How do you start your day? What things do you do to begin working? When do you transition from work to other areas of life? Rituals are habits and practices that help you transition from one area of life to another. They also help create boundaries with your time and prevent you from getting “stuck” in email all day! If we are going to escape the overwhelm, then one of the best ways to do this is to create rituals. Join me this week as I provide three steps you can take to create your own rituals.
Consider the activities you already do
You probably already have some rituals in place that you don’t even realize. For instance, you may get up and go for a walk, pray or meditate, make coffee, take a shower. When you start your workday, you may always check your email first or look at your calendar. If you have young children, you likely have some sort of a bedtime ritual. Think about those habits or practices you do every day. Which ones do you want to continue to do? Are there some that you would no longer like to do?
Create a list of activities you would like to do
These activities may be part of your New Year’s resolutions or list of goals. Perhaps you would like to create a daily habit of writing, exercising or spending quality time with those you love. You may want to find a way to transition from your workday to time with family or self care. Develop a list of daily habits or practices that you would like to do. As you review this list, consider which of these are most important and realistic for your current season.
Organize the activities into rituals
Looking at both the activities you already do and the ones you would like to do, how can you organize those to fit within different parts of your day? For instance, you may want to start your workday reviewing your biggest priorities, checking your calendar and spending time on an important project. Or you may want to start your workday checking your email for a specific amount of time and then transition to working on a big project. Consider the types of activities that give you energy, help you transition and create peace and clarity for you.
Earlier this year, I realized that I was continuing to try to do as much work as I could while I had childcare but I wasn’t transitioning my workday well. I would try to finish several tasks but did not have a good ritual for moving from my workday to my family time. When I didn’t take time to really shut down my day and prepare for the next day, I kept thinking about work – and even continuing to work – when I was trying to spend time with my family. I realized that I need to take time at the end of my workday to really shut down the work so that I could be more fully engaged with another important part of my life.
While it was difficult to stop trying to do just one more thing, I started blocking time on my calendar for 30 minutes before I knew I no longer had childcare. During this workday shut down ritual, I do the following: Review progress on my tasks for the day; prepare priorities for the next day; check my calendar for the next day; and briefly look at email. This practice has really helped me transition and create boundaries between my workday and my family time.
In my latest free resource, Escape the Overwhelm Checklist, I additional guidance on how you can create rituals. Download it here! .
So, what about you? What are you going to do to create rituals in your life?
Click here to watch the replay of my FREE Masterclass, Escape the Overwhelm.