One of the keys to loving yourself and living a life that’s nourishing is about being present. Science supports this. Yet, isn’t the point of having solid, remarkable routines to create a sense of efficiency? Where is the sweet-spot of routines and awareness?
Here’s why I am so passionate about routines: remarkable routines allow you to get more done with your time. You can judge their efficiency by the sheer fact that you don’t have to overthink them; you just move through them with a sense of ease. Routines support your lifestyle and your dreams.
Good, supportive routines also nourish your spirit which are routines that have become rituals of sort. This is one of the ways in which you can have routines and awareness in tiny, small moments of time.
But sometimes you need to go back to the beginning and start fresh.
Since so many of us are home all the time, it may seem as if life is on full auto-pilot mode. And this stagnancy has led to not getting things done like you want to do. This is why I remind you that sometimes, you just have to make a fresh start.
So, if you find yourself struggling? It’s the perfect time to get serious about establishing powerful routines. Routines because they allow you to use your energy in a more economical fashion. While I know that establishing good routines can be a lot of work, don’t let that stop you.
Because the oxymoron of establishing a new routine is what gets in the way of any new habit we’re trying to curate. Transforming it into something we do without overthinking.
Yet, I am well aware that there can be a shadow side to routines.
Have you ever gotten in your car to do a grocery store pick-up and you arrive without ever being entirely aware of how you got there? Or you hop in the shower and go through the familiar acts of washing and rinsing. Yet, as you are toweling off, you can’t recall shaving your legs. Or whether you used conditioner?
These are the times when the unremarkable moments of our days go beyond auto-pilot for efficiency and slip into sleep-walking through life. When your routines and awareness of your own life aren’t in sync.
While we all have instances when our brains are focusing on “Important Things” and our bodies go through the motions of washing dishes and folding clothes, sometimes those moments morph into days and weeks of living unconsciously.
For many people, those days of living unwittingly expand into weeks, months, or even years of simply going through the motions. Especially with the ways that COVID has changed our daily lives.
From the outside, it may seem as if their lives and full of happiness and run like the proverbial well-oiled machine: organized and efficient. But inside? They’re not really tuned into any part of their life. They’re just numb.
Recently I realized that while not all areas of my life were on auto-pilot. Yes, like many of you, the lack of variety to our daily lives due to COVID restrictions begin to show. And this meant I allowed myself to get out of one of my most important practices: awareness. Yes, despite knowing that awareness and presence are KEY to happiness, the sameness of our days due to all the stay-at-home orders had taken it’s toll.
I’d love to tell you that when you wake-up and realize that you crave a different way of living – and then go through the process of making conscious changes to your life – that it will stick with your forever. I’d love to tell you that the sheer power of a past decision to not accept the status quo for your life will mean that you’ll always live fully engaged.
The truth of the matter is that awareness isn’t a one-time shot of inspiration that lasts forever.
Yes, awareness is a practice. Just like yoga or writing or playing an instrument.
Though long ago I finally made peace with the little fact that “practice makes perfect” wasn’t a core truth, I have come to redefine practice as the opportunity to show up for ourselves and do the best we can in that infinitesimal space and time.
When we are going through the motions we are not showing up for ourselves. It is not doing the best we can in that space and time. It is not living life consciously, and it is not creating excellent routines to optimize our energy usage. It’s sleep-walking which means that your routines and awareness aren’t working together at all.
And when we catch ourselves in the act – be it days or months later – we tend to beat the crap out of ourselves for being so careless.
When I came to the ah-ha moment that, just like my writing – and really all areas of life – awareness and conscious living is a PRACTICE, I loosened the grip on the whip I was using to flagellate myself, and reminded myself of the truth. Because the truth is, awareness is a practice, which means that it will never be perfect.
Because awareness is a practice, it means that when I mess up or lose track, I get to start over.
And when you remember that awareness is a practice, each day we are granted an opportunity to to consciously engage in our own lives. This means that we get a fresh start. And are presented with the opportunity to choose to create and cultivate all the pieces of our daily life.
We human beings need routines that bolster the efficiency of our energy and rituals which facilitate the connection to God our and our soul. And just as we must fuel our bodies with food that satisfies our deepest source of hungers, we must also actively fuel our desires and goals.
So here’s what I’ve been reminded of: routines and awareness are good companions. Which means that you can be efficient in how you tend your life while also being fully present. To practice this, choose a routine you love – like making coffee or putting on your make-up – and be present to every step of your routine.
No, darling, living a conscious life isn’t an either / or scenario. You can have both routines and awareness in your toolbox for creating a life you love.
I fully believe that you deserve to live a life that’s full and conscious. There is no need to slip into living a life that feels numb. Or as if you’re sleep-walking through your days. And that means that in order to live a satisfying life, you can keep the good routines that make life easier. You just don’t have to forsake presence for efficiency.
When you wake-up (or re-awaken) and realize awareness isn’t a part of your lifestyle, guess what? In that instant, you are invited to stop being unaware. It’s the moment when you actively choose to engage. And be fully present here and now. This is a renewal of the practice of awareness.
You can choose to practice awareness while having the supportive structure of routines to fuel a daily life that feels nourishing.
If you want to ensure you have both routines and awareness, choose a North Star for 2024 to help you.
A Guiding Light for 2024: Discover Your Word of the Year.
- In Part One, you’ll take a look back as you Bid Farewell to 2023.
- You’re invited to look ahead to 2024and begin to breathe life into your desires as you explore Part Two.
- In Part Three, you’ll review a list of more than 1000 words and begin pondering what Word (or words) is right for YOU in 2024.
- To help you gain clarity, Part Four provides you with a series of tools to help you gain clarity around the best Word to serve as a touchstone to serve as your companion through your journey in 2024.
- In Part Five, you’ll Declare Your Word (or Words) of 2024.
I’ve also added two Bonus section to help you you create a more nourishing year.
Bonus One explores Ways to Work with Your Word of the Year. This section suggests a dozen ways to help seal your Word…and more than a dozen journal prompts to continue to check-in with your Word throughout 2024.
Bonus Two is an invitation to dive into your emotions. There, I’ll share how you can use your emotions for good. And as a path and process for creating days that are more nourished. And satisfying.
Get your FREE Copy of this powerful workbook: A Guiding Light for 2024: Discover Your Word of the Year.