#Essential Living

3 Powerful Benefits of Routine

May 07, 2017

Mr B has a routine for everything.  It's even been a source of gentle teasing.  I've always thought routines made life too mechanical and subconsciously avoided them.  Isn't being organized enough?  When used correctly, there is nothing boring about a routine life and the power is undeniable.  I've had a paradigm shift and have been making adjustments.

3 Powerful Benefits of a Routine:

1.  Difficult things become easy.  "That which we persist in doing becomes easier.  Not that the nature of the thing has changed, but our ability to do it has increased."  Heber J. Grant

As we repeatedly perform tasks, we develop "muscle memory" or the neurons create more communication paths called synapses.  The more repetitions, the easier it is for the brain to activate them.  We learn to do things on "autopilot", such as driving to work without consciously thinking about it.  (It's amazing how we can be daydreaming and driving at the same time.)  Once a routine is mastered, it becomes second nature. 
2.  The brain starts working less.  Creativity increases.  Routines help shift tasks to the subconscious freeing up space to learn something new.  "The brain can almost completely shut down." says Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit.  Personalizing our daily activities helps free the mind from distractions allowing greater concentration on matters we decide are of greater importance.    

3.  Behaviors are changed.   "We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."  Aristotle

"Scientists have explained that every habit is made up of a cue, a routine, and a reward," said Duhigg.  If we want to change a behavior, we can replace the cue or create one to trigger a new routine.  I used to check my phone messages when I first got up in the morning - we know where that leads.  Now when I turn off my phone alarm, I put it down and weigh myself instead and start my morning routine.    

We are naturally creatures of habit.  After a close examination, you will recognize many things you already routinely do.  The question is - Is it a good routine leading to great results?  Where to begin?  Start simple, of course.  Make one change in your daily or weekly routine and build from there.  As you progress consider routines for morning and evening, different days of the week, and for the weekends. 

"Routine, in an intelligent man, is a sign of ambition."  W. H. Auden     That's Mr B.

What will you change first?  Let us know and enjoy the process!  


* In case you're wondering why the bed doesn't get made until after breakfast, it's because Mr B is still in it!  We used to have a deal - the last one out of bed, makes it.  He willingly does so many other things around  the house, I let him off the hook on this one.

* Why is fixing my hair the last thing?  I don't know - it just is.

*  I didn't add this item, but now I don't check my emails/texts until I leave for work.

*  I'm learning to stay present and only do one thing at a time - except when driving to work I tune in to the Bobby Bones radio show from Nashville.  I've tried listening to more inspirational content, but it just doesn't work for me.  Those 12 minutes with the BB crew are pure delight, making me laugh and putting a smile on my face.   

Thanks for listening!  I enjoy good company.


Live by Design

Live by Design

Join the Initiative