Routines can be a tricky subject, especially when we’re talking about finding our balance. It can be easy to turn routines into rigidity, and that’s the last thing we want when we’re trying to find a space of ease with food and living a healthy life.
But… routines are essential for feeling less stressed and chaotic in our daily lives. Many of us don’t even realize we have routines established that keep us going in various areas of our lives… until we don’t have them anymore.
And I think that’s what a lot of us have experienced over the last couple of weeks.
We were going along our daily lives, some things were working, some things weren’t, and all of a sudden, out of our control, everything was shut down and it all fell apart.
This sent many of us into a tailspin, with work routines and school routines and wellness routines- all shaken up and leaving us feeling like we don’t know which way is up. I know I’m feeling it. I know my clients are feeling it. So I want to speak to that today. How do we establish new routines for a new season?
I think the first step is admitting that yes- we are in a new season. We can allow ourselves to remain in the hope that all of a sudden this will change and we’ll be back to normal, and that is true- but the reality is, we don’t know when that will be. So instead of fighting against it, it’s time to lean in and allow new routines to take place.
This doesn’t mean adding a bunch of new habits into an already stressful situation and hoping they’ll stick. This means bringing in the tried and true, the things we know feel good and work for us- and adjusting them to fit our new season.
I want to share five tips for creating new routines, in a new season of life- whether it be with your health and wellness, schooling, work or the like.
1. Identify what’s not working/what’s feeling off
The best place to start when establishing new routines is to get to the root of what’s not working. What feels off? What feels haphazard, and chaotic? What needs to change? Identifying what needs to change (at least what’s in our control) means we can then take action, instead of feeling paralyzed to our circumstances.
How do you feel in your health?
How is homeschool going?
How is working from home feeling?
2. Identify what IS working
Ok, so what IS working? What doesn’t need to change? Use this as positive fuel and stack on habits, if needed, for the things that aren’t working. A good example would be breakfast feels really crazy and haphazard now that you don’t have to get out of the door at any particular time, but you’ve been good about getting homeschool started. How can you have a set time for homeschool work and work backwards from homeschool time to allow for a normal daily wake-up time, clothes change time, and breakfast time? How can you add more normalcy to your daily routine so it doesn’t feel so chaotic? Can you make breakfast ahead and prep lunches while the kids are eating just like your typical school day? It doesn’t have to look totally different just because you’re at home.
What daily health habits have I kept up, and feel good (you can flip this and ask which ones you’ve let fall and it’s ok if these are serving you- like not going to the gym daily, but if you still crave movement, how can you continue that)?
What parts of work at home life feel good?
What parts of homeschool feel like they’re working?
3. Consider: how can I make positive changes that ADD to my life?
Again- we don’t want to be adding anything crazy to our routine this time, but we can add things that support us in this new season.
For example, this is probably not the time to start a new and crazy workout routine. But if you’re feeling stressed and all over the place and you’re craving alone time (speaking to myself, here)-- how can you ADD a positive change that won’t take AWAY from your life? For me, that’s taking daily lunchtime walks, after we’ve had lunch and the kids are having some free play time before the little goes down for a nap and we pick homeschool back up for our big kid, I go for a little 25-30 minute walk. It’s been cold, but I crave the fresh air and the time alone with a podcast.
How can you…
Make sure you’re feeling filled up each day
Positively manage stress and anxiety with self-care
Get more organized so life feels less chaotic
Establish new habits that serve your life NOW (a new food prep routine, that daily walk, a new way of squeezing in movement that feels right, a different work routine)
4. Manage your expectations
This is HUGE. Remember- this is ALL new, to all of us! Start with just ONE change at a time and go from there. Having huge expectations of yourself in this new season is a recipe for feeling more overwhelmed and defeated. Manage your expectations: This is a new season. One change at a time.
5. Re-evaluate when needed
Maybe most importantly, just because you’ve created new routines doesn’t mean you need to stick to them if they’re not working. Reevaluate as often as necessary- I’d suggest weekly, for now, and ask those first two questions again: what’s not working, and what IS working?. Adjust as necessary- as much as adjustment can be hard, different doesn’t need to be difficult.
Three ways I want to support you during this time:
If you have been struggling with feeling:
Overwhelmed by all the food
Not sure how to listen to your body
Worried about weight gain
Having a hard time with emotional eating
Creating new routines with your health and wellness
How to approach food in this new season
This is the course for you. In the 8-modules I take you through the exact steps I work with clients on finding freedom with food and simplifying nutrition to live a healthy, happy, whole life through mobile-friendly audio lessons and actionable workbooks for each module to use this time of social distancing for GOOD. I want you to come out of this situation feeling confident about your relationship with food and good about serving your body in a way that fits you and your life.
2. Instagram + the podcast: I’ve been sharing on stories (and saving to my highlights) almost daily, as well as weekly on my instagram stories. If you haven’t listened to podcast Episode 080 is all about Why you might be feeling crazier around food (during COVID) and Episode 081 is all about How Routines + Rituals can Support Wellness without Deprivation.
3. One-on-one coaching: Past Clients: I am offering one-off 60-minute coaching sessions to any previous clients or discovery calls. I don’t typically do this, but I know we all need a little extra support in this time. You can sign up for a session here.
Curious Clients: I am offering FREE mid-day mini support sessions over the next month. These are different than a discovery session- come with your questions and we’ll chat it out for a half an hour to help you work through some of the things that might be coming up for you during this time. Sign up for a free call here.