Episode 30: Back To The Grind: Establishing Routine After The Summer Slump
Summer is ending. School is starting. Even if you’re not going back to school, the time has come when it’s time to end the summer slump and get back into a fall rhythm. In this week’s episode, we give our top tips for implementing routines and share some of our favorite routines we’ve started in our lives to help you get off to a good start in your new routine filled life.
Use extrinsic motivation to make yourself do something until it becomes a habit. This ranges from using coffee as a reward for waking up early, listening to your favorite morning show or podcast (we know one we would highly recommend…) to get you up (are you sensing a theme of someone needing motivation to get out of bed?) or buying a new workout gear to motivate you to go to the gym.
Set limits. On the good things and the not so good things. Whether that’s setting a time limit on how long you let yourself watch TV or on how long you let yourself clean, limits help you stay on schedule. Boundaries require saying no to things on the front end (whether it’s saying no to work or to play) to better prepare you for things in the future.
Break up cleaning into manageable tasks. And stop when the time or the task is over. Don’t try to implement a ton of new routines or accomplish too many tasks at once, because that’s the surest way to get burned out. Set aside a certain amount of time each day and don’t let yourself get overwhelmed with the tasks that aren’t done.
Set an alarm to help you stay on task. It’s easy to get caught up in whatever you’re doing, be it productive or not, and not stick to your designated routine.
Do menial tasks daily, even when it seems unnecessary. Whether it’s running the dishwasher every night even if it’s not completely full or washing laundry every day even if it’s not a full load, do these tasks everyday to stay on schedule.
Get a planner or have a way to look at your week as a whole. Write down appointments, workouts, chores, whatever you need to make yourself feel organized and get the satisfaction of crossing things off your to-do list. Have some sort of concrete way to stay organized throughout your week and your future self will thank you.
Have a weekly/daily “uniform.” This tip comes from The Lazy Genius Podcast. If getting dressed on a Monday overwhelms you or you never know what to wear on a casual Saturday, establish a “uniform” and wear that outfit on that day every week. For KA, this is a grey t-shirt and jeans shorts on a Saturday. It may be a different day or a different outfit for you, but establish what look you’re going for and pick your pieces ahead of time to eliminate the “I have nothing to wear” meltdown. This also takes away the shame of outfit repeating because it’s a conscious choice.
Start small. And stay at it. Don’t try to eat healthy and shave your legs every day in the same week, because let’s be real, shaving your legs is a struggle. Set aside 2-3 weeks to try a new routine and then the next 2-3 weeks add on something else.
Make it easy on yourself. Whether you get a cordless vacuum to make vacuuming quick and easy or start washing your face in the shower (who knew this was common practice?) find ways to make your routines simple to ensure you actually do them.
Do you ever find yourself scrolling on the Internet and come across an article you want to read but it’s not the right time? Avoid wasting time throughout the day and save these articles to Pocket on your phone or add them to your reading list on the computer and set aside a time each week to catch up on your Internet reads.