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  • Writer's pictureLex Ellis (he/she/they)

How to Create Your Daily Routine

Throughout my life, people have looked negatively on routine. Routine wasn't "cool." What was my response to this? Well, of course, I tried to be spontaneous as possible and tried to be a "roll with the punches" kind of person. What did this get me? Frankly, a lot of anxiety. I underperformed in several aspects of my life because I was worried about being judged for meeting my own needs. As an adult now and a more vocal advocate for all things to do with mental health, I can safely and proudly say that I function much better with as much routine and consistency as possible. Routine can help anxiety and disorganized minds so much. If you can anticipate what is going on around you, you're less likely to end up in a high-stress situation. This is not to say you should try to schedule every minute of your day because that's unrealistic and setting yourself up for disappointment and discouragement. However, taking daily tasks you know you have and putting them into a time frame for the day can help greatly and help you plan the rest of your day.

For example, my almost daily morning routine consists of:

  • Run the dishwasher

  • Feed my toddler

  • Sweep

  • Mop

and then I generally take a short break to decide what else needs to be done for the day.

My evening routine is:

  • Cook dinner

  • Feed the kids

  • Give medicines

  • Put the kids to bed

  • Get the dishes to the kitchen

I don't always have the energy to do a complete clean-up after getting the kids fed and to bed, but I know I'll get to it in the morning because that's my routine. Knowing what you have to do at a particular time can alleviate a ton of stress during your day. If you already know things that need to be done daily, you should set up a routine for yourself. If you can't think of what you need to do every day, try starting with a habit tracker. If you know what you're doing daily, you can organize it better, therefore eliminating the guesswork and the anxiety of being on high alert not knowing what's coming next.

After you've determined what needs to be in your particular routine, make visual routines. Make it into a list and hang it up somewhere you know you'll see it. You can set alarms or reminders on your phone also to go off daily at certain times. I need to do this to physically remind me of some things because my ADHD and various mental illnesses make the concept of time very difficult for me. Usually, after a while, your body will become used to the routine you've put together, and the sense of knowing what comes next is comforting.

Give it a try and let us know how it goes!


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