What Coronavirus Is Teaching Me About Routines And Rituals
Routines and rituals have always been a big part of my life. I am naturally a laid back, let’s see how the day unfolds kind of person, but I also like to be of service, earn money and achieve things that make me proud. So I find daily routines and rituals are essential in my life to allow me to be productive.
Now, suddenly, here is Coronavirus. And all of my daily routines are thrown out the window. No need to wake early to have breakfast and spend time with my husband before work. No need to apply makeup, to prepare and practice yoga classes. My time is entirely my own. And while that does feel wonderful, it also leads to feeling a lack of direction or purpose, which will eventually lead to feelings of depression.
And that’s where the beauty of daily routines and rituals comes in. Now more than ever, the importance of setting and keeping to daily routines is brought home.
The difference between a routine and a ritual.
The difference between a routine and a ritual is in the attitude you take towards them. A routine is a set task that you do regularly to achieve something. For example:
I want to write for an hour every day to improve my skills, process some of what I’m feeling and be of service to people like you. So my routine to achieve this is to open my MacBook immediately after practising morning pages (read about that here) and write a rough draft of something for an hour before hitting the shower.
A ritual is like a routine with depth. You bring inner awareness to a ritual. For example:
I’m working on having a more abundant mindset, so I have a weekly ritual. Every Monday morning, I light a sage stick, practice a few minutes of breathwork before choosing an oracle card from Gabrielle Bernstein’s new deck Super Attractor. I take a few moments to reflect on my chosen card, then leave it sitting on top of the deck where I can see it and am reminded of it during the week. This ritual brings abundant thinking to the front of my mind.
So now that we know the difference between them, how can routines and rituals help us through this uncertain time?
A Daily Routine Will Keep You Grounded, Sane and Productive
Coronavirus has given us a world of uncertainty (literally), but it has also given us all the gift of time. And while time is the most precious gift, we are all used to having lots of things to do with our time. To be forced to stay at home, without work or socialising could lead to anxiety, restlessness, boredom and possibly depression.
Here’s where a daily routine will save you. The structure of a routine will give you boundaries and a sense of normalcy. It will help guard you against feelings of confusion and help you to stay grounded while everything is in constant change around you.
I wrote a post all about the importance of routines during self-isolation, you can read it here
Routines Will Give You a sense of purpose.
I am a chronic over-thinker. And having endless days with no prior engagements means I am free to sit and think up every scenario imaginable! But having routines, particularly around my work, does two things:
Stops my mind from doing what it does so well – overthinking
Gives me a sense of purpose as I’m still working towards my goals.
Our lives are on pause; they haven’t completely stopped. When this is all over, and it will end, all of your dreams and goals will still be there. True, they may need tweaking because we are not going back to the same world post coronavirus, but you will have goals to accomplish. So establishing routines now will help you keep moving towards your goals and dreams which will give you a sense of purpose and keep you positive.
Take something you want to accomplish and create a routine around it. For example, you may have always wanted to write a book. Now is the best time to start. You could start by thinking about when you are most creative. If you find you have more creative ideas and impulses, first thing in the morning then set up a routine that at 7 am you sit down to write for 1 hour.
Routines Will break up what seems like an endless period into manageable chunks.
Establishing daily routines will make your days much more comfortable to navigate. Your mental health will suffer if you wake up each morning and gaze into an endless stretch of time with no plans and limited human engagement. Breaking up your day into chunks will make your days manageable.
As an example, this is my daily routine:
- 6 am – Wake up, make a pot of coffee. Open my journal and practice morning pages. (Read more about this practice in this post) Write down at least three things I’m grateful for
- 7 am – Write a blog post, podcast script or work on my book
- 8 am shower, put on makeup and dress as if I’m going out.
- 8:45 am – tapping for success with Brad Yates, affirmations and breathwork.
- 9 am – healthy breakfast.
- 10 am – work on creating content for my online business, social media marketing etc
- Noon – yoga and meditation
- 1 pm – lunch and take the dog for a walk
- 2 pm – time to do whatever I want. Including Netflix and chill if that’s what I feel I need. Or reading, listening to podcasts or music.
- 3 pm – more content creation or research and writing for my book
- 5 pm – dinner prep, dog walking and family time.
Your routine doesn’t have to be complicated, it just has to work for you.
Rituals Will inspire higher thoughts and facilitate personal growth.
Coronavirus is being compared to the Spanish Flu of 1918. The world changed in many ways after that pandemic; one positive was that our modern health system was born. How do you think the world will change after this pandemic?
Whatever happens, the world will need people who have invested in themselves and can think on higher planes to help us navigate into a better future. Those of us who spend time now creating rituals to inspire higher thoughts and facilitate personal growth will be ready to serve humanity when this is all over.
At the bottom of this post, I’ve shared some links to quality people who can help you create beautiful rituals that will inspire your personal growth.
If we choose to thrive through our self-isolation and quarantines, we will be able to lend ourselves to the creation of a better world once this crisis is over.
I believe in a better future, one where we will be more empathetic as well as connected to each other. We have brighter days ahead of us, my friends if we choose them.
Resources To Help You Create Routines And Rituals
Russell Brand – uplifting content and things to make you think about how you want to show up in the world
Free Meditation – I use this app to establish a regular meditation practice. As well as meditation, there are talks and courses designed to help you reconnect with yourself, and stay calm.
My Free Meditations on Insight Timer – Yoga Nidra and guided meditation to facillitate your wellbeing.