(Little fun fact about me...I will never NOT use a Schitts Creek gif)
I am one of those people who love a Self-Help book or Motivational book. Majority of the books will discuss the topic of a Routine and how that is one of the golden tickets to success. Some will even go so far as to say that a Morning Ritual Routine is the secret sauce to happiness. I absolutely agree that a Morning Ritual or Routine is helpful and even routines in life help to guide you along your way BUT it can also stand in our way.
Here is where I distinguish the two....I call them the Conscious Routine & Auto Pilot Routine.
This is what I believe the writers and speakers mean when the talk about a Routine. It is purposely choosing to get up early, move your body, meditate, journal, whatever it might be for you etc To me this is Mindfulness behavior, this is paying attention on purpose. The Conscious Routine allows you to step into the drivers seat of your own life and take ownership and be an active participant. It is your life after all...you need to bring that main character energy!
Auto Pilot Routine:
This is the routine you do every day without thinking. For example: You are driving to work and by the time you get there you don't remember even driving to work. This is get up, take a shower, get dressed, make coffee, go to work, go home, eat dinner, watch 2hrs of Netflix, go to bed...and repeat. This is moving through your day like a zombie. Or what some like to call "being stuck in a rut"
Staying in the Auto Pilot Routine can cause more stress because you can't seem to find a way to break out of your cycle. The saying goes "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" is a proverb that means that without time off from work, a person becomes both bored and boring. The exact origins of the phrase remain unclear, though it was recorded as early as 1659. (Wikipedia) If they knew how important play in life is then...its even more important now as stress levels are at an all time high.
If you feel like you are stuck on Auto Pilot, where do you feel you are lacking joy in your life? I choose to look at work life and personal life as something to be integrated because it is better to look at the whole person. Typically, if you are unhappy at work then you will be unhappy at home and vice versa. You need to find joy and fulfillment on both fronts.
My challenge to you is to do something that puts you outside of your comfort zone. Try something new! A Hobby, an activity, a restaurant, a coffee shop, go travel, go explore...the possibilities are endless. Do something outside of the normal day to day. Give yourself something fun and exciting to look forward to. Life deserves to be lived.
P.S. Don't forget to Breathe, relax those shoulders, release the jaw, and unfurrow the eyebrows!