Why Routine is Important for Mental Health
Over the past few years, the topic of mental health has become less taboo. This is a huge win for humans everywhere because our mental health affects EVERYTHING. You deserve to feel good, feel motivated, and conquer your goals. However, if you’re facing mental health problems, making progress on your dreams can feel totally impossible.
One way to start taking control of your mental health is to develop a healthy daily routine. A routine has a ton of psychological benefits for anyone, but especially for those overcoming mental health challenges. So, today, we’ve dedicated our post to routines for mental health. Let’s get into it:
Why Routine is Important for Mental Health
Alleviate your anxiety.
Our stress levels both center on things we can and can’t control. That means our own efforts can ease at least half the anxiety we feel. We can control things like how often we work out when we clean the house, and if we hit all of our due dates. When our life is out of control, though, the stress of “when will I get it all done” can totally overwhelm us.
Luckily, with a good routine, you can have confidence you’ll get everything done. You can take control of your days, hours, and minutes for the sake of your mental health. As your routine proves it can make you productive day after day, you’ll see some of that stress alleviated, replaced with a pattern of accomplishment. Take charge of your mental health with a great routine!
Get better rest.
Whether you’re getting poor sleep because you’re stressed about your to-do list, or you’re getting poor sleep because you have no set bedtime or wake time, a routine can help. As you get more done with an organized routine during the day, you have no reason to stay up late at night! And, if you stick to a firm bedtime and wake time, you’ll stop feeling like you’re playing catch-up and running on fumes. You’ll feel big boosts in your energy levels with a solid routine!
Maintain healthy habits.
If you want to invest in all parts of your wellness (mental, spiritual, or physical health), you need a routine. Right now, considering working out, writing, or reading every day could feel impossible. Where’s the time? Where’s the motivation?
A routine will confirm you complete your healthy habits every day. You’ll spend less time on time-sucking tasks like scrolling social media, watching TV, and just vegging out, and more time being intentional. Then, in turn, your day-to-day routine will make you feel even better with all the healthy practices you can now include in your schedule. Once you reach this point healing is just around the corner.
Feel more accomplished.
Nothing feels better than checking a box or achieving a goal. Likely, with a good routine, you’ll be more productive all around. You will complete a lot of tasks to be proud of, and this will boost your mood and motivate you for the future. Accomplish more and dream bigger! (You can check out more on this concept with Siffat Haider in her Dream Bigger Podcast!)
Keep us accountable.
A routine is like a built in accountability partner. It waits for you every day to cross off that task and move to the next. And, it anticipates a repeat cycle daily. As long as you have your routine written down somewhere, it will push you each day to be your best self—and most importantly, take care of your health!
How to Build a Good Routine
Make a routine, not a schedule.
Instead of building a daily schedule, start with a routine. What’s the difference, right? Well, a routine is an order of events accomplished throughout the day. A schedule has set times for each task. Now, having a set time for each activity isn’t a bad thing, but it’s easy to fail with that format.
An extra ten minutes spent at an appointment and then another fifteen minutes on your run suddenly set your whole day off. This can be SO stressful! A few days running behind on your routine, and you’ll give up on your new regimen. Instead, simply have a list of tasks and a loose period of time to complete them.
You may want to work out, journal, meal prep, meditate, and read as you excitedly make your new routine. But, again, success is the goal here! So, start with just a small list of tasks. Even include tasks you’re already completing like “brush your teeth” or “eat breakfast,” just to have some easy wins! But, don’t start with a long list. You’ll fail early and give up fast.
A great place to start when deciding how to build your first routine is with this ILYSM episode “A 101 Guide on Becoming a Morning Person, Creating a Morning Routine & Using Journaling for Manifestation.” Just waking up when you’re supposed to and journaling is the perfect place to begin your new journey!
Allow for change and flexibility.
Even if you start small and keep a loose routine, you still may need to change things up. That’s okay! To find a routine that works, you’ll need a few weeks of practice. Create a daily routine that works now, and reevaluate weekly to see what needs to be added, removed, or changed. Don’t feel like your efforts were fruitless if you have to switch it up! This is part of the process.
Write it down and track progress.
Track your progress somehow. It could be on any number of phone apps, on a whiteboard, or in a journal. Studies have shown that writing down your goals makes you way more likely to accomplish them. Plus, when you write your habits down, you can track your progress to see how you’re doing with your new routine!
Set goals and celebrate every win.
Set small goals that you can achieve regularly. Then, set a time each day where you sit down with your routine tracker and celebrate wins! Celebrate these wins with something that makes you happy! A snack, a night out, or even an hour in front of the TV. No shame. You’ve earned this!
Don’t give up.
No matter what, start your day new. There will be times you fail your routine. There will be tons of times you don’t check all those boxes. It’s OKAY. Just wake up the next day, and keep on going. This isn’t a competition, and the goal isn’t stress. No way. The goal is peace!
For days when you fail, Dear Media’s podcast team has got you covered. Check out “6 Steps to Reset Your Routine & Get Back on Track” from the Life with Marianna podcast! Don’t forget that resetting is an option, and you don’t need to give up forever.
More Daily Routine Podcasts:
If you’re looking for a good way to start your day, make listening to a podcast part of your daily routine. It’s a great burst of inspiration while you’re still waking up or are getting ready in the shower. Here are some daily podcasts to listen to in the morning:
You won’t be able to listen to Lauren Elizabeth every day, but she does post pretty regularly about her best and worst moods of the week! She dives into her feelings with authenticity and reliability which inspires us to be one with our emotions.
What’s more real than trying and failing at a daily routine? Victoria Garrick gives weekly advice and inspiration through conversations with real people about their failures, successes, and daily challenges.
If the regular meditation podcast isn’t your vibe with the melodramatic music and the overly spiritual language, this podcast is for you. Jackie Schimmel gives you real-world wellness advice for your daily routines.
A morning routine can reinvigorate you and restore your mental health!
Mental health struggles can keep us from accomplishing our goals and feeling well-deserved peace. A good routine can boost your mood and set you back on track to achieving your dreams. It’s tough, but with the right philosophy and task list, you’ll feel the benefits of a planned day. For more inspiration and education on mental health and routines, check out our blog and podcasts! Dear Media isn’t just a podcast hub, it’s a global support network that helps its listeners walk through life together.