s so satisfying! But it would be entirely inefficient to write and cross off my morning routine every day.
Instead, I found a note on my phone worked best for me. I can still click the checkboxes in the Notes app and feel a sense of accomplishment.
Other people write their morning routine on a sheet of paper and tape it to their bathroom mirror or keep it on their bedside table. Figure out what works best for you. Over time, you’ll likely realize you don’t even necessarily need to reference your list. After all, day by day, actions become habits.