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What is your Favorite Ritual?

A ritual is an established procedure that one performs over and over to establish a habit. There are some rituals in my life that I do every day, and others that I perform each week. These rituals ground me and give me time to improve my abilities, do my best work, and gain more knowledge.

My daily rituals include a specific morning routine. I start the day studying a foreign language, followed by watching a short motivational video, then I journal, and then end this ritual with reading. I do these things in solitude…well, almost. My cat assumes that her morning ritual includes special time with me. Many mornings I find myself on the couch with a coffee cup on my left, a book in my lap, and a cat on my right shoulder. I guess cats need daily habits, too. Once my coffee cup is empty and my morning ritual complete, I am able to start my day, feeling like I gained qood, quality “me time”.

At the end of my workday, I begin my evening ritual – taking 15 minutes to wind down and prepare for the day. During this time, I clean my work station – a vital part of my ritual! Remember when you were in kindergarten and the teacher made you clean up before naptime? Well, my cleaning ritual goes something like this: I put my pens away, tidy up and organize small piles of paper, clear my desk of cups and other out-of-place items, and make a list of everything I need to do tomorrow. Once I feel adequately prepared for the next workday, I put my computer to sleep, push in my chair, and walk out the door. Sure, there are times when I have a few work tasks to do once I’m home, or a few items I mentally add to my to-do list on my drive home. However, that final 15-minute ritual allows me to be better prepared for the next day, and it helps ensure I have downtime from work without constantly worrying about what I’ve forgotten or things I still need to do.

My weekly Sunday night ritual is a little shorter, but just as important since it saves me a load of time and decision making. Have you ever wasted fifteen minutes or more standing in front of your closet, trying to decide what to wear? I alleviate this stress and wasted time by picking out my outfits every Sunday night. After checking my calendar for things I need to do, as well as consulting the weather app to make sure I dress for the temperature, I plan out every day’s attire ahead of time. I also spend Sunday evenings going over what’s going to happen for the week, making sure that I walk into work Monday morning with a clear plan.

Do you have a daily or weekly ritual? What types of things do you do to make less work for yourself?

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