by Joseph W., Licensed & Registered Counsellor
Date: Aug 2023
Getting back into a routine after a disruption can be challenging, but with some planning and determination, you can make the process smoother. Here are some steps to help you put yourself back into the routine of your daily life:
Set Clear Goals: Define what you want to achieve by re-establishing your routine. Whether it's getting back to work, exercising regularly, or focusing on hobbies, having clear goals will give you a sense of purpose.
Start Small: Don't overwhelm yourself by trying to immediately tackle your entire routine. Start with a few key activities and gradually add more as you become comfortable.
Create a Schedule: Having a schedule provides structure and accountability. Plan your day with specific time slots for different activities like waking up, meals, work/study, exercise, relaxation, and sleep.
Prioritize Tasks: List your tasks in order of importance. Tackle the most critical tasks first to create a sense of accomplishment and motivation.
Set Alarms and Reminders: Use alarms, reminders, or calendar apps to prompt you for specific activities. This can help prevent you from forgetting important tasks.
Set Realistic Expectations: Be realistic about what you can achieve in a day. Overloading your schedule can lead to frustration and burnout.
Gradual Adjustment: If your routine has been disrupted for a while, it's okay to gradually transition back. For instance, if you used to wake up at 6 AM but have been waking up at 8 AM, try setting your alarm 15 minutes earlier each day until you reach your desired wake-up time.
Stay Consistent: Consistency is key to establishing a routine. Try to stick to your schedule as closely as possible, even on weekends.
Prepare in Advance: Lay out your clothes, prepare meals, and organize your workspace the night before. This will save you time and mental energy in the morning.
Incorporate Breaks: Schedule short breaks throughout the day to relax and recharge. This can actually enhance your productivity and focus.
Practice Self-Care: Don't neglect self-care activities like exercise, meditation, reading, or spending time with loved ones. These activities contribute to your overall well-being.
Monitor Progress: Regularly evaluate how well you're sticking to your routine and whether you're achieving your goals. Adjust your schedule and goals as needed.
Be Patient: It takes time to fully re-establish a routine. Be patient with yourself and acknowledge that setbacks can happen. The goal is gradual progress.
Seek Accountability: Share your goals and routine with a friend or family member who can provide support and hold you accountable.
Celebrate Achievements: Celebrate your accomplishments along the way, no matter how small. Positive reinforcement can keep you motivated.
Remember that building a routine is a process, and setbacks are a natural part of it. The key is to keep going and make adjustments as needed to ensure your routine aligns with your goals and lifestyle.