The Power of a Daily Routine Inspired by Leo Babauta of Zen Habits
Setting goals is a good way for anyone to figure out what they want and the best ways to achieve. When you commit to something, be it one goal or an entire week’s focus, you’re more likely to achieve success.
For many, setting short-term goals and areas of focus brings more lasting, long-term success. Small steps to big things!
A daily routine is a key component to creating habits that bring about favorable outcomes. Creating a daily routine that works isn’t easy for everyone, but once you find one that fits your lifestyle you’ll find it to be life-changing.
Here’s how to make the most out of your daily routine, inspired by Leo Babauta of ZenHabits.
1. Set Specific Focus Points (MITs – Most Important Things)
A lot of celebrated thought leaders practice their own daily routines and Leo is no stranger to the idea. He took to his blog to share the morning routine he created for himself.
Included in his schedule was time to set out his three most important things (MITs) for the day. By performing this task every morning, he was able to take small steps towards his goals daily.
“The reason I like having a morning routine is that not only does it instill a sense of purpose, peace and ritual to my day, but it ensures that I’m getting certain things done every morning … namely, my goals. I’m setting aside morning time as a time of peace and quiet, and time to take small steps each day towards my goals.”
*What are your most important things to get done at work every day or every week?
2. Share Plans With Trusted Peers
Inspiration to succeed can be found everywhere you look, but that doesn’t mean you’ll immediately take action. Something we value greatly at TalentCove is the idea of sharing what you’re up to with trusted peers. It transforms the idea of the goal into something near-term and tangible and helps you commit and be accountable to take action.
It’s something that works for Leo when he wants to turn inspiration into action. “If you just think it in your head, you’re not committed. It won’t happen. Start by getting up and telling someone near you, right now.”
And while telling someone your plans is a good first step, it is usually not enough to keep you committed. He suggests — “If you’re really committed, write it on your blog (or start one). Post it on Facebook or Twitter. Tell 100 people about it. Put money on it. Say that you’ll sing in public if you fail. Make people hold you accountable.”
When people are aware of your goals and plans, it opens up feedback loops which aid in the forming of habits and routines. Take advantage of your trusted peers.
*Who do you trust to help you succeed? Start those conversations!
3. Track Your Progress
Getting into the habit of tracking your progress on projects and goals is very beneficial. There will be an immediate sense of satisfaction seeing what you’ve accomplished in front of you. And you’ll start to build more trust in yourself, making it more painless to move forward. Leo talks about this in 36 Lessons I’ve Learned About Habits:
“ — to build trust slowly, with small promises and small victories. This takes time. But it’s arguably the most important thing you can do.”
He also often mentions how impactful tracking your progress is to establishing a productive routine. Seeing items checked off helps you maintain focus.
*You can start right now. What progress have you made on current projects?
4. Celebrate Small Wins
We all know how easy it is to get discouraged and demotivated. It happens to most people on a regular basis. That’s why tracking your progress (visibly seeing how you’re coming along on a project) and celebrating your small wins along the way is so important.
In an earlier blog post, we discussed how acknowledging small wins increases your desire to do more. Leo shares this belief, writing, “If you give yourself small successes, you’ll feel motivated to continue.”
He also talks about the value in making small changes when trying to achieve something bigger. The same enthusiasm idea can be applied here. Small changes are easier to start and maintain, making it easier to stay on track.
“[i]f you make the habit very small when you start, you are much much more likely to sustain it for longer. It’s easier to keep a small thing going than a big one. And keeping it going is what matters.”
*Take a look at the progress you track and celebrate those small wins. You deserve it!
5. Check-In With Yourself; Make Adjustments
The first time you set your daily routines, you probably won’t succeed with executing each element. And that’s ok! Keep at it and when you find yourself too frustrated, or when there are major shifts in your life, make time to sit down and adjust. Your daily routine and habits will always be a work in progress as you grow and change.
“Our minds tend to adjust over time. That’s my change process — I gradually adjust what’s normal to me.” Read Leo’s suggestions for making adjustments here.
*What habits help you achieve your goals at work? Which don’t make you feel good? Do you need to reset?
The secret to your success can be found in your daily routine. You can easily get started today!
Do you follow a daily routine? Do you have any tips for success? Share in the comments!
–Lolly Fitzpatrick, Content and Social Media Manager at TalentCove
TalentCove was founding in 2013 with the belief that individual empowerment and mobile first software will transform how employees, teams and organizations realize their full potential. Empower Yourself: Engage with peers in a safe space for support and feedback.
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