January: Daily Routines
The start of a new year, a new month, and a new moon cycle aligns us perfectly to start new habits and routines or add onto those we already have. We all have daily habits, some good and some not so good, I'm sure. One of my "unquestionable truths" is "My daily routines matter most." My practice of yoga and Ayurveda along with reading Gretchen Rubin are what really hammered this home for me. Ayurveda is founded in daily routine, or dinacharya, as one of the most powerful tools for improving health and well-being. And as Gretchen Rubin says, "What you do everyday matters more than what you do every once in a while."
So what are you doing every day? What are your daily routines or rituals? And are you looking to improve any of your routines?
There are many basics we do every day - eat, hydrate, move, sleep, connect with those around us, and the list goes on. If you can improve on, or just steady, these basic daily routines and rituals, the benefits will add up and your foundation will be strong.
I am more of a morning person and find if I start my day with my routines then I am much more ready and able to work effectively and give back to those around me. Although my morning routine changes based on the season, my work schedule and travel, I always wash my face and scrape my tongue first thing in the morning. I then have some water and do some writing, some movement, and some meditation - some days this is an hour and some days this is just a few minutes. By starting my day with this routine, I find I am much better at staying focused and getting things checked off my to-do list the rest of the day since I feel like I have given myself the time and nourishment I need.
Whether your morning (or evening) routine is only a few minutes or a few hours, see if you can use the routine you already have to add to, or even remove from, so your daily habits serve you best.
If you want to move more in the new year, what already established habit can you tack that onto? Maybe it's getting out for a walk or doing a home workout right after you wake up and brush your teeth.
If it's not your morning routine, but habits throughout the day like drinking more water try to take a sip of water every time you go to check your email or your phone.
And if it’s something you want to do less of, see if you can replace your current habit or routine with something else. Always mindlessly snacking when you get home? Try doing something else with your hands like a puzzle, coloring, or another manual project to keep your hands and mind occupied.
Whatever you’re trying to start (or restart) this year or this month, pay attention to your daily routines. If nothing else just being more aware of your daily habits is a start!