a routine will become a habit and a healthy habit will pave the way to a happy and successful life.Me (AKA Tara Thomassen)
If you’re anything like me and follow a bunch of people on Instagram and YouTube who are into intentional living, productivity and becoming the best version of you then you’ve heard every Jane, Lisa and Mary advocate for a morning and night routine to set up your day and finish it with a bang! There’s a reason why they all rave about this until they’re blue in the face!
It’s not that I dismissed the idea of these routines but I never properly incorporated them into my day and actually saw benefits in my physical and mental performance for the day, until THIS YEAR! I have no idea how I went so long without having set up routines like these when i’m already so crazy about planning and organisation!
There are a couple of things to note before I dive into each routine that are essential for when and how you plan your own your own routines…
ONE: What do you want your routine/s to do for you?
Do you want a morning routine to invigorate and pump you up before the day? Do you want your night routine to relax you before bed and be technology free? Do you want a happiness routine that encourages self-compassion? If you have no why you’ll always be saying “well, then why not just skip it?!”.
TWO: Design a routine that works for you!
There’s no point in doing what everyone else is doing and hope that it will work for you. Get inspiration from said Jane, Lisa and Mary but don’t copy them unless you’re doing it for the same reasons, you’re after the same benefits or you’re experimenting to find what you love best. It pays to also keep tweaking your routine if something that doesn’t sit right, until you find a way that works.
THREE: Create a long and short version of these routines
Yes we may all love our routines and we know that in doing them we feel 1000 times better but there’ll be days when you wake up and don’t feel like going through the whole process; there’ll be days when you wake up late or don’t want to spend an hour and a half on your routines; there’ll be days where you may be slightly bored by your routine. Be a little flexible and allow for some spontaneity to shake things up! I really need to take my own advice with this one – my morning routine can be between an hour and an hour and a half long! Woops!
FOUR: It’s okay if you don’t do your routine!
I think it’s important to note that despite what I said above, we’re not always going to be able to work through our routines at all. Perhaps you’re staying with family, you’re on holidays, you’re spending a weekend at a retreat, or you just don’t feel like it at all because you’re in a rush and trying to maximise your time. I believe it’s okay to skip a day or two here and there. To be honest, skipping the routine occasionally will be a great incentive for you to do the routines other days because you’ll have felt how shit you feel when you don’t do it!
So now that the fundamentals are out of the way…
Let’s talk about morning routines! I did an Instagram post way back when that perfectly sums up what I believe are the most important aspects of a routine while not necessarily telling you exactly what you should do – because as we’ve already established, you need routines that work for you not the ones that work for me!
I’ve always hated rushing around in the mornings so I’ve always woken up early enough to go about getting ready at a slow pace. The difference between then and now is just that I now incorporate spiritual, mental, emotional and physical development into my routines.
If you’d like some inspiration from my morning routine, let me know! It’s my all time favourite routine!
A night routine is one I’ve only just recently incorporated and because I’m so new at it I haven’t found something that works for me 100% (look I don’t claim to be perfect, just happy!).
The night time is MY time where I mindlessly watch The Vampire Diaries for the 500th time and gorge on chocolate self saucing pudding so it’s incredibly difficult some nights to drag myself away until right before I’m heading to bed. Some discipline is definitely in order!
My most ideal night routine however, would usually include:
a) Catching up on my reading
b) My magnesium hot chocolate *mouth watering*
c) Preparing for the next day with a to-do list (I live my life by MANY lists – I’m an organisational QUEEEEEEN)
d) Doing all the above while listening to my favourite calming music
Use the same principles as I mentioned about morning routines above in my Instagram post, to also create your night routine. If you enjoy what you’re doing, you’re excited to do it and it relaxes you, then you’ve found your night routine!
I’ve added this bad boy in as like a mini part two of ‘Things You Need to Know About Self-Compassion’ to mention the actions you could take rather than ways of being like the self-compassion post dove into.
Having a happiness routine when you’re not quite feeling your best should encourage good feelings without forcing yourself to feel better, without wallowing in your low vibes and without emotionally beating yourself up for having a bad day. Instead, your happiness routine should soothe your soul (or at least that’s what I believe). Some introspection work will help you become aware of what makes you feel good.
When I’m having low vibe days I like to put myself in an extra calming place than usual to wind down. So I will take a clearing and mindful shower, light a candle, put on a feel good movie and get cozy. Perhaps others would meditate, or go for a walk in the sunshine and if that works for you too, do it! The night is my favourite time of day so I like to see out this routine at the end of the day. I always feel like if I was to do my happiness routine during the day it would be null and void if I had to go straight back to being busy or stressed straight afterwards, so I always see out the end of the day first.
I hope I’ve given you some food for thought. I’m constantly tweaking and improving my routines and I’m constantly trying to absorb as much knowledge from others as I can in order to improve, so be sure to let me know about your own routines and we can inspire each other!
Happy routine building!
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I love you 3000!