There’s a strange notion out there that labels people who stick to their routine rigid and boring, while those who don’t incorporate routines into their lives are seen as fun, free-spirited people. Everyone wants to be likened to the latter right? Because why would you want to live within the parameters of rules and structures when we can all be free from the creative destruction caused by routine, right? According to a new movement of innovative and successful people, the very opposite is true.
As the smoke and mirrors around routine begin to fade, more and more advocates of daily structure (particularly a morning one) are beginning to come out of their shell and tell the world how consistent habits have helped them achieve their goals, and beyond.
Because when you think about it, not having a routine – and not agreeing to fall into one as we often do naturally anyway – requires hefty planning. As Tynan, the author of Superhuman by Habit says, developing habits is an “action that you take on a repeated basis with little or no required effort or thought.” And in fact, opting for a lifestyle devoid of this requires much more energy – both physically and psychologically. Sealing a routine on a day-to-day basis means that we can spend more time focusing on well-being and on the things that make us feel good.
Of course there is no one way to make us all tick to a certain routine, and certainly, there is no one time of the day that we should all confine to. Some have found pride in their morning routine and its way to help bring calm, focus and creativity to the rest of their day. While others have mastered the art of evening repetitive habits and their capacity to bring a sound night's sleep, and thus a restorative start to the next day.
But whatever it is that makes your clock tick and your routine feel effortless, incorporating a foundation of light inside it can only serve to benefit your goals. If mornings are your kingdom then wrapping your routine around a certain light intake can help boost the positive effects it will bring to your day-to-day by kickstarting your circadian rhythms and waking up your metabolism, while giving your body a wake-up start. But if evenings are the time you flourish then light intake is equally as important. Try to organise your evening routine around warm, low-intensity light and see how it impacts the quality of your sleep.
Looking at online listicles of tips and advice for a better daily routine, it is easy to become overwhelmed by the sheer volume of various approaches. Some preach mornings are the sanctuary of healthy and successful living; others advocate afternoons and evenings might be the creative mind’s time to shine. If there’s one thing we’ve learnt from our countless research into circadian rhythms, light habits, sleep quality and energy levels in hundreds of users, is that there is no one-size fits all solution when it comes to routines — and especially when circadian rhythms are taken into the equation.
So a daily success routine simply needs to have you in it — whatever that routine means to you. But just make sure it has light in it too, and you’ll be good to go.