Routines are to the psychological self what a skeleton is to the biological body.
Self-help gurus like to rave about routines. For good reason: for every follower who hasn’t yet found structure, adopting even the slightest form of routine can yield dramatic improvements in one’s quality of life. The gurus deliver tangibly on their promises.
(So do religious rituals.)
(Never mind the fact that the guru themselves—as well as religion—remains an unnecessary component in the building of routines.)
To illustrate this blog post, I browsed youtube casually and found this example:
I do not personally condone this particular approach; however, it does feature elements that I now know from experience are reliably useful:
- a consistent schedule;
- hygiene of the body and mind;
- a balanced diet;
- building a list of planned achievements ahead of time;
- reflecting on how the actual achievements match the initial plan, at the end.
A secret source of social anxiety for me is how much better everyone else seems to do at building and following healthy routines than I do.
It is so hard to figure out on one’s own, on account of delayed and diffuse feedback loops. There is no reliable textbook, and so much unreliable and inconsistent junk online. I sometimes wish for an enlightened older brother, whose footsteps I could follow.