With a new year quickly approaching, it’s great opportunity to reflect on the past 12 months. Maybe you’ve had a successful and happy year or maybe you’ve really struggled. Regardless, each new year brings a chance to improve certain areas of your life while maintaining the ones that are working. A routine can really help you in both aspects. If you’ve struggled with your routine this past year, here’s how to master it in 2020.

Make a List of Areas of Opportunity

First, start by making a list of where you’d like to improve on a day-to-day basis. Really take time to think through your day from the moment you wake up to when you go to sleep. Maybe you struggle with setting your intentions for the day or don’t feel you have enough time to focus on what’s important such as your family. Maybe you don’t sleep well and you know you could improve your nighttime routine. Alternatively, maybe you feel groggy and sluggish all day so you need to improve your morning routine. You likely already know the areas you could improve on, so just be really honest with yourself.

Find Inspiration

If you know what areas you’d like to improve but you don’t know where to start, there’s a wealth of information available on successful people and their routines. It’s important to find someone who inspires you or someone you feel like your values align with. You could even look to your coworkers or friends for advice. Ask them what their daily routine consists of, even down to what they are eating for breakfast. Spend time cultivating a list of people who’s routines inspire you so you can start brainstorming and planning your own.

Get Specific

After you’ve identified the problem area and found inspiration and examples, it’s time to get really specific. Implement different combinations so you can find out what works for you. For example, maybe you’ve really struggled with being productive at work this year. You’ve done your research on productivity and realize you actually need to plan more ‘breaks’ for yourself throughout the day.  Next, you find this recent survey about the lives of gamers that shows participants believe gaming fosters productivity and 54 percent of respondents playing online games at work. This sounds like something you’d be in to! Your next specific step would be building in that time to your day to take a break and play an online game. You would repeat this as a part of your daily routine and ultimately, become more productive. Once you get specific, you can start achieving your routine goals.

Give Yourself Grace 

Of course no one is perfect and there are so many circumstances outside of our control. Some days just don’t go as planned and your whole routine is then thrown out the window. Learn to be okay with that and give yourself grace when you need it. The important thing is that you don’t give up and you wake up the next day and aim to get back on track with your routine.

Sticking to a routine isn’t as hard as you might think and if you make it a habit in 2020, it eventually won’t feel like ‘work’, it’ll just feel right!

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