Earlier this week, we offered a few ideas on healthy habits you can establish in your home for the coming school year. But in order to make these habits stick, you have to have a plan. One of the best ways to plan/create habits is to form a routine. In this blog, we are going to give you our top 3 tips for how to create a routine that you can stick to.
How to Create a Routine
1). Write it down.
We are creatures of habit. The more frequently we write something down, the more likely it is to stay top of mind. If you want to make it to three morning workouts each week before the kids go off to school, schedule it just like you would a meeting. If you see it daily in your calendar, you are more likely to a) think about it and b) be reminded! Another helpful tip- write your habit down on a post-it note and put it somewhere you spend a lot of time, i.e. your desk, car, or kitchen. The routine of writing something out, seeing it frequently each day, and then doing it is a great way to form (and stick to!) a new habit.
2). Set an alarm.
Let’s say that your family decided to set a bedtime during the school week of 10pm. As the year picks up, sports might start to get busy, work may start to run a little late, and you may end up sitting down for dinner at 8:30pm. Once dinner is cleaned up and everyone is showered and finishing up homework, it’s already 9:30. It can be tempting after a busy day to want to relax and catch up on whatever show you’re bingeing as a family. But one episode always turns into two, and can definitely turn into three or four. Before you know it, it’s midnight and everyone is hurting for sleep. Setting a nightly alarm alerting you to start winding down for bed, and a second alarm that it’s time for lights out can help establish that routine of getting to bed on time (at least in the beginning). As your body becomes accustomed to your new sleep routine, it will start to alert you all on its own that it’s time for bed. There will always be one-off nights due to some special event or other, but having a routine in place will help you better stick to your healthy habits even when life gets busy.
3). Be willing to say “NO!”
Life is filled with temptations. Late night parties, unhealthy food options, heck, even staying up late to binge Netflix when you know you have to wake up early. When it comes to creating a routine, you have to be willing to say, “no,” to the temptations. You can write down every workout in your planner or schedule your bedtime in your phone, but at the end of the day, you have to be committed to sticking with your routine. In order for a goal to become a habit, and for a habit to become a lifestyle, you have to have discipline and prioritize those things that matter most!
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