If you don’t know it already. I am a big routine geek and I love repetition.
Let me tell you about the three smallest things I do everyday to show you how lazy I am.
5 minutes meditation
I failed 20 minutes meditation, I even failed 10 minutes meditation, I have no excuse not to do five minutes in the morning and in the evening and it is the only thing that stuck so far. Meditation does not come easy to me. Sitting still and closing my mouth was like chinese torture to me a while ago and is still challenging. I think everyone knows how good meditation is for you, for your health, your mind, your memory, your focus, pretty much everything… It probably even saves polar bears.
Whatever you do for yourself every day, take 5 minutes and give yourself the gift of time and chill.
Nothing too complicated, I just write down three things I am grateful for every day. It could be living in a healthy body, having wonderful friends and family, or just something as simple as being able to enjoy the sun outside or the wind in my face.
If I cannot write it down, I will just think about it quickly in my head. It’s funny to realise that I had to force myself for a while and now if I don’t do it, something does not feel quite right.
Gratitude makes my mood better, improves my overall view of the world and makes me less likely to indulge in negativity or complaining. It even improves my communication with my wife and kids as we share what we are grateful for instead of just badmouthing people and moaning about our day.
Very basic health
Two glasses of water and push ups/pull ups. I tried supplements, spinach and eggs for my breakfast, or a strict workout routine every morning. I have found that I can drop all of these when I am traveling or on vacation, or basically if anything comes up... So I kept reducing it and reducing it to the things I can do anywhere, anytime. Again, I have no excuses not to do those healthy habits. Even a specific number of reps was too much as sometimes my body felt different and I did not want to work out as much every day. So my rule for exercise is the following: “enough to feel good”. Guess what ? I always can tell if it feels good or not.
So the insight for me from all these micro habits (and the others small things which create my daily routine) is that I only keep what sticks. I know that if it’s too big or too complex I will drop it. This is how I work and it is part of who I am. I don’t want my daily routine to become this sacred ritual that I can’t move away from or that I cannot skip without having a “bad day”. They are small habits that build on each other and can be dropped or added anytime and anywhere and rely only upon myself.
There is this book called The Willpower Instinct in which the author explains that eliminating excessive options and anything that depletes your willpower basically reduces the amount of decisions you have to make. The less decisions you have to make, the less effort you have to exert and the easier it is to do the things that really matter to you.
There are some days where I will have time and energy to do a full routine which is more complex and has a lot of other elements in it but I also know that I can always take 10 minutes to do the most basic version of my routine which requires very little effort.
Whatever you want to do in the morning and evening, make sure these routines work for you and don't require too much willpower so that you will enjoy doing them whatever comes up !
I am happy to discuss your daily routines or mine in more details, so let me know if you want to read more about them !
Performance coach, world traveler, tribe builder, NLP enthusiast and mnemonist. I am passionate about self-development and life changing coaching tools.
Video in French -